Downtown L.A. Goes from Gray to Green

What’s better than a tree planting to beautify downtown L.A.? Many tree plantings to beautify downtown L.A.!

TreePeople Citizen Forester Gabrielle Newmark rallied her downtown Los Angeles Arts District community to plant 27 trees—including well-adapted Australian willows and pink trumpet trees—on April 27. Enthusiastic volunteers named each tree so that now Hector, Blossom, Roscoe, Ilean, Bob Barker, and the rest are happily installed and on their way to shading the city streets.

Gabrielle knew she was following the lead of some pioneering greening efforts that had begun making a difference in this gray and gritty part of town. What she didn’t know was that the trees growing nearby were the work of past TreePeople Citizen Forester Durian Steinberg. Thanks to him, as well as local developer Yuval Bar-Zemer, there are now more than 100 trees gracing and greening this part of downtown.

Because of her Citizen Forestry work, Gabrielle has received funding from the Historic Cultural Neighborhood Council to begin work on an Arts District Master Tree Plan.

The commitment of Citizen Foresters is coloring the Arts District greener and greener.


Photo: Laura Velkei

By Lisa Cahill

Lisa Cahill first began her work with TreePeople as a volunteer Citizen Forester. She currently serves on the board of directors for the reDiscover Center, continues to volunteer as a Citizen Forester, has been on the Mar Vista Green Garden Tour and serves on several green committees at her church and children's schools. She most enjoys working in the garden with her husband, watching her children and vegetables grow.