Jacaranda Time!

Yes, it is that time of year when the city goes purple. Or lavender.

jacarandas on USC campus

The jacaranda trees go crazy for a while. There are stretches of several blocks long, jacarandas on Hoover Streetwhich are just lovely, all around the city. The two photos here are in the USC area. One is of a tree on campus, and the other shows a part of the lovely stretch running along Hoover from Adams to the 10 highway. There’s already a purple rain of blossoms on the ground under the trees, and as you walk under them you try to avoid crushing them, but it’ll be futile in a few days, as the ground will be covered with them. Fleetingly sad, but then you remember that they’ll be back next year, all crisp and fresh…

It’s quite marvellous that there are vistas similar to this all around the city. The purple city.

It’s interesting to note, to my surprise, that I did a post featuring jacarandas precisely this date last year. Evidently I have a very finely tuned internal clock that is in sync with the seasons of Los Angeles. One thing I am happy to not to have to repeat is a sequence of posts about the fire raging in nearby Griffith Park. Today is the first anniversary, and what a terrible evening that was. (On the plus side, I met one of my neighbours while we were both in the street staring at the fire, horrified, and we’ve stayed in touch ever since.) It’ll take so long for the park to recover, but I am glad to see that it is looking relatively healthy in the burn areas already. Of course, the real test will be when the true dry periods come and all the light green and yellow shrivel away.

Well, even though I have not given the final exam for my course yet (as I did when I did the Jacaranda post last year), I can feel the transition to my Summer phase happening. I’m thinking more about research, planning new projects, and getting much more rose thorn scratches on my hands and dirt under my fingernails. It’s so good to see the Summer again…


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5 Responses to Jacaranda Time!

  1. Robert says:

    Thanks for posting these pictures, Clifford. I don’t remember seeing any trees so abundently lavender in Philadelphia as your Jacarandas; some lavender bushes must be hiding somewhere here. Fortunately we have enough white, pink, red, magenta, yellow, purple (wild ground violets, I think), and ultimately green to keep me sensually alive in a natural way, Also glad you don’t have to report on nearby fires; still remember my horror over the CNN reports last year. Hoping for a happy recovery. Happy summer.

  2. gigi says:

    Hi Clifford,
    I’m sure you spotted the LA Times article on the lovely (but messy) jacarandas…

  3. Sara T. says:

    Aren’t they just THE BEST?? When we came to USC in May 2004 to look for housing, the jacarandas were all in bloom!
    I love their companion ground level plants, agapanthus/Egyptian lillies, that bloom about the same time.
    I think of them together as “Commencement Blooms” since they usually come out about now.
    One of the floral treats of SoCal!

  4. Clifford says:

    gigi – thanks!

    Sara T. – Yes, those lilies are lovely too, aren’t they?


  5. I love the little blue flowers, wish to use those to my bouquets…