Sunsets won’t be the same without this Silver Lake palm tree

Silver Lake resident Kevin W. FitzMaurice was an admirer of the lonely palm tree (pictured above last September) that rose across the street from him in the 800 block of Hyperion Avenue. This morning workers arrived to chop down “my palm tree”, said FitzMaurice via email:

“Dammit! They’re out there cutting down my palm tree across the street! This is happening NOW on the 800 block of Hyperion Avenue in Silver Lake, south of Sunset Boulevard. This is to make way for constructing a two-story building in the front yard of the house there, eliminating the yard! … Such a loss!”

Photo by Kevin W. FitzMaurice


  1. We don’t need no stinking trees! There’s land to develop!

  2. It’s not “your” palm tree unless you were the one paying a tree trimmer $100 every few years to maintain it. Clearly, you don’t have a yard yourself.

  3. Then I guess it is my tree. It is the city’s street tree at my location, and tree trimming is done by the city with my tax dollars.

  4. OMG I had the same reaction, neighbor. It was sad to see the guy up there cutting it down this morning. and, it seems there will be many more loud annoying sounds to come; and just after the other house mega-construction got finished. yuck.

  5. “This is to make way for constructing a two-story building in the front yard of the house there, eliminating the yard!”

    @Kevin- Your post did not say the tree was on the street – it read as though the tree was in your neighbor’s yard.

  6. Libertad: the point is unimportant. The tree is lost no matter whose it is — and that is a crying shame, more lost beauty, which means that much more uglification of Los Angeles. The Neighborhood Council, in giving the OK to take it down, indicated they saw no value in it, didn’t see any beauty in a tree. They must have been out sick in Third Grade the day the Robert Frost poem was the lesson.

  7. i’m a big tree fan, but didn’t they pass a law last year where all of the palms are supposed to come down if the city owns them (they pose a hazard apparently).

  8. No, the law did not call for palms to come down. It merely said the city would not plant any new ones along the streets — and it applied strictly to fan palms. Not because of a hazard; because they decided they preferred trees that offer more shade. Other types of palms than the fan palms are still OK, such as the date palms. But that ordinance did not call for any palms to be taken down, only that the would not be replaced by fan palms if they did come down.

  9. Kevin! It’s your tree because you cared enough to take that beautiful photo of it! I’m sure it was a wonderful part of your day, and I know how you feel seeing it cut down. Several years ago, the owner of a vacant lot next door to me (in Silver Lake) cut down 3 beautiful stately Eucalyptus trees that I had planted 10 years before. It was a tearful day when I heard the noise of the chainsaws and saw the trees fall.

  10. thanks Kevin for that clarification. now if they would only consider a law against stucco.

  11. Well, thank you Sandy. And you clearly understand the loss. You kind of hit the mark. And as I said, it isn’t important whose tree it is, it is just as much a loss nonetheless.

  12. Kevin,

    Your picture is beautiful. And I am with you on the value and importance of that tree. Terrible loss. Shame. Shame. Shame.

  13. Kevin, now that we have acknowledged the semantics, I agree with you that the loss of the tree is a shame. However, I humbly suggest that instead of beating our collective chests we take action by planting a tree. This past year I have planted 3 trees. If every poster commenting here planted a tree then some good will have come from this destruction!

    Also, the SLNC meets the first Wed. of the month (July 7th) I suggest going down to the Micheltorena School and giving them a piece of your mind in person to prevent a repeat of their idiotic decision.

  14. Cockroaches live in palm trees… (shudder!)

  15. Just FYI, I did speak out against the variance for this project, partly complaining about the loss of the tree (but also about the reduced setback they sought). I even presented them this picture to show what they were allowing to be lost.

    This is actually not one of the worst projects around this street. This Neighborhood Council has approved some seriously shocking projects on this street — in one providing a variance to provide for more units than the zoning allowed on the lot, providing for 12 three-story units each the width of a trailer and reducing the setback on all sides, in the front to a mere 5 feet, to provide space for the extra units! I was vociferous in opposition to that — to no avail.

    This neighborhood council time and again — on my street and around the neighborhood — seems to have no problem with horrible development.

  16. So one of the many palm trees in Southern California is gone…
    …GET OVER IT!!!

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