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Flowering pear trees in Kensington not that nice

Empty dirt plots in front of Ken Cinema

"Someone later informed me that the trees had some form of blight."
"Someone later informed me that the trees had some form of blight."

Those living in Kensington have been up in arms online about their neighborhood trees in the last week. Trees are falling apart, others are destroying their surroundings, and some have a contagious and deadly disease.

Those around the I-15 and Adams Avenue exit just south of the I-8 wonder why trees in front of the now-defunct Ken Cinema were removed last week.

"They're probably going to try and move the sidewalk back to put in bike lanes," opined George Light. "You would think they would stop tearing down all the trees which scrub CO2 from the atmosphere and produce oxygen."

Marlborough Drive. "It is rotten completely. Please deal with this tree."


Light's neighbor wondered if "bike racks were going in the empty dirt plots" along the Adams Avenue sidewalks.  

Anjanette U. said the tree removals were done "because the roots are destroying the sidewalk. Where folks are suing the city for broken sidewalks."

While there is no exact explanation by the city or an association published why the trees were uprooted and hauled away, Light said in a recent message to me, "Someone later informed me that the trees had some form of blight and were being removed because they were diseased." A few of Light's neighbors corroborated and took to NextDoor, saying that the removed trees were Bradford pear trees, which emit a foul odor this time of the year. The trees were part of the "63 pear trees" in sidewalk plots that flanked both sides of Adams Avenue from Interstate 15, past the Kensington sign and the theater to Aldine Drive and then to Fairmount Avenue — as reported by SD News in 2013. Even back then, the city, Kensington Garden Angels, and the Adams Avenue Business District were dealing with the Bradford trees, some of which already had the fire blight disease.  

Bradford pear trees used to be the popular landscaping option county-wide, but they have proven problematic, according to plant-based blogs. The pear trees have weak branch structures and are known to break in storms and high winds, as seen in Kensington and the rest of the county during the December and January storms. Plus, the trees rapidly reproduce and form colonies that beat out native San Diego County flora.

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This time around, instead of treating the sick trees, the collaborative group from 2013 is allegedly replacing the Bradford pear trees with magnolia trees. "They won’t be just magnolias because of what we know about monoculture," said Kensington resident Susan L. on the NextDoor app. "There will be a mix of a few trees to provide diversity of species and prevent such a pathogen (like fire blight that Bradford pears are prone to) from spreading from tree to tree. Watch for a post about the trees soon."

"Palm tree debris was causing traffic hazards/safety issues on the highly populated narrow street."


Other states have banned the selling of Bradford pear trees, which initially came from China more than 100 years ago, according to USAToday.com. TikTok influencers have also recently posted about the white flower-bearing pear trees because they are "eye-catching as spring kicks off and its blooms pop—but get close, and a whiff of its blossoms may send you running," added USAToday.com.

It's not just Bradford trees mid city occupants are concerned about.

"This is ridiculous!" exclaimed a Kensington neighbor who lives on Marlborough Drive, just three blocks southeast of the Bradford pear trees' plots. "This street tree is almost ready to fall down. It is rotten completely. Please deal with this tree. I have filed several [GetItDone] reports over the last year. You came out and put a white mark on it. Yet you have done nothing and it is a danger to people and property. Please, please, please come deal with this."

On March 21, Tom took to NextDoor and asked his Kensington neighbors, "Does anybody know why the City of San Diego no longer has Kensington scheduled for tree trimming? I checked the schedule at sandiego.gov/trees. Under the maintenance tab, you can find a link to the Fiscal Year 2023 Palm trimming schedule. All the other neighborhoods seem to be on it."

"The palm tree in front of my grandmother’s house has now caused a minimum of $4000 worth of damage," Kathryn P. added. "The sewer lines are filled with roots. I would like to chop that tree down for what it’s done to me. We have to go to the cottage to use the bathroom."

However, according to the Get It Done app, underneath the Tree Maintenance tab, they are on top of some of the Kensington tree issues. On February 15, the City assessed a palm tree situation on Kensington Drive, of which the prior rains caused the branches and bark to fall onto the street, sidewalk, and curb. "The palm trees are maintained by the City," reads the report in part, and "the debris was causing traffic hazards/safety issues on the highly populated narrow street. Skunks are hiding in the debris and possible rodents. Health and safety issue." The complaint was labeled "closed — this issue was recently resolved or repaired."

And back to the controversial fast-growing and stinky Bradford pear trees in front of the old Kensington Cinema, Judy H. clarified online that the tree-removal contractor allegedly "jumped the gun and wasn't supposed to start removing the trees this early. Neighbors from TreesKenTal and Adams Avenue Business Association complained and the work was stopped. It will start back up in the next week or two, after the new nursery stock is ready to be planted. The plan is to remove trees one day, stump, grind, and plant new trees the next day. Advance notice was to be given to both the adjacent businesses and the Garden Angels so they could remove their succulents. Much as folks would like to blame the mayor, it was a mixup on the contractor's end."  

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"Someone later informed me that the trees had some form of blight."
"Someone later informed me that the trees had some form of blight."

Those living in Kensington have been up in arms online about their neighborhood trees in the last week. Trees are falling apart, others are destroying their surroundings, and some have a contagious and deadly disease.

Those around the I-15 and Adams Avenue exit just south of the I-8 wonder why trees in front of the now-defunct Ken Cinema were removed last week.

"They're probably going to try and move the sidewalk back to put in bike lanes," opined George Light. "You would think they would stop tearing down all the trees which scrub CO2 from the atmosphere and produce oxygen."

Marlborough Drive. "It is rotten completely. Please deal with this tree."


Light's neighbor wondered if "bike racks were going in the empty dirt plots" along the Adams Avenue sidewalks.  

Anjanette U. said the tree removals were done "because the roots are destroying the sidewalk. Where folks are suing the city for broken sidewalks."

While there is no exact explanation by the city or an association published why the trees were uprooted and hauled away, Light said in a recent message to me, "Someone later informed me that the trees had some form of blight and were being removed because they were diseased." A few of Light's neighbors corroborated and took to NextDoor, saying that the removed trees were Bradford pear trees, which emit a foul odor this time of the year. The trees were part of the "63 pear trees" in sidewalk plots that flanked both sides of Adams Avenue from Interstate 15, past the Kensington sign and the theater to Aldine Drive and then to Fairmount Avenue — as reported by SD News in 2013. Even back then, the city, Kensington Garden Angels, and the Adams Avenue Business District were dealing with the Bradford trees, some of which already had the fire blight disease.  

Bradford pear trees used to be the popular landscaping option county-wide, but they have proven problematic, according to plant-based blogs. The pear trees have weak branch structures and are known to break in storms and high winds, as seen in Kensington and the rest of the county during the December and January storms. Plus, the trees rapidly reproduce and form colonies that beat out native San Diego County flora.

Sponsored
Sponsored

This time around, instead of treating the sick trees, the collaborative group from 2013 is allegedly replacing the Bradford pear trees with magnolia trees. "They won’t be just magnolias because of what we know about monoculture," said Kensington resident Susan L. on the NextDoor app. "There will be a mix of a few trees to provide diversity of species and prevent such a pathogen (like fire blight that Bradford pears are prone to) from spreading from tree to tree. Watch for a post about the trees soon."

"Palm tree debris was causing traffic hazards/safety issues on the highly populated narrow street."


Other states have banned the selling of Bradford pear trees, which initially came from China more than 100 years ago, according to USAToday.com. TikTok influencers have also recently posted about the white flower-bearing pear trees because they are "eye-catching as spring kicks off and its blooms pop—but get close, and a whiff of its blossoms may send you running," added USAToday.com.

It's not just Bradford trees mid city occupants are concerned about.

"This is ridiculous!" exclaimed a Kensington neighbor who lives on Marlborough Drive, just three blocks southeast of the Bradford pear trees' plots. "This street tree is almost ready to fall down. It is rotten completely. Please deal with this tree. I have filed several [GetItDone] reports over the last year. You came out and put a white mark on it. Yet you have done nothing and it is a danger to people and property. Please, please, please come deal with this."

On March 21, Tom took to NextDoor and asked his Kensington neighbors, "Does anybody know why the City of San Diego no longer has Kensington scheduled for tree trimming? I checked the schedule at sandiego.gov/trees. Under the maintenance tab, you can find a link to the Fiscal Year 2023 Palm trimming schedule. All the other neighborhoods seem to be on it."

"The palm tree in front of my grandmother’s house has now caused a minimum of $4000 worth of damage," Kathryn P. added. "The sewer lines are filled with roots. I would like to chop that tree down for what it’s done to me. We have to go to the cottage to use the bathroom."

However, according to the Get It Done app, underneath the Tree Maintenance tab, they are on top of some of the Kensington tree issues. On February 15, the City assessed a palm tree situation on Kensington Drive, of which the prior rains caused the branches and bark to fall onto the street, sidewalk, and curb. "The palm trees are maintained by the City," reads the report in part, and "the debris was causing traffic hazards/safety issues on the highly populated narrow street. Skunks are hiding in the debris and possible rodents. Health and safety issue." The complaint was labeled "closed — this issue was recently resolved or repaired."

And back to the controversial fast-growing and stinky Bradford pear trees in front of the old Kensington Cinema, Judy H. clarified online that the tree-removal contractor allegedly "jumped the gun and wasn't supposed to start removing the trees this early. Neighbors from TreesKenTal and Adams Avenue Business Association complained and the work was stopped. It will start back up in the next week or two, after the new nursery stock is ready to be planted. The plan is to remove trees one day, stump, grind, and plant new trees the next day. Advance notice was to be given to both the adjacent businesses and the Garden Angels so they could remove their succulents. Much as folks would like to blame the mayor, it was a mixup on the contractor's end."  

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