In The Weeds: Fed-up La Jolla resident gets it done for City

Dave Abrams shows off the tools with which he whacked the weed farm growing on this Nautilus Avenue median.

Fed up La Jolla resident gets it done for City


Dave Abrams finally had enough of the weed farm growing in the traffic median outside his Nautilus Street home. Some of the unwanted plants had grown into three-foot trees with fruit.

On May 4, Abrams clicked into the City’s website ( to file a request to clean it up.

“Thank you for using Get It Done to report non-emergency problems to the City of San Diego,” read the e-mail he received immediately. “Your request is being processed.”

Two full months later, nothing got done.

So Abrams grabbed a pruning sheers and a scraper from his garage and got it done himself.

The weedy median, between Avenida Manana and Muirlands Vista Way, required some seven hours of squatting, bending, pulling and scraping from June 27 to June 29.

“It was pretty arduous work and I was constantly fearful of getting picked off by one of the hundreds of passing cars and trucks,” said Abrams, who is 71 years old and had both knees replaced last year.

There were a few “attaboys” and “thank-yous,” by the way. (“Not too many, but a few,” Abrams said.)

As the chair of the La Jolla Traffic & Transportation Board, Abrams has enough City contacts to have called in a personal favor, but chose not to on principal. “I didn’t ask them, to be honest,” Abrams said.

When he was finished, two standard garbage bins brimmed with weeds.

“It’s kind of an in-your-face issue,” Abrams said. “Everybody drives the streets, so everyone’s seeing (the weeds) all the time. And I’ve noticed the same situation in other parts of the City. For whatever reason, they’re not allocating resources to median maintenance and I don’t know why.

“I’m sure I’m not the only one perturbed to see this kind of crap, because it just looks terrible.”

The City’s public information officer in charge of transportation did not reply to the Light’s e-mails or voicemails — possibly due to the July 4 holiday.


EDITOR’S NOTE: As we went to press, the Light received the following letter from Ken Greenman on another citizen take-charge median cleanup that we wish to include here.
Greenman writes: “We got tired of looking at the tall weeds on the Soledad Road median, so I spent a couple of hours with shovel and rake removing them. I was able to do about 60 percent of the median, which is large. Because the median is so wide, there was no danger from traffic. I plan to return shortly and finish the job. I got some ‘thank yous’ and one ‘God Bless You’ from neighbors. If the City refuses do the job, apparently it’s up to us to do it.”