One of La Jolla Village’s more than 100-year-old eucalyptus trees removed on Ivanhoe Avenue

By Pat Sherman

One of the few, original eucalyptus trees planted in La Jolla Village by land speculators and La Jolla founding fathers Frank Botsford and George Heald was removed Monday afternoon, March 18.

Botsford and Heald planted some 2,000 trees, including eucalyptus, pine, cedar and palm, shortly after laying out the initial La Jolla Park subdivision in 1887, according to an article by La Jolla Historical Society historian Carol Olten.

Another of the duo’s now more than 100-year-old eucalyptus trees still stands across Ivanhoe Avenue, a reminder of their gift to the Village. Because La Jolla’s water supply was scarce at the time, many of their original plantings perished shortly after they were planted, though the eucalyptus thrived, according to Olten.

Though beautiful to behold, the towering, majestic trees pose a public threat. Several of the old trees in La Jolla and elsewhere in San Diego have either fallen over or lost limbs, causing injury to property and people. Trees have fallen in front of the Wall Street post office and by Mary, Star of the Sea Catholic Church (the latter crushing a car).

Property owner and La Jolla resident Horacio Valeiras told the

La Jolla Light

the city has approved replacing the eucalyptus with two other trees, of an as-yet-undetermined species.

The tree stood at 7835 Ivanhoe Ave., the former site of Harman Realtors (now located on Herschel Avenue). Valeiras is remodeling the two-story, 1981 office building to open the interior space and alter the front and rear facades. The remodel should be complete and replacement trees planted sometime this summer, Valeiras said.