Welcome to Christmas Tree Lane!
REQUESTING VOLUNTEERS FOR MAY 20, 2017
What: Removing the undergrowth from beneth the trees
When: May 20th, 2017, 8AM - 12 Noon
Where: Christmas Tree Lane, beginning 8AM Altadena Dr proceeding south each hour til we get to Woodbury Rd by Noon.
What to bring: Your favorite garden tool and gloves, hula hoe, regular hoe, garden rake, machette, anything good for pulling or chopping weeds.
The reason: Preserving the trees on the Lane
Oak Root Fungus (Armillaria) – According to arborists at the LA County Arboretum, the biggest threat to the Deodar trees on the Lane is the oak root fungus. The fungus infection is spreading throughout the soils in our region and will prey on any tree that is in stress. It is believed the drought and smog are stressing our over 100-year-old trees. There is nothing currently known to treat the disease, but there are things homeowners can do to minimize its impacts upon the tree. The fungus thrives in warmth and moisture. To reduce the threat to the trees, the County arborist says to avoid planting and irrigating within a five foot radius around the base of the mature trees. This area should be dry and air allowed to circulate through the soil, especially during warm weather when heat and moisture in the soil causes the fungus (when present) to thrive. The mature trees should derive all of their watering needs from subterranean sources or from surface watering outside the drip-line. The drip-line of the deodar extends to the outermost reach of it’s branches. The ominous signs that a tree has been affected is when the needle growth on the limbs and branches at the top of the tree have become denuded, or the bark on the tree trunk becomes loose and falls off. When that happens, the tree's days are numbered, and all we can do is postpone the inevitable. If your tree is showing signs of such distress, following the recommendations will postpone the day when County crews will have to remove that tree. The Lane Association will initiate the re-planting of replacement trees. Remember, It can take 20 years and more for a newly planted tree to restore value to your property, so do what you can to preserve the original one.
Our January 2017 Newsletter is now available!
Christmas Tree Lane - Behind the Scenes!
Altadena’s Christmas Tree Lane cedars are dying, but there is a last ditch effort to save them
If you'd like to to be a part of Christmas Tree Lane Association and share this historical tradition and have great fun with neighbors and friends, then please join us!
The Plant Selection Guide is available for download, which lists which trees and plants are best to plant on Santa Rosa Ave around the Deodar trees.
Christmas Tree Lane in Altadena (Santa Rosa Avenue, between Woodbury Avenue and Altadena Drive) is the oldest large-scale Christmas lighting spectacle in the United States. [Click here for directions to the Lane.]
In 1885, real estate magnate John P. Woodbury of the Woodbury Family, the founders of Altadena - planted 134 deodar trees (Cedrus deodara) as a grand mile-long driveway entrance to the mansion he would build. Woodbury's mansion was never built, but the trees thrived and the "driveway" became Santa Rosa Avenue.
In 1920, Altadena resident and department store owner Frederick C. Nash organized the first tree-lighting spectacle. In that first December when deodars were decorated with colorful lights with the goal of attracting shoppers to Nash's store, one of the most celebrated Los Angeles-area traditions was born. The Lane is recognized as the oldest large-scale outdoor Christmas display in the world, listed in the National Register of Historic Places and designated as the California State Landmark No. 990.
Every Christmas season for more than 80 years, the majestic deodars on the "Mile of Christmas Trees" are strung with 10,000 lights.
Since 1956, the tradition has been kept alive by the Christmas Tree Lane Association (CTLA), a non-profit group of volunteers that has preserved the Lane without corporate sponsors or government funding, relying only on community support. CTLA members put up the lights between October and early December, then work on taking them down from February to April. In the spring and fall, volunteers rebuild the lines, replace faulty bulbs, and clear the brush growing under the deodars.
All this hard work culminates on the second Saturday in December, when the festive lighting ceremony brings out thousands of revelers from all around the area, as well as local choirs, marching bands, solo performers, and of course - Santa Claus!