L.A. Palms, 2018

The palm tree, though resembling a tree, aligns more with grass botanically. In California, these non-native palms thrive predominantly in Southern regions like Palm Springs and Baja's mountains. Despite their prominence symbolizing luxury and adorning streets from San Diego to Santa Barbara, they're not exclusive to the South; Northern areas like San Francisco and Napa Valley also boast their presence, adding allure and value to properties. These palms, notably the Mexican fan palm, now iconic in media and culture, once seemed excessive but have become synonymous with wealth, influencing everything from branding to Instagram posts. Yet, amid their elegance, some struggle to retain allure, juxtaposed between strip-mall lots and freeways while others, like an aged landmark in Exposition Park, witness the ebb and flow of societal change. Regardless of the neighborhood, if it's in California, a palm tree will likely stand witness to its transformation. Originally published in Garrett Leight - Spectacle Magazine.