On June 16, Barnsdall Art Park Foundation in partnership with the Los Angeles Parks Foundation, the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks and the Department of Cultural Affairs planted 40 olive trees currently missing from the Historic Olive Grove at Barnsdall Park.
The planting and a ceremony marked the next phase of an ambitious collaborative effort to restore and sustain Barnsdall Art Park’s historic Frank Lloyd Wright-designed landscape, the cornerstone of which is the grove of olive trees that first gave Olive Hill its name back in the 1890s.
The 11.5-acre park and cultural destination includes Hollyhock House, created by Frank Lloyd Wright for Aline Barnsdall, which is Los Angeles’s only UNESCO World Heritage Site. As part of the undertaking, which began in 2021, the Olive Grove’s irrigation system was improved while the 463 existing olive trees were fully pruned and dead stumps removed, making way for the new planting to take root.
BAPF has raised and contributed $33,000 to plant and maintain 40 new olive trees, which includes two years of follow-up care, through the Los Angeles Park Forest program, created and managed by the Los Angeles Parks Foundation, whose mission is to enhance and preserve public parks for the city. Their Los Angeles Park Forest initiative adds trees to city parks to offset the carbon footprint, cool surface air temperatures, and educate the public about climate change.
“Barnsdall Art Park is a unique and priceless gem in the city of Los Angeles, and this Olive Grove Initiative is yet another reminder as to why,” said Councilmember Mitch O’Farrell in a press release. “Preserving the existing trees and propagating new, healthy olive trees into the campus’s landscape is an essential step in preserving this historically significant grove that is an essential contributor to this cultural resource we all cherish, Barnsdall Art Park, and UNESCO World Heritage Site Hollyhock House.”
A number of individuals have donated trees in honor of loved ones, including Nathan Miller, CEO of Miller Ink, in memory of his late grandmother, Harriet Miller, who worked as a Director of the Barnsdall Park Junior Art Center for many years.
Donations to help sustain the grove and Barnsdall Art Park can be made here.