Photo By Caleb Ellis - Just a little off top: Leanne Whitehouse, 19 a theater major, checks her phone next one of the 20 palms trees scheduled to be replaced in October.
Photo By Caleb Ellis / Viking – Just a little off top: Leanne Whitehouse, 19 a theater major, checks her phone next one of the 20 palm trees scheduled to be replaced in October.

By Eliza de la Flor / Copy Editor

After enduring construction and obstructions, students at the LAC can enjoy the Front Quad, but the landscape view includes the sawed-off stumps of recently planted palm trees that several sources described as “defective.” The trees were planted near the beginning of last Spring’s semester. Several were noticed to be doing poorly soon after.

Some students are enjoying the Front Quad despite knowing that new trees signify more construction this semester. Ashley Gies, said, “I like how it looks, it’s awesome. Yeah, the dead trees bring the look down. It looks a little worse with those. But when those are gone, I know it’s going to look great.” Other students expressed some frustrations with the project. Daniel Castle, said, “They just put these trees up last semester, and this looks terrible. They did all this work and now they’re going to do it again. I think it’s pretty terrible and when it comes to the grass quality, I give them a ‘D’ for effort.”

Mark Taylor, director of public affairs, said, “The original palms were planted Jan. 22 and Feb. 1. They are under warranty. We are replacing a total of 20 palms during the month of October. All of the costs of replacing the trees will be covered by insurance so no additional bond or district funds will be required.” The contract was initially handled by CS Legacy construction company.

Adrian Vargas, purchasing agent, said he believed “irrigation issues” occurred and the trees were not being properly watered. Irrigation issues were confirmed by John Viera, project estimator at Park West Landscape, the company now handling the contract. “At each tree location, an additional irrigation head is being added. The same species, phoenix canariensis, will be replacing the removed trees,” Viera said.