Historic Grapefruit Trees
Little Tokyo has two historic, 150-year-old grapefruit trees that have come to represent our community's resilience. And they still bear fruit!
There are two remaining Little Tokyo grapefruit trees from the Wolfskill Orchard, which stretched into downtown from the late 1800s to early 1900s and popularized citrus in California. Faced with new developments in 1982, JACCC and the SoCal Gardeners Association helped save and relocate our 150-year old tree from its original location behind the Amerasia bookstore (near what is now Pinkberrys) to the JACCC Noguchi Plaza. These trees have lived with us through the founding of Little Tokyo, the Japanese internment camps, and the many waves of development. They continue with us in the struggle to sustain our community amidst the many cultural, environmental, and economic changes.
Annual Historic Grapefruit Cocktail Night
Since 2016, SLT hosts an annual Historic Grapefruit Night in celebration of our two fruitful and generous trees. Our local bar Wolf & Crane created The 1884 cocktail, featuring the essence of 150 years of grapefruit history! Our past events have supported Rafu Shimpo with a subscriber drive, and Little Tokyo Community Council. We hope to see you at our next one, as soon as the grapefruits are ripe for the drinking!
In 2015, JACCC held our first art happening to honor the two historic grapefruit trees and the Aoyama tree! Featured artists included: Mme. Ikuta, Mr. Kitajima, Ms. Palter, Ikenobo, and Urasenke. Each event included Kado, Sado, and Shodo (Ikebana, Tea, and Calligraphy), celebrating the longevity and sustainable livelihood of these trees in Little Tokyo.