More On The Huntington Garden

Having negotiated the Desert Garden with rare relish – what an amazingly creative set-up – my daughter and I then proceeded to the next exhibits…..specifically the totally contrasting Lily Ponds. Here is a “jungle lush” view of our approach…..

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Once again, the entire Gardens are simply World Class edifices. I just feel and felt then so lucky to be able to take part in all this incredible landscaping. This is pretty much the best in the galaxy.


Later, we pass by the Australian Garden section, rife with Eucalyptus and these guys….. This is where Hummingbirds go to retire.

Flowers are the primary attractions here…..with some Eucalyptus trees, of course. I am so jaded now towards Eucalyptus, I didn’t even bother taking pictures. That was actually a mistake because the bark and trunks congregated there were richly-colored.

Guess where this leads…….


This spot is on the march between the Aussie Garden and the splendid Japanese Garden, of course. It was yet another present for the senses and featured some absolutely amazing Bonzai plants which made me wonder at the ratings these plants would receive in comparison with absolutely any others. I mean, I just suspected these were also some of the best Bonzai examples in the world. Incredible stuff!

Here’s today’s Daily Double worth a billion – I was really beginning to believe these guys knew what they were doing.

The Japanese Garden was closed for a year or so as they remade a water feature and added some features. Indeed, it had just been opened for a couple weeks before our visit. This is a real sweet Japanese Garden.

I rate the Water Feature a total success……with a perfectly bubbling sound and the absolutely correct flow rate.

As always in Japanese Gardens, we get to witness the changing patterns in the sand or stones lavished daily for our pleasure. More minimalist, gorgeous lines soothe our souls as we connect with the purpose of this combination of Man and Nature.

We then cut through a grove of Camelias which were almost spent by this date. But what was even cooler were the hardy orchids which so adore life under the canopy between the Japanese garden and The Chinese Garden.

Here are the beginnings of the canopy, complete with some Camelias:

And here are the orchids along the paths……


Cool stuff………….and now our Favorite

The Chinese Garden……..note the ham welcoming committee. These guys even supply gorgeous models!

I now consider myself somewhat of an expert on Chinese gardens, having worked on the actual construction of the Portland, Oregon Chinese garden personally. I rate this version as near-equal. This is simply a phenomenal place, no if’s and’s or but’s. It’s simply just as good as it gets.

Walk with us…..

As always, the gorgeous foot-massaging pebbled walkways are the eye candy that ties it all together.

Hide the women and children!  😉

The consistent fascination Chinese Gardens illustrate for windows and the Feng Shui aspects of peeks into another dimension never fails to please.

What a wonderful place. Alena and I both offered that the Chinese Garden was out favorite spot on the entire Huntington’s grounds. This is a stunningly beautiful garden.


Oh yeah – and a great beautiful Mahonia, too.

And, finally, a beautiful bridge.

Next, I’ll finish Huntington up.

The West Coast Journey – Huntington Library and Gardens

Eventually, maybe sooner rather than later, I’m going to split off a different blog  for strictly personal stuff. My days have been so loaded with friendship, communion among old friends and family and the more serious issues of life, they have nearly overwhelmed my more technical pleasures in presenting landscape-specific posts, information and results. As it is, I guess I’ll just punctuate things with a few examples of some of the ridiculously arresting places I managed to see and capture on digital film. In fact, today will be rather easy.

This comes later……..after the Desert.

Below, we’re munching on breakfast at a place famous for its French Toast on a bread they manufacture – more like a roll. Good Lord, there’s a reason for the fame. Here we eat beside the barking seals up the beach in La Jolla in the San Diego area. I regret I’ve forgotten the name of the gorgeous seaside restaurant, but they do a bang up business anyway….plus, its setting is totally unique. I bet Alice Joyce knows this one.

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Today it’s the Huntington Garden and Library, in beautiful downtown Pasadena, California. I had long heard about it, specifically from James at Lost In The Landscape. I had made up my mind that if I ever got there, I’d check this garden out.


The literal forests of Cactus were extremely gorgeous, busy and arresting.

It was a total thrill, seeing these as we approached, but my delight was just beginning. Famous for its rare and exotic species, collected for nearly 100 years and tended to by true experts, the Huntington’s Desert Garden display is absurdly rich in impractical colors, made even more rare and other-worldly by the electrifying vividness of the blooms.

The Cactus above features a bloom so bright Yellow, it’s as if it creates its own Sun – from inside!

Below, these apparently “Interstellar/Transgalactic” Yucca’s provide us with colors we cannot find in ordinary gardens, certainly not in such combinations.

Looking magnificent comes easy to these guys – the entire lot of them.

Once again, the “artful arrangements”.

There is some amazing material to work with, no less…..

There are also some beautiful accidents    😉

This gorgeous area below looks like something of a transition between the Desert Garden theme and the Japanese Garden. I really dig the blue color – it’s like this air conditioner for the eyes. Plus, the layout is minimalist and tight for that.


Some very unusual individual cactii…….

Silver Jade Plant below.


Beautiful stuff all over