Monday, May 11, 2015

A visit to the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden, Part One

The Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden had been on my list for awhile. I wasn't exactly sure what to expect, but I was excited to discover what it was all about during our December 2014 trip to Southern California.

Please let me set the scene. I momentarily perched right there on that low wall (below) while I called up my plant lust partner, Patricia, to check in on things back at home. She was kindly keeping an eye on my plants. When we left Portland there was talk of an arctic outbreak, thankfully that didn't materialize. So...plants at home taken care of here I was in Arcadia, CA, with an 80 degree day ahead. It was December 23rd!

I started off with plans to keep my camera in my handbag. Just enjoy the garden, I told myself. Right. That didn't last long.

"The Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden is a unique 127-acre botanical garden and historical site located in what was the heart of the historic Rancho Santa Anita in the city of Arcadia" (source). This beauty is an Agave bovicornuta...

To be honest I'd put off posting about this visit thinking I'd take the time to organize my photos in a logical manner. No. That's not happening. I darted back and forth, here and there, with no logical reason except for when something caught my eye. This will not be an orderly post.

For an overall garden map click here. I can tell you that today we'll see the Celebration Garden, Weaver’s Garden, Garden For All Seasons, Water Conservation Garden, Desert Display Garden, Aloe Trail and Madagascar Spiny Forest...you probably won't know exactly where we are unless you're keen to what plants belong where. I avoided the Carnivorous Plants/Epiphyllum Collection and the Tropical Greenhouse/Orchids area...they were indoors and I was too thrilled to be outside and warm, in December,

There were many peacocks wandering through the garden. These were on top of shade cloth, it was a little odd to walk under these birds.

I love the notion of an Aloe Trail, especially when they're in bloom!

Oh - but I think here I might have turned back towards the Water Conservation Garden, or maybe the Desert Display Garden...

Agave tequilana 'Limeno'

I think these are Agave vilmoriniana. I'm usually pretty good at photographing labels/signage so either there wasn't much, or I was mentally just going with the "enjoy not document" mindset.

Were back on the Aloe Trial now, I think.

I've previously shared this image and the next on the plant lust blog. That little hummingbird was fearless.

And then needed a rest.

What's better than a Bismarckia nobilis? An entire forest of them...

Wait, a brief moment to admire the Aloe...

And back to the palms.

A change of scenery...

So seriously cool. For another, more knowledgeable, look at the Madagascar Spiny Forest check out the blog Piece of Eden for a post she recently did on this section of the garden. For additional (fun) reading here's a story on the Spiny Forest that appeared in Pacific Horticulture magazine (thanks to POE blog commenter Nell for the link).

I know these as Euphorbia polygona cv. 'Snowflake'

...and with that we end Part One, come back tomorrow for the, Serpent Trail/Australian Discovery Area, Bauer Lawn & Fountains, Prehistoric Forest, Balwin Lake and you know, more...

All material © 2009-2015 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

24 comments:

  1. I've been looking forward to this. So nice to see a familiar place through foreign eyes. Your pictures are marvelous making it all look so lush and gorgeous. I especially love the blue sky background. Must point out one of my favorite plants there, though. It's the Kalanchoe beharensis on the steps at the entrance on the left, huge, symmetrical and mysterious.

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    1. It felt very lush and gorgeous when I was there, of course the beautiful blue sky just added to the feel. I've never seen as large a Kalanchoe beharensis as that one, an amazing specimen!

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  2. The 'disorganised' way of featuring a place is sometimes much better as it feels more natural and spontaneous. And you're right with what you previously said on FB, Bismarckia mobilise is perhaps the most beautiful palm of all.

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    1. Thanks for making me feel better about not organizing my photos before posting them.

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  3. After reading's Hoov's posts, and now yours, I've moved the L.A. County Arboretum to the top of my must-see list for my next SoCal trip.

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    1. Yay! I think you'll love it. There's a little area with plants available for purchase too, always a nice feature.

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  4. So glad you got there; the Arboretum doesn't get quite the attention of Descanso and the Huntington. Are the Bismarkias not fabuloso?

    I'm disorganized only about 95% of the time. You do so much better.

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    1. Descanso is on my someday list, but I'm glad I went for the arboretum this trip. And I'm not buying that 95% comment!

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  5. Wow! Looks like a 4 day weekend trip is in store for next January!

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  6. Oh, what a cool place. I am going to need to go back over and over like you do, in order to see all I want to see. And are those tree-sized Pachypodiums in those Madagascar pictures?

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    1. You're going to the Arboretum Alison? Cool! And yes...pretty amazing aren't they?

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  7. We love the Arboretum. We went there on one of our first dates! We haven't been in a long time, so I'm glad to see it has recovered from the terrible wind damage that happened in December of 2011. Did you see any of the albino peacocks they have? So unusual!
    I loved the wavy lines of spines on that Snowflake. Great photo!

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    1. No albino peacocks to be seen, and what a fun date location it would be!

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  8. Don't care about documentation but sure am glad you relented and pulled out your camera.

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    1. Me too Ricki, pictures are a great souvenir.

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  9. I've loved (and saved) so many of your photos, but I don't think I've ever loved one as much as the fearless hummingbird taking a break, in silhouette. So, so fabulous.

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    1. Great complement, thanks so much!

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  10. You got great pictures! I'm always betwixt and between about which is better: LA Arboretum or The Huntington. They're both fabulous.

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    1. Oh man...as much as I loved this place the Huntington will always be #1 in my book.

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  11. Bismarckia Nobilis forest - You're killing me...so beautiful. What a treat to be somewhere warm when it's cold in our soggy PNW!

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    1. I was in heaven with that sun and heat.

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  12. I love the Madagascar´s spiny forest :)

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