Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden

After a couple of fun posts (here, here) from this garden it's time to get down to business! That means a formal post of photos from my visit to the LA County Arboretum and Botanic Garden: 127 "historical" acres near the San Gabriel Mountains in Arcadia, California.

Naturally this big bad pair of agaves at the entrance had to be photographed, I love how they appear to be crawling over the wall.

Agave gypsicola, in the Desert Display Garden.

More of the Desert Display Garden...

Agave stricta?

It had a great bloom spike whatever it was.

Echinopsis pachanoi, aka San Pedro cactus.

I feel like I rarely see Agave bracteosa in SoCal, this was a welcome exception—well unless it's actually Agave vilmoriniana, then that's more expected. They're usually easy to tell apart, but from this angle I'm not so sure.

The locals are very colorful.

Xanthorrhoea, I think I momentarily strayed into the Australian Garden...

Before wandering into this walled garden space, with its ginormous opuntia tree.

Equally ginormous cycad.

And shapely Agave 'Joe Hoak'.

Back to Australia now, one of the acacias, not sure which one as I obviously thought the blooms were more important than the foliage, can you blame me?

Brachychiton australis seed pods.

Macrozamia macleayi, a species of cycad in the Zamiaceae family.

Didn't see a name for this eucalyptus with the sweet blooms.

I was momentarily confused by the small volcanoes around the cordylines, then I realized they were piles of mulch.

Bismarckia nobilis, which hails from western and northern Madagascar.

Fruit of the Bismarckia nobilis

Now entering the Madagascar Spiny Forest!

Alluaudia procera, or Madagascar ocotillo

Pachypodium lamerei

Folotsia grandiflora

I tried to find out more about this strange creature online but came up empty.

Moving on to the Aloe Trail, Aloe 'Rooikappie'.

Aloe marlothii

Euphorbia polygona, I think?

Euphorbia polygona 'Snowflake' 

I wonder what creatures live in that curly aloe skirt?

Aloe ramosissima/Aloidendron ramosissimum

More curly skirts, on tall plants!

That sun and blue sky was so welcome in November, and we're finally getting some of that here now in late June!

Finally, a few silver Echium wildpretti I spied on my way over to the Prehistoric Forest and a bunch of aliens.

I love the skeletal ghost look of these, now I really want to leave my blooming echium in place until it achieves this level of wow.

All material © 2009-2022 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.


  1. Where is that sign (first photo)? I've never seen it before.

    That Agave gypsicola looks awesome. It's great seeing a relatively new and still obscure agave planted out in a public garden.

    Agave bracteosa vs. vilmoriniana: It's the latter.

    I love the ghostly echiums in your last photo.

    I thoroughly enjoyed this post!

    1. I don't remember exactly where that sign is, somewhere near the entrance. Because of the "light show" they had the entry all switched around and you went in a slightly different way, that might be why you haven't seen it.

  2. The Desert Display Garden looks great! I need to pay another visit - but not in summer's heat. I expect the November conditions were optimal.

  3. bracteosa never gets that big--18"x18" maybe. gypsicola, what a beauty!

    1. Hmmm, my Agave bracteosa didn't get that memo!

  4. Great photos and thanks for taking us along via your pics! And my heart just skipped a beat seeing the Gypsicola, what a stunner!

    1. So curly! It's one that I fear wouldn't like container life I may just admire it from afar.

  5. AnonymousJune 23, 2022

    The Australian garden is very appealing to me: Acacia blooms, Eucalyptus blooms and especially Brachychiton's seed pods: the urge to collect those amazing pods that may have dropped to the ground would have been difficult to control.

    1. Ha! You know me very well. I've brought back those pods from Lotusland, but didn't see any on the ground here.

  6. Very cool. A lot of those plants look other worldly especially those curly-based aloes..

    1. Indeed, another world I enjoyed visiting very much.

  7. Back in the olden days my friends and I loved to go to the arboretum to see the peacocks and to visit the lagoon at Queen Annes Cottage. Just love those Bismarkias.


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