Close this search box.

A garden of inspiration


Two weeks ago it was snowing at my house, but not until after it sleeted for awhile. It was miserable. Or so I was told. I was fortunate enough to be enjoying gorgeous California sunshine surrounded by amazing plants. 

I have much to tell you about those plants, but first I wanted to share the detour I made to the Huntington Library and Botanical Garden. I met a couple friends there and we spent four hours exploring it all (at a very rapid pace). The gardens were spectacular and the library was fascinating.

Admittedly, we didn’t have a lot of time to soak it in, but I’m so glad I made a point to go to California a little early to see it. Unfortunately we were there at midday, so photography was a challenge. Lighting wise, these photos are nothing special, but I still wanted to share them with you to get a little taste of the beauty of the Huntington. 

Huntington Garden, roses on pergola

I generally don’t love desert gardens, but Huntington’s was stunning. You walk down into it and around serpentine paths so are enveloped in the garden. 

huntington pink desert garden

Huntington cacti desert garden

Huntington agave desert garden

huntington, hands, tree
An art installation included ornaments painted with women’s handprints.
huntington purple walk
The path to the rose garden was bursting with spring.
huntington red climbing rose
I loved these red climbing roses against the cream building with the silver foliage (which I forgot to check the name of) underplanting.
huntington ivy wall
I loved the vine-covered buildings.
huntington bamboo walkway
Transition zones help prepare you for a change in scenery. I loved this entrance to the Japanese and Chinese gardens where bamboo mingles, just a little, with flowering trees.

If there is a high point of the garden, it is surely the Japanese and Chinese gardens, which you’ve probably seen in photos many times before. It was awe-inspiring.

huntington bamboo grove
Bamboo is exotic to my eye, and I’m always stunned by the size of some bamboo stands.
huntington japanese bridge
The bridge sits at the bottom of a valley and is the first thing you see as you walk down into the garden.
huntington japanese bridge
Here’s a wider view.

huntington japanese garden statue pond horizontal

huntington japapense pond

huntington bamboo screen closeup
I couldn’t resist a detail shot of this screen on an area overlooking the lake at the Chinese garden.

You’ll have to indulge me for a moment because my penchant for garden paths once again reared its head and I was completely enamored with the painstakingly handmade paths in this area of the garden. I couldn’t get over how beautiful they were and how much work must have gone into them.

huntington walkway

pebble and slate path

This wisteria had been trained into a tree form.

Another highlight for me was the rill near the entrance.



I enjoyed the Huntington as much as I’ve ever enjoyed any garden I’ve ever been in. I’d gladly go back to soak it all in.

5 Responses

  1. When we visited the Huntington 20 years ago, I believe that bridge in the Japanese garden was red. This is such an improvement. The paths in the Ch. Garden are a good example of how different these two cultures ate and the gardens show it. Love the art piece.

  2. I am always intrigued by these dry gardens and a rill going through seems so exciting. Almost as exciting as seeing the tall bridge in the other garden. I would head straight to it and climb to the top of the bridge and look around. Love it.

  3. Thanks for sharing a bit of California sunshine. I hope to get back to Hunington Gardens someday-thinking it’s been over 30 years as I remeber pusing my oldest in his stroller throuh the spectcular gardens.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

What would you like to know? Search, or jump to categories below.