7 days in So Cal makes one weak
Today is the last day of my week of Los Angeles area visits to winter gardens and I'll give you a report:
Huntington Gardens near Pasadena was a revelation - of course the roses were all pruned back (except for a nice Joseph's Coat and a few other climbers) -but I had no idea that the desert and jungle and succulent world could come up with such amazing shapes and forms! Also, I lucked into the annual camellia show there. Gorgeous forms and delicate colors, but they still don't compare with roses because they have almost no scent and what scent they have is mildly like a root vegetable. So roses rule, IMHO.
Descanso Gardens had also of course been pruned except for the climbers which 2 guys with ladders were taking care of. One Old Blush still bloomed shyly.
I visited museums and gardens but my chief joy was walking around outdoors in a T-shirt. I prefer northern Cal, because the plant life there seems more aesthetically controlled and consistent. Here, the mix of plant types, even at the Huntington, wasn't always beautiful. At least to me, with my New England eyes. But it was almost surreal, all those twisting, spouting, grotesque botanic sculptures.
So my next westward trip will probably be in 2013 and to the Bay Area
again, for the old roses.
Meanwhile, this June will be the 3rd or Leap Year for my own antique climbers. Can hardly wait!