Blooming Rose

Blooming Rose

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

It's Lilac Time

A few days ago a friend and I visited Descanso Gardens. We decided to go at this time
because the lilacs are in full bloom and we just can’t resist them.  Walking into the lilac
garden transports you to another world. The scent is heavenly and the varieties many.
I am always amazed at the different shades of the lilacs. From a deep purple to
lavender to white and every shade in between.

The gardens were started in 1937 when Mr. Boddy, who was the publisher of the
Los Angeles Daily News, bought the property. His 22 room mansion is also open to
the public and provides an interesting history. He named the property Rancho Del Descanso
which means “Ranch of Rest”. One visit and it’s clear that “Ranch of Rest” is the perfect

We actually started our visit walking through the many various varieties of flowers and
then went to the rose gardens. They were just beginning to bloom but there were
enough roses open and flowering that one’s imagination could picture the arbors covered
with their glorious blooms. This only means that we will have to make another visit to
the rose gardens in a few weeks when the roses are in full glory.  I guess my roses at home
are ahead of schedule!

We walked on through the oak tree forest, past the little waterfall and ponds populated by
Koi and ducks. And past the bird observation which was built in conjunction with the
Audubon Society. We will visit that on our next trip.

We hiked up through the camellias (like a forest)until we reached the Boddy House.
Outside of this mansion is a wedding arbor where ceremonies are performed on a regular
basis. It is surrounded with lovely flowers and tall trees. You can almost imagine a beautiful
bride and groom exchanging their vows.

We went through the Boddy mansion and slowly made our way toward the
Japanese Garden.

Approaching the Japanese Garden and Full Moon Tea House is a stream with Koi
swimming and a very picturesque Shinto Bridge surrounded by plants and flowers
native to Japan. It is a beautiful and popular sight.  There is a sand garden and a rock
garden as well as Japanese sculptures.

By now our main destination was within reach...we headed toward the beautiful lilacs
and took our time to absorb and enjoy their beauty...well, how could you not take
your time?  They are exquisite and the scent is intoxicating.

Several movies were filmed here including Memoirs of a Geisha, Legally Blonde,
America’s Sweetheart and many more, as well as tv commercials. The day we visited,
the garden was celebrating Earth day. The children came dressed as little flower ballerinas.
There is also an Enchanted Railroad train that one can ride through different parts of the
gardens. Children especially love this.

It was a beautiful and peaceful day.  The Earth must have been pleased.

1 comment:

Lynda said...

The gardens sound wonderful. I would love go for my birthday in May. I wonder if the lilacs will still be blooming? I would especially love to see the rose gardens. Thank you for writing about these gardens.