The Joys of Winter
Winter provides us with our best season to do gardening chores. This also is a good time to plan your garden for 2013. Here are some local (and close-to-local) places to visit to get inspiration for your garden this year:
San Diego Botanic Garden in Encinitas offers great cultural activities for visitors of all ages, whether they are gardeners or not. Take a self-guided tour to see the fascinating botanical plant groupings, the interactive Children’s Garden and various exhibits (like Sculpture in the Garden, which is up through April 1, or Art in the Ecke Building, up through March 23). You can also participate in classes, docent programs and events.
San Diego Botanic Garden
230 Quail Gardens Drive, Encinitas
The Water Conservation Garden in El Cajon is a public garden that focuses on a fun, entertaining approach to education where the local homeowner, student or casual visitor can learn about water conservation in xeriscaping and the sustainable use of related natural resources. Classes and events provide landscaping ideas, as do free garden tours, available every Saturday.
The Water Conservation Garden
12122 Cuyamaca College Drive, W., El Cajon
Balboa Park is filled with garden ideas. You can choose to tour the Japanese Friendship Garden (above), the cactus garden, an Australian garden, a California native plant garden, a desert garden and more.
1549 El Prado
Just over the county line, on 40 acres of the historic Rancho Mission Viejo in San Juan Capistrano, is the Tree of Life Nursery. They grow more than 500 species and varieties of native California plants, and publish their availability online. Also online are a plant catalog, plant profiles, planning tools and how-to recommendations.
Tree of Life Nursery,
33201 Ortega Highway, San Juan Capistrano
Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden is the place to be if you love magnolias, roses, silk cotton trees or exotics that you can grow in your garden. Different plants are in bloom on a month-to-month basis.
Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden
301 N. Baldwin Ave., Arcadia
The Huntington Botanical Gardens contains more than 14,000 different plants in more than a dozen principal garden areas, including jungle, rose, herb, palm and subtropical gardens. Come see what’s blooming in January.
The Huntington Botanical Gardens
1151 Oxford Road, San Marino
And, just for fun, did you know that one of the best-known raptor watch sites of the country is located in this county? The Wildlife Research Institute in Ramona draws visitors from all over the world, especially on Saturdays in January and February when the watch for hawks, falcons and golden eagles is on.
Wildlife Research Institute
18030 Highland Valley Road, Ramona
Garden tip provided by:
Landscape designer Christiane Holmquist
Christiane Holmquist Landscape Designs
2523 San Vicente Road, Ramona