Field Trip: Arlington Gardens, Pasadena

During the Garden Writers Association Symposium in September, bus loads of eager gardenerds stepped off to visit Arlington Gardens, an historic site in Pasadena, CA. It is “Pasadena’s only designated public garden designed to demonstrate sustainable water-wise gardening in a Mediterranean climate.” Boy, did it live up to that claim. In the middle of our drought, this garden was lush and thriving. Enjoy these photos, and then plan your visit.

Coming through the gates of the garden, you're greeted by lavender and olive trees.

Coming through the gates of the garden, you’re greeted by lavender and olive trees.

This is the house that used to be on the property. It was razed when the family sold it off.

This is the Durand house that used to be on the property at the turn of the 20th century. It was razed when the family sold it off in pieces in 1960.

A pomegranate tree lines up with olive trees in this Mediterranean garden

A pomegranate tree lines up with olive & California sycamore trees in this Mediterranean garden.

One of several Pomegranate trees on the property.

One of several Pomegranate trees on the property.

What a great use for a fountain in a drought!

What a great use for a fountain in a drought!

A pomegranate stain glass window decorates a seating area

A pomegranate stain glass window decorates a trellis above a seating area. There are seating areas tucked into every corner of the property.

Walking around to the different “rooms” in the garden, we came upon several trees with notes hanging from the branches.

Wishes on the tree.

Wishes on the tree.

The Wish Trees Garden, a beautiful and heartfelt addition to the garden.

The Wish Trees Garden, a beautiful and heartfelt addition to the garden.

Many wishes were profound and universal.

Many wishes were profound and universal.

Not just wishes, but collages.

Not just wishes, but collages.

Our favorite spot: The keyhole garden with a water wand sculpture in the center. Genius!

Our favorite spot: The keyhole garden with a water wand sculpture in the center. Genius!

The keyhole garden grabbed our attention mainly because of the centerpiece sculpture using water wands. We could have stayed here all day smelling leaves of all the beautiful sages planted in the garden.

The meadow garden leads to 2 Adirondack chairs in a field of grasses.

The meadow garden leads to 2 Adirondack chairs in a field of grasses.

The labyrinth is watched over by an ancient California pepper tree.

The labyrinth is watched over by an ancient California pepper tree.

Thoughtfulness is encouraged at Arlington Gardens. The space is divided into 35 "rooms" to allow for quiet contemplation.

Thoughtfulness is encouraged at Arlington Gardens. The space is divided into 35 “rooms” to allow for quiet contemplation.

In memory of orchards that once occupied acres of land, the designers created a small citrus orchard, from which comes their famous marmalade.

In memory of orchards that once occupied acres of land, the designers created a small citrus orchard, from which comes their famous marmalade.

Famous for its marmalade, Arlington Gardens showcases treats from its orchards.

Famous for its marmalade, Arlington Gardens showcases treats from its orchards.

When we first arrived, the host volunteers had plated up some marmalade for us to sample; a keen trick to ensure a customer at the end. Yours truly left with a jar in hand. I don’t even like marmalade, and I enjoyed this stuff! The marmalade is one of the main ways the Garden raises funds to keep going. So if you visit, please pick up a jar.

For more information about visiting Arlington Gardens, check out their website at ArlingtonGardeninPasadena.org.

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