Sasanqua camellias, glorious roses, and colorful fall foliage mark autumn at the Descanso Gardens. Ordinarily, it costs $9 per person to visit this paradise, but here's a little known secret that isn't even noted on their website: admission is free every third Tuesday of the month!
The stunning Descanso Gardens have something for everyone. The Camellia Collection is North America's largest camellia collection and blooms from early fall through spring. Gaze at some of the centuries old Coast Live Oak trees in the Oak Forest left over from the woods that once covered the area. The California Garden showcases native plants from - where else? - California! Inhale the perfume of the 5-acre Rose Garden, where there are more than 3,000 roses from around the world. Stroll across the bridge in the delightful Japanese Garden, and follow a path along the koi-filled stream to the Full Moon Tea House, which is only open in the summer. Tempt your taste buds at Nature's Table, an edible garden bursting with fruit trees, seasonal veggies, herbs and edible flowers. Come mid-March, the Lilac Garden blossoms with 250 different types of lilacs.
Aside from the gardens, there are other earthly delights. Take a trip back in time at the Boddy House, a a 12,000-square-foot, two story, 22-room mansion built by E. Manchester Boddy, founder of Descanso Gardens. Visit the Sturt Haaga Gallery, where ELEMENTAL: Of the Earth is currently on display through November 24, 2013. Kids will love the Enchanted Railroad, a 1/8th replica of a diesel train that chugs across a section of the Gardens near the Promenade.
Descanso Gardens - monthly free day
Third Tuesday of the month:
October 15, November 19, December 17
1418 Descanso Drive
La Cañada Flintridge 91011
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