Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden
Arcadia, California
March 2008

This 127 acre was opened to the public in 1955. It showcases plants from Mediterranean climate regions of the world, arranged geographically around a 4-acre lake. There are large areas devoted to plants from Australia, Africa and South America.
The first thing you encounter on entering are the resident peafowl. You may see hear them before you see them because the peacocks are pretty noisy in their attempts to impress the peahens.

On our route, the first garden we reached was the Desert Display Garden, a small but neat garden of North American desert plants.

Next is a garden display called the 'Madagascar Spiny Forest', a planting of treacherous looking plants from this island off the coast of Africa.

As contrast, there's a greenhouse full of orchids, bromeliads and other tropicals. The greenhouse isn't large but it is packed full. The plants are beautiful but there are almost no labels to indicate what they are.

A large Australian area features Eucalyptus, Acacia and other flowering trees and shrubs. Most are mature and impressive. My favorites are the grass trees, Xanthorrhoea, which I'd never seen fully mature.

Another large area is devoted to plants from arid Africa, especially Aloes. The diversity of the Aloes is something to see, from ground-hugging rosettes to massive trees.

A prehistoric garden features a topiary dinosaur and cycads.

There are also ponds, fountains, an Asian Garden and more. Everything is well-labeled and the trails are well-marked so it's easy to find your way around. We spent three hours and didn't see it all.
To see more photos of the Los Angeles County Arboretum, click
To visit the official website of Los Angeles County Arboretum, click here.

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