It’s almost time to open America’s private gardens once again. The Garden Conservancy’s Open Days in Pasadena will be Sunday, April 28th.
Brew a strong cup of joe, swallow down some good, healthy protein and carbs because you’ll have only six hours to stroll, peruse, smell, and enjoy six incredibly diverse private gardens.
Storrier Stearns Japanese Garden: Charles and Ellamae Storrier Stearns fell in love with Japan during their many travels to that country and, in 1935, they hired Kinzuchi Fujii to create a “stroll garden.” The hills and peaceful sounds of waterfalls; the quiet colors of large boulders placed to look like an ocean shoreline in Japan; and the exquisite, authentic teahouse as the focal point, all create the harmonious and tranquil environment traditional to Japanese gardens for centuries.
Brandstater Victorian Garden: The residence is an 1890 Victorian farmhouse, which was one of the first built in Sierra Madre. The artist owners of the house employed Lenkin Design in 2006 to create an outdoor living area that would reflect the Victorian period and also enable them to “cook, entertain, soak, and garden in a romantic Victorian cottage style.”
Wenzlau Garden: Henry Huntington’s grandson, Edwards Huntington Metcalf, built an authentic English Arts and Crafts-styled estate as the primary residence for his young bride and him. It sits less than a mile from Huntington Library and Gardens. Construction began in 1934 and the current owners restored both the house and garden in 1992. The front rose garden has 170 hybrid climbers, teas, miniature, and tea roses. On the way to the back garden, a bay laurel and a cassia tree surround a fountain and host a “charming collection of bird houses.” The back garden has an extensive collection—many of them rare varieties propagated in Japan—of azaleas, camellias, and rhododendrons.
The Iaffaldano Garden: Designed and built in 1926 by Sylvanus Marston, two landscape designers, Mark Berry and Gabriela Yariv, have put their mark on the current look of the grounds. There is elfin thyme, violets, English geraniums, and Santa Barbara daisies. The front garden also has Italian cypress, feijoas, lavender, bearded iris, and African boxwood. Citrus trees ring the back lawn’s edges with flowering Solandra maxima and bright bougainvillea. The western part of the garden sits mostly in shade, and as such the plant palette changes completely with ferns, duranta, clivia, and various varieties of liriope, thriving in the low light.
The Hogan Garden: A garden meant to be used in its entirety, rather than just admired. The garden is a result of efforts by designer Mark Bartos and the owners, and is still a work-in-progress. The chosen plant palette is minimal with the front garden utilizing a variety of roses, camellias and potted topiaries of box and dwarf olive. Two rear garden areas were designed to flow freely from the residence and from the century old barn used as the “gentleman of the house” retreat.
Merrill & Donivee Nash: Thirty years ago, Donivee Nash brought her roots of Delaware to influence the landscape design of her 1938 New England-style saltbox home. The garden has changed, grown, and evolved over time and now hosts a sycamore grove to screen the tennis court, a birch grove of Japanese anemones, a fig tree garden, an olive terrace, and a golden rain tree (Koelreuteria paniculata) that has been shading the patio for decades.
Garden Conservancy Open Days Pasadena
Sunday, April 28th, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Maps and discounted admission tickets at Arlington Garden, 9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
275 Arlington Drive off Pasadena Ave.
For information on Open Days Los Angeles, please click HERE