Return to the Perennials Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Posted by denisez10 SoCal (My Page) on
Wed, Apr 9, 08 at 23:26

Excuse the poor photo quality, but I hope you get a flavor of this amazing place. These ranchos are scattered throughout the urban areas of So. Cal., and the main visitors seem to be school children on field trips. I've been to this rancho only twice before, just have become aware of it in the past few years, and it's about 15 mins from my house, tucked in near the State University. Except for checking in with the docents in the office, I've basically wandered these grounds by myself every time I go. There's a definite time-machine quality to this place. And it's completely free. And, Kathy, they have some reissued Bauer pottery in the gift shop.

It all started because of this Moreton Bay Fig tree, a patriarch of a tree. I saw a historical photo of it while working at a law firm recently, which got me excited about seeing it again and possibly getting a good photo of it, so I asked Mitch to come along and take a photo of it for me. You can see his camera near the base of the tree:

Photobucket

While Mitch set up the photo --

Photobucket

-- I wandered off into the rose garden:

Photobucket

-- where I was stunned to find a wall of climbing roses in bloom of the golden tea/noisette tribe. I had to confirm my suspicions on rose provenance, so I raced off back to the docents in the office to inquire about names, which no one knew, books were consulted, I was embarrassed to cause such commotion in an otherwise tranquil afternoon, close to closing time, but a woman was produced who pronounced (in a British accent) the rose garden had been restored by Clair Martin of the Huntington Rose Garden in 1996, and the two golden roses were indeed tea/noisettes Reve d'Or and Climbing Lady Hillingdon, the latter which I've long wanted to grow. The red in the middle is Talisman, no longer available:

Photobucket

There are many quiet places to sit and contemplate the lush greenery, such as these spots:

Photobucket

Photobucket

Photobucket

Here's a closeup of Solana maxima, the cup-of-gold vine, which was espaliered against one of the low buildings in a little courtyard, just starting to bloom. This vine gets huge. Pretty sure this guy is bat pollinated:

Photobucket

What's so enchanting about this place is the curators have resisted the impulse to jazz it up with fancy hardscape but have left it in its original simplicity. There were signs of alterations, with a new deck being built, and an old clay tennis court straight out of The Great Gatsby was being dismantled. Workers were busy building something in its place, I know not what, but it was right next to a small succulent/cactus garden, with a rather massive specimen agave:

Photobucket

and this huge tree-like euphorbia:

Photobucket

We purposely arrived late to catch the photographic "magic" hour, so closing time was swiftly upon us, and there was no chance to explore main house or the working part of the rancho, the corrals and barns with farm animals and the magnificent white horse, the breed of which Chelone would know, just a massive draft beast of some sort. And then it was a short drive out of the rancho back into the city, a quick look out the window to see it swallowed up by housing developments, as tho it was just a dream.

Here is a link that might be useful: more Rancho info


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Gasp.

Stunning photos Denise. What an area you live in. I'm not usually up this late, and that was just the soothing trip I needed. Thank you for sharing!


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Oh my, this is just beautiful! Thank you for posting these photos. And we get a 'bum' shot! We haven't had one in a while. LOL

Jerri


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

The agave photo is spectacular! The shadows cast on itself really make it interesting....I want to frame it and look at it everyday!

I think I am learning that the reason I don't like roses is because they belong in CA :)

What a magical Spring trip. Thank you!

Saucy


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Proof that GaHdens need not be about blooms only, but require bark, texture, color...
Lovely start to my day!


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

What a pleasure to see this morning!


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Wow, wow, wow! Thanks so much Denise for posting these marvelous pic of a beautiful spot. Wonderful! I love them all but especially that fig tree and massive agave.

Deanne


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Boy, Denise -- what eye candy treat. I second 'bug's comments....

This would make me excited to move to California (assuming I could find some dirt to rent/buy to play in) --

Thanks for taking the time and thinking of us challenged for spring folks.

--Cindy


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Awesome! You are very lucky to have such a beautiful garden so close to home. Thanks for sharing, it was a great way to start the day.

Michelle


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Trying to find the words .....

That someone I "know" was actually in a place that looks like that is amazing to me! "Only in the movies" for this New Englander :-) Fantastic!!

Martie


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

so nice to have you all along!


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Denise, I love this tour. Thank you. Sorry I am late getting to it. It has been a strange day here.
That tree-like Euphorbia is something else! So is the fig tree.


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Denise, The sculpture effect of the fig tree is so neat. I can't wait to see Mitch's take on it. I am going to explore your link to learn more about the rancho. I'm with Saucy, CA must be the place to grow roses. They just don't look like that here. Norma


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Ah Denise , what a slice of 'home' for me ! I have never been to or even heard of this garden ! Is it near UCLB ? When I was a San Diegan back in the olden days we enjoyed the Moreton Bay Figs in Balboa Park, and I'm sure you've seen that gigando speciman in Santa Barbara , just off 101.
And I absolutely have wanted Lady Hillingdon for quite some time, and hope she will be duly installed in the PNW if I ever get there !

Thanks for posting these totally FF pics...

Kathy in Napa


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Yes, Kathy's it's practically on site at Long Beach State. I've grown the non-climbing Lady Hill but never the climber, which I'd definitely make room for.

Norma, get a load of what this photographer has done with the tree:

Here is a link that might be useful: more tree photos


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

I also see 'movie set' in some of your photos denise..lol. Really I want to sit down in those wicker chairs and breathe in some fragrant tropical plant floating in the air. Thanks so much for sharing your photos. :-)

pm2


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

How big is the Agave? (how many "hands", lol)

The MBFT is terrific. In my area, trees with that sort of sculptural aspect are few and far between. Usually, they are weeping Beeches. Your photos reminded me of "The Little Prince" and the Baobab.

I love that there are plants that are bat pollinated (sorry Saucy). One of the the things I most love is watching for bats in the twilight skies. This is about the right time to begin the watch.

Roses. I'm too lazy to deal with them. They're pest attractants here... fungus, insects, all manner of blight... I have a New Dawn that is too hardy and too appealing to nasty little worms. The jury is still out, but they sure are pretty.

What amazes me more than anything, Denise, is how different the whole "feeling" is from New England. And how much I loved your tour. Thanks.


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

One of Mitch's images, with the screened-in porch of the main house to the right:

Photobucket


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Denise I didn't realize that 'Mitch' took these tree photos, until I read someone mention it on the main Idyll thread. What a talented photographer he is! I did follow the link and looked at the other shots of the trees and they were all very interesting. You must be very proud of him! :-)


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

PM, he just took the last photo, the one right above your post. I've always found pride to be the easy part in raising kids ;)

Here's one he took a couple nights ago of a local garage band:

Photobucket


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Mitch is The Bomb


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

Another great shot Denise. I hope Mitch is getting paid for his work. They are very good!

pm2


 o
RE: Visit to Rancho Los Alamitos

I've been missing out! I couldn't have guessed what was on this thread.

Nick and I both agree that we'd like to visit!

Mitch's pix are really great and I want to see more of what he took!

What's the name of the band?

Saucy


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Perennials Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Please review our Rules of Play before posting.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here