If you live in or are visiting Southern California you may want to check out one of the many botanical gardens that are here. This weekend I visited Descanso Gardens for the first time. It’s located in La Canada Flintridge, North of Los Angeles. It’s $15 per person to enter and parking is free. It’s a large garden that is divided up into separate spaces, depending on the type of plant. It’s very similar to most botanical gardens that I have been to. They also have a lot of art installations and sculptures. I’m pretty sure they do special things for holidays, like Christmas too.
When I compare this garden to the other ones that I have been to in this area, I can’t say it’s very high on my list. If it were a free garden I would love it but there are just other gardens that are better for a similar price. First I’m going to talk about what I really liked about it. So, the rose garden area is very beautiful. It’s right by the entrance and where I took almost all of these photos. There are a ton of super colorful roses. Aside from the rose garden, there were almost no flowers. I found it to be kind of odd. The rest of the park was just other types of plants and they didn’t seem to vary much. It was really nice to walk around and there was a lot of shade, though. They have a Japanese garden but it is super small and felt a bit run down. The gardens seem to have a bit too much of a focus on art and the sculptures and installations. Personally, I don’t like when gardens have sculptures. I like when they have statues or fountains but I think sculptures can feel really out of place. I just don’t really think the two go together.
Overall I would say that I liked Descanso Gardens but I don’t think I would go back. If you are looking for a similar experience and have a bit more money to spend I recommend The Huntington. I think the price is about double but it is completely worth it. It’s so well manicured and enormous. A garden that is more comparable in price but one that I prefer is the South Coast Botanical Garden. That garden is very similar but a bit better because it has more plant varieties and it doesn’t feel as run down.