There are literally thousands of interesting individual plants in the Arboretum's collections. At any time of the year there's something blooming, and there's always plenty to see.
To help you decide where to start, below we present a sample of some of the specimens that are currently worth seeking out in our gardens. To aid in your quest a map of the Arboretum can be found here. Follow the World Tour signs to view many of these blooms.
You may access a larger selection of what's currently blooming in our gardens by checking out the photo gallery on the Arboretum Snapshots page.
California Natives, the entrance garden
The California Garden, on the right as you enter the Arboretum, boasts many special plants of interest to gardeners. Many of these were originally selected in the wild by Arboretum staff, and have since been propagated and released to the horticultural trade.
Showy native blooms are currently well represented in the California Garden. Highlights this winter include the Ceanothus maritimus, Arctostaphylos densiflora (Vine Hill Manzanita), and Encelia californica (California Brittlebush).
Arctostaphylos densiflora (Vine Hill Manzanita)
Encelia californica (California Brittlebush)
South African Garden
Many brilliant colors and fascinating plants can be found throughout the South African garden. There is a wide variety of colorful Leucadendrons and Ericas currently in bloom, among them the Erica speciosa and Leucadendron 'Wilson's Wonder'. Other plants include the elegant Proteas, such as the Protea nitida and the Nylandtia spinosa.
Leucadendron (Wilson's Wonder)
New Zealand Garden
Many New Zealand plants have become familiar to California gardeners and many special forms of these plants are on display. Among these are a variety of Hebes including the Hebe macrocarpa var. brevifolia (Surville Cliffs Hebe). Other plants of interest include the Leptospermum scoparium and the Rhopalostylis sapida (Feather Duster Palm), a very distinctive palm, with its stiff, upright leaf arrangement.
Hebe macrocarpa var. brevifolia (Surville Cliffs Hebe)
Rhopalostylis sapida (Feather Duster Palm)
Australian Rock Garden
A stroll through the Australian Gardens is always a feast for the senses. Diving, glittering hummingbirds signal the presence of a variety of grevilleas of every form and hue, like the Grevillea tetragonoloba.
In other parts of the Australian Garden you will find many interesting plants in bloom, like the Eucalyptus caesia, and, among a number of correas currently in bloom, the locally named Correa 'Dawn in Santa Cruz'. The Australian Rock Garden also has a number of interesting blooms, including the dainty pink flowers of the Boronia crenulata ‘Shark Bay’, and the showy Acacia boormanii (Snowy River Wattle) and Isopogon baxteri (Sterling Range Cone Flower).
Acacia boormanii (Snowy River Wattle)
Boronia crenulata ‘Shark Bay’
Isopogon baxteri (Sterling Range Cone Flower)
Correa 'Dawn in Santa Cruz'
The Aroma and Succulent Gardens
The Aroma Garden contains salvias of all shapes and sizes, lavenders, oreganos, thymes, and many other drought-tolerant perennials and shrubs can be seen. You will see many plants that produce their aroma from their flowers, and many which produce their aroma from their leaves.
The Succulent Garden's collection focuses on succulents from the coastal areas of Mexico and California. Examples of beautiful and interesting cactus and succulents are exhibited in this garden, including the exotic Agave shawii subsp. shawii, from northern Baja California, Mexico, which is currently beginning to bloom.
Agave shawii subsp. shawii