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. Late spring at the Arboretum produces many varied blooms in the gardens. There is no better time to visit!
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.
Many varied native blooms are currently well represented in the California Garden. Highlights this late spring include the Salvia 'Starlight', Trichostema lanatum (Wooly Blue Curls), Romneya coulteri (Matilija Poppy), and the Eriodictyon crassifolium (Felt-Leaved Yerba Santa).
Trichostema lanatum (Wooly Blue Curls)
Romneya coulteri (Matilija Poppy)
Eriodictyon crassifolium (Felt-Leaved Yerba Santa)
South African Garden
Many brilliant colors and fascinating plants can be found throughout the South African garden. There is a wide variety of colorful Leucospermums currently in bloom. Among them the striking Leucospermum reflexum and Leucospermum ‘Spider’. There are also some examples of attractive trees, such as the Dais cotinifolia (African Button Flower), which flowers profusely in the early summer, and the Quillaja saponaria (Soapbark), a Chilean native evergreen tree that is currently in full bloom.
Dais cotinifolia (African Button Flower)
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 pubescens. Other plants of interest include the Macropiper excelsa (Pepper Tree), which has aromatic heart shaped leaves, and the Pachystegia insignis (Marlborough Rock Daisy), which proliferate in the Kiwi Beds area.
Macropiper excelsa (Pepper Tree)
Pachystegia insignis (Marlborough Rock Daisy)
A stroll through the Australian Gardens is always a feast for the senses. There is a wide variety of banksias and grevilleas of every form and hue. One example of the banksias currently on display is the Banksia speciosa.
In other parts of the Australian Garden, many callistemons are in bloom, including the Callistemon pityoides. While in the area of the Rock Garden, you will find many colorful and interesting plants in bloom, with one of the more striking examples being the brilliant blooms of the Eremaea hadra.
One of the most fascinating of the Australian plants, the Xanthorrhoea preissii (Grass Tree), is currently blooming near the Horticulture I building. Their long grass-like leaves grow approximately 3-4' long and large spear-like creamy flower spike, is magnificent.
Xanthorrhoea preissii (Grass Tree)
Learn more about the fascinating Banksias from Australian Garden curator Melinda Kralj and the Outback Howlers.
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.
Current examples include the Salvia 'Costa Rica Blue'and Salvia disjuncta (Southern Mexican Sage).
Other plants currently in bloom include the Cordyline ‘Festival Grass’ with red burgundy leaves that produces tiny pale lilac flowers, with a jasmine-like fragrance, and the Philadelphus ‘Belle Etoile’ (Mock Orange).
Salvia 'Costa Rica Blue'
Salvia disjuncta (Southern Mexican Sage)
Cordyline ‘Festival Grass’
Philadelphus ‘Belle Etoile’ (Mock Orange)