December 8 — Behind-the-scenes tour of Descanso Gardens with Executive Director David Brown
The highlight of my year in blogging was a tour of Descanso Gardens Friday with Executive Director David Brown. He took me behind the gates to the backside of the gardens, which is being developed as a showcase for native plants in this era of tighter water supplies.
David pointed out that just about anything can grow in Southern California if you water it enough. And that’s getting to be a problem as agricultural and urban needs vie for limited supplies. Native plants are more suited for gardens here because they are used to sparse water most of the year. The aim of Descanso’s new meadow area is to inspire an appreciation for Southern California’s disappearing natural vegetation, promote a new aesthetic in garden design, and show the need for conservation. Plus, it will be a fun place to walk.
The new development will make the gardens whole again, restoring the property that has been closed off beyond the lake since the 1980s. The new meadow will open late next year.
I hope you enjoy the video. The first half is a tour of the gardens that are open to the public now, the second half is a tour of the backside. The narration is by David Brown.
A technical note: Most of the video was shot with a Go-Pro on a monopod as we sped around on a golf cart. There’s additional footage and stills with my Canon 5D Markii. Audio is via the camera, the Go-Pro and a Zoom H4N recorder.