The Huntington Garden
Spring seems only around the corner at Liu Fang Yuan, or the Garden of Flowing Fragrance, at the Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens in San Marino. Delicate pink cherry blossoms have begun to appear on trees, and dappled sunlight warms the stone walkways.
There are other changes in the air at the Chinese Garden, as it is more informally known. Workers are putting finishing touches on new pavilions, walkways and landscaping as the newest garden in the Huntington's collection of more than a dozen readies its first expansion since its 2008 opening.
On March 8 (March 7 for members), the Chinese Garden premieres three major new architectural elements as part of its second-phase expansion: two pavilions and a rock grotto with a waterfall that visitors can walk under. Still to come for the planned 12-acre site are a small gallery for Chinese art, a hillside pavilion and a penjing (a style of horticulture similar to Japanese bonsai) court. About half the $22 million needed to complete the project has been raised so far.
Reason: made the title fit
Admission is $20 weekdays and $23 on weekends. $15 and $18 for Seniors (65+). The Foreign Mom likes it well enough that she's gotten a membership when she's here - $90 for Seniors and it's good for unlimited visits for 2 people.
Oddly, in all the times I've been there I've never been in any of the galleries. It's just worked out that way, but they have a lot of great works of art. One of these days.
John Q. Public
It's almost surreal walking around the grounds and you realize you are less than a mile from the now bustling center of Pasadena.