Lisa Blackburn

Former senior editor and special projects manager
Department: Communications & Marketing

Verso

Posted on Jun. 2, 2021
Sensei Eugene Imai of Shumei America recites a ritual prayer asking the spirits to bless and protect the Magistrate’s House, built in Japan in 1695 and now being reconstructed at The Huntington. On…
Posted on May. 5, 2021
Posted on Nov. 25, 2020
The golden leaves of Ginkgo biloba trees, seen here in the Japanese Garden’s Zen Court, provide a spectacular display of fall color and are a perennial favorite with visitors. Photo by Christine…
Posted on Oct. 14, 2020
California juniper (Juniperus californica), Han-kengai or semicascade style bonsai, estimated age of original plant material: 1,500–1,800 years old. Collected from Jawbone Canyon, Mojave Desert and…
Posted on Sep. 2, 2020
A four-member Teacher Advisory Panel meets regularly with The Huntington's Education staff to develop new classroom resources and lesson plans based on The Huntington's collections. During the…
Posted on Jul. 8, 2020
Yearning for closeness after months of social distancing? Nature photography is the perfect antidote to the six-foot rule. The gardens abound with photogenic subjects that beckon visitors to get…
Posted on May. 13, 2020
The year 1970 was a tumultuous one for the nation—as 2020 is today—but The Huntington was an oasis of calm, offering intellectual engagement and spiritual renewal through nature, the humanities, and…
Posted on Apr. 27, 2020
Rose Garden curator Tom Carruth (far right) and gardeners John Villarreal (center) and Noel Aviña (left) maintain physical distancing and wear face masks for added safety while tending the garden…
Posted on Nov. 27, 2019
Award-winning float builder Phoenix Decorating Company will produce The Huntington’s float in the 2020 Rose Parade®. The floral entry is part of the institution’s yearlong Centennial Celebration (…
Posted on Mar. 20, 2019
John Naka’s bonsai masterpiece “Goshin” (Guardian of the Spirit) is the centerpiece of the National Bonsai & Penjing Museum’s John Y. Naka North American Pavilion in Washington, D.C. But the…
Posted on Feb. 6, 2019
Celia Paul, Self-Portrait, March, 2017. Oil on canvas, 24 7/8 x 22 3/8 in. © Celia Paul. Courtesy of the artist and Victoria Miro, London/Venice. Seven paintings by the contemporary British artist…
Posted on Sep. 5, 2018
Victor Gail (right) and his partner, Thomas Oxford, in 2001. Photo by Hal Nelson. A generous bequest from Long Beach art collector Victor Gail (1929–2014) has greatly enhanced The Huntington’s…
Posted on Dec. 18, 2017
The Huntington will host the annual Viewing Stones Show presented by the California Aiseki Kai from Dec. 26 to Dec. 30. Shown here: “Ribbon Dancer,” collected in South Korea by Don and Chung Kruger…
Posted on Sep. 6, 2017
During a four-week program at The Huntington this summer, girls from the Pasadena YWCA had an opportunity to engage with the history of that organization through some unique historic materials in the…
Posted on Feb. 17, 2016
The Huntington will celebrate the Lunar New Year with a cultural festival on Feb. 20 and Feb. 21. Visitors can enjoy music, dance, demonstrations, exhibits, Asian cuisine, and lively performances,…
Posted on Jan. 4, 2016
With systems in place to harvest rainwater and prevent flooding in areas like the Chinese Garden, The Huntington is readier than ever to weather the storm. Photo by Martha Benedict. Southern…
Posted on Oct. 9, 2015
The orchid family is a vast one, and its amazing diversity will be on display during The Huntington’s International Orchid Show and Sale, Oct. 16–18. This unusual bloom—yes, that’s an orchid!—is…
Posted on Sep. 11, 2015
Ted Matson, The Huntington’s resident bonsai expert, grooms an olive tree designed by the late John Naka. The art of bonsai, says Matson, is like “sculpture with living plant material.” Photo by…
Posted on May. 1, 2015
During her 25-year career at The Huntington, Peggy Bernal (seen here in the 1990s with her daughter, Victoria) made major contributions in several areas, including fundraising, communications, and…
Posted on Mar. 20, 2015
Xiao Liwu, one of San Diego Zoo's three giant pandas, dines in his Zoo enclosure on bamboo harvested from the gardens at The Huntington, among other sources. Photo courtesy of San Diego Zoo Global.…
Posted on Feb. 11, 2015
Set the mood for romance with a stroll on the North Vista, with its 18th-century statuary and Italian Renaissance fountain. Photo by Lisa Blackburn. Time and time again, on Top Ten lists and “best of…
Posted on Nov. 24, 2014
For Thanksgiving inspiration—and just plain fun—adventuresome cooks would be well served by perusing the historical recipes in The Cornucopia: Being a Kitchen Entertainment and Cookbook, a…
Posted on Oct. 22, 2014
The profusely flowering Leucophyllum langmaniae 'Lynn's Legacy' is one of many drought-tolerant plants that will be available at the Fall Plant Sale, Oct. 24–26. Photo by Lisa Blackburn. If you’re a…
Posted on Jun. 18, 2014
In a recent workshop for docents, yarn was dyed with natural pigments extracted from plants in the Herb Garden. (From left: basil flowers, calendulas, onion skins, madder roots, anemone petals,…
Posted on May. 27, 2014
The half-acre Herb Garden is a wonderful source of inspiration, for foodies as well as gardeners. Photo by Lisa Blackburn. For those who enjoy both gardening and cooking (not to mention eating),…
Posted on May. 9, 2014
Mary Cassatt's Breakfast in Bed (1897) is one of the best-loved mother-and-child portraits at The Huntington. But there are other works in the collections that explore the same theme, and they're…
Posted on Apr. 25, 2014
With more than 3,100 accessioned trees in the Botanical collections, picking out a single favorite is no easy task. The Huntington's resident "tree guy," Tim Thibault, shared some of his own top…
Posted on Mar. 27, 2014
Dozens of bonsai specimens will be on display this weekend as the California Bonsai Society presents its 57th annual Bonsai Show at The Huntington. From ancient origins in China and Japan, the art…
Posted on Mar. 11, 2014
Echinopsis'Frolic'. Photo by Antonio H. Miguel The Desert Garden at The Huntington holds many delights—literally thousands of them—and it's impossible to walk through the 10-acre landscape without…
Posted on Feb. 3, 2014
February is an ideal time to learn about camellias—and to enjoy them. Pictured: Camellia'Tama Peacock'. Photos by Lisa Blackburn. The best way to learn about something is to talk to an expert. Or…
Posted on Jan. 17, 2014
A hillside in the lower Desert Garden blazes with masses of Aloe arborescensblooms. Photos by Lisa Blackburn. Winter is one of the showiest seasons at The Huntington, especially in the Desert Garden…
Posted on Jan. 7, 2014
'Cinco de Mayo' roses, seen here in the Rose Garden earlier this year, will be among the varieties available during a sale of bare-root plants on Thursday, following a talk by Tom Carruth. Photo by…
Posted on Dec. 31, 2013
The 1969 Rose Parade included a San Marino float honoring The Huntington's 50th anniversary. Anyone who lives or works in the Pasadena area knows that New Year's Day is all about roses—the annual…
Posted on Dec. 10, 2013
Camellia x vernalis 'Yuletide' is a festive addition to the winter landscape for Southern California gardens. During the holiday season, adding some Christmas color around the house often means a…
Posted on Jun. 12, 2013
Rick Kidd shares his workout with his granddaughter Gemma. The Lily Ponds are a favorite part of their route. A walk in the gardens. Those words usually conjure up a leisurely stroll through a…
Posted on Mar. 15, 2013
The earliest known image of Saint Patrick, from a 13th-century manuscript. Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Will you be wearing green this weekend for Saint Patrick’s Day…
Posted on Feb. 1, 2013
Camellia japonica 'Alba Plena' As Valentine’s Day approaches, long-stemmed red roses tend to get a lot of hype. But here at The Huntington, February is all about camellias, as thousands of…
Posted on Aug. 24, 2012
Echeveria elegans, a member of the Crassulaceae family. Photo by Lisa Blackburn. Two men who are arguably better acquainted than anyone else with the renowned Desert Garden at The Huntington will…
Posted on Aug. 22, 2012
Rose Garden volunteers Alex Matthisen and Nurit Burrow, two of the many "deadheaders" who help keep the rose bushes tidy, display the tools of their trade. If you’ve ever longed to spend more time…
Posted on Jul. 3, 2012
Curators watch as Global Loft (Spread) is secured in place by assistant preparator Tom Cabbell, Al Herrmann of Cooke's Crating, and exhibits manager Gregg Bayne. Photo by Lisa Blackburn. If the…
Posted on Jun. 22, 2012
Readers in the Ahmanson Reading Room of the Munger Research Center. When the halls of academe begin to empty for the summer, the corridors of The Huntington start filling up. University and college…
Posted on Apr. 24, 2012
Volunteer Belinda Chuang gets ready for the plant sale. Photo by Lisa Blackburn. Preparations are in high gear for the 38th Annual Spring Plant Sale, which takes place on Sunday, April 29, with a…
Posted on Mar. 22, 2012
Calamondin Orange. As if spring itself were not enough incentive to get out and enjoy nature, Huntington visitors can catch two special garden shows on Saturday and Sunday, March 24–25, each with a…
Posted on Mar. 15, 2012
Docents tour the new tea garden surrounding the ceremonial teahouse (seen in the background). A group of Huntington volunteers enjoyed a special perk this week: A chance to go behind the…
Posted on Jan. 13, 2012
Photo courtesy of Yangzhou Puppet Company. In the upcoming celebrations marking the Year of the Dragon, it will be tempting to focus all of your attention on the spectacle of the crowd-pleasing…
Posted on Dec. 5, 2011
A near-miss for an 18th-century statue in the North Vista. Photo by Laurie Sowd. On Sunday The Huntington reopened after three days of cleanup and assessment of damage wrought by the severe windstorm…
Posted on Nov. 25, 2011
Camellia season has begun! Early flowering species and cultivars can be seen in bloom in several areas of the gardens, especially in and around the North Vista. The Huntington's botanical collections…
Posted on Oct. 21, 2011
Huntington volunteers getting ready for the sale. Photo by Lisa Blackburn. Whether planning ahead for spring or looking for autumn color to enjoy right now, gardeners will find plenty of inspiration…
Posted on Oct. 14, 2011
A colorful Cattleya-Laelia cross, C. aclandiae "SVO" x L. breigeri "Star of Brazil" HCC/AOS. Photo by Lisa Blackburn. (Alternate thumbnail image on Huntington Blogs main page features a dramatic…
Posted on Sep. 30, 2011
Vicente Maria de Vera de Aragon, Duque de la Roca (ca. 1795) by Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes (1746-1812), courtesy of the San Diego Museum of Art. If you're strolling through the Huntington…
Posted on Aug. 24, 2011
Volunteers Kathy Clements and Michael Litvak of the American First Day Cover Society (Claude C. Ries Chapter 48) apply the special pictorial postmark to Hopper stamps on envelopes, postcards, and…
Posted on Jul. 28, 2011
Hua Wenyi (at left) and Peter Sellars (right) discuss their work together. Susan Pertel Jain (center) is executive director of the UCLA Confucius Institute and was responsible for bringing the two…
Posted on Jul. 1, 2011
Henry Huntington must have loved the Fourth of July, because when it came to flag-waving he went to great lengths (and heights) to show his patriotic spirit. The grand old flagpole that he purchased…
Posted on Jun. 30, 2011
If you love dry-climate succulent plants, this event is for you. The Cactus and Succulent Society of America will present its national show and sale on Saturday and Sunday, July 2–3, 2011 at The…
Posted on May. 26, 2011
If you've been eagerly awaiting a chance to explore the Ranch, The Huntington's new sustainable urban agriculture site, wait no more. Starting Saturday, May 28, we'll be offering a monthly open…
Posted on May. 5, 2011
Alan Jutzi (right), chief curator of rare books, and colleague David Mihaly look at one of the L.A. city maps used by researchers developing the video game project. Photo by Lisa Blackburn. If you…
Posted on Mar. 24, 2011
Ben Oki at rest. This weekend, the California Bonsai Society presents its 54th annual show at The Huntington. In anticipation of the event, we're running an article that originally appeared in the…
Posted on Mar. 8, 2011
'The Big O'—voted "Best in Show" for blooming clivia last year. What does it take to win "Best in Show?" The flower judges will have the answer this weekend when the North American Clivia Society…
Posted on Feb. 11, 2011
Cupid blindfolds Youth in a 19th-century statue in the North Vista, a gentle reminder that love is blind. Photo by Lisa Blackburn. Looking for the perfect place to woo your sweetheart? There's no…
Posted on Feb. 8, 2011
Camellia 'Brigadoon' in the North Vista. Photo by Lisa Blackburn. When many parts of the country are blanketed by snow, the winter landscape at The Huntington is covered with camellias. The…
Posted on Feb. 2, 2011
A performance by lion dancers and drummers near the north entrance to the Chinese garden. Photo by Martha Benedict. In Chinese culture, the most important of all holidays is Chinese New Year. It…
Posted on Jan. 20, 2011
Rose Garden volunteers pause for a quick group portrait before getting back to business. From left: Kathy Cooper, Nora Romo, James Drummond, Marlane Forsberg, Vicente Perez (staff), Gena Coffey,…
Posted on Jan. 14, 2011
Curator Olga Tsapina (left) consults with Chief Preservation Officer Holly Moore, who found the manuscript to be in excellent condition. Photo by Lisa Blackburn. April 19, 1775, was a very historic…
Posted on Dec. 7, 2010
Photo by Lisa Blackburn. © 2010 The Huntington. Few authors are more synonymous with the holiday season than Charles Dickens, whose classic tale A Christmas Carol was written in 1843. The Huntington…
Posted on Dec. 2, 2010
Freezing temperatures are a rare occurrence in San Marino, but when they hit they can be devastating to some of the plants in the botanical collections, including many rare cacti and succulents. In…
Posted on Nov. 23, 2010
Many visitors ask us, "What's the best time of year to see the botanical gardens?" Some people favor spring for the first big display of roses, others prefer summer for the water lilies and lotus…
Posted on Nov. 2, 2010
Cacti in the Desert Garden by mfbenedict, via Flickr. The gardens at The Huntington are among the most photogenic in the world. Just ask any visitor strolling down a path with a camera. Many of…
Posted on Oct. 28, 2010
Pumpkin in The Huntington's herb garden. Halloween is upon us, and if your spirit is craving something "super-natural" this week, forget about chocolate bars and candy corn and gather up a basket of…
Posted on Oct. 12, 2010
For docents in the school tour program, what they learn is as rewarding as what they teach. Art docent Joan Caillouette discusses a portrait of George Washington with first-graders from Arroyo Vista…
Posted on Oct. 5, 2010
Bamboo sheaths, palm flower stalks, seed pods, leaves, and other materials became beautiful works of art. Several hundred visitors had a chance to exhibit their artwork at The Huntington on Saturday…