Japanese house with cherry blossoms

Themed Gardens

Encompassing about 130 acres, the botanical gardens feature 16 stunning spectacular themed gardens.

In 1903 Henry E. Huntington (1850–1927) purchased the San Marino Ranch, a working ranch about 12 miles from downtown Los Angeles with citrus groves, nut and fruit orchards, alfalfa crops, a small herd of cows, and poultry. The property—originally nearly 600 acres—today covers 207 acres, 130 of which are open to visitors. The Botanical living collections comprise approximately 28,000 living plant taxa (i.e., different types of plants) and can be found throughout the 16 themed gardens.

  • Australian Garden

    Orange to yellow flowers bundles drape down like pom-poms amidst stalks of green leaves. Among the flowers are red to red to red orange-tinted fruits.

    Directly below the Subtropical Garden, this five-acre open expanse of trees and shrubs offers a pleasant contrast to the paths and manicured lawns located on the hilltop.

  • California Garden

    A rectangular bed of dry-climate, Mediterranean style plants are separated down the middle by a gently flowing stream of water

    Landscaped with California natives and dry-climate plants, covering 6.5 acres, the Frances and Sidney Brody California Garden reflects the local Mediterranean climate as well as the agricultural and elegant estate history of the 207-acre Huntington grounds.

  • Camellia Garden

    Large blooming pink roses spread their petals among a 10 foot tall thatch of dark green leaves. A stone statue of a person looks downward.

    Camellias are at the peak of their bloom in January and February, putting on a dazzling display in the North Vista, Japanese Garden, and the Garden of Flowing Fragrance.

  • Children’s Garden

    A thatch of green leaf vines are set in the shape of a 10-foot “volcano.” Out of the “stack” is a water mist  that gently drops down on a nearby child.

    The Children's Garden introduces kids to the wonders of the natural world through interactive sculptural elements.

  • Chinese Garden

    An open-air Chinese pavillion sits on a rockface in front of a calm pond.

    The Chinese Garden (Liu Fang Yuan 流芳園, the Garden of Flowing Fragrance) features a stunning lake, graceful pavilions, teahouse and tea shop, stone bridges and waterfalls set against a wooded backdrop of mature oaks and pines.

  • Conservatory

    A glass-enclosed structure used as a greenhouse. Tropical palm bushes line sit on both sides of the main entrance.

    This 16,000 square-foot greenhouse features 50 interactive exhibits in four galleries and a rare opportunity to study plants from all over the world.

  • Desert Garden

    A well-worn asphalt walking path snakes through a desert garden of cactus and succulants.

    One of the largest outdoor collections of cacti and succulents in the world, the Desert Garden includes more than 5,000 species of desert plants in sixty landscaped beds.

  • Herb Garden

    Concentric square walkways surround small patches of various kitchen and medicinal herbs.

    The Herb Garden contains many unusual as well as common herbs, and is arranged according to the many ways herbs are used, such as medicines, teas, wines and liqueurs, cooking, cosmetics, perfumes and soaps, insect repellents, and dyes.

  • Japanese Garden

    A short, arched Japanese “moon” bridge hides under a Japanese willow tree whose locks of leaves are gently lit by the golden rays of a setting sun.

    One of the most beloved and iconic landscapes on the grounds, the historic Japanese Garden features a distinctive moon bridge, Japanese house, Zen garden, bonsai court, and a ceremonial teahouse and tea garden.

  • Jungle Garden

    A six to seven foot waterfall sends water down a rocky embankment. Jungle garden plants align the stream.

    The Jungle Garden features a high forest canopy, an understory of trees and shrubs, climbing vines, and leaves of giant proportions. Plants commonly associated with the tropics grow here, including orchids, bromeliads, gingers, ferns, palms, bamboos, and many members of the calla lily family, such as philodendrons.

  • Lily Ponds

    Circular lily pads line a silent body of pond water while a dozen or so orange, white, and black-patterned koi fish swim among the pads.

    Water lilies, flowering lotus, papyrus, and five ponds, make up the tranquil, four-acre lily ponds, home to turtles, bullfrogs, Japanese koi, and an occasional mallard family.

  • Palm Garden

    An hill of lush green grass leads to garden of palm trees of various shapes and sizes. An almost cloudless blue sky shines on the scene below.

    Ninety species of the most decorative and botanically interesting palms native to arid and subtropical lands grace the hillside just south of the entrance and wrap around the north and east sides of the Jungle Garden. The collection constitutes one of the broadest representations of palms on public display in California.

  • Ranch Garden

    A small wood shed, painted blue-green with an amber-red door sits among a collection of low-level green plants and shrubs.

    The Ranch Garden is part classroom and part research lab, connecting gardeners, native plant enthusiasts, landscape professionals, educators, and researchers, offering fresh ideas for sustainable gardening.

  • Rose Garden

    A close-up shot of a beautifully full-bloomed rose in a soft pastel yellow touched with orchid pink and cream.

    The three-acre Rose Garden contains more than 3,000 individual plants and more than 1,200 different cultivated varieties, with a spring bloom beginning in late March and extending beyond November.

  • Shakespeare Garden

    A field of yellow and white daisies reveal a sandstone-colored building in the background.

    Located between the Huntington Art Gallery and the Virginia Steele Scott Gallery and connecting to the Rose Garden, the Shakespeare Garden features a broad variety of plants; some cultivated in England during Shakespeare's time, some mentioned in his plays and sonnets, plus many whose ancestors trace back to plants of his Renaissance writings.

  • Subtropical Garden

    A patch of 20 or so orange and yellow flower bulbs sit atop thick light-green stalks about 2-3 feet tall. Inside the dark-dark red open leaves are balls of bright red, orange, and yellow stems.

    Plants that can tolerate occasional mild frost grow in this four-acre hillside garden on the scarp of the Raymond Hill earthquake fault. The south-facing slope is one of the warmest areas of the gardens, providing a nurturing home for plants from areas of the world with mild climates.

  • Garden Sculptures & Fountains

    At the end of a broad avenue of bright green lawn sits a large garden fountain atop a shallow base filled with still water. Sculptures of Greek heroes line the length of the lawn.

    In 1910, Henry E. Huntington began acquiring a large collection of outdoor sculptures, personally deciding on the exact location for each piece of garden statuary. Love is a common theme among the garden sculpture, most of which dates from the late 17th and early 18th centuries, although some are the works of 20th-century American artists.

  • Mausoleum

    A round, marble rotunda designed in the form of a Greek temple envelopes a sarcophagus.

    Constructed of Colorado Yule marble, the mausoleum of Henry and Arabella Huntington overlooks the gardens from a knoll west of the orange groves. Graced by two stately Lemon-Scented gums and a Coast Live Oak, it was a spot that Mr. Huntington loved. Mr. Huntington selected John Russell Pope, one of America's most distinguished architects, to design the mausoleum in the form of a Greek temple.