What there is to know
- Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanical Garden
- Saturday August 20 from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m.
- public $25; $20 members
Pause, close your eyes, sit down and take a soothing sip of a fancy floral tea, if you have a cup of floral tea handy, and imagine a beautiful garden.
Have you imagined the green space bathed in sunshine? Chances are you’ve done just that, as we’re usually out in the daylight, admiring trees, shrubs, and all manner of striking flowers.
But no “news flash” is required for the following statement: the gardens exist at night, and while we generally can’t access them – at least the largest public gardens in Southern California – we do know that the leaves glisten in the moonlight, cool breezes are flying through the branches, and tiny creatures scurry under the bushes, as tiny creatures often do.
Sometimes, however, moonlight and magic combine for a special after-hours event, an informative adventure that examines a pretty plot’s most unusual plants.
The 90-minute event will take place inside the Arcadia destination, which is generally only open during the day, with the exception of occasional special events and “Lightscape”, the holiday light show of several weeks which should return in November.
“Flowers that pretend to be rotting meat, trees that eat whole rodents, and cacti that thrive in the wettest places on earth” can be pondered during the animated gaze.
And it will be bustling: the botanical garden, which has its roots (both historically and literally) in the 19th century, covers 127 magnificent hectares.
A ticket if you are not a member? It’s $25, while LA Arboretum members can join for $20.
It’s not quite fall yet, although regional temperatures will finally drop a little during the third weekend of August. Think of “Bizarre Botany” as a wonderful window into autumn and the weird sights, especially those from the natural world, that we can see during the atmospheric season.