Cover image for Desert gardens
Desert gardens
Levick, Melba.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Rizzoli, [2000]

Physical Description:
176 pages : color illustrations ; 29 cm
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
SB427.5 .L96 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Oversize

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Whether explosive displays of columnar cacti and brilliant wildflowers cascading down sun-bathed hillsides, meditative, botanical expressions of an organic, spine-laden geometry set within the quiet, earthen walls of a Spanish colonial mission, or twilit, verdant groves evoking a prelapsarian topographythis book captures the numinous light and beauty of 18 unique and rarely photographed private and public desert gardens between San Francisco and San Diego. Featuring the most important desert garden in the world at the Huntington Botanical Gardens in San Marino, as well as the Moorten Botanical Gardens in Palm Springs, Balboa Park in San Diego, and many exquisite private gardens, the volume celebrates the sculpturesque charms of cacti, aloes, and other succulent flora that have adapted to the extreme conditions of the desert.
Combining spectacular garden views in idyllic settings and ravishingly beautiful images of particular specimens, with text by the renowned desert garden expert Gary Lyonsthat balances the poetics and technical aspects of this garden genre, the book serves as an inspirational guide to these horticultural treasures. Because interest in desert gardens continues to grow dramatically, the book also includes the addresses and visiting hours of gardens open to the public, and provides a bibliography of what one needs to know in order to create one's own.

Reviews 1

Booklist Review

Levick's 100 opulent color photographs capture the beauty of 18 private and public desert gardens in southern California. Among them are the garden in the Los Angeles City Zoo (200 species of cacti and other succulents), the Huntington Desert Garden in San Marino (3,000 species), and the Balboa Park Cactus Gardens in San Diego with hundreds of species. Lyons, a much respected drought-tolerant garden designer, gives an informative history of the desert garden from the 1880s (the "cactus craze" era) to the present, and offers readers a personal tour of all 18. He apologizes for the excessive use of botanical names, explaining that many of the plants are so unusual that common names for them do not exist. This beautiful book also includes a garden directory, giving the addresses and visiting hours of the nine gardens open to the public. --George Cohen