Virginia’s Glorious Camellias Beckon the Sun to Rise

On a brisk winter morning while strolling through the Italian Terrace Garden, I found myself surrounded by camellia bushes heavy with buds and blooms. Flower colors ranged from blood red to the palest of pinks with the occasional pure white blossom. Other flowers mixed red and white petals, reminding me of a peppermint stick. The form of the flowers varied greatly. Some were reminiscent of peonies, others looked like a rose, and still others could be mistaken for a carnation! It's no wonder many people mistakenly think the flower will produce fragrance. Most do not; however, a few camellias new to the scene do produce sweet, somewhat spicey scents. They include 'Minato-No-Akebono,' 'Kissi,' 'Koto-No-Kaori,' 'Buttermint,' 'Scentuous,' and 'Scented Gem.'

A Learned Journey Under the Canopy of the Living Giants – The King Palms

Superintendent Emeritus Timothy Lindsay conducted a 90-minute walking tour of the King Palm Forest, located on the east slope of The Virginia Robinson Gardens on October 28, 2023. Tim spent over 20 years restoring the forest by adding new plantings and designing water features that he interpreted while leading a public tour on Saturday, October 28th, 2023. This is a synopsis of his learned journey under the canopy of the King Palm trees

Robinson Gardens Former Superintendent Timothy Lindsay Featured in this Month’s Beverly Hills Living Magazine!

Timothy Lindsay, former Superintendent at The Virginia Robinson Gardens, shares insight into his tenured 20-year journey reviving and beautifying the property into the significant landmark it is today. What's next for Timothy? "Well, historians never retire. I'm currently looking to get involved in garden projects in the Pasadena area, close to where I live." Look for Timothy in the August issue of Beverly Hills Living, a private community magazine that is mailed monthly to homes in Beverly Hills

The Farewell Party for the Incomparable Superintendent Timothy Lindsay

On May 7, 2022, it was an emotional and bittersweet day for the Friends and LA County members as they celebrated Superintendent Timothy Lindsay’s Farewell Party at the Virginia Robinson Garden. Co-chaired by Jeanne Anderson, Maralee Beck and Joan Selwyn, it was an elegant and beautiful affair befitting our beloved, multi-talented, and extraordinary Tim. As the attendees sauntered through the Main House, the very talented Diane Jenkins took expert pictures of the festively attired guests in front of Jeanne’s romantic flower arrangement. Enhancing the lovely atmosphere in the Great Hall, pianist Dale Witt played classical and jazz tunes

“Voices From The Garden”

A solitary walk through a garden can be a spiritual experience. The best ones always are. The feeling is one of many voices, your inner voice, calming your mind as nature washes over you. The voice of nature itself, the wind through the leaves, the birds moving about, and, at your feet, the smallest of creatures going about the business of living create their own background music. The deeper into the garden you go, the richer and more profound are the voices. Here you open up and allow nature to penetrate any armor you wear in your daily life. Walking further, the voices of the creation of the garden emerge. The energy of countless hours that created such an environment manifest themselves in something far greater than its small parts. Our endeavors are imbued with ourselves, a piece of our spiritual essence attaches itself to these deeds. The Virginia Robinson Gardens has been blessed with many good deeds for over twenty-five years by Tim Lindsay. He has become a part of his creation. While strolling down one of Virginia’s many garden paths, stop for a moment, look and listen closely. You will hear the voice of Tim. Everywhere. Here are some of the other “Voices From The Garden”

The Glorious Camellia Beckons the Sun to Rise

During a brisk winter morning, while strolling through the Italian Terrace Garden, I found myself surrounded by camellia bushes heavy with bud and bloom. Flower colors ranged from blood red to the palest of pink with the occasional pure white bloom. Some flowers were mixed red and white reminding me of a peppermint stick. The flower form varied greatly as well. Some were reminiscent of peonies; others looked like roses; and still others like carnations. It’s no wonder many people mistakenly think the flower will produce fragrance. Most do not; however, one new to the scene is called ‘Sensation,’ and it does have a mild, yet distinct fragrance. Once the camellia had arrived in California in the late 1800s, from its native countries of China and Japan, there was no looking back. In fact, by 1936, Mr. Boddy, a newspaperman by trade and a horticulturist by nature had assembled a 25-acre commercial camellia forest in La Canada-Flintridge, now known as Descanso Gardens

Wild and Exotic Birds of the Virginia Robinson Gardens

A hawk seeks water or an unsuspecting visitor at the cherub fountain on a warm March day.

The phrase, “Birds of a feather flock together,” is at least over 470 years old. It was in use as far back as the mid-16th century and was inspired by the flocking behavior of birds when foraging for food or flying in formation during seasonal migrations. This concept is sometimes applied metaphorically to people who act in similar ways.

One early spring morning, Friends members flocked together with a naturalist, Darrow Feldstein, who guided us on a garden bird watch. While we moved … Read More

Preparing Your Garden for Winter Weather

Now in early November, the sun noticeably takes a shorter path across the sky, arching low on the southern horizon. This seasonal tilt of the earth away from our star, the sun, is expressed in the landscape by long shadows and most dramatically by shorter days and long cold nights. Plants in our garden respond on cue to this seasonal variation. The green chlorophyll on the leaves’ surface of our hardwood trees sloughs off into the atmosphere, gradually revealing the yellow, orange and red pigments hidden all summer long under the green layer of chlorophyll. Now exposed, these colorful pigments … Read More

A Message from our Superintendent Tim Lindsay

Covid-19 Brought Fundraising to a Halt:

Private donations allow vital projects to proceed:

During the closure of the gardens, we have managed to complete a number of necessary and timely projects thanks to our members’ financial support and the help of the County.

The garden with its many historic statues, urns and pots is better fortified with the addition of a new security fence installed along Cove Way.

Displayed in the buildings at VRG are early 19th century artifacts that are now better protected. The County sponsored new roofs on the Servant Quarters and Pool Pavilion.

The most historic trees … Read More

Kamins’ Garden Water Features

Offer a Powerful Sense of Transcendence and Tranquility

Today we highlight the various water features created by the Kamins in their historic estate in Beverly Hills.

The water features throughout the Kamins’ garden are bountiful, beautiful, and intriguing. There’s a sense of discovery and anticipation as you round each bend in the garden path.

As you transverse the Kamins’ garden there’s a fresh perspective as each water feature reveals itself individually. Yet, there’s a connectiveness as they evoke the qualities of music. Collectively, they sound like a symphony.

Some water features are abstract and metaphorical, providing hidden patterns of pure … Read More

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