June 2021 Happenings

Message from President Betty Goldstein

In each new day, wherever you may be, there is always waiting for you some beautiful discovery.

-Partial quote from Katie Daisy’s book, “How to be a wildflower.”

Dear Friends,

Beauty is always around us. It may be in watching the flight of the bee as it scatters pollen from one pincushion flower to another, water from a stream coating the rocks, causing them to glitter as the sunshine reflects off of them or a leaf floating in the gutter, swirling as it makes its way to the ocean.

Every morning, in my backyard, two little sparrows bathe in the birdbath, and the red-throated hummingbird feeds on the nectar of my abutilon tree. And it makes me smile. I especially love the optimism of the white asylum growing through the cracks in the sidewalk, fully blooming, undaunted.

I read a research article about trees having a positive effect on cardiovascular health, suggesting a correlation between green space and human health; the study continues with no conclusions as of yet. But I do know that Virginia Robinson, who walked her garden most every day, lived to be almost 100 years old. Here at the Robinson Gardens, one may feel the lowering of your heart rate and a calmness that the gardens can bring.

You can come and experience the King Palm Forest and watch and listen to the swaying of the palm trees or sit on the bench and watch the water descend from the waterfall to the Children’s Wildlife Pond. At the pond, you can search for Charlie the Catfish who usually is under the duck house in the shade. From there, you move on to the cutting rose garden where 200 roses in a kaleidoscope of colors are in full bloom. For so many of us, being out in nature, on a hike, in the garden or at the beach brings a soothing effect, our own healing medicine.

Come to the Virginia Robinson Gardens and celebrate with us the long days of summer -- let us together, find that “little thing of beauty.”


Betty Rodriguez Goldstein
President of the Friends of Robinson Gardens

To become a member of VRG, please click here.

Our Garden Tour Star Mia Lehrer

Every month, we are highlighting “Our Garden Tour Stars” -- landscape architects, florists, and interior designers who have participated at our annual Garden Tour and Showcase Estate at the Virginia Robinson Gardens. We want to let you know about these very talented designers, their inspirations, and their creations.

This month, we are honored to feature internationally renowned landscape architect Mia Lehrer. In addition to the beautiful gardens she has designed on Garden Tour, she was featured in a fabulous documentary, “Women in the Dirt: Landscape Architects Shaping Our World,” which was screened twice at the Virginia Robinson Gardens for our members. She also took the Friends on a wonderful tour of two of her projects, the Los Angeles River Revitalization Master Plan and the Beverly Gardens Park on Santa Monica Boulevard in Beverly Hills.

We asked her these five questions:

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Come Into the Gardens


The Basket of Apples is one of Cézanne’s most famous still-life paintings. Today he might have chosen to paint a basket of colorful heirloom tomatoes.

Tomatoes are native to the Americas and can be traced back to the Aztecs around 700 A.D. Early Aztec writings reveal recipes for a dish that uses tomatoes, peppers, and seasoning. However, it was not until around the 16th century that Europeans were introduced to this fruit. Throughout Southern Europe, the tomato was quickly accepted into the kitchen, but as it moved north, many Europeans feared that the tomato was poisonous, and the tomato’s reputation was ruined.

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California Romance and Beauty: Interior Designer Krista Everage

“Beautiful presentation!” “So glorious!” “I adored looking at everything!” On April 28, 2021, these were some of the enthusiastic comments from the Zoom attendees watching the very informative and lively interview of interior designer Krista Everage by publicist Christine Anderson, President of Communication Arts + Design, Inc. at the Virginia Robinson Gardens. Education co-chair Leslie Kavanaugh introduced Krista, a longtime Friends member, along with her friend and colleague Christine. Christine aptly remarked that the common thread in all of Krista’s work “from interiors to furniture to gardens to jewelry is luxurious romance suited to the indoor/outdoor California style.”

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Spotlight on Lisa Gimmy

Each month we spotlight a volunteer, staff member, docent, donor, or sponsor of the Virginia Robinson Gardens (VRG) -- those that have made an impact on the organization. We want to let you know about these wonderful people and corporations that give so much to the Virginia Robinson Gardens and to the community, and what they do that is so impactful.

This month, we spotlight Lisa Gimmy, a wonderful and dedicated Friends of Robinson Gardens Member. A landscape architect, Lisa did a terrific presentation on her career for VRG members and docents. She has also been a Garden Tour hostess.

We asked her these three questions:

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In Case You Missed It: Thoughts from Friends

Jeanne Anderson

“Happiness is a work of art. Handle with care.” Edith Wharton

For me, gardens have always been a place where dreams can someday come true.

Someday became TODAY last March when I decided to fulfill the dreams I had for my home and garden. I had already read my coffee-table garden books from cover to cover, and I decided it was time to purchase things I loved and hire people who would work safely and make my surroundings cozier.

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To see what the Friends of Robinson Gardens have been up to, please visit our Archive.