Thursday, January 14, 2010

South Coast Botanic Garden, Part 2- January 14

The garden is divided into some very distinct areas. There is a redwood grove, as well as a eucalyptus  and ficus collection, to name a few. And speaking of ficus, we eagerly headed toward that section of the garden when we learned that banyan trees were located there.  The first tree we saw there was the Moreton fig! We should have expected that are of the same species, they both have the same flared buttresses for roots(makes for a shallow root system). The road next to the ficus trees is buckled, it seems the roots are pulling up through the pavement. I don't know what the garden can do about that situation, but the garden brochure says that the garden is constantly being renovated to "compensate  for the settling of the grounds and to prevent landfill gasses from escaping into the atmosphere". The garden was created  on a sanitary landfill in 1959. Gasses that form underground as a result of decomposing refuse are collected throughout the garden and are used to generate electricity. This is a most unusual botanical garden in more ways than one! And speaking of unusual, one picture I wish to share with you was found in the succulent area of the garden. Anyone hungry for pork and beans?

Another unusual plant which we found in the garden is the white floss silk tree from Peru. Its blossoms look like white orchids, and its bark is covered with sharp needles.

And we were surprised to find a blooming wild lilac, a native of California. Its blooms look different than the lilac plant which I am familiar with, but it still has the wonderful smell of a lilac.

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