Saturday, August 20, 2011

The Gamble Garden

I often travel to distant lands to see the world when I have a beautiful world waiting for me to discover right here at home. So this week I embarked on a journey to explore my "backyard". And was I surprised to find three exceptional gardens which I hadn't visited before! The first of these is the Elizabeth F. Gamble Garden in Palo Alto. Elizabeth was the only daughter of the co-founder of Procter & Gamble. She bequethed her estate to the City of Palo Alto which together with the Garden Club of Palo Alto maintains the property with the mission of providing horticultural and environmental education to the community as well as the historical preservation of this 1902 estate.

The Gazebo

The Gazebo is not original to the garden. It was added in 1996. In the photo above, late afternoon sun casts a rainbow over the vine covered Gazebo lending it a magical presence.

California Style Garden Room

The plants selected in this section of the garden are resistant to oak root fungus and are drought intolerant. But more importantly, it is an area of tranquility.

Cutting Garden

In the Cutting Garden, summer's best blooms are ready to enliven the Gamble house. Here dahlias in variegated colors stand out from  the pack. The floral beds change with the seasons.

Cherry Allée

The path leads from the sundial to the  grotto fountain.  In the spring, it's a mirror of  white then pink from the blossoming Japanese Flowering Cherry trees that line the way.

Fruit Trees

This is an amazing way to grow trees. Antique varieties of  apples and pears are "espaliered" - trained to grow horizontally from the center trunk. This tree is from the genus Malus.

Carriage House and Patio

Renovated in 1987, the Carriage House is now used for classes or business seminars and social gatherings. It's at the back of the  main house with  magnolia, Victorian Box and Japanese maple trees keeping the patio cool.


Whimsical touches like this frog prince fountain surprise visitors as they stroll through the gardens. Birds must love the bird bath in the California Style Garden Room. And the exquisitely pruned rabbit standing right outside the Tea Room or the scarecrow in the Roots and Shoots garden are delightful especially to the junior gardeners.

The garden is open everyday during the daylight hours and is free! The house is open from  9 a.m. to 12 noon. For more information about the Gamble Garden here's their website link and address: 
http://gamblegarden.org/
1431 Waverley, Palo Alto, CA
Phone: 650-329-1356
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Images by Charie


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