Natural beauty in Balboa Park’s Desert Garden.

Here are many photos of natural beauty in Balboa Park’s Desert Garden. This rugged garden, which was created in 1976, contains a huge variety of fascinating cacti and succulents, a few winding paths, and a wide view of Florida Canyon below.

You can find all this beauty just east of Park Boulevard, across the pedestrian bridge near the Plaza de Balboa. The Desert Garden is directly north of the award-winning Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can enjoy even more Cool San Diego Sights by following me on Facebook or Twitter!

Do you love beautiful things? Visit my photography blog which I call A Small World Full of Beauty.

Thousands of tiny stars in a beautiful park!

So many flowers are abloom right now in Balboa Park! Many appear like tiny yellow suns, or stars exploding in a fiery supernova. Walking through the park yesterday felt like a journey through galaxies. I discovered clusters of stars in every direction!

This beautiful sunburst was discovered in the Casa del Prado, at the San Diego Bromeliad Society's weekend plant show.
This beautiful sunburst was discovered in the Casa del Prado, at the San Diego Bromeliad Society’s weekend plant show.

These beautiful yellow flowers seem like a sky full of shining suns. You can find this fantastic blown glass at Spanish Village Art Center in Studio 41.
These beautiful yellow flowers seem like a sky full of shining suns. You can find this fantastic blown glass at Spanish Village Art Center in Studio 41.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can enjoy even more Cool San Diego Sights by following me on Facebook or Twitter!

Do you love beautiful things? Visit my photography blog which I call A Small World Full of Beauty.

Photos of late afternoon beauty in Balboa Park.

Late this afternoon I took a meandering stroll through Balboa Park. As the sun approached the horizon, its light touched surprising patches of beauty.

I paused for a bit by the reflecting pool, the channels of water that flow down El Prado from the Plaza de Balboa, the International Cottages and the old cactus garden. My camera was out.

Come along with me!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can enjoy even more Cool San Diego Sights by following me on Facebook or Twitter!

Beauty created at every turn in Balboa Park.

Skilled artisan in the Casa del Prado creates a beautiful ceramic pot for a bonsai.
Skilled artist creates a beautiful ceramic pot for a bonsai. His wheel turns with a purpose.

If you thirst for beauty, simply wander through Balboa Park.

Follow that twisting path.

Smell a flower.

Poke your nose into a building.

Turn a sudden corner.

Look up.

Look down.

Close your eyes and spin around.

Open your eyes.

An exhibition in Balboa Park's Casa del Prado presented by the San Diego Bonsai Club. Bringing forth carefully pruned beauty from nature's infinite, eternal beauty.
An exhibition in Balboa Park’s Casa del Prado presented by the San Diego Bonsai Club. Bringing forth carefully pruned beauty from nature’s infinite, eternal beauty.
Uplifting music on a carefree Sunday by the Botanical Building.
Creating music on a carefree Sunday by the reflecting pool and Botanical Building.
Painting the beauty before one's eyes in Balboa Park across from the House of Hospitality.
Painting the beauty before one’s eyes in Balboa Park across from the House of Hospitality.
Beautifully sculpted flowers welcome visitors to the San Diego Museum of Art during their Art Alive event.
Beautifully sculpted flowers welcome visitors to the San Diego Museum of Art during their Art Alive event.
Happy music for ears. Tasty crumbs for beaks.
Pleasing notes for ears. Tasty crumbs for beaks.
Heating glass like a small rotating sun in Spanish Village Art Center.
Heating glass until it becomes a small rotating sun in Spanish Village Art Center.
Nature has produced this beautiful gem at the Japanese Friendship Garden.
Nature has created this delicate gem at the Japanese Friendship Garden.
Fine Japanese ceramics displayed in the garden's Exhibit House. For those that thirst for beauty.
Fine Japanese ceramics displayed in the garden’s Exhibit House. For those with an unquenchable thirst for beauty.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can enjoy even more Cool San Diego Sights by following me on Facebook or Twitter!

Do you love beautiful things? Visit my photography blog which I call A Small World Full of Beauty.

Beautiful cherry blossoms at Japanese Friendship Garden.

The cherry blossoms are opening in bunches at the Japanese Friendship Garden in early March.
The cherry blossoms are opening in bunches at the Japanese Friendship Garden in early March.

The Japanese cherry trees in Balboa Park are beginning to really blossom!

This morning I walked through the canyon at the Japanese Friendship Garden and took in the indescribable, almost heavenly beauty. Then I sat down near the Inamori Pavilion, in the perfect mood to reflect and write.

Beauty springs forth like a miracle.
Beauty springs forth like a miracle.
Pink blooms in blue San Diego sky.
Pink blooms in blue San Diego sky.
A small bird enjoys the newly opened cherry blossoms.
A small bird high on one branch enjoys the newly opened cherry blossoms.
People look up in wonder at a magical Japanese cherry tree.
People look up in wonder at a magical Japanese cherry tree.
The grove of Japanese cherry trees in the canyon is starting to put on a great show.
The grove of Japanese cherry trees in the canyon is starting to put on a great show.

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What did I write?

A philosophical short story titled The Child and the Koi.

March flowers in Balboa Park’s Botanical Building.

Cymbidium orchids. Many can be seen in the Botanical Building in early March.
Cymbidium orchids. Many of these gorgeous flowers can be seen inside the Botanical Building in early March.

It’s the first weekend of March. Even though it is still winter, many flowers are blooming inside Balboa Park’s always lush Botanical Building!

Large displays of Cymbidium orchids are the main attraction. But today I spotted other beautiful flowers, too!

Here are some photos!

Visitors to the Botanical Building in Balboa Park enjoy beautiful displays of early March flowers.
Visitors to the Botanical Building in early March can enjoy beautiful displays of flowers.
Cymbidium orchids.
Cymbidium orchids.
Cymbidium orchids.
Bright yellow Cymbidium orchids.
Rhododendron azalea - Gretel.
Rhododendron azalea “Gretel”.
Nematanthus wettsteinii, also called Goldfish Plant.
Nematanthus wettsteinii, also called Goldfish Plant.
Camellia japonica.
Camellia japonica.
Stamens of Camellia japonica.
Stamens of Camellia japonica.
Tulips.
Tulips.
Tulips.
Elegant, beautiful tulips.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can enjoy even more Cool San Diego Sights by following me on Facebook or Twitter!

Surprising life in Balboa Park’s reflecting pool.

A duck sleeps among lily flowers in the life-filled Balboa Park reflecting pool.
A duck sleeps among lily flowers in the life-filled Balboa Park reflecting pool.

One of my favorite spots in Balboa Park is the reflecting pool–or lily pond as some call it–between El Prado and the Botanical Building. Built for the 1915 Panama-California Exposition, its official name is Laguna de las Flores.

Under and around the pool’s beautiful green lily pads there is abundant life. Some of the more unusual fish and other critters in the water have been introduced by visitors to the park–something that is officially discouraged. From ducks to koi to turtles to visiting, hungry herons . . . to tadpoles and even crawdads–you never quite know what surprising animal you might encounter.

I’ve taken many photographs of life in the reflecting pool over the years. Here are just a few.

Child watches ducks walk along the edge of the Balboa Park reflecting pool near the Timken Museum.
Child watches ducks walk along the edge of the Balboa Park reflecting pool near the Timken Museum.
A beautiful patch of water lilies among rippled reflections.
A beautiful patch of water lilies among rippled reflections.
Green lily pads reflect San Diego sunlight.
Green lily pads reflect San Diego sunlight.
Two of Balboa Park's resident ducks enjoy a day swimming about the lily pond.
Two of Balboa Park’s resident ducks enjoy a day swimming about the lily pond.
In addition to many more common mallards, one can occasionally see mandarin ducks at the Balboa Park reflecting pool.
In addition to many more common mallards, one can occasionally see mandarin ducks at the Balboa Park reflecting pool.
Colorful koi glides beneath glistening lily pads.
Colorful koi glides beneath glistening lily pads.
A curious koi lifts its head above the surface of the lily pond.
A curious koi lifts its head above the surface of the lily pond.
Someone has spotted a turtle sunning at the edge of the Balboa Park reflecting pool.
Someone has spotted a turtle sunning at the edge of the Balboa Park reflecting pool.
The turtle stretches out its neck absorbing warm sunshine.
The turtle stretches out its neck absorbing warm sunshine.
Photographing the lush flower bed at the south end of the Balboa Park reflecting pool.
Photographing the lush flower bed at the south end of the Balboa Park reflecting pool.
Plaque by the reflecting pool flower bed expresses grateful appreciation to Arthur and Jeannette Gladys Pratt for their generosity and dedication to Balboa Park.
Plaque by the reflecting pool flower bed expresses grateful appreciation to Arthur and Jeannette Gladys Pratt for their generosity and dedication to Balboa Park.
People gaze into the water from the walkway between pools of water near the Botanical Building.
People gaze into the water from the walkway between pools of water near the Botanical Building.
A flock of ducks visits Balboa Park.
A flock of ducks visits Balboa Park.
Natural beauty rests at water's edge.
Natural beauty rests at water’s edge.
Busy life in the water.
Busy life in and on the water.
Floating among beautiful green reflections.
Floating among beautiful green reflections.
A dog is fascinated by all the life, too.
A dog is fascinated by all the life, too.
Koi, a duck and lilies.
Koi, a duck and lilies.
Orange life darting below a yellow flower.
Orange life darting below a yellow flower.
A crowd of colorful koi swirl before one's eyes.
A crowd of colorful koi swirl before one’s eyes.
In beautiful Balboa Park, the reflecting pool is teeming with life.
In beautiful Balboa Park, the reflecting pool is teeming with life.
Just walking along the grass.
Just walking along the grass.
A mother duck and her ducklings explore their watery world.
A mother duck and her ducklings explore their watery world.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can enjoy even more Cool San Diego Sights by following me on Facebook or Twitter!