Colors of summer at Plumeria Show and Sale!

The Southern California Plumeria Society’s 20th Annual Hawaiian Plumeria Festival took place this weekend in Balboa Park!

The festival’s popular flower show and plant sale attracted a huge crowd to the Casa del Prado and its outdoor courtyard. There were many plumeria plants to choose from, plus friendly advice from experts on how to grow them in our soil and climate. Not to mention colorful artwork to purchase, and food and entertainment!

I walked through the event today and took some photos…

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!

San Diego Iris Society blooms in Balboa Park!

I’m no expert when it comes to flowers, but I definitely enjoy drinking in their beauty.

I spent several minutes yesterday inside the Casa del Prado, walking slowly past tables full of exquisite irises. The San Diego Iris Society is having their Annual Spring Show and Iris Sale this weekend in Balboa Park. The event continues today.

The people I metĀ in the society were all very nice. If you grow irises in San Diego, it would be fun to become a member!

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!

Photos of beauty inside the Botanical Building.

Yesterday I strolled through Balboa Park’s Botanical Building. No matter where I aimed my camera, beauty waited.

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!

Magic dahlias explode in Balboa Park!

Blooms like fireworks inside the Casa del Prado. People enjoy a special flower show in Balboa Park, arranged by the San Diego County Dahlia Society.
Blooms like fireworks inside the Casa del Prado. People enjoy a magical flower show in Balboa Park, organized by the San Diego County Dahlia Society.

If you’d like to see something beautiful, take a look at these photographs. I was fortunate to capture some magic this afternoon inside the Casa del Prado. That’s where the San Diego County Dahlia Society was having a flower show.

Someone peers into an open door at the Casa del Prado in Balboa Park. Magic awaits inside.
A visitor to Balboa Park peers through an open door. Magic awaits inside.
A burst of exquisite beauty.
An explosion of exquisite beauty.

Delicate white petals.
Delicate white petals.

My camera by sheer accident took the artistic photograph that you see here!
My camera by accident took the photograph that you see here! Must be magic!

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 magical photography blog which I’ve titledĀ A Small World Full of Beauty.

The Peace Trees of the Japanese Friendship Garden.

Chinese Parasol Peace Tree, presented to the Japanese Friendship Garden by Green Legacy Hiroshima, August 2015.
Chinese Parasol Peace Tree, presented to the Japanese Friendship Garden by Green Legacy Hiroshima, August 2015.

The Japanese Friendship Garden is home to a variety of inspiring Peace Trees. These Peace Trees are descendants of trees that miraculously survived the Hiroshima A-Bomb during World War II.

The trees were presented by Green Legacy Hiroshima, an organization that spreads the seeds and saplings of Peace Trees to gardens around the world. They are symbols of hope, and the resilience of life, and the victory of human friendship, understanding and peace.

Here are some photos collected over the past couple months. May these Peace Trees grow and thrive in beautiful Balboa Park, where people come together to celebrate the good of humanity.

People walk through the profound beauty of the Japanese Friendship Garden in San Diego.
People walk through the profound beauty of the Japanese Friendship Garden in San Diego.
Ginko Peace Tree, presented to the Japanese Friendship Garden by Green Legacy Hiroshima, August 2015.
Ginko Peace Tree, presented to the Japanese Friendship Garden by Green Legacy Hiroshima, August 2015.
Wisteria Peace Tree, presented to the Japanese Friendship Garden by Green Legacy Hiroshima, August 2015.
Wisteria Peace Tree, presented to the Japanese Friendship Garden by Green Legacy Hiroshima, August 2015.
A walk through the Lower Garden of the Japanese Friendship Garden.
A walk through the Lower Garden of the Japanese Friendship Garden.
Chinese Parasol Peace Tree, presented to the Japanese Friendship Garden by Green Legacy Hiroshima, August 2015.
Chinese Parasol Peace Tree, presented to the Japanese Friendship Garden by Green Legacy Hiroshima, August 2015.
Ginko Peace Tree, presented to the Japanese Friendship Garden by Green Legacy Hiroshima, August 2015.
Ginko Peace Tree, presented to the Japanese Friendship Garden by Green Legacy Hiroshima, August 2015.
Tending to small bonsai trees in the Upper Garden.
Tending to small bonsai trees in the Upper Garden.
Plaque near Camphor Peace Tree in the Japanese Friendship Garden. In August 15, 2015 the JFG received 15 saplings grown from trees that survived the atomic bombing of Hiroshima.
Plaque near Camphor Peace Tree in the Japanese Friendship Garden. In August 15, 2015 the JFG received 15 saplings grown from trees that survived the atomic bombing of Hiroshima.
The Camphor Peace Tree flourishes in the Japanese Friendship Garden in Balboa Park. Proof that life, hope and peace can prosper.
This Camphor Peace Tree flourishes in the Japanese Friendship Garden. Proof that life, hope and peace can prosper.

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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.

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!

Balboa Park becomes more beautiful one Friday morning.

San Diego Park and Recreation Department workers paint a wall one Friday morning in Balboa Park.
San Diego Park and Recreation Department workers paint a wall in Balboa Park one Friday morning.

During my walk through Balboa Park this morning, I saw lots of people out and about working to beautify the park. It’s Friday, which means another busy weekend is just around the corner…

Cleaning the Plaza de California near the Museum of Man with a blower.
Cleaning the Plaza de California near the Museum of Man with a blower.
Another worker clears leaves with a blower by the Niki de Saint Phalle Nikigator sculpture.
Another worker clears leaves and litter with a blower by the Niki de Saint Phalle Nikigator sculpture.
Working on some underground repairs in the outdoor courtyard of the House of Hospitality, near Donal Hord's sculpture Woman of Tehuantepec.
Working on some underground repairs in the outdoor courtyard of the House of Hospitality, near Donal Hord’s iconic sculpture Woman of Tehuantepec.
Restoration work if being done on this facade by the reflecting pool. Sadly, a vandal must have climbed the scaffolding and spray painted graffiti.
Restoration work if being done on this facade by the reflecting pool. Sadly, a vandal must have climbed the scaffolding and spray painted graffiti.
Raking between enormous roots behind the Botanical Building!
Raking between enormous roots behind the Botanical Building!
Some work is going on to fix up the front entrance of the San Diego History Center.
Some work is going on to fix up the front entrance of the San Diego History Center.
More leaf blowing in the Plaza de Panama.
More leaf blowing in the Plaza de Panama near the Museum of Art’s Sculpture Garden Court.
A Park and Rec worker gathers up some garbage one Friday morning, preparing for the weekend.
A Park and Rec worker gathers up some garbage one Friday morning, preparing for the inevitable weekend crowds.
A tree trimming service removes fallen eucalyptus trees in Palm Canyon. This year's winter storms have knocked many large trees over.
A tree trimming service removes fallen eucalyptus trees in Palm Canyon. This year’s winter storms have knocked many large trees over.
Some of the enormous eucalyptus trunks weigh many tons.
Some of the enormous eucalyptus trunks weigh many tons.
A truck dumps mulch, with the Balboa Park Club rising in the background.
A truck dumps mulch, with the Balboa Park Club rising in the background.
Mowing the green lawn at the International Cottages.
Mowing the green lawn at the International Cottages one quiet Friday morning.

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!

Photo tour of Japanese Friendship Garden canyon.

Visitors to the Japanese Friendship Garden in beautiful Balboa Park carefully step across a stream that flows through a lush canyon.
Visitors to the Japanese Friendship Garden in beautiful Balboa Park carefully step across a stream that flows through a lush canyon.

A few days ago I took you on a short photo tour of the upper level of the Japanese Friendship Garden in Balboa Park. You can find that here. Now we follow our docent tour guide down a gently sloping path into the large canyon expansion below.

Of course, a few quick photos don’t really convey the profound beauty and tranquility of this place. And my understanding of the garden is quite limited. While our tour guide spoke of the garden’s careful creation, its tending, and the meaning of its elements, I was so absorbed in the surrounding beauty that I took only a few notes. Please read the photo captions, and forgive me for not knowing more. I’m still learning.

Gazing down from an overlook into the canyon expansion of the Japanese Friendship Garden in San Diego. This large section of the garden opened in 2015.
Gazing down from an overlook into the canyon expansion of the Japanese Friendship Garden in San Diego. This large section of the garden opened in 2015.
Before heading into the canyon, our docent tour guide talks a little about what we will see below.
Before heading into the canyon, our docent tour guide talks a little about what we will see below.
Beautiful handle on the Charles C. Dail Memorial Gate which leads into the canyon.
Beautiful handle on the Charles C. Dail Memorial Gate which leads into the canyon.
After stepping through the gate, the docent shows us a black pine. This one is being trained with a bamboo splint to assume an aesthetically beautiful shape.
After stepping through the gate, the docent shows us a black pine. This one is being trained with a bamboo splint to assume an aesthetically beautiful shape.
Visitors to the Japanese Friendship Garden head down a path that leads from the Upper Garden into the Lower Garden. The winding path is a journey of discovery.
Visitors to the Japanese Friendship Garden head down a path that leads from the Upper Garden into the Lower Garden. The winding path is a journey of discovery.
Here we are, just walking along, feeling at peace, surrounded by so much natural beauty.
Here we are, just walking along, feeling at peace, surrounded by so much natural beauty.
Trees provide shade and fluttering leaves; a bench near a stone lantern allows for rest and meditation.
Trees provide shade and fluttering leaves; a bench near a stone lantern allows for rest and meditation.
We have arrived at the Dragon Bridge, where a serpentine dry waterfall creates the impression of flowing water.
We have arrived at the Dragon Bridge, where a serpentine dry waterfall creates the impression of flowing water.
The carefully-placed white stones in the dry waterfall were imported. But the yellowish boulders on top were found in the canyon. A Japanese garden must contain an element of what is native.
The carefully-placed white stones in the dry waterfall were imported. But the yellowish boulders on top were found in the canyon. A Japanese garden must contain an element of what is native.
One of three highly-prized cloud-like trees placed near the dry waterfall. Every part of the garden has been designed with the greatest attention to detail.
One of three highly-prized cloud-like trees placed near the dry waterfall. Every part of the garden has been designed with the greatest attention to detail.
Now we walk into an area full of cherry trees. In spring, if the preceding winter had a sufficiently cold period, the grove of 160 trees becomes magical with cherry blossoms.
Now we walk into an area full of cherry trees. In spring, if the preceding winter had a sufficiently cold period, the grove of 160 trees becomes magical with cherry blossoms.
Walking slowly along a winding path through the cherry tree grove. It's a November day in San Diego. But the Japanese Friendship Garden is beautiful in every season.
Walking slowly along a winding path through the cherry tree grove. It’s a November day in San Diego. But the Japanese Friendship Garden is beautiful in every season.
Approaching a second bridge where there is a pond and a turtle-shaped small rock island.
Approaching a second bridge where there is a pond and a turtle-shaped small rock island.
Our tour guide shows us a bamboo deer chaser, or shishi odoshi. You might recall that we saw another in the garden's upper level.
Our tour guide shows us a bamboo deer chaser, or shishi odoshi. You might recall that we saw another in the garden’s upper level.
Crossing the low bridge as bright water ripples gently past.
Crossing the low bridge as bright water ripples gently past.
The rock with a bent shape at the bottom of the small waterfall represents a salmon, which like we human beings fights to move upstream, against difficult currents.
The rock with a bent shape at the bottom of the small waterfall represents a salmon, which like we human beings fights to move upstream, against difficult currents.
We walk along the artificial stream. Many flowers can be seen here in spring, including azaleas and camellias.
We walk along the artificial stream. Various flowers can be seen here at different times of the year, including azaleas and camellias.
A tranquil scene at the Japanese Friendship Garden. There are five bridges, each with its own distinct character.
A tranquil scene at the Japanese Friendship Garden. There are five bridges, each with its own distinct character.
Sitting on a shady bench.
Sitting on a shady bench.
Now we are walking past an ornate Nara period Japanese stone lantern.
Now we are walking past an ornate Nara period Japanese stone lantern.
We come to the elegant Inamori Pavilion, which is used for special exhibits and events. The Sukiya-style building has a moat full of koi. The viewing deck, or engawa, looks out at a waterfall.
We come to the elegant Inamori Pavilion, which is used for special exhibits and events. The Sukiya-style building has a moat full of koi. The viewing deck, or engawa, looks out at a waterfall.
Gazing out at the sparkling waterfall and a bridge just beyond it.
Gazing out at the sparkling waterfall and a bridge just beyond it.
The Japanese Friendship Garden is treasured by many for its beauty, subtle wisdom, and serenity.
The Japanese Friendship Garden is treasured by many for its beauty, meaningful design, and serenity.
Photo of the beautiful Inamori Pavilion from nearby bridge.
Photo of the beautiful Inamori Pavilion from nearby bridge.

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!