A very quiet, sunny morning in Balboa Park.

I saw very few people in Balboa Park this morning.

It isn’t often you find a sunny Balboa Park so empty and peaceful. But it was Memorial Day and I started my walk early.

I headed from Cortez Hill up Sixth Avenue, walked east down El Prado all the way to the rose garden, then made my way south along Park Boulevard to the Administrative Courtyard.

I’m sorry to say I didn’t take my camera out right away. My first photograph is by flowers in the Alcazar Garden.

Why was I walking so early in the morning? At eight o’clock there was a special Memorial Day ceremony at the Veterans Museum. I blogged about it here.

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!

Floral Association event honors Kate Sessions.

Photograph of the Marston House across the south lawn.
Photograph of the handsome Marston House across the south lawn.

Kate Sessions, the pioneering horticulturist who is often called the Mother of Balboa Park, was honored yesterday at an event held at the beautiful George Marston House and Gardens. Every year the San Diego Floral Association throws a special birthday party for Kate Sessions, who was born on November 8, 1857.

Many of the large trees that grow today around Balboa Park were planted in person by Kate Sessions over a century ago. That the annual floral party is held in the sprawling gardens of the 1905 Marston House is appropriate, because George W. Marston, successful businessman and founder of the San Diego Historical Society, was also an important advocate for Balboa Park. His old house, situated in the northwest corner of the park, is a fine example of the Arts and Crafts architectural movement. It was designed by famous architects William Sterling Hebbard and Irving Gill. Today it is the home of a historical museum.

The Marston House Museum and its lovely gardens are open to the public in the northwest corner of Balboa Park. The current exhibit is titled Irving Gill - Progress and Poetry in Architecture.
The Marston House Museum and its lovely gardens are open to the public in the northwest corner of Balboa Park. The current exhibit is titled Irving Gill – Progress and Poetry in Architecture.
Several vintage automobiles from the Early Ford V8 Club were on display in front of the house.
Several vintage automobiles from the Early Ford V8 Club were on display in front of the house.
Geraniums and other colorful plants were for sale on the Marston House grounds.
Geraniums and other colorful plants were for sale on the Marston House grounds.
The San Diego Floral Association, founded in 1907, is celebrating their second century of community service and horticultural education.
The San Diego Floral Association, founded in 1907, is celebrating their second century of community service and horticultural education.
Victorian attire and a food truck greet visitors to the fun annual event.
Victorian attire and a food truck greet visitors to the fun annual event.
Sunlight through gilded leaves.
Sunlight through Autumn-gilded leaves.
View of the Marston House from the north, across a section of the gardens.
View of the Marston House from the north, across a section of the gardens.
Beds of blooming roses in the Marston House gardens.
Beds of blooming roses in the Marston House gardens.
Sitting quietly on a bench among green hedges.
Sitting quietly on a bench among green hedges.
Fountain in the gardens of Balboa Park's historical Marston House.
Fountain in the gardens of Balboa Park’s historical Marston House.
Beautiful tiles with images of flowers.
Beautiful tiles with images of flowers.
A peek inside the lath greenhouse between the Marston House and its carriage house, which now operates as a museum store.
A peek inside the lath greenhouse between the Marston House and its carriage house, which now operates as a museum store.
A perfect yellow rose.
A perfect yellow rose.

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!

A world-class rose garden in full spring bloom.

The world-class Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden in Balboa Park was in full bloom on Easter Sunday.
The world-class Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden in Balboa Park was in full bloom on Easter Sunday.

Today I visited a very special place. I took a slow stroll through the amazingly beautiful Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden in Balboa Park. It also happens to be Easter Sunday. Many people were enjoying the vibrant colors. The rose garden is in gorgeous, full spring bloom.

The Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden is truly world-class. It has won so many prestigious awards, signs and plaques appear all over the garden singing its praises. Just walking about randomly, I noticed this garden has been inducted into the Great Rosarians of the World’s Rose Garden Hall of Fame, has earned the Public Rose Garden Award from All-America Rose Selections, has gained an Award of Garden Excellence from the World Federation of Rose Societies, and goodness knows what else!

And here I am, someone who knows next to nothing about roses. I suppose I should have recorded the many varieties that I photographed–but it was too warm and perfect outside, and I simply didn’t feel that motivated. The beauty was enough.

And believe me, there was an abundance of beauty!

Plaque among roses reads: This garden is dedicated to the memory of Inez Grant Parker . . . 1975
Plaque among roses reads: This garden is dedicated to the memory of Inez Grant Parker . . . 1975
Visitors to beautiful Balboa Park in San Diego enter the large, amazing rose garden just east of Park Boulevard.
Visitors to beautiful Balboa Park in San Diego enter the large, amazing rose garden just east of Park Boulevard.
During the spring, the roses are in full bloom. Brilliant colors can be seen everywhere one turns.
During the spring, the roses are in full bloom. Brilliant colors can be seen everywhere one turns.
Someone is wearing Easter Bunny ears in the rose garden! A perfect, special day in the sunshine.
Someone is wearing Easter Bunny ears in the rose garden! A perfect, special day in the sunshine.
My camera seemed quite attracted to yellow blooms. They are like sunshine, grown from the rich Earth.
My camera seemed quite attracted to yellow blooms. They are like sunshine, grown from the rich Earth.
Even the white fence around the Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden's small maintenance area is bedecked with glorious color.
Even the white fence around the Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden’s small maintenance area is bedecked with glorious color.
A bright red rose. Many buds have yet to open on this late March day.
A bright red rose. Many buds have yet to open on this late March day.
People stroll slowly among the beautiful rose displays. Many take photographs. Young and old are touched. Many bend down to smell the sweet scent.
People stroll slowly among the beautiful rose displays. Many take photographs. Young and old are touched. Many bend down to smell the sweet scent.
Many varieties of rose can be spotted in this truly fantastic, multiple award-winning garden.
Many varieties of rose can be spotted in this truly fantastic, multiple award-winning garden.
Photo across Park Boulevard toward the Natural History Museum, one of many attractions in Balboa Park.
Photo across Park Boulevard toward the Natural History Museum, one of many attractions in Balboa Park.
A sea of brilliant color. A walk in this garden is like moving through a beautiful dream.
A sea of brilliant color. A walk in this garden is like moving through a beautiful dream.
These deep purple roses really caught my eye. They appear to be made of velvet.
These deep purple roses really caught my eye. They appear to be made of velvet.
Cheerful blooms smile up at those who pass by.
Cheerful blooms smile up at those who pass by.
Many paths among the roses invite a casual stroll. Benches invite relaxation and meditation.
Many paths among the roses invite a casual stroll. Benches allow for relaxation and meditation.
Yellow, pinks, reds, oranges, whites, every color of the rainbow, it seems, have sprouted like magic.
Yellow, pinks, reds, oranges, whites.  Every color of the rainbow, it seems, has sprouted in this one special place like sudden magic.
One cheerfully blooming sun in a whole universe of bright colors.
One cheerfully blooming sun in a whole universe of bright colors.
A stroll through this amazing garden brings one closer to deeper, more important things in life.
A stroll through this amazing garden brings one closer to deeper, more important things in life.
Everyone loves roses. Photographers and bicyclists, alike!
Everyone loves roses. Photographers and bicyclists, alike!
Come to this amazing Balboa Park rose garden during the blooming season and it will take your breath away.
Come to this amazing Balboa Park rose garden during the blooming season and it will take your breath away.
Fields of beauty.
Fields of beauty.
The Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden overlooks Balboa Park's less-developed Florida Canyon area. Blue sky and a few clouds today.
The Inez Grant Parker Memorial Rose Garden overlooks Balboa Park’s less-developed Florida Canyon area. Blue sky and a few clouds today.
A world-class rose garden, free to the public in Balboa Park.
A world-class rose garden, free to the public in Balboa Park.
Roses like snow on a spring day.
A flurry of white roses, like snow on a spring day.
Delicate beauty. A miracle.
Delicate beauty. A miracle.
Roses enough to fill the spirit to overflowing.
Roses enough to fill the spirit to overflowing.
This one is for you, my reader.
This one is for you, my reader.

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.