The Huntington Library For Birthday Month 2013

Visiting The Huntington Library Is Always a Treat

We Started Early

We went with GregE and GwenE and had a great afternoon!

Did You Know? - As a landowner, a businessman, and a visionary, Henry Edwards Huntington played a major role in the growth of Southern California. Huntington was born in 1850 in Oneonta, N.Y, and was the nephew and heir of Collis P. Huntington, one of the Big Four railroad tycoons of 19th-century California.

In 1892, Huntington relocated to San Francisco with his first wife, Mary Alice Prentice, and their four children.

He divorced Mary Alice Prentice in 1906, and in 1913 married his uncle's widow Arabella Huntington, relocating from San Francisco to Los Angeles. He purchased a property of more than 500 acres that was then known as the San Marino Ranch, and went on to purchase other large tracts of land in the Pasadena and Los Angeles areas for urban and suburban development.

As president of the Pacific Electric Railway Company and the Los Angeles Railway Company, he spearheaded urban and regional transportation efforts to link together far-flung communities, supporting growth of those communities as well as promoting commerce, recreation, and tourism. He was one of the founders of the city of San Marino, incorporated in 1913.


Different... We Be Under Construction

Did You Know? - The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens has received a gift of $32 million from longtime Huntington supporter Charles T. Munger for its new Education and Visitor Center.?? The Munger gift is the lead gift toward the $60 million project.? Construction is now under way and is expected to be completed in early 2015.? The center will feature 6.5 acres of new gardens and about 43,000 square feet of educational facilities and visitor amenities.

Our new starting point - Gwen heads for the shade

It was hot outside... It was wet inside

The camera and "microscopes" were amazing

Great educational displays

We counted... Gwen got to 20 and had to stop

Did You Know? - Dendrochronology (from ???????, dendron, "tree limb"; ??????, khronos, "time"; and -?????, -logia) or tree-ring dating is the scientific method of dating based on the analysis of patterns of tree rings, also known as growth rings. Dendrochronology can date the time at which tree rings were formed, in many types of wood, to the exact calendar year. This has three main areas of application: paleoecology, where it is used to determine certain aspects of past ecologies (most prominently climate); archaeology, where it is used to date old buildings, etc.; and radiocarbon dating, where it is used to calibrate radiocarbon ages (see below).

In some areas of the world, it is possible to date wood back a few thousand years, or even many thousands. Currently, the maximum for fully anchored chronologies is a little over 11,000 years from present.

Carrot roots...

Pitchers in action

Did You Know? - Pitcher plants are carnivorous plants whose prey-trapping mechanism features a deep cavity filled with liquid known as a pitfall trap.

Gwen and Greg walking in the mist - Greg is performing Shakespeare for the trees

To The Childrens Garden

Did You Know? - Plants such as topiary animals, weeping mulberry trees, papyrus, and tree aloes create a whimsical atmosphere. Parents and grandparents can watch their children from shaded benches in the garden?s center or from a comfortable overlook platform, complete with a rocking chair.

The Garden centers on the four ancient elements-?Fire, Water, Earth and Air. These are the raw elements that fuel the plant world and, through plant growth, give rise to the oxygen, food, resources, and habitats that sustain human life.

The Childrens Garden

Beautiful flowers

A stone turtle... Looks pretty real to us

Sue takes the high road

Topiary Volcano: Sunlight fuels the flame-colored leaves of New Zealand flax
growing atop the volcano. Rampant vines form a shady refuge.

Magnolias were amazing

Did You Know? - Magnolia is a large genus of about 210 flowering plant species in the subfamily Magnolioideae of the family Magnoliaceae. It is named after French botanist Pierre Magnol.

Magnolia is an ancient genus. Appearing before bees did, the flowers evolved to encourage pollination by beetles. To avoid damage from pollinating beetles, the carpels of Magnolia flowers are extremely tough. Fossilised specimens of Magnolia acuminata have been found dating to 20 million years ago, and of plants identifiably belonging to the Magnoliaceae dating to 95 million years ago.

Almost as old as Greg....

Green on one side and brown on the other....

It's for kids silly

It's Greg

...or the Boogey Man

Did You Know? - A bogeyman (also spelled bogieman, or boogeyman) is an amorphous imaginary being used by adults to frighten children into compliant behaviour. The monster has no specific appearance, and conceptions about it can vary drastically from household to household within the same community; in many cases, he has no set appearance in the mind of an adult or child, but is simply a non-specific embodiment of terror.

Parents may tell their children that if they misbehave, the bogeyman will get them. Bogeymen may target a specific mischief ? for instance, a bogeyman that punishes children who suck their thumbs ? or general misbehavior, depending on what purpose needs serving. In some cases, the bogeyman is a nickname for the Devil.

The butterfly was busy

Now that is orange

Back Inside The Conservatory

Amazing... Look below

The ficus leaves are leaves that drip

No wonder... 78 degrees and 95% humidity

Did You Know? - Humidity is the amount of water vapor in the air. Water vapor is the gas phase of water and is invisible. Humidity indicates the likelihood of precipitation, dew, or fog. Higher humidity reduces the effectiveness of sweating in cooling the body by reducing the rate of evaporation of moisture from the skin. This effect is calculated in a heat index table, used during summer weather.

There are three main measurements of humidity: absolute, relative and specific. Absolute humidity is the water content of air.

Relative humidity, expressed as a percent, measures the current absolute humidity relative to the maximum for that temperature. Specific humidity is a ratio of the water vapor content of the mixture to the total air content on a mass basis.

Chinese Gardens... Under Construction For A Large Expansion

It was so cool under the shade of the large trees

The creek was crystal clear

Japanese maple tree ... In the Chinese garden

Did You Know? - Acer palmatum, called Japanese Maple or Smooth Japanese Maple (Japanese: irohamomiji, ??????, or momiji, ??) is a species of woody plant native to Japan, North Korea, South Korea, China, eastern Mongolia, and southeast Russia.

The lake was beautiful

Bridge of the fish!

Check the metal guards around the edge ... Keeps the geese away

Love the rocks


The lake is so clear now

Red leaves are always amazing....

Did You Know? - Maples are one of the few trees that turn a vibrant red in the fall. This is due to a particular substance called anthocyanine. After photosynthesis stops, there is still some glucose trapped in the leaf. The breakdown of that glucose produces anthocyanine, which turns the leaf bright red. Anthocyanine protects the leaf from frost.

A Walk To The Japanese Garden


Did You Know? - Agapanthus is the only genus in the subfamily Agapanthoideae of the flowering plant family Amaryllidaceae. The family is in the monocot order Asparagales. The name is derived from scientific Greek: ???? (agape) = love, ????? (anthos) = flower.

Some species of Agapanthus are commonly known as lily of the Nile (or African lily in the UK), although they are not lilies and all of the species are native to South Africa, from the Cape of Good Hope to the Limpopo River.

The water moves leisurely down the gully into the Japanese Gardens

The Japanese Tea House

Did You Know? - In Japanese tradition a tea house can refer to a structure designed for holding Japanese tea ceremonies. This structure and specifically the room in it where the tea ceremony takes place is called chashitsu (???, literally "tea room"). The architectural space called chashitsu was created for aesthetic and intellectual fulfillment.

White gravel outside the Tea House is relaxing

Japanese Bonsai Garden

Just amazing....

Did You Know? - Viewing stones are rocks that are appreciated for their shape, form and color. Viewing stones may resemble geographic features, animals, people or other everyday objects. Viewing stones may be naturally shaped by the processes of erosion and weather (suiseki), or may be found objects or man-made (biseki)

Checkout the grapes

We Continue Through The Japanese Gardens

Another five months and these wil be bright yellow

A view into the gully

Don't be Koi with me!

Gwen was saying.... "I think I can...I think I can... I think I can..."

We made it....

The Rose Garden Awaits

The Herb Garden was beautiful

Did You Know? - The traditional kitchen garden, also known as a potager (in French, jardin potager) or in Scotland a kailyaird, is a space separate from the rest of the residential garden ? the ornamental plants and lawn areas. Most vegetable gardens are still miniature versions of old family farm plots, but the kitchen garden is different not only in its history, but also its design.

The kitchen garden may serve as the central feature of an ornamental, all-season landscape, or it may be little more than a humble vegetable plot. It is a source of herbs, vegetables and fruits, but it is often also a structured garden space with a design based on repetitive geometric patterns.

The kitchen garden has year-round visual appeal and can incorporate permanent perennials or woody shrub plantings around (or among) the annuals.

Herbs often have multiple uses. For example, mint may be used for cooking, tea, and pest control. Examples of herbs and their uses (not intended to be complete):

Tea Time

Kimberly has been at the Tea Room for twenty years

We Continue Our Walk

Grape arbors abound in the garden

Apple Mint???

Did You Know? - An attractive herb, apple mint is often used as an ornamental plant. It is hardy and easy to grow, preferring full sun to lightly shady conditions.

The leaves of this plant can be used to make apple mint jelly, as well as a flavoring in dishes such as apple mint couscous. It is also often used to make a mint tea, as a garnish, or in salads.

We're walking....

The Shakespeare Garden was alive and well

Amazing colors

To The Residence

Formerly the residence of Henry E. Huntington (1850?1927) and his wife, Arabella Huntington (1850?1924), the Huntington Art Gallery opened in 1928.

A view from the front door of the main house

We brought our own art expert... Professor Greg

An amazing view from the upstairs window

The artist was truly patient

We had to walk through the chapel to get to Blue Boy and Pinky

Pinky was doing well this afternoon

Did You Know? - Executed when the artist was only 25 and shortly after his election to the Royal Academy, Pinkie is an extraordinarily fresh and lively performance with the sitter standing on a hill, her dress blown by the wind. The movement of her dress in conjunction with her frank gaze gives a sense of immediacy to the composition and expresses the animation of the sitter.

The young girl was the daughter of a wealthy plantation family in Jamaica, who came to England for her education. Called "Pinkie" by her grandmother who commissioned the portrait, she was only eleven when her likeness was taken. Sadly, Sarah died within a few months of the portrait's completion, probably of tuberculosis. Her younger brother Edward was the father of the poetess Elizabeth Barrett Browning.

Pinkie was the last painting purchased by Mr. Huntington, who did not live to see it installed in the house.

Blue Boy - Thomas Gainsborough (1727-88)
oil on canvas, 70 5/8 x 48 3/4 inches

Did You Know? - The best known painting at the Huntington, Gainsborough's The Blue Boy, portrays Jonathan Buttall, the son of a successful hardware merchant, who was a close friend of the artist. The work was executed during Gainsborough's extended stay in Bath before he finally settled in London in 1774.

The artist has dressed the young man in a costume dating from about 140 years before the portrait was painted. This type of costume was familiar through the portraits of the great Flemish painter, Anthony van Dyck (1559-1641), who was resident in England during the early 17th century. Gainsborough greatly admired the work of Van Dyck and seems to have conceived The Blue Boy as an act of homage to that master.

Mr. Huntington purchased the painting along with Gainsborough's The Cottage Door and Reynolds's Sarah Siddons as the Tragic Muse from the Duke of Westminster.

Studying the art....

The portal where the carriages brought people in and out of the residence

Great view from the patio

May we introduce the new owners

Blue Girl and Orangie

Time For A Walk

The water sounded amazing through the trees and bushes

Lily pads everywhere

Water was flowing down the side of the hill

It cooled off around the small lakes

Greg is attempting to keep up with us....

No! The camera is NOT at an angle... We are on a hill

Look for the geese

They are hidden well

Greg plays in the water....

No turtles to be seen

The Koi were bright this afternoon

Agapanthus seemed to be everywhere

Great reflections