Monday, August 16, 2010

The Gardens @Getty Villa

Inner Peristyle Garden
Outer Peristyle Garden

East Garden - what we think might have been the family & slave Play Garden
Herb Garden - fragrant herbs and fruit Orchard of pomegranates, figs, apples and grapes

I greatly enjoyed the Architecture and Garden Tour at the Getty Villa in Pacific Palisades (Malibu). The 4 gardens to which our group was introduced included: Inner Peristyle Garden (ancient visitors to the villa of this noble might see only this garden which would have been glimpsed from the atrium; my favorite plant here is the Bay Laurel tree), Outer Peristyle Garden (this is the one which draws the eye as you enter the dining room (triclinium) of the Roman-styled villa; my favorite plants here are the Pomegranate and the Oleander; the Acanthus featured on the wall and ceiling is just ok), East Garden (this would have been a private, garden, only for the play/use of the family and slaves with its two fountains of 1) civets and 2) striking mosaic lined with seashells; I loved the Water Lilies and Papyrus in this garden), and Herb Garden (herbs and fruit orchard along; besides the smells of lavender, rosemary, thyme and spearmint, I loved the way the Grape vines are staked, the feel of the sturdy stinky Pennyroyal (mint family - pulegium named by Pliny!), and visual appeal of the Citron, grand ancestor to our lemons, and reed-like Papyrus too!). A list of the plants in the Getty Villa gardens is at

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