Manuela Gomez Rhine is a freelance journalist based in Pasadena, California.

Master Gardeners at the Ranch

The master gardeners who volunteer each Saturday at the Huntington Ranch Garden Open House are the perfect hosts for this one-of-a-kind garden experience. They always arrive early to harvest the freshest seasonal bounty from the vegetable beds and fruit trees and set out samples for visitors to taste. When the … Continue reading

Fourth of July Fireworks

The offerings are explosive: “Balloon Rockets, Devil Bombs, and Barking Dog Cap Bombs, Floating Stars changing colors, making a most beautiful display in the air,” reads a fireworks catalog entry. A promotional poster announces Sanderson & Lanergan, pyrotechnists to Boston, and promises a fireworks show, “[f]urnished as usual in the … Continue reading

Puyas in Bloom

A recent tour of Puya in the Desert Garden with The Huntington’s curator of the desert collections, John Trager, turned me from a Puya Ignoramus to a Puya Enthusiast. Puya are drought-resistant, mainly South American terrestrial bromeliads (Bromeliaceae) that love arid sun. The Huntington has the best collection of these … Continue reading

The Name of the Rose

An old Hollywood crowd graces bed number 15 North in The Huntington’s Rose Garden. ‘Ronald Reagan’ and ‘Nancy Reagan’ naturally stand together, with ‘Ginger Rogers’ to one side, ‘Dick Clark’ on the other, and ‘Lucille Ball’ and ‘Cary Grant’ nearby. Meanwhile, ‘Marilyn Monroe’ and ‘John F. Kennedy’ share their own … Continue reading

Coming Home

Before Phillip E. Bloom applied to become The Huntington’s Curator of the Chinese Garden, he spent two days exploring and contemplating Liu Fang Yuan, the Garden of Flowing Fragrance—first alone and later with his wife, Yurika Wakamatsu, who had just taken a position as an assistant professor in the Department … Continue reading