Green Acres Nursery maintains more than 600 varieties of plants and trees on more than 15 acres, most of which are tailored to southwestern landscapes. White, ornamental star jasmine bushes ($9.78 for 5 gal.) will withstand drought while inviting visiting noses to whiff their ambrosial scents, while vibrant, purple bougainvillea ($4.20 for 1 gal.) will florally fill gaps in any fence to keep opossums from trespassing. Since the ordinary backyard aquascape has deflated Mylar balloons for lily pads and aged pitas for skipping stones, make your pond superb by adding naturally luscious philodendrons ($49.40 for 15 gal.). Green Acres Nursery cultivates each greenling on-site in its nursery, caring for them from the time they're a tiny bud to their first day of kindergarten. Click here to see what plants are currently available.
Mission Hills Nursery draws from a long tradition of horticulture, as it was founded in 1910 by renowned green thumb and urban-green-space advocate Kate Sessions. Year after year, rows of roses, shrubs, and vegetables have sprung up under the staff's doting hands and dangled morsels of plant food. A section for gardening accessories equips yard workers with trowels, thorn strippers, and organic fertilizers to motivate crops without scourging them with caustic chemicals. In addition to tending to its plants, Mission Hills Nursery's staff arranges landscapes with garden-design services and teaches clients to arrange their own through gardening classes.
Backyard X-Scapes stocks a wide array of outdoor accouterments to help pretty up patios and accessorize barren backyards. The six-piece bamboo outdoor-furniture set enshrines sitters in nature's most beautiful and panda-friendly plant. Enjoy an afternoon of reclined revelry upon the sturdy frames of two chairs and a sofa while simultaneously resting yard-work-weary limbs. The included coffee table and two end tables/ottomans can be used as a depository for summertime snacks and drinks or as a makeshift soapbox during backyard mayoral debates.
With a verdant variety of shrubs, trees, roses, and vines, the friendly plantologists will help you wade through the veritable ocean of foliage. Beginning green-thumbers can take advantage of a jumbo planting kit, including ample plant food, vitamin B1, and planting compost—everything a person needs to lure an unsuspecting plant into captivity ($15.97 for the regular kit; $29.97 for the jumbo kit). Advanced yard-enhancements abound in the form of trees and shrubs, such as a selection of 5-gallon citrus trees, good for accenting a living space and forming a focal point for the worship of the Lemon Pledge gods ($34.99). Armstrong can also help organic gardeners reach full-flavored nirvana with a bevy of 3-inch plant varieties ($2.99; selections vary by season and location).
Edible Arrangements' more than 50 fresh, artful fruit baskets combine the aesthetic elements and emotive properties of floral arrangements with the juicy edibility of fruit. The sweetery's designers stud the Delicious Daisy, a bouquet of sliced honeydew, pineapple, and cantaloupe, with strawberries and strings of grapes that can double as a 25th-anniversary gift for a Smucker's jam heiress ($35). Decadent, gluten-free layers of white and semisweet chocolate coat fruit in a 12-piece box of hand-dipped strawberries and bananas ($25). Customers can also put today's Groupon toward a larger centerpiece, such as the Melon Delight, a decorative spray of watermelon wedges, pineapple daisies, cantaloupe, honeydew, grapes, and double-dipped bananas sprouting from a watering can ($76). The preservative-free treats are all handcrafted at the apex of freshness, readying hand-dipped dainties to be hand-shoved into eagerly awaiting mouths.
San Diego Botanic Garden envelops visitors in 37 acres of lush gardens and diverse terrain, offering nature-centric events and docent-led tours through the urban oasis. Explore the seemingly endless expanse of 28 themed gardens and venture into the world of verdure with the Australian Garden, rich in low-water plants and Vegemite, or the Mediterranean Garden, filled with fragrant water-smart plants such as lavender, rosemary, and Tang. Attend an insightful event, such as the Asian Arts in the Garden experience, or satisfy pressing cocoa queries at the Chocolate Festival. Peruse the premises with a gaggle of garden groupies, take a self-guided tour, or attend the free docent-led garden tour at 10:30 a.m. on Saturdays.