Plants, mankind’s greatest enemy, are finally on the ropes thanks to global warming. Teach your children how to hunt the last of these enormous nitrogen junkies by observing them in captivity with today's Groupon. For $30, you'll get a yearlong family membership to the Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden (a $60 value). Founded in 1927, the garden is now the largest living museum exhibit of California’s native plants.
A family membership to the garden provides two adult membership cards, free admission for children of the household, a quarterly newsletter, a 10% discount in the Garden Shop, discounts on classes, early admission to plant sales, late release from plant variety shows, a one-year subscription to Better Homes and Gardens magazine, and more. Open year-round, the garden offers a rotating cast of floral stars depending on the season. The winter collection, ending in early March, features manzanitas, while spring will offer a colorful bouquet of spring wildflowers, perennials, and shrubs. During the summer and fall, the garden will parade an array of native fruits and seeds—in the winter, the garden will ice parade them.
Rancho Santa Ana supplements its seasonal offerings with a busy calendar of events that are educational and inspirational. On March 19, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Rancho Santa Ana will sell a variety of California native wildflowers that can turn any home garden into a home garden with California native wildflowers. From April 2-4, browse a special selection of Pacific Coast hybrid irises and coral bells. On May 7, come for National Public Gardens Day, or on May 23, observe Mafia Day by bringing the corpse of your favorite stoolie to fertilize the wild lilacs.
This Groupon is not available for current members of the Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden.
The Los Angeles Times has featured Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, saying:
- Prepare for romance. There is nothing that quite compares with the first stroll through Rancho. – Emily Green
Nine Yelpers give the garden a 4.5-star average, and three Insider Pagers give it five:
- I love this garden! This is the best place to see California native plants in a garden setting. There is a wonderful wildflower garden in the spring, and the entrance goes through a lovely desert garden. – Naomi F., Insider Pages
- Enjoy a stroll through this beautiful botanic garden dedicated to California's native plants. 86 acres of paths taking you on a journey into nature. – Ann F., Insider Pages
Located at the Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, Grow Native Nursery helps to educate tender-footed gardeners and green thumbs alike. In addition to overseeing a huge selection of plants, the nursery’s resident experts lead clinics on the first Saturday of each month, answering questions about gardening, landscaping, and how to house-break a baby flower. The surrounding garden has provided greenery to the public for more than 30 years, emphasizing the importance of native botanicals, such as San Diego ambrosia, California lilacs, and prickly pears.
Moms Country Orchard provides Oak Glen residents with a healthful harvest of locally grown, pesticide-free fruits and vegetables. Nestled amid the San Bernardino Mountains, the orchard specializes in hard to find heirloom varieties, all of which are grown without the use of commercial pesticides, fertilizers, or sacrificial brussels sprouts. Savor the seedy stuff with favorite apple varieties such as red delicious, gala, granny, and arkansas black. Apple varieties can be mixed and matched and purchased in one-quarter-peck bags ($8), half-peck bags ($10–$12), half-bushel boxes ($32–$38), or full–bushel boxes ($50–$60). Like the popularity of rhinestone jeggings, Moms' stock changes with the season, welcoming winter by stocking the shelves with in-season citrus such as oranges, grapefruits, and blood oranges (all $1–$2 per pound), and vegetables such as beets, carrots, and bunches of fresh greens ($2) can be found at various times throughout the year. Regardless of the time of year, all Moms’ produce is sustainably grown with an adherence to a strict natural preservation program to minimize harm to the planet and their customers.
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 container plant varieties ($2.99; selections vary by season and location).
A working cattle ranch set on more than 350 acres of hilly terrain, Heaven's Ranch invites visitors to enjoy such equine entertainment as lessons and scenic rides through a vast network of trails. An experienced staff oversees operation of the facilities, including two large round pens and two outdoor training arenas. The 100'x100' and 100'x180' arenas give beginning and intermediate students plenty of space to learn at their own pace during lessons. Riding instructors Annee and Laura guide their classes through challenges, which aim to foster confidence and comfort. Instruction is tailored to riders' individual goals, whether they want to take a casual weekend ride or find a dramatic way to escort their date to prom.