Flowers are like teenagers, blooming gracefully into adulthood so they can brighten up otherwise lifeless cubicles. Witness the budding innocence of nature with today’s Groupon to South Coast Botanic Garden on the Palos Verdes Peninsula. Choose between the following options:
- For $40, you get a one-year individual membership, four guest passes, and $25 worth of gift-shop merchandise (up to an $87 value).
- For $50, you get a one-year family membership valid for two adults and free admission for children aged 5–17, four guest passes, and $25 worth of gift-shop merchandise (up to a $107 value).<p>
Children aged 4 and younger are admitted free.
South Coast Botanic Garden hosts concerts, art classes, and educational programs on an 87-acre landscape that is home to more than 2,500 species of leafy inhabitants. Throughout the year, visitors meander along the facility’s blooming avenues to admire exotic plant-life species and to apologize for consuming so many of their salad cousins while passing through 12 themed sections such as the Mediterranean Garden, the Fuchsia Garden, and the Dahlia Garden. Centuries-old stone lanterns guide inquisitive visitors throughout the Japanese Garden to a serene, babbling koi pond, and the cactus-laden WaterWise Garden provides an introduction to plants that require little water to thrive, including rebellious flora with nonconformist hairstyles.
Within the grounds’ gift shop, gardening apparel, plants, and sustainably made gifts beg, like a venus flytrap with vocal chords, to be taken home. A straw visor ($20) keeps the suns rays out of vision fields, and a potted orchid ($31) and recycled-materials necklace ($28) brighten spaces indoors and around wearers. In addition to free admission to more than 250 North American botanical gardens, members of the plant menagerie also receive frequent discounts on classes and events such as one-stroke painting, fall photo walks, and bird-watching lectures.
South Coast Botanic Garden
In 1956, a mining company sold some unproductive facilities to the County of Los Angeles, thinking it had taken everything worth taking from the land. The county wanted to reclaim the site as a natural habitat, but civic demands at the time dictated that it become a sanitary landfill. Then, in 1961, a group of private citizens headed by Frances Young convinced the Board of Supervisors to reclaim the site as a botanic garden. By April of that year, the one-time mine and former landfill bloomed with more than 40,000 donated trees, shrubs, and other plants, officially completing its rebirth as the South Coast Botanic Garden.
Today, the garden's 87 acres of land support more than 200,000 plants representing more than 2,500 different species, including 100 extremely rare mature plant specimens and globe-spanning plants from Australia and Africa. The robust growth sprawls across several theme gardens, including a dry-soil cactus garden, a traditional Japanese garden sculpted around centuries-old stone lanterns, and a Mediterranean garden inspired by the sultanates of antiquity. The diverse plant life provides shelter for an equally diverse population of birds and bugs, with 200 avian species spotted each year, matching the 200 yearly squeals from grown men who encounter a particularly large beetle.