Peeking into Backyards on a Garden Tour in San Diego


I am such a lucky girl – I have been again in San Diego when they do the Clairemont Garden Tour on the first Saturday in May. This time there were just 10 gardens or yards to visit, two of them were in schools or community places.

What is the Clairemont Garden Tour? It’s a day on which mainly private homes open their yards to the public. So everybody interested can have a peek into people’s creativity, their private recreation places, where they to relax after a day out in the wild, wild city or work.

The gardens are sometimes designed by landscape architects but most of them are by the owners themselves. This time we had also a look into university and community yards which I found very interesting.

This year there were 10 gardens in Clairemont, two less than last year. We have been to 8 of them in the given time-frame from 10 am to 4 pm.

Here are the gardens/yards:

1. The first garden we visited was the most amazing in flowering. A kind of German farmer’s garden. Full of flowers, a wonderful and pretty big waterfall ending in a pond, a nice lawn and even a part with vegetables.


2. This one was a community garden with mainly vegetables. Wood-framed raised beds with a mixture of vegetables and healthy flowers. Every raised bed is ‘worked on’ by a community member.


After the second garden it was already lunchtime and we had a super healthy, fresh smoothie at Jamba Juice and while waiting for it we were eating our salad wraps with chicken salad I prepared in the morning before leaving.


3. Number three was a nice Mexican-like back yard with a wonderful sitting area under a Palo Verde tree. And again there was a little pond (we found them in nearly all gardens).


4. This one was a typical backyard with a big pool. But instead of all cement and a wooden wall, here was a wonderful luscious green ‘fence’ on the back with a nice variety of flowers.


5. This back yard was by far the most artistic one. The owner is an artist who recycles things and makes out of ‘one’s trash’ beautiful new things. Like out of windows a great room-divider. Or broken ceramic tiles for a table-top. Different colored wooden pieces find a now ‘home’ on a wall. So many ideas!


6. Here I liked the back deck and from there the way to go into a shady canyon. Very unexpected as location. As yard or garden there was not really much to see.


7. This yard was not our favorite one, too. It has a nice patio, the food was good, but the yard itself was not that ‘wow’.


8. The last one was not that great as back yard but the talk we had was worth it. A lady there told us that she is organizing every first Saturday a kind of food-exchange. That means I can bring a bag of vegetables out of the garden, can even bake something, put it in a bag, bring it over to her house and two hours later I get my bag with goodies. I think that is a genius idea! Maybe this weekend I will participate as we have a lot of lettuce in the garden, and I would not be really sad to bake, too.


We had some really good ideas. Like for example I thought raised beds are really great. The nutrients and especially the water stays inside where the plants grow. At home the water in the garden always goes everywhere but into the plants. The dirt is oftentimes too dry to let it sink. I adjusted already πŸ™‚

I am looking forward for the next year tour, hopefully I will be here. If not, I will enjoy my garden at home in Italy! Which doesn’t hurt either πŸ˜€


Clairemont, San Diego, California/USA:

For further information:
Garden Tour Clairemont


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