Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Palisades Park: Santa Monica

Overlooking the Pacific Ocean from the top of steep, crumbling cliffs, Palisades Park is a long sliver of green space marked by huge date palms. First-time visitors usually recognize the park from the numerous films that were shot on location within the park.

Today the park is popular with joggers and is usually sprinkled with a few homeless people. From the cliff side fence there are fantastic views of Santa Monica bay and the famed pier. Separated from the beach by the Pacific Coast Highway, the park is crisscrossed by paths lined with trees and benches for nearly two miles. There's a war memorial, a world-class rose garden, sculpture, a senior center, drinking fountains and clean restrooms.

Photo below: The twisted ground-hugging trunks of the Australian tea tree (Leptospermum laevigatum) are a photographer's delight. Salt resistant, drought tolerant and very hardy, these trees are often planted to help stabilize sand in California’s coastal areas.

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