HomeEventsSan Marino Garden Club Enjoys San Gabriel Nursery Event

San Marino Garden Club Enjoys San Gabriel Nursery Event

The April 9 meeting of the San Marino Garden Club was held at the popular family-owned San Gabriel Nursery and Florist, where owner Mary Swanton hosted a festive event, which included a history lesson.

Members enjoyed refreshments, an opportunity to explore the 2-acre grounds, a springtime golden egg hunt and plant shopping.

Garden Club members enjoyed the flowers, some of the 1,001 origami cranes celebrating good and a historical slideshow Swanton provided of her family’s 100 years of nursery and florist ownership, as wholesale and retail growers. The slideshow also delved into her family’s civic and community service involvement, and the challenging years during World War II. Surrounded by abundant plants and brightly hued blossoms, the guests also perused historical documents, photo albums and newspaper clippings, and reflected on the family’s resilience and hard work.

Club members learned about Swanton’s grandparents. Her grandfather Fred Yoshimura used to ride his horse to gardening jobs to plow the gardens of local estates and gather cuttings, while her grandmother Mitoko Yoshimura grew the cuttings. Their efforts resulted in the pair opening one of the first area floral shops, where Mitoko Yoshimura created floral wreaths to adorn customers’ horses for the early Pasadena Tournament of Roses parades.

With now 100 years of experience, the rich history of the nursery’s past has created a business boasting “one of the largest and most complete specimens at a single location.” The staff’s extensive knowledge about plants and growing conditions provided answers to all of the club’s gardening questions.

First published in the May 2 issue of the San Marino Tribune


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