Encinitas Wow: Botanic Garden to Glow

The little lights will soon be on around the San Diego Botanic Garden.

TREE DECORATION TIPS... tend to dominate lifestyle sites and publications just after Thanksgiving, for that's the moment when many people are turning their gazes to local corner lots and the storage room (where the faux fir has been sitting patiently since early January). We want to know a faster, non-tanglier way to weave a string of lights through various branches, and we want to have a tree-topper that comes with a lot of moxie and merriment. But consider what a snap it is to festoon your own at-home fir, a single tree, as opposed to decorating a truly big botanic garden, the kind that comes with towering trees and shrubs that can easily be described as sizable. It's a considerable undertaking, but one that staffers at the San Diego Botanic Garden perform each season, the better to get the glow going at the annual Garden of Lights.

THE MULTI-NIGHT SPECTACULAR... is very much about seeing the agave and olive trees and other flora native to our state in sparkly mode, whether that sparkle comes from brightly hued bulbs or simple white lights. But there are other holiday-ish happenings during the Dec. 3 to 30 run, including the roasting of marshmallows, horse-drawn wagons to hop aboard, and snow. Yes, these are all outdoorsy pursuits, so you can bet mulled wine will be for sale. Other sweet happenings, from stories to puppets to Santa cameos (on select dates) round out these Encinitas-based must-do. It's a classic combining of nature and the yuletide, one that brings dazzle to the plants with a few human-fun goings-on in tow. All the details? Wend along a glowing garden path now (and learn all).

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