Discovery Carts


Mobile, educational exhibits for children and families


Saturdays and Sundays, 12:30-3:30 p.m.


Encouraging observation and exploration, mobile Discovery Carts offer visitors the opportunity to participate in hands-on activities in the gardens using live plants, artifacts, and other objects. Each cart features 3-5 activities throughout the day, changing each weekend. Activities may take between 2-5 minutes each, and though designed for children, are also engaging for adults. Cart activities vary by theme and are described below.



The Chinese Garden Cart

Location: North Courtyard in the Chinese Garden


Beijing Opera Masks - Create your own villain or hero inspired by traditional Beijing opera mask colors and shapes
Chinese Lantern - Light up your day with a colorful paper lantern based on traditional Chinese forms
Apothecary Box - Learn about ancient Chinese medicinal herbs with a hands-on apothecary set
Chinese Character Writing - Practice your calligraphy with our brush pens and Chinese characters



The Japanese Garden Cart

Location: Situated next to the Japanese House


Origami - Ever wondered how to make origami? Come and learn about this ancient art of folding paper
Zen Garden - Clear your mind with our mini-zen gardens then visit the Huntington's own, life-size zen garden nearby
Japanese Character Writing - Compose dozens of words in Japanese with our brush pens and Japanese characters
Tea Samples - Explore the difference between green and white tea by smelling and touching various types of tea leaves



The Desert Garden Cart

Location: Desert Garden (subject to change)


Cochineal Dye - See how tiny bugs transform into the color red and dye a small strip of fabric yourself
Creosote Branch - Discover how California deserts get that “rain smell” – hint: it comes from a very special bush…
Succulent and Cactus Tactical Activity - Brave enough to touch a real cactus? Find out exactly what those prickly plants feel like

About The Huntington

The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens is a collections-based research and educational institution established in 1919 by Henry E. and Arabella Huntington. Henry Huntington, a key figure in the...

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