Meditation Garden Plants

It all started when Bill and I were married and I first moved into his home where he had been living for over 20 years. “Bad move” you might say. “You should move into a home that’s both of yours.” Normally yes. But not when you’re moving from La Mirada to Carlsbad. No contest!  

Bill's Canna Lily

Bill’s Canna Lily is on the right as I walk to my Meditation Garden. He feeds waters and cares for it. 

My Garden Angel instructed me to tell you the process of how and why my Meditation Garden came into being. I was inspired by the unbelievably spectacular gardens at the Self Realization Fellowship Gardens on Hiway 101 in Encinitas, CA.  We have our own special bench looking out at the Pacific Ocean and that’s where Bill put the ring on my finger and we became formally engaged. I decided this would be my model (on a smaller scale) for my very own Meditation area.   

Bill had planted basic shrubs and trees in his large backyard. That was it. Neat and clean and absolutely zero personality. I walked around looking for my special spot and found it. On one side of the house there was an interesting tree that gave shade and a lot of leather ferns. That was it. I could just picture it as my special space where I could go for spiritual fulfillment, peace and serenity. I began by planning the lay-out of a little flagstone walkway and patio. Once I had that in place I began planting a few plants which I have pictures of and are listed below. I needed a perfect place to sit and found the wrought iron bench at Anderson’s Nursery on La Costa. It’s small and an unusual shape. It took me a long time to find the perfect shape, size and colored pad for the seat.  

Some have expressed interest in the plants I have used  in my Meditation Garden. So I’m including pictures and a list of the plants. With my Garden Angel’s help it keeps getting more beautiful.     

Buddah on Path to Meditation Garden


 To the Buddha’s right is lavender, and rosemary, to the left is Heavenly Bamboo and Day Lilly. A Rose Quartz rock sits at his feet.     

Sweet Cherub


A Cherub in the Fountain surrounded by Leather Fern, Red Potato Vine,  pink Butterfly Succulent in Blue Pot and Elephant Foot Palm in the foreground.   Sweet.  

Gail’s Meditation Garden
Meditation Garden

To the left is the total view.     

I think this is an Aralia Tree but I wouldn’t mind being enlightened by someone who knows. I looked it up on the web and what they show doesn’t look like this one.  I think it has an interesting trunk.
In the back is a pale pink Camellia, a split leaf philodendron, a blue pot with a cactus white orchid, leather and sword ferns.
In front of the tree is a tiny green Buddha  an Amethyst rock and a quartz rock on baby tears moss, a maidenhair fern to the right of the tree, and two clumps of photosynthesis grass which glisten when sprinkled.
Spanish moss hangs from the tree on which my Garden Angel and I have started placing interesting airplants called Tillandsia. This is a shady and very pleasant place to meditate or just sit and enjoy the beauty of it all.
Also from this bench I can see even more beauty in the rose garden which I’ve shared in my Serenity Garden Section.  My whole garden is always a “work in progress” and a place I go to work or relax as the mood takes me.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this tour of my Meditation Garden.
Gail Manishor, Author of
From Here to Serenity, A Spiritual Guide to Transform Your Life



My Meditation Garden

The Path 

My next move was to put down slate stones for a small patio and walkway to guide anyone who loved peace to my Meditation Garden. I found an interesting wrought iron love-seat at Anderson’s Nursery for that area. It’s an unusual shape and size and so far I haven’t found the perfect cushion for it and will have one made.

On Seaside’s Center for Spiritual Living’s annual trip to Baja, Bill and I looked for and found a small fountain with a cherub which we placed under the tree. Later in an Encinitas shopping area called The Lumberyard, I found a few treasures: a beautiful piece of rose quartz, a clear crystal rock and a chunk of amethyst and placed them on the baby tears moss under the tree.

For some reason which I couldn’t understand, I never did use the meditation garden for meditating. I had some work to do. Still, I thought it was beautiful and always took friends to see it when they came to visit.

The Meditation Garden



 Beginning My Meditation Garden

I envisioned a meditation area in our backyard and the perfect site was obvious to me. There already was a beautiful tropical tree and some leather ferns on the shady side of the back garden. However, the ferns looked a little burned. I began to cut back the bad parts. I love camellias, so I bought several of those and one pale pink one went into the meditation area. It was beginning to take shape.  

I placed a Buddha on the path leading to what was to be a peaceful setting and put an arch over him with a flowering purple trumpet vine climbing it and added some other plants to further spotlight our Buddha. We (Bill and I) found the Buddha on our first of many trips to Baja together.  





As a child I was a nervous little worry-wart. My goal has always been to be calm, serene and peaceful. This has been a transformational experience that I have worked on all my life. That’s why I wrote From Here to Serenity, A Spiritual Guide to transform Your Life.

When I first moved into our home in Carlsbad 10 years ago, there were trees, shrubs and hedges. It was neat and boring. My new husband Bill had been living in his home for years and wasn’t all that interested in gardening. In fact, he wasn’t interested in gardening period. However, he did love the trees and shrubs he had painstakingly planted. We had some negotiating to do.

My goal was to make our home and garden comfortable, peaceful and serene. When I moved into our home I bought 4 rose bushes and 2 Australian Tree Ferns. I was still working full-time in Long Beach and so the progress was slow but it was sure.

Gail Manishor