Landmarked Features

image of campbell bridge postcardCampbell Bridge

The construction of the Campbell Bridge in 1941 made the Canyon areas on the west side of Mission Creek accessible for the first time.  Funding for the bridge was provided by Ina Therese Campbell in memory of her husband John Campbell. The original rustic bridge was rebuilt in 1988 and then destoyed in the 2009 Jesusita Fire.  Reconstruction of the bridge was completed in February 2013.

image of newly constructed entry stairs

Clara Small Smith Entry Steps

The historic entry steps were built in 1950 to lead visitors from the newly-constructed parking lot into the Garden.  Their design and placement are an integral part of the Landscape Master Plan developed by Beatrix Farrand and Lockwood de Forest in the late 1940s.  The steps, which are made from native sandstone, are centered on the Blaksley Boulder. After descending the steps, visitors are delivered to the center of the Garden and treated to sweeping views of the Meadow framed by Santa Ynez Mountains.
The steps were donated by Mrs. Sellard Bullard as a memorial to her mother.

image of caretakers cottage


The cottage was one of the original buildings at the Santa Barbara Botanic Garden.  It began life in 1926 as a Sears Roebuck kit that was built on site.  It originally sat about where the Blaksley Library now sits, and was moved to its present location in 1941 to make room for the new building.  It was used as the caretakers cottage from 1926 to 1990 when it was rennovated.  Surrounded by the Water Wise Home Garden, the cottage now serves as home base for our volunteers.

image of blaksley libraryBlaksley Library

The Blaksley Library was built in 1941 to house the Garden's increasing large collection of books (including the reference library of naturalist Charles Francis Saunders) and herbarium specimens.  Santa Barbara architect Lutah Maria Riggs was hired to design the building with input from Beatrix Farrand and Lockwood de Forest II.  Building of the Library triggered a reconfiguration of the entire administrative complex of workshops, greenhouses and office buildings that had been arranged diagonally to the Canyon wall.  A formal axis was established, and the Library and it's courtyard, aligned with the Blaksley Boulder and Arlington Peak  to the north.  
The building was given by Mildred Bliss in memory of her mother Anna Dorinda Blaksley Bliss, the Garden's founder.
Visit the Blaksley Library.

image of indian steps

Indian Steps


image of padres at mission day

Mission Dam and Aqueduct

The Mission Dam, situated on Mission Creek, is one of the unique attractions at the Botanic Garden. Constructed in 1806-1807 by Chumash Indian neophytes under the direction of the Franciscan padres, this historic dam and aqueduct system helped supply the Santa Barbara Mission with a reliable source of water. Although no longer a functioning dam, the structure has been preserved by the Botanic Garden and can be viewed from above and below.
For more information and pictures, Click Here.


image of infomration kioskInformation Kiosk

The Information Kiosk was constructed in 1937 to serve as the orientation and interpretation center for the Garden.  The kiosk was designed by Lockwood de Forest III and  modeled after a similar structure at Dumbarton Oaks, the home of Garden benfactor Mildred Bliss.  In the early years of the Garden it house a table with a large map of the grounds which served as the visitor's only means of orientation. Today the kiosk contains various interpretative exhibits in the glass cases which line the walls.
For more information and pictures, Click Here.