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Forestiere Underground Gardens in California

This unique manmade underground world features fruit gardens and amazing stonework

Forestiere Underground Gardens
Forestiere Underground Gardens
Forestiere Underground Gardens
Forestiere Underground Gardens
Forestiere Underground Gardens

The Underground Gardens, a life-long hobby of Sicilian immigrant Baldassare Forestiere, are naturally lit courtyards that feature fruit trees and beautiful architecture.

The underground mansion was created with a help of simple tools, like a pick, a shovel, a wheelbarrow and a scraper. Baldassare had been digging, chipping, and carving this amazing place for 40 years during each spare minute. This self-taught artist created a large complex of patios, grottoes, and garden courts.

Several rooms with fruit-bearing trees and grapes growing beneath the surface of central California are interconnected with passageways that encircle four-room living quarters.

Here you can also find lots of arches and carved stonework, which make the spot even more attractive. The yards include a large variety of fruit-bearing plants, such as oranges, lemons, grapefruits, grapes as well as some unique varieties, like kumquat, loquat, jujube, strawberry, and quince. The microclimate in the underground gardens has a temperature variation from 10 to 30 degrees Celsius.

The gardens are open for guided tours from March till November. The weather factor is quite important, as you can’t come during rainy days. The stairs and slopes become wet and muddy, so always check the weather before you go.

Practical info

When is the ideal time of year for a visit to Forestiere Underground Gardens?

Considered the ideal time of year, visiting Forestiere Underground Gardens between March and November is recommended. Rainy days should be avoided due to slippery conditions on the stairs and slopes. The subterranean oasis features fruit gardens and intricate stonework, where natural light from courtyards illuminates interconnected walkways and rooms, encircling four-room living quarters. Show more

What is the address of Forestiere Underground Gardens in California?

Located at 5021 W. Shaw Avenue in Fresno, California, Forestiere Underground Gardens was the creative passion of Baldassare Forestiere. As a self-taught artist and Sicilian immigrant, he used basic tools such as a pick, shovel, wheelbarrow, and scraper to fashion an underground mansion with patios, garden courts, and grottoes, featuring unique arches and carved stonework. Show more

What was Baldassare Forestiere's inspiration when creating the Underground Gardens?

Inspired by the Catacombs of Rome, which he visited in his youth, and the arid climate of Fresno, Baldassare Forestiere spent 40 years crafting the Underground Gardens with hand tools during his free time as a life-long passion. The illuminated complex of courtyards and interconnected walkways, with four-room living quarters and tens-of-thousands of fruit trees and plants including oranges, lemons, grapefruits, kumquats, loquats, jujube, strawberries, and quinces, is an astonishing sight to behold. Show more

What types of fruit trees can be seen in the Underground Gardens?

Beneath the surface of central California, Underground Gardens is filled with tens-of-thousands of fruit-bearing trees, including oranges, lemons, grapefruits, and grapes, as well as unique fruit varieties such as kumquats, loquats, jujube, strawberries, and quinces. The gardens have optimal growing conditions thanks to a microclimate with temperatures ranging from 10 to 30 degrees Celsius, and visitors can revel in the beauty of passageways, patios, and grottoes interconnecting the different parts of this spectacular garden. Show more

What is the microclimate like within the Underground Gardens?

Beneath the surface of Fresno, California, Underground Gardens has a unique microclimate that fosters the growth of tens-of-thousands fruit-bearing trees such as oranges, lemons, grapefruits, grapes, kumquats, loquats, jujube, strawberries, and quinces. Temperatures range between 10 and 30 degrees Celsius, and interconnected passageways, patios, and grottoes guide visitors through the different garden areas, each housing beautiful arches, carvings, and stonework. Show more

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Last updated: by Eleonora Provozin