Gardeners as Consumers

Advertising in the nineteenth century increased after daily newspapers began  to sell for pennies in the 1830s.

Ads usually just listed information about the product or service, with perhaps an image.  By the 1890s advertising evolved into creating a need in the consumer for the product.

Selling roses in this 1867 ad that appeared in Gardener’s Monthly meant simply telling the reader you had roses to sell. By the end of the century advertising included images and reasons why you needed the product. 

Nurseryman and editor of his own magazine Gardener’s Monthly Thomas Meehan wrote in  1867, “The Gardener’s Monthly is sustained by genuine horticulturalists, all of whom are buyers.”

He portrays the gardener as one who has to invest in garden seeds and plants, and perhaps tools.

Not much has changed today, except the variety of products and services. We still buy.

By 1900 businesses, including the green industry, were creating needs in order to move products into the home, where women did most of the buying.  Lithograph images of the newest rose, growing up the side of a suburban home, captivated the reader of seed and nursery catalogs.  ”I too could have this rose.  My home too could look like this.”

The Crimson Rambler rose, which came from England in 1893, became the most coveted rose by 1900, and most catalogs listed it as a must have plant for the landscape.

The Dingee and Conard Rose Catalog of 1912 featured the ‘Crimson Rambler’ climbing rose which appeared in many seed and nursery catalogs of that time. 

Sound familiar?

 

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