In a recent letter to the editor in the Boston Globe Jeffrey Collins, director at…
Old medical journal encouraged retired nurses to garden. –
Recently I came across an article in an old professional journal for nurses from 1911 called The Trained Nurse and Hospital Review.
The article “Floriculture as an Occupation for Retired Nurses” encouraged retired nurses to take up gardening.
The journal noted the author simply as “A Retired Nurse.”
The author wrote the article for “the retired nurse or nurses about to retire who are in quest of some employment that will be productive of an income.”
The purpose for the gardening, she admitted, ultimately was to sell the flowers to make some money.
Annuals like pansies, asters, and verbenas might be a good start.
The author herself grew five thousand pansies in frames and hot-beds.
She also planted hundreds of verbenas and petunias along with a good selection of vegetable plants.
Advertising helped spread the word that created a great demand for her plants.
After July 1 the author recommended growing cut flowers like dahlias to meet the buyer’s needs.
She mentioned how English nurses have taken up growing flowers and vegetables quite successfully.
She wrote, “The growing of flowers as an occupation is said to have become exceeding popular with our English sisters.”
On this trade card also from the early 1900s the James Vick’s Sons Seed Company in Rochester, New York featured a field of asters. [below]
As this retired nurse wrote, the aster was a very popular annual at that time.