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Art of Gardening Began in England

We know we love certain plants more than others in the garden.

Did you ever wonder where the idea of ‘garden’ came from? Someone had to create it.

We know that for centuries cultures relied on herbs for both cooking and medicinal needs.

The idea of cultivating a garden is somehow different.

Margaret Wiiles’ book The Making of the English Gardener: Plants, Books and Inspiration 1550-1660 has its own idea about the beginning of the garden.

Willes writes: “In 1655 the great promoter of husbandry Samuel Hartlib looked back to the beginning of the century and observed,

‘About 50 years ago [1600], about which time Ingenuities first began to flourish in England, the Art of Gardening began to creep into England…

“Dutch and Flemish gardeners had been coming to England since the early 1570s, driven from their homeland by religious persecution.”

The word ‘ingenuities’ here meant inventiveness or creativity.

The idea of gardening emerged as a new or ingenious way to deal with nature in the form of hoticulture and agriculture. In some way with a new form of relationship was emerging and coming from the English.

And there you have it!

Willes writes that “By the 1570s the gardens of Western Europe, great and small, were being enriched by the introduction of exotic plants and flowers.”

So Hartlib speaks in his book Legacy of Husbandry [below] about the beginning of what today we call ‘gardening.’

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