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Preacher Encourages Gardening

In his magazine Gardener’s Monthly of 1866 Philadelphia nurseryman Thomas Meehan included a letter from  a clergyman who lived in Adrian, Michigan. [left: Catalog from the Joseph Breck Seed Company which began in Boston in 1818.]   The clergyman wrote: “First…

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Seed Company and Nursery Owners as Teachers

The owners of the nineteenth century American seed companies and nurseries considered themselves teachers, and looked on gardeners as their students.  So catalogs from the companies did not hesitate to instruct. Seedsman Peter Henderson on this 1899 catalog cover [left]…

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Modern Style of Planting Shrubs

This Weigela rosea [left]  bursts with spring color in my New England garden. The shrub variety came to America in 1848 from England where three years earlier plant hunter Robert Fortune had brought it from China.  Walter Elder, a Philadelphia…

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Landscape in 1865

In 1865 Boston financier and horticulturalist Horatio H. Hunnewell (1810 -1902) gave $2000 to the Massachusetts Horticulture Society  to encourage the art of landscape gardening. [left: The Hunnewell Pinetum, a collection of evergreens, still stands today as a symbol of early…

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