You may wonder how plants from other cultures made the journey to your garden. Robert…
New York seedsman Grant Thorborn ( 1773-1863) had been a friend of fellow Scotsman and landscape gardener John Claudius Loudon (1783-1843) in London.
In her book Loudon and the Landscape Melanie Louise Simo wrote that Loudon and Thorburn enjoyed after dinner conversation together at Loudon’s home.
In 1794 Thorburn sailed for America.
Grant Thorburn opened the first seed and florist shop in New York in 1802.
In its 1899 catalog the Thorburn Company laid claim to being a worthwhile company to deal with simply because it had been around for so long: “Our leading business principle has always been to supply only the very highest class of seeds. The fact that we have commanded the leading wholesale and market-gardeners’ trade of this country for nearly a century should justify our claim to the patronage of those who have not yet experienced the advantage of dealing with us.”
In his writing about the garden in the catalogue, Thorburn liberally quoted from English garden authorities, including the landscape ideas of his friend Loudon.