This section is from the book "The Florist And Garden Miscellany". Also see: All New Square Foot Gardening: Grow More in Less Space!.
Who shall despise the labours of the Florist? I ask the question as I sit with a large bouquet of flowers before me, consisting of a variety of Ferns for a background, Roses, Antirrhinums, Pentstemons, Fuchsias, Verbenas, Scarlet Geraniums, Primulas, and Pelargoniums, not one of which but owes its charm to that indefatigable race who are ever trying to produce greater beauties from the sources which Nature has prepared to their hand. Surely it is cause for congratulation that so many of all classes are found seeking their pleasure in so useful and pleasing an employment. For my own part, I cannot describe the peace and tranquillity brought over my mind when, wearied with the toil of business, and sick of the feverish struggle entailed upon me by the present competition in trade, I enter my garden or greenhouse, and hold converse with my favourites. I know that these simple pleasures are enhanced by previous labour, and I feel it a privilege to have that constant necessity for daily employment which is rewarded by consequent relaxation and repose; 'tis the too much of it of the present day that causes me to regret.
However, to my flowers. Is any one able and willing to give through your periodical next year a list of the most gay and hardy flower-producing plants suitable for bouquets? How charitable it would be, if some of those who have large means and establishments would, either directly or by their gardeners, supply us through your pages with information adapted to cottage readers like myself! I have derived much information and pleasure from Mr. Whiting's communications, Mr. Rivers's papers have always been welcome, Mr. Edwards's lists most valuable, and so, indeed, has been every Number of the Florist and Garden Miscellany; and I tender my sincere thanks to each individual contributor.
I am promising myself much pleasure in a reperusal of the volume during the long winter evenings which are now commencing in earnest; and I will endeavour to provide a mite of information to such of your readers as are, like myself, possessors of small gardens with a little greenhouse, to which they attend themselves, with occasional help from a labouring man - not your jobbing gardener, an impracticable race that I can do nothing with. I am afraid even "Gregory of the Packet of Seeds" and I should have fallen out; for, "make a spoon or spoil a horn," I will have my own way. I like to give responsibility to able servants, and nothing is more to be valued than the faithful exertions of such; but my one hobby, my garden and flowers, will not carry double, and I never had a jobbing gardener that did not want to get in the saddle himself, and put you on the pillion. J. M. C.