This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V18", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
The taste for rare trees is not as wide-spread here as in other parts of the world.
I have found considerable difficulty in getting together all I wanted. In fruit trees I had no trouble whatever; the pear trees especially are splendid, and there are plenty of places where you can get them near home.
The demand for ornamentals, however, is much smaller, and hence the opportunity of getting a good assortment not very good. While you can get at Stuttgart (12 miles from here) splendid specimens of A. Nordmanniana 7 to 8 feet high, perfect beauties, with ball, for $2.50 (retail), I could not find a single specimen of Irish or Swedish Junipers, very few dwarf Thujas, no Retinospora (or, as they call them here, "Chamoecyparis "), excepting ericoides, which does here splendidly. A. Pinsapo is here perfectly hardy. So is Well, gigantea, Cedar of Lebanon, Deodar Cedar and Cryptomeria jap. I even saw an Araucaria imbricata, some 24 feet high, entirely uninjured; it was, however, well surrounded and protected by other evergreens. Strange to say, the common Am. Arbor vitse suffers more or less every spring; no entire limbs perish, but nearly all the ends of last year's growth are dead. A. Nordmanniana, Pinsapo, Cupr. Lawsoni-ana (perfectly hardy), Thujopsis borealis, Welling, gigantea, Taxus baccata, White Pine, Hemlock Spruce, White Spruce, Biota aurea and B. compacta, English Holly, you can find in the nurseries around here in the largest quantities and generally of very good size.
Magnolias are extremely scarce.
We had, what they called here, terribly cold weather; every one was complaining; the cold was 10° below zero, and that only one day, without any air stirring. January was beautiful, generally 20°-24° above zero. February and beginning of March was mostly wet, and now for weeks we have had no frost; we are sitting in the garden every day; thermometer ranges during the greater part of the day between 50°-65°, and sinks to about 42°. Most fruit trees are now blooming or beginning to. The nurserymen have been through selling their dead stock for a week or more.
This delightful climate, the most excellent beer, the splendid and very cheap wine, the cheap and good cigars, the jolly society we have - how can a man long for America, with local option and all its blessings? and women writing and preaching against smoking? as I read of in your papers. Three cheers for Germany!