This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V22", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
Professor Sargent writes: " I was much interested while in Charleston, South Carolina, last month to find in an old garden near the foot of Calhoun street, belonging to Mr. David Jennings, an old single reel Camellia, the remarkable dimensions of which are worth recording. It was planted, it is said, by a Colonel Lucas in 1808, and was one of the first Camellias ever brought to the United States; although those brought from France by the elder Michaux, and planted by him on the Middleton Estate, near Charleston, where they are still living, I believe, are a few years older. The trunk of Mr. Jenning's plant has a circumference of 4 feet 6 inches, its branches spread 30 feet, while its height is considerably over 30 feet. Hundreds of seedling Camellia plants were springing up everywhere in this garden, showing that the climate of the Southern Atlantic States is perfectly suited to the Camellia, which is already largely cultivated there.
Near Charleston, too, 20 miles up the Ashley River, on the Drayton Estate, and just in front of Drayton Hall, stands what, so far as my ob ■servation goes, I must consider the finest tree on the continent. No tree, which I have ever seen at all equals it in strong, healthy, magnificent solidity. It looks as if it had lived a thousand years, and was good for a thousand or ten thousand more. It is a Live Oak, round topped and perfectly symmetrical, its long branches almost touching the ground at their extremeties.
There are, I was told, in the same neighborhood, specimens with larger trunks even, although this one girts at 4 feet from the ground, 19 feet 10 inches; the spread of its branches being 111 feet and 122 feet. I have seen fine trees in many countries, but none which could equal this South Carolina Live Oak".