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.
It is surprising that those who love flowers and gardening, and know how much their own pleasure is advanced by having nice gardens and flower culture everywhere about them, do no more than they often do to increase a love for flower culture in their neighbors. Now and then some one sees the point and tries. Before us is a series of letters in the Melrose Journal, by our esteemed correspondent Mrs. Edson. She tells the Melrose people that it is not to their credit that they have not the weakest pretension to any public garden: and suggests that an association for the cultivation of aesthetic taste would be of as much use to the town as "jubilee concerts," and various " unholy " devices for amusing the people. She would also have tree-planting associations, and says: " My idea is for the town to pass a law authorizing the association to select and plant suitable trees, - and see them properly cared for, - in all our streets where there are not enough already, the abuttors to pay the cost of the same. Perhaps there is some better way.
I merely offer this as a passing suggestion".
She closes her admirable remarks by the following piece of "gospel" truth: " Coming now to the practical value of all ornamental planting and garden decoration, real estate dealers (and they will not, I think, be accused of being sentimentalists), will tell you that there is no better way of improving the value and saleability of property, than the tasteful laying out of the grounds belonging to it; a house, be it ever so grand and imposing in architectural design, with as many towers and gables as there are stars in the skies, is at best but a lonesome, desolate-looking place, without trees and shrubs and clinging vines to make it look cheery and habitable. There has developed of late years, a passion for lawns; and a well kept lawn is a very pretty thing, though getting a trifle monotonous when duplicated a hundred or more times, even to the inevitable and omnipresent bed of Geraniums, which some writer has wittily denominated the ' scarlet fever.'"