This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V23", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
We have been much pleased to-day, May 2nd, during a long drive, with the elegance of our native Styrax which I think well worthy the attention of those who love a garden. Buds and blossoms resemble those of the Orange, and their delicious fragrance entitles them to consideration. Growing in rich moist soil I almost despaired of its succeeding in my dry sandy garden. However two years ago I planted several without enriching the soil; this year they are in lovely bloom, and promise, with some mulching, to make pretty trees. The star shaped flowers are purely white with a green calyx and the stamens are yellow. It blossoms close to the stem and the flowers literally cover the tree.
The Cross Vine, or Bignonia, is not I think sufficiently esteemed. It is a noble creeper, both for its beautiful strong foliage and its many colored blossoms; to-day we collected long wreaths, some with flowers, bright orange, marked with brown; others fiery red, the inside of the cup of a paler hue, another pink and nearly white, while yet another was flaring yellow. We remarked that the deep hued flowers had foliage of a darker color, veined with red or brown. This plant I have also succeeded with in my garden. It grows luxuriantly over a rustic screen flowering profusely and even grows up to the roof of my kitchen, hanging in festoons from the eaves.
While thinking of our lovely woods, I cannot resist mentioning great patches of blue lupins we found by the roadside, many nearly a foot in height, and in a little while there will be tall branching white and yellow ones, glimmering among the pines.
[The Styrax grandifolia was once in the famous Bartram gardens, but like so many interesting mementoes of the famous Botanist, is not there now. It shows however that it is perfectly hardy in gardens quite far north. - Ed. G. M.]