This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V24", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
In Tower Grove Park palm house there is a group of bananas, in the centre of which is growing the largest specimen of Musa sapientum in this country. The stem and leaves are colossal. The smaller members of this group are from six to eight feet high, and look like pigmies alongside of this giant.
The new Tradescantia multicolor is very beautiful, but has a strong tendency to revert back to the old T. zebrina, from which it is probably a sport.
I counted the flowers (male) on a single spathe of Astrocaryum murumuru, and found their number to exceed a fraction over ten thousand (10,000). The plant had three fiower-•spathes this year. This plant is growing in the unique collection of Mr. Brown. Strelitzia au-gusta, in the same collection, has been in bloom for the past four months.
Several important additions have recently been made to Mr. Henry Shaw's extensive collection of plants. Notably among the tree-ferns - Cyathea Dregei, eight feet high to the crown and three feet in circumference around the middle of the stem, is the largest. A pair of Dick-sonia Antarctica, not so stout, but quite as tall. There is also a magnificent specimen of the silver tree-fern, Cyathea dealbata. But the gem of the collection is a Todea Africana. This is a curiosity. There are numerous stems growing from the base which is gnarled and knotted like the roots of some old tree of the forest. The new palm house has been open to the public all winter, but nothing has transpired publicly as to when the dedication will take place.
The winter has been so mild that dahlias left in the ground over winter are at this date (April 15th) sprouting vigorously.