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.
An interesting and beautiful feature of the operations of this time-honored institution, now advancing in the second half century of its useful career, is the annual reception given by it's ladies' committee to the members and invited guests. The sixth recurrence of this festival took place on Tuesday evening, the 6th of June last, in the new horticultural hall, which, like the fabled phoenix of old, has arisen from its ashes with richer plumage and greater beauty of form and feature than it ever possessed before.
In the centre of the hall were spacious tables laden with floral offerings, from which the ladies of the committee, and their aids, dispensed refreshments and fragrant flowers to the assembled guests. From the stage, which was set with a parlor scene and decorated with foliage plants, a parlor orchestra discoursed soft music during the evening.
In the Foyer, or smaller saloon, fronting on Broad Street, there was an interesting display of tropical and other plants, sent by members of the society.
Among the contributions were plants in bloom from John Dick, Jr., decorative plants from H. A. Dreer, Robert Scott & Son, and John Nisbet, gardener to Mrs. David Jayne, and a collection of fifty varieties of rhododendrons in full bloom from Thomas Meehan. Floral designs, such as plateaux, baskets, pyramids, bouquets and boutonnieres were also contributed by Pennock Brothers, W. P. Graff & Son, R. Scott & Son, C. Eisele, T. J. Maginley and J. M. Hudson.
About 1,800 guests participated in the pleasures of the evening, the hospitable character of which called to mind the motto that one often sees carved in the solid stone over the fire places of the olden time in the lands beyond the sea, "focus perennis esto." So may we hope and wish that "the fire of horticultural love may burn forever." Selah!