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.
The enclosed has been handed to the Gardener's Monthly by a friend in Southern California, from one of the best nurserymen in the State, residing in Nevada county. The fact that he has sense enough " to let well enough alone," is evidence of his merits. The rolling stones may, by chance, fall into a mass of moss; but they seldom gather it.
"Some five months ago I had the pleasure of receiving from you a very nice and complimentary letter, to which I ought to have replied at once ; but as I intended to take a trip down the southern country this fall, I put off answering you from week to week, till - yes, till the yellow leaves of autumn were dropping off thick and fast from the trees, and the winter was upon us, with no trip for me this fall down the fair land of Santa Barbara and Los Angeles. The only trip I took this year was a month ago, down to San Francisco, Santa Clara and Alameda ; and, after an absence of ten days, I had to come up to pick my grapes and gather my fruit, and draw tight the strings of my little purse; for that's the reason why I do not go so much around as I'd like to. I have to depend solely upon my own resources, with no capital whatever to carry on my nursery business, or indulge in the agreeable pastime of traveling throughout our beautiful State.
"In your letter you say : 'Would you not find a more congenial location, a larger market and scope for your talents in this southern country than where you are?' To that question of yours, which I think is very pertinent, I will frankly reply - yes, I would do 'heap' better; there, under your genial climate, I would certainly find a better market for all the fine varieties I either introduced or imported into this country from Europe, than in this rough, mining county of Nevada. I would also very likely find there a better scope for my - I would not say talents, but ideas and taste. This is all very true, but - but it costs a great deal of money to move an establishment like mine, no matter on how small or large a scale it is carried on, and that money I didn't and do not have; for I will tell you, since you have been so kind to write me such a friendly letter, that I had to start my nursery, take care of it, enlarge it, with no capital at all but my own labor and exertions. And if to-day I am the owner of the nice and valuable property upon which is my nursery, I have the satisfaction to say that I do owe it entirely to myself, and that I owe nobody a cent.
" Should I be fortunate enough this season to have quite a demand for trees and make a little money, then I would, probably next fall, have the pleasure of taking a trip down your way, and I would indeed be very happy to make your acquaintance, and live for a few days among the good people of old Santa Barbara".