This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V25", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
Mr. Maries continues in the London Garden his remarkably instructive sketches of Chinese travel. Of the roads he says : "I went by steamer to Kui-kiang and was favored with the use of a nice bungalow on the mountains, inland from that place. There are are no decent roads in China; the main path is generally only about six feet wide, and often paved with irregularly shaped stones, or rather was once upon a time; now there are a few stepping stones for a few feet, then a few yards of mud. If a horse or coolie chair comes along, one has to either step down into a mud rice field or dispute the way with the comers. Near Kuikiang the Chinese are not of the best disposition, and I avoided the villages and generally turned off the road if I saw many people coming. I was stopped several times by the natives and told I had no right there, or that I must go back. Once I had all the plants I had collected taken from me by a priest and a gang of cut-throat-looking fellows. I, however, fetched them again at night. Once I was surrounded in a village, and I thought the curiosity of the natives would have resulted in stripping me of all I had. The frightful diseases with which some of the Chinese are afflicted, it is sickening to behold.
The miserable wretches had made me almost mad to be clear of them. Most indescribable skin diseases, others just recovered from small-pox, others with toes and fingers completely rotted off with disease. I have many times walked two and three miles to avoid the villages, and even then a crowd would follow me, shouting "foreign devil," etc. The Kuikiang Mountains extend from north to south of the Poyang Lake."