As this book is intended to comprehend all the wants of a cottage or suburban garden, including flowers, fruits, and vegetables, it would increase its size too much to give a great variety of designs for the flower-garden. To those that require such, some intelligent landscape gardener should be consulted. Intelligent, I say, for nine out of ten that pretend to be landscape gardeners are not; but consult a man able to draw a neat design, for if he cannot do that he is not a very safe person to be intrusted with the working out of the plan of another. You are careful to ascertain that the architect for your house is a man of education and intelligence before you entrust yourself in his hands, but when it comes to designing the lawn and flower-grounds, the veriest bog-trotter, who styles himself a "landscaper," is too often allowed to display his "art," and at the same time make you ridiculous. Rest assured that if such a pretender has not had ambition enough to become fairly well instructed, he is not likely to show much taste in designing your grounds.
200 Feet Front. Fig. 6. - Design For Laying Out Grounds.
The design, (Fig. 6), shows an area of 200 feet by 350, or a plot of nearly two acres, about one-third of the whole facing the street, is used for flower-garden and for dwelling, the two-thirds in the rear for fruit and vegetable grounds. There is a point in this sketch, to which I wish to call attention, as it is one too often lost sight of; the flower-garden and lawn face the street, while the fruit and vegetable grounds are at the rear; the view of these from the street is shut out upon one side by a screen or tall hedge of evergreens, h, and upon the other by a curvilinear glass structure, G, which may be used either as a grapery or a greenhouse. The walk, w, passes on each side of the house to connect with other walks at the rear; the beds, F, may be planted in ribbon lines either with flowering plants or those with brilliant and strongly contrasting foliage. The flower-beds, F, each side of the entrance near the front, may be made of any form that may be preferred; a simple circle planted as suggested in the next chapter, will produce a good effect, and be more easily cared for than beds of the style here given; most persons, where the floral ornamentation is, as in this case, confined to a few effective masses, prefer to change not only the manner of planting such beds each year, but to alter their form occasionally. The unbroken area of lawn at c is intended for a croquet ground. At the rear of the house the central walk is spanned by a grape arbor, G A, if one wishes the vines to afford shade, or a simple trellis may run each side; the borders next the fence on each side and at the rear, (not shown in the plan), may also be used for grapes, or will be convenient for raspberries, currants, and other small fruits. The large plots, V F, are for the main crops of vegetables and fruits; asparagus, rhubarb, strawberries, and such other crops as remain year after year without being disturbed, should be so placed at the outset as to be interfered with as little as possible in the frequent working of the soil necessary for other crops. A lot of this size will require the labor of one man, whose time must be exclusively devoted to the garden, and to nothing else, to keep it in proper order. Such is the extent, and something near the design of the grounds I use for such purposes. I generally have selected one of my most active men to take charge of it, and find he has plenty to do to do it well. A second design (Fig. 7) shows a lot of the same dimensions, with a different arrangement, there being a stable, s, and no rear entrance, it is necessary to provide one from the front, and in order to secure a greater breadth of lawn, the house is placed at one side of the center of the grounds. The drive, d, in the design is made to turn around a group of flower-beds of fanciful pattern, but this may be replaced by a single circle, planted as suggested in the next chapter, or by a group of ornamental evergreen or other shrubs. In this design the croquet-ground is at C, and the grape arbor, g a, is used to shut out the view of the vegetable grounds from the street.
200 Feet Front. Fig. 7. - Design For Grounds With Carriage-Drive.
A row of closely planted evergreens at h serves to break the force of the winds; the suggestions as to the other details in the preceding plan, (Fig. 6), apply to this also.