This section is from the book "The Florist And Garden Miscellany". Also see: All New Square Foot Gardening: Grow More in Less Space!.
Under this head we have this month, with the exception of one or two plants, little very striking to record. The last Number of the Journal of the Horticultural Society makes us acquainted with:
A little hardy evergreen shrub, from Van Dieman's Land, with small white flower-heads, which add little to its beauty, the latter being confined to the foliage.
A prostrate, succulent plant, from California. It is a hardy annual, but of no beauty, the flowers being of a pale, dirty rose-colour. It is of less interest than L. Douglasii.
A new species, from Messrs. Henderson, of the Wellington Road Nursery. It forms a trailing, half-shrubby stove plant, with dull red flowers, having a flat limb divided into four nearly equal lobs, which are square at the ends, as if they had been cut off.
Polygonum vaccinifolium is stated to be a pretty, trailing, hardy species, the deep, rose-coloured flowers affording suitable decoration for rock-work in autumn.
A hardy little yellow-flowered bulb, suitable for the American border.
A very pretty, nearly hardy, sweet-smelling Californian creeper, bearing heads of lilac flowers like a Verbena. It requires the same treatment as the latter-named plant.
One of the finest Orchids in cultivation. It produces long flower-stems, like those of an Oncidium, richly ornamented with flowers two and a half inches in diameter; the lip half white, half violet; the sepals and petals yellow, barred with brown.
A rather pretty blue hardy bulb, requiring the same treatment as Scillas.
Curtis'sBotanical Magazine for January contains, in addition to the usual scientific descriptions, cultural directions for each of the plants figured, - a new feature of much importance to the work. Of the plants it brings under notice, the following are the most beautiful: -
From Mr. Lee, of Hammersmith, who received it from France. It is a Mexican species, with semi-double imbricated brick-red flowers, apparently two inches across. The plant, which grows about one foot high, will succeed in a greenhouse.
From Messrs. Lucombe, Pince, and Co. It is a lovely purple pea-flowered greenhouse plant, and should be in every collection.
This is stated to be a truly handsome and perfectly hardy plant, suited for bedding. It produces numerous spikes of purple flowers.
A somewhat coarse-growing stove shrub, like a Mela-stoma, having clusters of large white flowers, which are stated to be produced in succession for many weeks together.
WINDOW-GARDENING IN LONDON.
I send a sketch to illustrate the taste for flowers often to be seen in the lowest parts of London, among the weavers of Spitalfields. Cowper, in "The Task," happily describes this instinct: -
"These serve him with a hint That Nature lives; that sight-refreshing green Is still the livery she delights to wear, Though sickly samples of the exuberant whole. What are the casements lined with? creeping herbs; The prouder sashes fronted with a range Of orange, myrtle, or the fragrant weed, The Frenchman's darling: are they not all proofs That man, immured in cities, still retains His inborn inextinguishable thirst Of rural scenes, compensating his loss By supplemental shifts the best he may? The most unfurnish'd with the means of life, And they that never pass their brick-wall bounds To range the fields and treat their lungs with air, Yet feel the burning instinct: overhead Suspend their crazy boxes, planted thick, And water'd daily. There the pitcher stands A fragment, and the spoutless teapot there; Sad witnesses how close-pent man regrets The country; with what ardour he contrives A peep at Nature, when he can no more".