This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V26", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
This remarkable place can be reached from Hunter's Point by the Long Island Railroad in about 1)4 hours. \)4 hours by railroad to Glen Cove, and 1 1/2 hours by horse power to Dosoris. It is a small island of about 50 acres, connected by a bridge with the main island. I do not wonder that Mr. Dana has his heart in this place, the indomitable perseverance he has shown against so many natural obstacles, all the bad winds from all quarters, salt spray against the plants and poor soil; but for all this he has succeeded in making a real paradise out of a barren island. Let gentlemen see for themselves what a man can do with horticultural love, money and perseverance. I am simply going to give a few notes on the salient features of different trees and plants.
You will notice at once the superb Piceas Nordmanniana, cilica, Cephalonica, nobilis. Mr. Dana had most of the plants named, from the Kissena nurseries; having explained to him how easy it was to keep said trees in beauty for a long time by pinching, he had the good sense to do so, and most often with his own hands. Hence his reward. There is one, Picea nobilis glauca, which I grafted in 1858 is worth a journey to see, for any one who takes interest in such trees. Besides the above he has Picea magnifica, P. pectinata pen-dula, P. pectinata compacta, P. Pichta, P. con-color, P. brachyphilla, P. Japonica, named for want of a proper name until better determined. We received it through Mr. Thomas Hogg with no name. This Picea in question is one of the foremost of the whole; as hardy as the Picea Nordmanniana, nearly as good a grower, soft in its touch, intensely glaucus underneath, and of very fine perfume.
Of Abies, A. pungens glauca, a pretty specimen, stands first. A. orientalis, several-fine specimens; A. Menziesii, A. Morinda viridis, hardier than the ordinary A. Morinda; A. alba aurea variegata, A. nigra, A. ccerulea. Here you can see how very superior the last three varieties are for exposed situations over A. excelsa, A. elata or A. aura-cariodies, as Mr. Probasco, of Cincinnati, calls it. It originated at the old Parsons & Company's nurseries. I grafted the first plant in 1860. A remarkable variety for a landscape artist, as it will take the place of Araucaria imbricata, this last not being hardy North. A. inverta pendula, A. Gregoriana, A. nigra pumila and many others too long to mention.
The Pinus are represented as follows: Pinus Koraeensis, P. Strobus nivea, P. Strobus monticola, P. excelsa, P. Strobus pumila, P, cembra, P. uncinata erecta, P. mughus, P. mughus compacta, P. Sylvestris pumila, P. pungens, P. Inops, P. massoniana, P. massoniana aurea, P. massoniana variegata, P. densiflora. The last four from Japan, all extra fine and hardy. Of Californian pines, P. ponderosa, P. Sabiniana, P. Jeffreyii, P. mono-phylla or Fremontiana and many others.
Of Retinosporas the leading ones are: Retinos-pora obtusa, R. nana aurea, R. obtusa gracilis; of this last there are two superb specimens. R. pisifera, R. pisifera nana variegata, R. filifera, R. filifera aurea, R. lycopodioides, R. filicoides, R. plumosa, R. plumosa aurea, R. plumosa argentea variegata and others.
The most prominent of Biotas are, Biota aurea B. aurea elegantissima, B. filiformis.
Of Taxus there are T. baccata aurea. T. baccata elegantissima, T. adpressa, T. cuspidata. This last from Japan.
Cedrus deodora, C. Atlantica, Podocarpus Japonica, Thujopsis Standishii, Thujopsis borealis; in fact no end of varieties of Thujias and other evergreens. I only mentioned the most prominent, of which there are fine specimens.
In ornamental trees and shrubs there are fine Fagus sylvatica atropurpurea, F. sylvatica lacini-ata, Ouercus robur fastigiata, Q. robur nigricans, Q. robur argentea variegata, Q. robur Concordia, a very fine specimen; Q. robur pendula, Q. panonica, . Daimio from Japan. Fine specimens of Ulmus Montana camperdownii pendula, U. fulva pendula, Tilia argentea, T. sul-phurea, this last, one of the very best lindens, keeping its glossy green leaves longer than the other varieties.
Corylus avellana pendula, Betula alba Youngii pendula, B. alba laciniata, B. alba atropurpurea, Magnolia hypoleuca, M. parviflora, M. Lenne, M. conspicua, M. soulangeana, M. stellata, and others.
Cornus florida pendula, two large specimens, which Mr. Dana had from Mr. Meehan; no doubt it will be one of the most distinct and lasting of weeping trees. So also will be Cornus Florida flora rosea, which he received from us. These are only a few of the most prominent deciduous ornamental trees and shrubs of the large collection that he has besides. The best collection of Japan maples to be seen in a private place will be found here. He has also the largest collection of hardy Azaleas to be found in a private place in this country.
Of hardy Rhododendrons there is a large bed, a good beginning with more to follow. I think Mr. Dana has only just begun; one of these days he will likely build a Rhododendron house, for the half hardy kinds. You can put so many other plants with them to make them interesting. A private gentleman with means ought to have such a house. He has a good beginning of Orchids, stove and greenhouse plants, under the care of Mr. Falconer. We need not apprehend any retrograding where he is.
Now I come to a branch of horticulture which I believe Mr. Dana is the first American gentleman that took a liking to, the French method of training fruit trees and grape vines. This department has been established by Mr. Charles Bulot, a French gardener, and a master of this branch of horticulture. This department is worth seeing in conjunction with the mushroom cellar, and well managed French vegetable garden.
Flushing L. I.. N. Y.