This section is from "The Horticulturist, And Journal Of Rural Art And Rural Taste", by P. Barry, A. J. Downing, J. Jay Smith, Peter B. Mead, F. W. Woodward, Henry T. Williams. Also available from Amazon: Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste.
THE following account of Mr. C. L. Allen's flower farm, near Queens, Long Island, is given by the editor of The Observer. Most of our readers know, that this is the largest flower farm in this country, devoted specially to lilies, gladiolus, tuberoses, and bulbs, generally. The grounds occupy about fifty acres of fertile garden soil, very fine and mellow:
At one corner of the farm we found an extensive plat of paeonies, embracing over one hundred and fifty varieties, all in full bloom. The sight was gorgeous. Almost every hue and color - from crimson to white, " ring streaked, speckled, spotted and grizzled" - beamed forth from the rich velvety petals. Some of the finest lilies that Japan affords find a congenial home in this beautiful soil of Long Island, and some that rarely perfect their seed, developed a full crop last season; and the kernels were allowed to fall at pleasure into the bosom of mother earth, where they remained during the winter, and germinated the former part of the growing season. Tuberoses and gladiolus, and extensive varieties of other flowers, flourish here in beauty by the acre. The leaves of every flower and tree seemed more like thin leather than the breathing organs of growing plants, showing, conclusively, that there is a wonderful congeniality of both soil and climate to the production of both flowers and fruit.