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.
THIs is an original work, by the late Mr. Bridgeman, which has long kept its place as a standard book in the gardening world, and, with McMabon's (published in Philadelphia), continues to be the guide to the novice no less than the practised hand.
We like to record the success of practical men. In the case of the Messrs. Bridgemans, we find an industrious and thoughtful father successful through a lengthened career, and leaving his sons established in the same business and in the someplace, after his death. Nos. 876 and 878 Broadway, New York, are now the property of the two sons, Andrew and Alfred. The seed department is managed by Alfred, and the greenhouses by Andrew Bridgeman, in two well-built stores, with their dwellings above. The business was first commenced in 1828, by the father, and continued by him until 1850 (the period of his decease), when the sons erected two four-story houses, well adapted to their objects; the southerly one is devoted to the sale of vegetable, herb, flower, and grass seeds, horticultural books, and garden tools and implements; the walls are plastered on all sides with cement, and the floor is of concrete, making it secure from dampness and the attacks of vermin. In the house devoted to the plant department, the basement is divided into a flower-room for keeping and making-up cut flowers, and a packing-room and general stowage; the store is appropriately fitted up with shelvings, counters, etc, and floored with encaustic tiles; in connection with it is a greenhouse, eighteen feet wide and one hundred and thirty feet long.
The country establishment is at Astoria, where there is a fine propagating house, five greenhouses, two rose-houses, one rose pit, and about forty sashes of frames for violets, pansies, Ac. The grounds are ornamented with different varieties of fruit-trees, and are occupied principally in growing roses, ornamental and flowering shrubs, fruit, herbaceous and greenhouse plants, asparagus, rhubarb, strawberries, Ac. etc. Mr. B. is prepared to execute orders to any amount for forest trees, dwarf pears, etc.
In the city store will be found one of the finest collections of bulbous roots; a number of each kind are potted for those who desire to have them already started - a convenience which many salesmen cannot afford. Here will also be found fancy flower-pots, bulb-glasses, and baskets for flowers, of which latter ornaments they fill innumerable orders during the winter season, as well as hand-bouquets and designs for parties and suppers. The greenhouse in the city is filled with plants suited for private houses during winter, and, in spring, they are replaced with bedding-out plants, for which the establishment is famous throughout the Eastern and Middle States.
This sketch of the business of two brothers in the heart of New York, realizes an agreeable picture, and is an example of exactly what we like to see. To minds imbued with a love of nature's gifts, and, of course, admirers of the floral world, it would seem to us to afford an amount of enjoyment which few other occupations can give. We record it for the encouragement of those who may now be struggling with economy and industry to found similar establishments elsewhere. There is not a city in our land where equally persevering attention and honesty may not bring like results.