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 most delightful indications of approaching spring, after the terribly severe winter, we have yet seen, was the gay exhibition of the Brooklyn Horticultural Society, which closed last evening. the 12th of April. It was a decided hit, and never have we seen an exhibition give so much gratification. Strictly speaking, some of the former exhibitions have excelled this in rare specimen plants in perfection of bloom, but in quantity and gay colors, this excelled all others. The standard varieties of Azaleas, Roses, Geraniums, etc, together with a few really fine new seedlings, and the thousands of Cinerarias, Carnations, Verbenas, Fuchsias, Stock-Gillies, Hyacinths, Ac, made the display very brilliant and attractive. Coming, too, just on the heel of snow storms, with spring lingering in the lap of winter, full eighteen or twenty days later than usual, it called forth - particularly on the part of the ladies - the strongest expressions of delight.
The rooms during the evening were crowded to their utmost capacity, and before the visitors separated, they were addressed moat eloquently and appropriately by the Rev. Dr. Vinton, of that city. His voise and articulation was so good that all in the room could hear him distinctly, and the address elicited frequent and loud applause. He knew not why he was selected as speaker, but when he learned that the evening was to inaugurate the Hunt Botanical Garden, of Brooklyn, he felt that none of her eons might withhold their voice or influence. Complimentary reference was made to Thomas Hunt, who so generously donated $50,000 and one-third of the land, or five acres, and Wm. C. Langley and Jambs Kent, who also generously donated the balance, ten acres, of the land, with cash subscriptions of $10,000; others had subscribed $80,000, and the Legislature had granted them a charter. The ground chosen is just south of Greenwood cemetery, overlooking the Bay, and is every way desirable.
The address referred, in an interesting manner, to the Garden of Eden, which God planted - the Garden of Gethsemane, where the Saviour groaned in agony - and the Garden in the paradise of God, where stands the Tree of Life. The noble men bad done well in thus consecrating a portion of their estates to such a purpose - and be used the sacred term, consecrating, deliberately, for he held it was an appropriate and pious work to which it was devoted, and they earned the enco-nium of benefactors of their country. The garden is the last thing a man makes, and a conservatory of flowers is usually the last crowning act of a garden. God designs in flowers something beyond their mere nomenclature, and yet let us honor the man who can marshal them all by their names, as did our forefather, Adam ; and he who adds new varieties, or improves old kinds of flowers and vegetables, may rank as a benefactor.
The moral influence of flowers was then eloquently dwelt upon, where not only the gigantic plant helps to educate man, but the tiniest flowers are sermons.
The address closed with a beautiful tribute to the lamented Downing.
The fine collection of plants from the green-houses of Wm. C. Langley, received the award of the first premium; J. H. Prentice, second. J. E. Ranch, for the best two specimens; and the four, to Edwin Hoyt Best Azaleas, A. Fraser, gardener to D. Perkins. Best Pelargoniums, George Hamlyn, gardener to W. C. Langley. Best Roses, to J. E. Ranch ; second best, to James Wier. Best hot-house and green-house plants, to A. Gordon, gardener to Edwin Hoyt Best Fuchsias, to Wm. Poynter. Best Cinerarias, to T. Templeton. Best Carnations and Verbenas, to J. E. Ranch. Best Stock-Gillies, and best twelve Roses, to James Wier. Best Hyacinths, to J. DeGraw. Best hand bouquet, to W. & J. Parks. Best basket, to Wm. Poynter. Best collection of Roses in bloom, to J. W. Burgess. Best Asparagus, to G. Hamlyn. Best Lettuce and Mushrooms, to E. Decker.
The spirited movements of the friends of horticulture in Brooklyn, is exciting to action the New York horticulturists. The law providing for the large Central Park, has an article permitting a certain portion to be devoted to a large fine garden, and it is hoped that steps will soon be taken to secure so desirable an object, and with the stimulus of a healthful and courteous competition on the part of New York and Brooklyn, it is believed something very fine can be accomplished. R. G. P.