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.
These industrious gardeners, especially around Paris, pursue a simple pian, which they find advantageous, paying attention to a few special plants for which there is a regular demand. The plan, will prevail here as we arrive at a more ex-. tended population. Division of labor follows high civilisation, as we see in our stores and shops* Formerly, when cities contained but a few inhabitants, the store contained dry-goode, hardware, and groceries, with a large sprinkling of nick-nacks, and perhaps an ox or goose-yoke or two. New the cloth er silk merchant disdains to sell knives, and the hardware merchant would know about as much of the quality of silks as the butcher. This plan of having specialties has many advantages, not the least among which is the perfection that may be obtained by studying and practising a particular line of business.
The French gardeners, in the faubourgs around Paris, possess from a quarter to one acre, where everything is done on the most economical plan. To save expense in heating, etc, the plant-houses are built two, three, or four feet below the surface, exactly like span-roofed pits; the front or south lights are glass, and the back is simply constructed; in this coun-try it may be of very common boards, with an interspace filled with tan or covered over thickly with leaves in winter. No other means of warming is employed. such structures are quite common in Burlington, N. J. - so much so as to make it quite noted - -and in these fine plants are bloomed, and lemon and lime-trees fruited in great perfection.
Bach French gardener grows only ten or fifteen kinds of plants, to bloom in succession, that his energies may be concentrated upon one thing at a time, and thus what is done is done well. One will attend only to camellias, azaleas, roses, orange-trees, and hard-wooded plants; another, to ericas, epaoris, pelargoniums, &o.; another to violets, pansies, carnations, etc. All who have been in Paris, in the season, will remember the exquisite perfection of. the moss-rose buds and flowers sold in the shops and streets; these form one specialty, and the earliest come from such houses as we -have described. It is no uncommon thing to find in one of these little 'gardens 10,000 or 15,000 camellias, and in another as many roses or crassnlas. From such spots issue the bouquets so exquisitely grouped, and with such harmony of colors, that the work assumes the character of a fine art; it is, in fact, the result of study assisted by practice, by a people who, of all others, have the best taste for colors.
These hints are thrown out for imitation, and are from notes on the spot.
The Hybrid Luoombe oak, having now attained sufficient age to be foiled, is pronounced to possess more valuable wood than the best English oak, being heavier and stronger.