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 floral hall, which is at all times the principal attraction, was situated on the summit of the elevation. It was one hundred and twenty feet long by eighty feet broad, forming a center hall about twenty-four feet wide the whole length, and two side halls also the whole length of the building. The eastern side hall was devoted chiefly to the flowers and vegetables.
There was a good display of annuals and Verbenas. The display of Dahlias was not so great There were some very tastefully done up table boquets. There was a very pretty floral design by Mr. Kerr's gardener, filled up in the different plots with Asters, Marigolds, Verbenas, etc. There was a fine box of annuals from Messrs. Thompson A Murray, of the City Gardens, Hamilton. Judge Campbell, of Niagara, had some very good Cockscombs, seemingly the same that figured at the Horticultural Show in Toronto lately, and received so much merited praise. J. F. Moore, of Hamilton, had a very fine display of Balsams. Eneas Kennedy had a very good collection of plants, from his own private garden. Mr. Fleming, of Toronto, had a pretty fair collection of green-house plants. Thomas & Murray had a very pretty flowering Jasmine, very useful and suitable for a hall window; it flowers in the early part of the season, and gives out a powerful and most delightfully fragrant odor. They had a fine specimen of Veronica, and a very pretty Gesneria zebrina, a plant of beautiful foliage. The Torenia Asiatica, from the same gardens, was a very fine specimen, with a beautiful soft blue Memulone flower. It grows easily, and flowers freely; but requires a good deal of heat to bring it to perfection.
There was a very graceful Japan Pine from the same garden. This plant is well adapted for a conservatory. The Lantana Ewingii, a flower something like a Verbena, but more variegated. The flower first becomes orange, it then fades to a fine soft pink, and from that comes nearly to a white, the flowers appearing in all their different stages in one plant at the same time. It flowers from the beginning of June all the way to winter, and is well adapted for bedding out. It has been only recently introduced. There was one plant, a native of California, termed the Zauchneria Califor-nica, with a beautiful scarlet flower, resembling a Fuchsia somewhat This plant is also well adapted for bedding out J. F. Moore exhibited a very healthy India Rubber plant, and one Orange tree, with one specimen of the fruit upon it There were two fine specimens of Aloes, and a very fine specimen of the Abutilon striatum, with a beautiful striped well-shaped flower; a considerable variety of Cacti, and a rather curious plant-the AEschynanthus zebrina-from the same garden.
On the opposite side of this hall there was a great display of cabbages, chiefly from Toronto gardens. There were also squashes, in great variety; celery, large beets, and also some remarkably fine table beets. Mr. Lesslie showed a good collection of pears and quinces, of very fine quality. In the western hall there was a most magnificent display of white and red onions, the finest by far that has yet been exhibited at any of our fairs. There were some tomatoes of a very large size, but not very tempting; there were some very fine small ones. There was a display of white table turnips, very fine. The capsicums were a very good display. There were some good cauliflowers, two heads especially very fine. The chicory looked well-it was chiefly from Pear's garden, Yonge street The carrots were a very good display. There were three baskets of varieties of vegetables. The Baron de Lougueuil displayed some very fine egg plants, of a large size. The watermelons were rather an ordinary display. The Normal School, Toronto, exhibited specimens of the production, of the experimental garden: there were cabbages, oats, barley, potatoes, corn, carrots, beets, mangel wurzel, turnips, etc., etc., with a full report of the quantity raised, and all the particulars connected with the various specimens.
The peaches were a very good display. There were some very excellent hot-house grapes, from W. H. Boulton's garden. Enoch Turner and W. B. Jarvis, of Toronto, and W. P. McLaren, of Hamilton, had also Borne very fine specimens. There was a very prolific specimen of grapes, we think from Mr. Lewis, of Salt-fleet; there were upwards of forty bunches on one vine about three feet long. Mr. Humphreys, of Toronto, exhibited a basket of very excellent Sweet Water grapes. This was decidedly the best specimen of that kind of graces in the exhibition. There were fifty-six different entries of "twelve winter apples." The winter table apples made a very good display. The Ribston Pippins were very fine. There were some excellent baking apples, from Lesslie's Garden. There were seven entries of twenty varieties of apples, some of them very fine, from Lesslie, Turner, and Brucrly, of Hamilton, and others.
Dr. Craigie's son displayed some very fine specimens of dried plants, very well prepared. There were only a few of them displayed, the greater part of them being left in the portfolio.