Archive.org has a host of old gardening books (from mid-19th to mid-20th Century) available in many formats and on a host of topics. I happened across a few in my Pinterest feed and gone completely down the rabbit hole in this treasure trove of information. Sure some ideas might be out of
TO OUR READERS.
“Ladies and Gentlemen” we are to be together for six months’ said the captain of an outward-bound East Indiaman; “let us be pleased with each other during that time.” Now, no voyage could be more delightful than was the one of which that brief address was the preface : let it be ours, then, at the commencement of a new volume — our six months’ voyage . and we have a good hope, when it closes, that our passengers will agree to a memorial, as in the voyage alluded to, thanking ” the captain, officers, and crew, for their uniform urbanity and good conduct.” Such a memorial is doubly gratifying, for it rewards past efforts, and is an earnest of future success; — it is an evidence that the same passengers will sail \nth you again, and that they will recommend the craft to their friends. As we are beginning a new, so we are just closing one of our six months’ voyages; and most gratefully do we add that it has been prosperous. That it has been pleasant to our passengers that prosperity is a silent testimony; but we have recorded evidence, also, in many letters — such as we have before quoted in former volumes — and we must give extracts from two of them now.
One, from a young gardener, says, — ” My garden has been a complete mass of flowers, while the gardens around looked comparatively barren. I have had several brother professionals asking my advice and among them my old master. The advice I gave hun was the advice I have given to all — Read The Cottage Gardener. My old master laughed at such advice, saying such principles and secrets as I practised were not taught in books; but I soon convinced him of his mistake, by shewing him the volumes, and comparing my garden with them. I am happy to say that he is now a constant subscriber.”
The next letter is from a lady, and it thus concludes: — ” I must add my mite of thanks for your most useful periodical, which, from an indolent country girl, has converted me into an active gardener, delighting in my flowers, and not scorning hard work — at which my husband marvels.” Now, some such young lady as our correspondent was before she read The Cottage Gardener, was another young lady on board the ship we have mentioned; and we remember her asking the captain whether he should have a new band of musicians next voyage. He replied in the negative, but that “they would have a good supply of new music.”
Precisely so \nth our musicians. We retain the old — have added one or two more; and we are quite confident that our readers will agree that they all ” discourse most excellent music.” They harmonise well; have abundance of new themes, and we pledge ourselves that they shall keep good time.
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