this nothing but the swing of fashion's and ivy once more asserting their pendulum. But there are epidemics of claim? If Nature is at times coerced, sentiment as well as of disease, which she revenges herself with a sweet wilhave to be reckoned with. The weari- fulness. Many a ruin looks fairer in its ness of life, which is affected by many, decay than when it left the builder's is felt in all its reality by the few. Man hands. The Colosseum, before the carries with him a double nature: the archæologists intervened, harbored civilization of centuries co-exists with four hundred and twenty species of primitive savagery. The stronger the plants. Shelley tells us how he found character the greater the impulse to- the inspiration of “Prometheus Unwards reversion. Minds of a primitive bound" "among the flowering glades type decline to be "lulled by the singer and thickets of odoriferous blossoming of an empty day;" the trim paths of shrubs and trees" which had taken poslife irritate them. Such men as Rous- session of the Baths of Caracalla. This seau, Gautier, and Thoreau might well is Nature's method, and man, if he is be credited with this “yearning towards wise, will enter into partnership with wildness." But Cowley spoke for her rather than competition. others besides himself when he desired Those who sigh for primitive wildthat his garden should be

ness must seek it elsewhere than in

cultivated England. The very aspect of Painted o'er with Nature's hand, not

our woods has changed. The forests Art's.

among which our British ancestors

wandered were of oak, birch, alder, In the polished and decorous Addi

and mountain-ash. The plane, elm, son we find an even more unexpected poplar and chestnut were unknown to advocate:-

them, and they never heard the bees

drowsing among the lime blossom. Ad“I have often," he says, "looked upon it as a piece of happiness that I have

dison would have found the pleasure never fallen into any of these fantas

of his walk enhanced if, besides the tical tastes, nor esteemed anything the cowslips and daffodils, which were the more for its being uncommon and hard object of his quest, he had found the to be met with. For this reason I look

indigenous plants of some other counupon the whole country in springtime

try, or the flowers of another clime. as a spacious garden, and make as

The Scotchman in his exile loved his many visits to a spot of daisies, or a bank of violets, as a florist does to his

thistle, though it was not indigenous; borders or parterres."

and Cromwell was indebted to the

American forest for his bergamots. This is, however, no disparagement Along the shores of the Mediterranean of a garden. Burns took his walk to many a little clearing will be met with see the linnet's nest and the rosebud which recalls Virgil's exquisite picture bending its thorny stalk. We would of the wild garden and its lilies, under not outrage his artistic sense by turn- the rocky heights of Ebalia. The twice ing his wild rose into a standard bud- flowering roses of Pæstum would not ded with different varieties of the have bloomed among the violets unless flower; nor would we affront Addison's some hand had placed them there. All cultured taste by overlaying Nature that the fastidious eye demands is with Art. Who would not sympathize that nature should not be made ridicuwith Juvenal's lament over Egeria's lous by the introduction of incongruous fountain "prisoned in marble," or with elements or by inharmonious juxtaposiByron's delight at seeing the flowers tion. In her own domain she must reign supreme, under condition that she favorites in Nature's lap, we must first finds room for the beauty of other ask Nature if she would care to grow lands.

them. It would be too much to assume that In our flower-beds each specimen is the Wild Garden is dictated by our surrounded by its quota of bare earth; present phase of ennui. We may seek but in Nature's garden there should be its origin more reasonably in our lean- no waste land-save under the deep ing towards freedom, accentuated by a shadow of an evergreen. The leafless revulsion from the uniformity of the season of the deciduous trees allows day. The creation of a wild garden time for a crop of bulbs. Each spot is an undertaking which may satisfy should be a calendar of the seasons. the ambition of the most adventurous. By forecasting the blooming period it Here there are no standing rules, no is possible to maintain an unbroken handbooks, which, carefully adhered succession of blossom throughout the to, will ensure success. With a very year. There will not be the brilliant moderate amount of knowledge and outburst of the bedding-out system; but skill many square feet of cuttings and the result will please the fancy of those seedlings may be counted on. They who subscribe to the old-world adage: will come in their appointed season. "Use pleasure gently and it will last There is no question to be settled as to the longer.” finding room in a crowded bed, or oust- Grouping is another "riddle of the ing less worthy occupants. Your painful earth,” which must be studied plants can go at once into the home pre- thoughtfully. There are no unmeaning pared for them and provided with lines, no specimens dotted aimlessly every comfort. He was a reverent here and there. Each species collects. man who said, "God Almighty is my itself into a colony, whose form is dicgardener. I merely put the things in. tated by the exigencies of the position. He makes them grow.” When we The colony is compact, but of irregular come into the august presence of Na- shape. The approach to it is often ture we instinctively put aside the lofty marked by outlying sentries-seeds talk about "flowering" a plant and then carried by the wind or dropped by transferring it to the rubbish heap. birds. But be the form what it may, Nature must be reverently wooed if she it will be found worthy of imitation. is to be won. When we note the perfec- To attempt a catalogue of such plants. tion of her picture, we may well turn as are suitable to the wild garden pupil instead of teacher. A well fur- would be less serviceable than to indinished bed of bloom rising out of the cate the general conditions which must stark earth has as sorry an appearance be borne in mind. Nature cultivates as a room without a carpet. It is in the hedgerow and the ditch, the copthe setting of her flowers that Nature pice and the meadow, the brookside chiefly distances the art of man. To and the arid bank. What, then, are the provide that delicate net work of fern limits of the wild garden? It begins and grass and herb is a task of infinite where the last flower-bed spreads its difficulty. Where possible the original trim beauty on the greensward, and it growth may be left undisturbed. Many ends where the practised eye and the of the sturdier bulbs may be dibbled in well-stored mind can find no further the turf, and pæonies make a grand point of vantage whereon to place a show in the tall grass; but too often the flower. This will not be reached till indigenous vegetation would starve or many a year has slipped into oblivion. overrun the exotics. Before we lay our The time is gone, but the work remains,


and the world is thereby enriched. It may be said that this is mere naturalization. But to admit the imputation is to cast no slur on an art which tests the gardener's skill in the solution of problems unknown to the ordinary garden. His highest capacities are called forth by the effort to domesticate in the different parts of his domain plants and flowers of the most different provenance; and the variety of foreign plants is always on the increase. The Elizabethan gardener boasted of the many strange herbs which were "daily brought from the Indies, America, Taprobane, Canary Isles, and all parts of the world.” Read Bacon's modest list, and then compare it with Loudon's, then carry the catalogue up to date, and we shall see the advantage at which we stand as to raw material. As England is an epitome of the world, so the wild garden is a miniature presentment of many lands. The unpremeditated art of Nature must be the workman's ideal; but though no trace of the hand remain, it should bear the impress of man's mind. It is nature's truce with man. She has condescended to heighten her beauty by a richer dress.

Beyond the fact that each is engaged in growing flowers, there is little in common between the horticulturist and the gardener-two terms which are often treated as synonymous. It is by the composition of the picture that the true artist is known. The eye of the artist and the mind of the poet must inspire the technical skill of the gardener if his work is to rise above the level of mediocrity. It is not the palette dotted over with patches of brilliant color that we admire, but the ordered barmony of effects. Naturalization, if we accept for a while the limitation, is not the haphazard introduction of exotics among our native flora. As to technical knowledge, it necessitates an intimate acquaintance with every flower we

handle, its preference for sunshine or shade, drought or moisture, its favorite soil, and its capacity for holding its own among indigenous rivals. This much may be acquired; but the æsthetic qualities which can weave а parti-colored

into harmonious union are gifts, and beyond the teaching of books.

To begin with, we must discard the dogmatic laws of the garden; but such rebellion need not lead us astray. The character and variety of the flora within our reach will be mainly determined by the configuration of the land and its geological formation. Where a hanging coppice or a low ridge of rockpreferably limestone-falls gently to a river or marsh, nooks will be found which the practised hand will people with congenial plant life. Each rill which adds its tribute to the river may have its own flora, while by the alluvial soil which it carries down it prepares a bed for another group. The various exposures to sun and wind, which a broken outline affords, give climates so various that the vegetation of many latitudes may be collected within a limited area. There are spots in our southern and western counties where, among bay, ilex, laurustinus, myrtle and arbutus, no unworthy reminiscence may be obtained of the natural gardens which clothe the Mediterranean coast. Landor hated evergreens because they seemed to have no sympathy with Nature; but Emerson loved them for their snug seclusion. A holly glinting against the russet oak leaves needs no apology. It is no disparagement of our English woodland to say that it has an unkempt look after the finished beauty of more southern lands. The patriarchal husbandry of the Moor leaves a plentiful crop of iris and other bulbs to gem his fields, while the rocky background is covered with cistus. The meadows and corn-fields of Greece and Asia Minor are ablaze with color. The thistles of

the South American pampas, taller than some woodland stream-surroundings a man on horseback, spread a mass of which are also only too well suited to bloom like a heathery moor. These the requirements of the rattlesnake. and like effects may be ours in minia- The peat mosses and marshes of the ture. The northern latitudes of the northern and temperate latitudes bave American and our own continent will added much to our choice of subjects. supply all that we need for the bleaker Yet so rich is our native flora that, exspots.

cept for such exotics as the waterThe traveller will turn with a wistful loving irises, we need not travel beyond sigh from scenes which can live only our own border. There is often more in memory. No human hand can re- difficulty in collecting on one spot our produce the gardens with which nature indigenous plants, scattered irregularly decks her lordly domain-the gorgeous over the kingdom. Yet the result will color which lights up the sombre depths repay the effort. It is not the paucity of a tropical forest, the modest beauty of plants, but the difficulty of selecting of the verbenas and fuchsias of a the worthiest, that embarrasses us. cooler latitude, the brilliant bulbs of the Among those which should find a place Cape, or the tender bloom of oleanders are the great water dock, the bullrush, filling a Spanish valley-yet these cladium mariscus, and the equisetum scenes will supply a picture lesson of known as giant horse-tail; some of the the way in which Nature works. “Ab sedges, such as carex pendula, which uno disce omnes.” Let the wayfarer in are of a very graceful habit; the flowerone of the forest states of North Amer- ing rush, arrowhead, loosestrife, willow ica emerge from a "pine barren” on to herb, monkshood, yarrow, meadowa cranberry moss. It is one of Nature's sweet, waterlilies, with their dwarf water gardens, laid out on a scale and likeness, villarsia; bog arum and bog with surroundings worthy of her. The bean; marsh marigold, that "shines like yellow sand, redeemed from barrenness fire in swamps and hollows gray;" waby the dark fir-trees, fringes the marsh. ter violet, our native globe flower, and Beyond it, far as the eye can reach, water ranunculuses, especially the indistretches a waving sea of green-the genous ranunculus lingua, with its stately heads of elm-trees and maples large, handsome, yellow flowers and older than the Republic. The mass of bold habit. A rich drapery of ferns, vegetation which crowds every inch of notably osmunda, and such distinct the oozy soil is bewildering at first grasses as poa aquatica, will suffice to sight, but a detailed examination soon complete the picture. reveals many of our acclimatized fa- To pause here, however, will be to vorites. It is from the marshy mead- fail in doing justice to our opportuniows and forest pools of the Eastern ties. We have amplified with some deStates and from the dank woods of tail the characteristics of the water garthe lake region that we have obtained den; but space will not permit to carry the stately swamp lily and the golden this principle into other portions of the club, the large yellow and the white garden. The secret of success lies in water lily, pitcher plants, water arums noting the native flora which abound and varieties of lady's slipper-among in a locality, and associating with them them the lovely mocassin flower. No- the exotics of the same species. With where does the incomparable tint of the the meadow-sweets, for example, may cardinal flower, beautiful alike in sun- be grouped the many beautiful varieshine and shade, show to better effect ties of herbaceous spiræas; with the than among the tussocks which fringe yellow water-flag several of the foreign

irises. Many of our garden plants rola, narcissus, snowflakes, fritillary, would thrive much better in the cool and many another. The wild rose and soil which borders a lake or river. Some the sweet briar flourish on the top, prefer the brink, while the water itself while our native climbers take possesis the natural home of others. To meet sion of the bank. No training can ever their respective wants three zones give to them the artless grace with should be provided-an arrangement which they arrange their drapery when which will promote the growth of indi- free from restraint. In the company of vidual plants and add to the general traveller's joy and honeysuckle we may mass of bloom. The beautiful Nile lily place several varieties of clematis, --calla æthiopica-is hardy in the south honeysuckles of other hues but in of England; so, too, is the Cape pond sweetness equal to our own, jasmines, weed. The saxifrage known as "pel- vines, roses, and Virginian creeper. The tata," from its shield-like leaves, and difference between their beauty in such the pickerel weed of North America are a spot and that of their garden rivals noble plants. Gunnera, with its hand- may be tested by comparing

a wellsome rhubarb-like leaves, starwort, and trained vineyard with an old vine many another plant will make an ample wedded to an elm-tree in primeval fashreturn for the consideration which gives ion. them the opportunity they lack under A glimpse at a New England wood the ordinary methods of cultivation. will show how we may enliven our own

It is inevitable that the lover of the coppice. The ground is brightened in picturesque should give his sympathies spring by dog's-tooth violets, hepaticas, to the live fence, for which wire and Solomon's seal, blood-root, gold-thread iron railings are being so largely sub- --so named from its yellow roots—and stituted. The enemies of the latter de- the lovely wood lily. If these plants cry them, not unjustly, as forming a can endure the climate of Massachulådder to climb over, a lattice to look setts, what may not we accomplish? through, and as destitute of the prime It is true that in their own country the essential of shelter. It is the disap- heavy mantle of snow preserves them pointment due to the introduction into from the alternate coaxing and freezour hedges of such unsuitable shrubs ing which is the vice of an English winas privet and elder, together with neg- ter; we must therefore remedy the lect in maintaining them, which has drawback by allowing Nature to take brought live fences into disrepute. But care of her children in her own untidy if properly formed in the first place of way. “Tidiness" is the bane of plant blackthorn, quick, or holly, they will life. To remove the leaves from a bed justify the trouble by their utility, at the approach of winter is to shear a econoiny and beauty. It is the infatu- sheep at Christmas. From the artistic ation of rabbits for the bark of the point of view it may be doubted holly which has deterred many from whether the bare soil, dotted over with planting this—the best and most orna- frost-bitten plants, is a more cheerful mental of fencing plants. Our hedge- sight than a carpet of dead leaves; but rows and banks form a garden which even if it be so, let consideration for the may be rendered more attractive than flowers, which need our best help in any artificial fence. They afford, too, a their season of distress, incline the bal. shelter which is invaluable. Here ance in their favor. There would be there will be a congenial home for col- something ludicrous, were it not painored primroses, polyanthus, cyclamens, ful, in the annual digging-over to which Solomon's seal, the hardy gladioli, py- shrubberies are subjected. The “rough

« 前へ次へ »