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Title: Garden Ornaments
Author: Northend, Mary H.
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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[Illustration: Book Cover]



GARDEN ORNAMENTS



[Illustration: TALL POPLARS LEND DIGNITY TO A GARDEN SETTING]



GARDEN ORNAMENTS


BY
MARY H. NORTHEND


ILLUSTRATED


[Illustration]


NEW YORK
DUFFIELD & COMPANY
1916



Copyright, 1916,
by DUFFIELD & CO.



_I Dedicate This Garden Book
to My Friend_
EKIN WALLICK



CONTENTS


  CHAPTER                                                           PAGE
        FOREWORD
     I. THE GARDEN PATH AND BORDER                                     3
    II. THE PERGOLA AND ARCH                                          21
   III. THE TEA HOUSE IN THE GARDEN                                   37
    IV. THE GARDEN STEPS                                              53
     V. ENTRANCES                                                     71
    VI. BIRD BATHS                                                    89
   VII. GARDEN SEATS                                                 107
  VIII. GARDEN POOLS                                                 125
    IX. THE SUN-DIAL IN THE GARDEN                                   143
     X. THE FOUNTAIN                                                 163



ILLUSTRATIONS


  TALL POPLARS LEND DIGNITY TO A GARDEN SETTING           _Frontispiece_
  LET GUTTERS OF COBBLESTONES LINE YOUR PATH               _Facing p._ 3
  A SUCCESSFUL GRASS PATH                                              6
  A BRICK-PAVED PATH FLANKED BY MANY-HUED IRIS                        12
  THE SUNLIGHT SIFTS THROUGH THE SHELTERING VINES OF THE PERGOLA      21
  BUILD YOUR PERGOLA WITH COBBLESTONE SUPPORTS AND RUSTIC TOP         24
  THE MOSS GROWS BETWEEN THE STONE WALK                               28
  A TEA-HOUSE                                                         37
  STEPPING-STONES IN A GRASS PATH                                     42
  LILY PONDS IN A FORMAL GARDEN                                       46
  STONE STEPS ATTRACTIVELY PLANNED                                    53
  A FOUNTAIN THAT SERVES AS A BACKGROUND FOR A LILY POND              58
  MARBLE STEPS LEADING TO THE WATER IN A FORMAL GARDEN                64
  AN OLD-FASHIONED GARDEN IS OFTEN ENTERED UNDER AN ARCH OF
    LATTICEWORK                                                       71
  A FINE DECORATIVE IRON GATEWAY                                      76
  A SUCCESSFUL ENTRANCE TO A FORMAL GARDEN                            82
  THE CENTRAL FEATURE OF THE GARDEN MAY BE A BIRD-BATH                89
  A WELL-PLACED BIRD-BATH                                             94
  AN ORNAMENT DELIGHTFULLY USED TO MARK THE OPENING OF PATHS
    THROUGH WOODS                                                     98
  A FORMAL GARDEN SEAT                                               107
  A SIMPLE AND ATTRACTIVE GARDEN SEAT                                112
  STATELY LILIES ADD CHARM AND DIGNITY TO A GRAVELLED WALK           118
  A POND-LILY POOL OF A VERY ATTRACTIVE SHAPE                        125
  A LILY POND THAT FILLS CHARMINGLY A CORNER OF A GARDEN             130
  THERE IS AN EVER-CHANGING BEAUTY TO A GARDEN WHOSE PATHS ARE
    BROKEN HERE AND THERE BY POOLS                                   136
  GRASSY PATHS LEAD PLEASANTLY TO THE SUN-DIAL                       143
  THE SUN-DIAL IS A FEATURE IN ITSELF                                148
  AN OLD WELL USED EFFECTIVELY AS A DECORATIVE FEATURE               154
  NARCISSUS STANDS IN THE HEART OF THE FOUNTAIN                      163
  A ROMAN FOUNTAIN PLACED AGAINST A VERY APPROPRIATE BACKGROUND      166
  AN ARTISTIC FOUNTAIN PARTICULARLY WELL PLACED                      170
  THIS WALL FOUNTAIN WITH ITS SHELL BACKGROUND AND BASIN IS MOST
    FITTINGLY PLACED                                                 174



FOREWORD


Doubtless we have all realized the allurement of the garden, as we walk
between the beds, drinking in the sweet perfume of the many flowers, or
as we watch the birds perched on the branches or lazily swinging on the
flowers, twittering to their mates as they sip the nectar or prune their
plumage, after bathing in the sparkling water of the pool.

There is more than enjoyment that comes to the garden lover through his
life among the plants. He grows broader and becomes forgetful of the
trivial cares and prejudices of every-day life as he watches their
development. He comes to the garden for inspiration and finds it among
the flowers.

We are by nature garden lovers, and though with some the feeling has not
as yet been developed, yet deep in the depths of their soul is a
yearning for intercourse with Nature and her lessons--taught through the
cultivation of flowers. It spells Contentment, Happiness and Love.

It is a delight to visit gardens, and study the character of the
designer. It is no hard matter to read through varied planting likes and
dislikes in the owner. It brings us closer together, this mutual love of
floriculture, and it is in discussion of this theme that we forget the
sordid phases of life.

Visit the gardens with me, listen to the anthem of the birds sung at
morn and eventide. Learn their habits, and make them friends, so that
they will nestle into your often lonely life, bringing with them a
gladness that is not only delightful but alluring.

Many a love story has been told among the flowers, many a real story has
been developed as one sat gazing at some flower-laden field. Joy and
sadness has been our varied lot since we began our garden work, but as
the years go on, gladness predominates. We grow to look forward with a
tender longing for the coming spring. We hang lovingly over the opening
buds of the early flowers. We are glad that we, too, have grown to know
the flowers, that we have learned through their poetic language solace
for the wounded soul, and how to live better lives, through intercourse
with them.

To my many friends who have made it possible for me to visit their
gardens, and to reproduce their carefully thought out schemes in
pictures, I extend my hearty thanks. It has done much to make not only
my life but other lives happier. It is with the hope that others may
find the same enjoyment in this work that I have that I send it forth to
perform its mission and with the hope that it may encourage others to
start gardens of their own and to give to them a happiness they have
never known before. If I have accomplished this I have met the desire of
my heart.



THE GARDEN PATH AND BORDER


[Illustration: LET GUTTERS OF COBBLESTONES LINE YOUR PATH]



CHAPTER I

THE GARDEN PATH AND BORDER


"All the world's a garden and we are garden lovers in it." This is not a
new theme, for it has been in existence ever since the planting of the
early flower plots, those that were in evidence in our grand-dames'
time. There is a distinct atmosphere connected with those simple
one-path gardens that is most delightful. It lies not only in the gravel
paths and the stiff box-borders, but in the fragrant old-fashioned
flowers that were grown promiscuously inside the trim line of box.
Perchance some dainty line of cinnamon pinks whose delicate blossoms
when we find them in the twentieth-century gardens, carry us back
vividly to the Colonial days when they so often formed a part of the
garden scheme.

Great changes have taken place in the evolution of the posy beds, for,
with the passage of time, they have developed into wide expanses of
floral landscape, subtly moulded into charming pictures and fascinating
vistas.

In the planting and the planning of the flower beds of the present day
many of the general motives of the older gardens have been retained.
They have, however, been enlarged upon and developed until they are
perfected in every detail. The landscape architect of to-day realizes
that the achievements of yesterday can be interwoven with the
possibilities of to-morrow.

As we saunter leisurely through the twentieth-century garden, we come
occasionally upon a simple box-border, much more scientifically treated
than those of long ago. This special feature of garden culture should be
planted in the early spring that it may obtain deep rooting, so as to
resist the ravages of the winter season. The plants should not overcrowd
but be set three inches apart in narrow, shallow trenches, with plenty
of mulching to insure the best results. Unlike those found in the
gardens of Colonial days, they should be carefully clipped, sometimes
for topiary effects.

Here and there, we come unexpectedly upon old-time flower plots, showing
a box-border, not like those of the present day, carefully trimmed, but
scraggly and unkempt, preserved for sentiment's sake. They still line
the central walk, much as they did long years ago. In those days there
was no laying-out of gardens or creating odd designs, but, instead,
there was a simple, narrow, dividing line, worked out by the removal of
turf and filling in with earth.

Few realize that garden culture can be divided into periods, each one of
which is well defined, so that it is possible to determine where the
old-fashioned ideas left off and the new-fashioned ones began. The
earliest period has a straight, simple path, about six feet in width.
These gardens came into existence when our shipping was greater on the
sea and the merchant princes demanded large and more elegant houses with
gardens laid out in the rear. Many of these were planned by the
mistresses of the stately homes, while some were designed by English or
German gardeners, who in their planting reproduced the gardens across
the seas. There are a few only that deviate from the general plan of the
single walk dividing the beds and ending in a summer house, vine-clad,
where the Colonial dames during the summer months held afternoon teas.
These garden houses were the nucleus of the garden furniture that has
come into fashion with the passing of time.

One of the distinctive features connected with these gardens is the
border. This varies in width with the size of the plot and the flowers
enclosed. It must be borne in mind that the gardeners of those days knew
little of the theory of color schemes, yet the results were pleasing to
the eye, so much so that to-day the old-fashioned garden stands in a
class by itself.

With the evolution of gardens, new ideas sprang into existence. All
landscape architects realize the importance of giving particular
attention to the laying-out of the path. Here the bit of garden demands
a straight path, yonder to bring gardens into unity a grass path should
be laid, while level stretches demand charming floral treatment, wrought
out through proper use of flowers in the borders.

[Illustration: A SUCCESSFUL GRASS PATH]

Every ambitious gardener realizes that during the summer months, his
particular garden will be on dress parade, and must be always at its
best. Therefore, he gives special attention to the trimming of the
borders, the smoothing of the path and the right coloring in beds, so
that no discordant note be found. Every part must be kept in good
condition, for there are no closed doors for untidiness to skulk behind.
This he knows means constant and unremitting care and that he may avoid
sameness, he changes the flower scheme every year, to give a fresh note
to the planting of his own particular plot.

The greatest care must be taken that borders are properly balanced, for
any deviation from this rule results in lop-sided effects that spell
failure. No walk in any part of the garden but should be planned to
serve a definite purpose, either to connect other paths or at its end to
bring out some carefully laid plan that will lend a picturesque effect
to the finished design.

Let us take as an instance a curved path. First of all, we must realize
that it is not following any haphazard plan but has a definite aim.
Perchance it has been most carefully laid out to avoid the felling of a
tree that is needed for picturesque effect, but whatever the object may
be, it is fulfilled by the design of this particular path.

There are to be found, quite frequently on large, extensive grounds,
grass paths that cut the lawn, connecting separated gardens. In any
case like this, how much better to introduce English stepping stones.
There is a picturesque coloring in their soft, gray hue, contrasting
pleasingly with a line of grass between. They also break the monotony
given by a solid mass of green and lend to this particular part of the
ground an old-world aspect.

Have you ever stopped to think when planning for your next year's garden
that designs can be easily varied to bring out some new thought and make
a change that is alluring? It is the careful introduction of these novel
ideas that gives zest to garden culture. Every person has a different
idea of what is right in garden culture and unconsciously treats the old
plan in an individual manner. A little touch here and there goes a great
way in producing odd effects.

Among the many materials that can be used for this feature of the garden
is brick, and of this there are many kinds. For the old-fashioned garden
the second-hand brick gives a Colonial atmosphere. For the gardens of
to-day it is generally better to use the hard, burned brick--these can
be laid in straight lines or herring-bone fashion as fancy dictates,
and should show a line of straight brick or headers as they approach the
border. This feature should be used generally in formal types of garden
landscape. Great care should be taken, however, that the brick be laid
perfectly dry and cemented in mortar.

If you are looking for novelty, why not try cobblestones? They are very
inexpensive, particularly if you live in a seaport town where the
beaches are strewn with them. Be sure to pick out those that are nearest
the same size and shape, for this gives a better effect. There is
nothing that gives a better backing for earth beds, especially as they
are easily kept weeded. If the cobblestones prove too conspicuous for
the scheme of the garden, it is a comparatively easy matter to plant as
a background a flowering plant that will in time fall over them and hide
them from view.

A turf walk is, properly speaking, the most effective path. It also has
many advantages, chief among them the fact that it is not hard to keep
up and can be replaced with very little trouble, save the cutting of new
sod. Be very careful not to make the mistake of laying old sods that
have been piled for a considerable length of time and have thus lost
much of their vigor. In order to have them at their best they should be
freshly cut and laid carefully in a rich foundation, the pieces joined
as closely as possible together and the crevices filled in with either
grass seed or dirt. Plenty of watering means success; still one should
not be impatient, for it is not until a second season that grass comes
to its own. One difficulty in a border like this, which can, however, be
easily remedied, is that it needs constant cutting to keep the grass
from overrunning the beds.

If you are planning a garden of the English type, it is well to carry
out the idea of introducing irregular stones for the walk. It is
desirable that the stones should not all be of the same size, otherwise
there will be no chance for grass and moss to grow between them and give
them the old-world aspect. In gardens of this type such a path is really
imperative, for the flowers crowd against the dividing line and would be
much less interesting if stones were not introduced.

Bear in mind, in dealing with this particular subject that the width of
the walk depends in a great measure on the size of the garden. Here a
narrow path is all that is necessary to carry out the scheme; there, a
wide one seems to fit appropriately into the plan. It is not always
possible to have gardens large enough to allow a wide path, yet the
effect of one can be produced by a little contriving; for instance, if
you use grass for the central feature with an earth border on either
side.

If you desire a successful garden you should seek for variety, not only
in the cutting of the walk, but in the planting of the borders. To-day
everybody is striving for originality and to work out odd ideas that
still are practical. One should remember, too, that no two gardens are
exactly alike, any more than two faces bear an exact resemblance.

In describing the border, one might liken it to the setting of a gem.
Doubtless, it might be said to be artificial but so is the planting of
the flower plot. It is not nature's work, but designed by the hand of
man and in it harmony should be developed in the highest degree.

Let us take as an example the damp garden. This is usually laid out in
one corner of the estate. If we should treat it with a gravel walk, what
would be the result--dampness and disappointment. Now, let us change the
whole plan and place stringers on which boards are laid, so nailed that
they can be lifted during the winter season and stored away in a
friendly barn or cellar. Watch the result and you will find it is always
dry and practical for usage. Better still, if wearing properties do not
have to be taken into consideration, use cedar boughs that resemble in
contour miniature logs. They fit into place as if put there by nature,
all the more if they are bordered by ferns. If you build at the further
end a rustic summer house, it gives a refreshing touch.

Many garden lovers delight in collecting wild flowers, digging them up
in the neighboring woods to blossom in their cultivated garden. Why not
give them a home by themselves in a rough rockery? This can easily be
built from stones found on the estate. Here we deviate from the stilted
idea of paths and introduce stone steps. These should be large and rough
enough to fit in with our plan. Hardy ferns should be planted on either
side and rock plants between the steps. You will then see the wisdom of
creating a path like this which is in sympathy with the general idea of
the garden.

[Illustration: A BRICK-PAVED PATH FLANKED BY MANY-HUED IRIS]

Landscape gardeners are at the present day endeavoring to work out
results that are in harmony with any period that they are called upon
to reproduce. Occasionally they come upon a subject that is very
difficult to treat, such as the concrete walk. This is an absolute
necessity in some locations. Yet, when finished, it presents a bare
appearance and demands special treatment. Very successful results are
produced by bright borders of flowering plants, and if in addition to
this an arch of wire or rustic boughs is made for the entrance and
covered with rambler roses, of which to-day there are many varieties, a
happy solution will be found to the perplexing problem of a colorless
path. During the time of blossoming, the touch of brightness adds to the
effect while later on the bright green of the leaves relieves the cold
gray of the concrete.

The late Joseph Jefferson, in speaking of gardens and their borders,
once said, "They are all expectation." And so they are from the early
spring when the first bulbs come into bloom until the falling of the
late chrysanthemum. As we con the seedman's list to prepare for the
spring gardening, we go through the procession of the seasons noting the
colors and finding a joy in anticipation that is exhilarating.

In order to give correct handling to your paths, the color scheme of the
borders should be taken into consideration. Different kinds of gardens
demand varied treatment, and for this, the situation on the grounds and
the type of the walk, should be carefully thought out.

For earliest bloom, one should use bulbs. To have them at their best
they should be planted in the fall, about six weeks before the hard
frost sets in. Trenches are first dug, from twelve to eighteen inches
deep, enriched and topped with a layer of sand, to insure the bulbs
touching nothing else. Each bulb should be planted six inches deep and
the same number of inches apart. They should be covered with from four
to six inches of straw, dead leaves--hardwood ones being best for this
purpose--or pine branches. Great care should be taken that these are not
removed too early in the spring. Years of careful experiment have
developed better colors and more strength in bulbs and have succeeded in
producing a greater variety, both single to double. This evolution in
bulbs makes it possible to choose suitable varieties for any border
work.

Snow drops are the first to poke their tiny heads up through the cold,
hard earth. They rise above the snow, bringing gladness in their train.
Then comes a procession of dainty bulbs including the hyacinth with its
many hues, and the tulips, that stay by us until late in May, clothed in
Dolly Varden gowns, or simple Quaker garb. It is a good plan to plant
pansies among the bulbs, so that they will show their painted faces
before the last bloom has disappeared. Many people in such borders use
sweet alyssum for the outer row, but this, while it is decorative, is
not always satisfactory for it grows so high that it is apt to shadow
the major scheme. Bulbs can be left in the ground for a second year's
blossoming or if new varieties are desired they can be carefully lifted
and replaced by potted plants, such as the scarlet geranium or the dusty
miller, whose soft gray sheen makes an interesting note of color as a
foreground for the bed that stretches down to touch it, a solid mass of
one-toned flowers.

Within the last few years iris has become a popular accessory for border
use. One reason for this is that it stays in bloom from the time of its
first opening until the hot blast of the August sun touches its closed
head. Well may this be termed the "fairy's favorite flower," it is so
dainty in its hues.

The rose moss or portulaca is a valuable border plant. It grows
luxuriantly in sandy soil, where no moisture is retained, and seems to
draw sufficient sustenance from the dews that fall at night, rather than
from the unkindly sand which touches its tiny roots. One advantage in
its use is that it grows quickly from seed, that is, if it is planted in
a dry spot. The needle-shaped foliage is inconspicuous, while the
blossoms are as brilliant as poppies and are produced in large numbers.
A serious fault, however, is that it closes during the afternoon. If one
decides to use portulaca, choose solid colors rather than to mix a mass
of varied ones.

For a shady bit of garden, why not try out delphiniums? They are not
expensive, the roots costing about a dollar and a quarter a dozen, but
they are so graceful that they are effective for use of this sort.

The plants chosen must be in harmonious contrast to those that fill the
beds, otherwise one shudders as they view the completed scheme and
wonders how it is that the gardener is so color-blind. Hardy borders or
annuals are used very often. Each of them having a distinctive charm,
some gardens demanding one, and others another, so that one cannot
dictate to the owner of a garden which kind is best for his use, it lies
with his own whims and fancies, to develop beautiful combinations, and
to work out variations of the last year's scheme, so that the gardens of
yesterday may differ essentially from those of to-day.

It may be that long borders of bright-eyed verbenas greet our eyes as we
gaze upon the vari-colored beds, or perchance gorgeous Sweet Williams,
vieing in hue are shown. Tall rosy spikes of lythrum lift their heads,
while stately hollyhocks uncurl their silky petals, shaking out the
tucks and wrinkles of the bud like newly awakened butterflies stretching
their wings. There is a busy hum of bees as we saunter down the garden
path, stopping now and again to watch their flight as they light on
flowers to sip their nectar, furry with golden pollen dust.

So we stand wondering what our grand-dames would say could they view,
with us to-day, the transformation of the old-fashioned garden, into a
magnificent show of rare plants in a well-developed design.



THE PERGOLA AND ARCH


[Illustration: THE SUNLIGHT SIFTS THROUGH THE SHELTERING VINES OF THE
PERGOLA]



CHAPTER II

THE PERGOLA AND ARCH


"I have made me a garden and orchard, and have planted trees and all
kinds of fruit." Thus spake the wise Solomon who in all his glory found
time to enjoy his flowers. Nowadays, blossoming plants are intermixed
with marble fragments, and the garden contains many interesting features
that were then unknown. Sir William Temple, on his return from a visit
to Holland, where he went for garden study, tells us that he found that
four things were absolutely necessary in order to complete a perfect
garden. "Flowers, Fruit, Shade, and Water."

Originality is to-day the key-note in every garden design. Gardens have
been developed with the passing of time so that instead of one type we
find an infinite variety of styles, each one of them so distinctive that
one need have little fear of repetition in results. Here we find the
formal, the Italian garden while over yonder is the wild, and the
rambling one. They are carefully designed to bring out some individual
scheme. Unlike the little posy plots of long ago with their unobtrusive
green arbors, now we come upon a large space which has been laid out for
picture effects. This is the work of the landscape architect, who takes
as much pride in his garden structures, as does the architect in the
design of his house. He vies with his rivals in producing odd effects
with marble fragments and artistic combinations in his color scheme.

Each one of the many types, that are shown at the present day, shows
distinctive features. These appear and disappear in endless variety, and
among them are the pergola and the arch, the latter a grandchild of the
green arbor that was in evidence in our grand-dames' time.

Unlike those seen in the old-fashioned gardens, it is not always built
of wood. Sometimes it is so placed as to define the terraces, leading
with its shadowy treatment to delightful glimpses of vistas beyond, well
laid out for this very purpose. Again we find it shadowing the garden at
one side, where it makes a covered walk, under which one can pass, and
view the garden pleasantly.

Simple and unostentatious were the early gardens, for not until 1750,
was there found any trace of garden architecture in the North. It was
about that year that one Theodore Hardingbrook, came to this country
bringing with him a fund of information to strengthen and enlarge this
line of work. He gathered around him a faithful, interested little band
of students, and taught them new ideas, and awakened an ambition for new
designs in Colonial flower plots. Then was evolved the little summer
house with its cap of green, which stood generally at the foot of the
garden path ending the central walk and it was then that the green arbor
came into existence, spanning the centre of the little plot. Covered
with vines it made a pleasant break in the otherwise straight lines of
the old-fashioned garden, and it also gave a touch of old-world gardens
to the new-world plan.

This was not the commencement of pergola construction, which had its
origin in the vineyards of sunny Italy. They were not like those of
to-day, wonderfully beautiful in design but rude and rustic, roughly put
together as a support for the vines. Through the intersecting crevices
fell glorious clusters of pale green and royal purple grapes, to ripen
in the glimmering shade. These rough arbors, shadowed by hardy vines,
graced the Italian hillsides, when Columbus as a wool comber's son
frolicked the summer days away long years before he discovered the new
country that lay across the sea.

The birth of this feature was not romantic but plebeian, for it was
built for practical use only. The hardy Italian grape growers had come
to a realizing sense that their fruit throve better if held aloft, and
so they conceived the idea of a supporting arbor. As the bright sun
filtered through the vines, the picturesqueness caught the attention of
gardeners on large estates and from this was evolved the long pillared
pathways over which cultivated vines were twined, casting their long
shadows far over the path beyond in Roman gardens.

When larger and better gardens were demanded to meet the architecture of
the large, square, Colonial homes, green arbors were popular. They were
crudely put together, often the work of the village carpenter, simple
and unconventional in their treatment yet prettily draped with vines.
During the summer months they were especially picturesque and inviting,
with their little wooden seats placed on either side. To the garden came
the gallant, dressed in knee breeches and wearing powdered wig, there
to meet his lady love, bending low he plucked from the branches of the
trailing vine a flower to deck his fair beloved's hair.

[Illustration: BUILD YOUR PERGOLA WITH COBBLESTONE SUPPORTS AND RUSTIC
TOP]

These green arbors gave a distinct individuality to the old-time garden.
Over them were carefully twined the Dutchman's pipe. It showed nestled
away beneath its leaves, tiny, almost invisible little green pipes that
were coveted by the little ones for "Let's pretend smoke." Invariably,
the yellow and white Baltimore Belle rose sometimes known as the Seven
Sisters, lent their charm, boldly peering out from under the vine to
watch the lovers seated on the simple seats. They gave them a welcoming
nod as they swayed to and fro in the passing breeze, mingling their
blossoms, with a dainty Scotch rose and the pink moss, that seemingly
grew on the same stem. It is the former rose that was the greatest
favorite, for it lasted longer, giving dashes of yellow like sunshine to
light the dark, autumnal days.

Now and again, we come unexpectedly upon a garden such as this. It lies
in the heart of a Colonial city, hidden away from passers-by behind a
high paling fence.

The twentieth century pergola in the modern garden lends itself to a
great variety of treatment. It is an important feature and should be
properly treated in order to bring out the right effect. Often the
amateur, when dabbling with garden culture, neglects this feature on his
grounds and gives it a wrong setting.

It must be remembered that the mere setting out of a garden does not
always bring about the best results. It should be done with some
definite aim in view, such as color or suitability to situation. In this
way only can one obtain perfection. There should be taken into
consideration the formation of the different beds, especially those that
are in close proximity. It cannot be a successful experiment unless
carefully planned.

If you have never tried to form combinations that will intensify the
loveliness of the grounds by a happy gathering of right colors, you have
missed a delightful experience. This idea does not come quickly to the
amateur floriculturist, but once he fully grasps it, he turns as if by
instinct to the structural part of the garden plan. It is then that he
realizes that while he has not seemed to have progressed during his
first year's work, yet he has laid a solid foundation that will stand
him in good stead. In the midst of his garden he rears a house of
flowers, placing it in a situation where he can watch the growth and
maturing of the plants. Each corner of the garden is given separate
treatment. In some gardens, where the space is small, it would be
impossible to carry out the pergola scheme. Then it can be simplified
and condensed into the child of the pergola, the arch, excellent for
decorative effects. This means for flower showing can be made of wire,
simply fastened to posts, bent into shape, or of wood and painted white;
either of these methods is satisfactory and can, if properly used, be
most successful.

The arch, to fit in with the garden plan, should span the entrance. Over
it should be trained either a blossoming vine or many, to work out a
succession of bloom. Sometimes it will be the wisteria with its drooping
clusters of lavender, or the rambler rose found in such a variety of
colors to-day. These two with the clematis, are especially adapted for
this purpose, if one is willing to use proper fertilizer and depth of
planting.

In order to insure better and more prolific growth, the vines should be
cut back to about six or eight inches in height when first set out. It
must be remembered in dealing with them that they are like little
children, each one requiring individual care. We must also be sure that
the soil is frequently stirred to avoid caking.

Properly placed, the curved trellis is a joy. It gives a decorative
setting to the garden proper. As the eye travels down the path, it
greets a charming bit of color in the bed of solid green that tops the
roof.

The arch would not be a proper note of setting for every garden. There
are only certain kinds with which it blends. The narrow path demands it,
for it needs a break to show it at its best. A judicious fashioning of a
series of arches, extending here and there along the entire depth of the
walk is sometimes attractive. They serve to break the monotony and add a
flower note that is delightful. In the planning of these, great care
should be taken that they are set at proper intervals. They should be on
the same level and correspond in width, otherwise the result would be a
wavy line that is most distressing.

[Illustration: THE MOSS GROWS BETWEEN THE STONE WALK]

The color scheme depends on garden planting. If lavender is chosen it
should be reproduced all through the line. Do not be so foolish as to
choose one vine only but plant them in order to make a succession of
bloom. One does not wish to view a spot of color now and a mass of green
later on.

There are so many different kinds of vines that can be planted for this
use, each one of which is admirable, that it is hard to choose.
Commencing with the earliest why not take the American or the
loose-cluster wisteria. It has many advantages over other vines, in that
it is a strong grower and bears an abundant cluster of flowers
resembling the sweet pea in formation.

One can reasonably assert, that the wisteria is the leading flower for
the pergola or arbor. It dons a rich and graceful foliage and unlike
other vines, has two distinct seasons of bloom. It is especially good if
one wishes to carry out a one-tone color scheme, making lavender the
key-note, and using this particular vine for the early bloom in May, at
which time the luxuriant clusters of drooping flowers show their
wonderful shading as they peer through the arches dropping down below
the leafy growth and making a note of exquisite beauty. In August, when
they show their second season of bloom, the flowers are less abundant.

They should be followed by the Clematis Jackman. This vine, if it
reaches maturity, is most effective, but it has the distinct
disadvantage that though it starts right, and sends out shoots, they are
apt to blight early and disappoint the gardener by dying before putting
forth its wonderfully beautiful flowers. June, the month of roses, is a
suitable time for one to watch for the blossoming of this vine.

Many people avoid the Coboea Scandens on account of the large,
conspicuous flowers it produces. They make a decided mistake when they
shun this particular vine, for it has good qualifications for pergola
covering. No vine grows more rapidly, as it reaches often from
twenty-five to thirty feet in a single season. It bursts into blossom in
July, in rich, purple, trumpet-shaped flowers.

For the successful growth of vines many things have to be considered but
principally the soil. The amateur makes a mistake in starving the
ground, and thus losing half the quality it would otherwise have had. In
order to obtain the best results, put plenty of barn-yard manure, or
bone meal, at the foot of the trellis, and this should be plentifully
renewed at the commencement of each year.

Rambler roses are one of the most effective treatments for arbor or
pergola growth, and the most popular of these are the white, yellow,
crimson and pink. Each year new varieties are put upon the market and if
one wishes to follow the new ideas they will be forced to constantly
change the plants.

In some cases, the pergola is used to form a trellised pavilion or
summer house to shelter a marble statue and again with carved setting to
outline a bed, as the central feature around which the flowers are
arranged. Thus the simple vineyard trellis has been transformed into a
gem of graceful construction, and we find it to-day, with its slender
marble columns, supporting a delicately carved marble roof of slabs,
over and through which the green of the vine, and the glint of the
flower hover, dipping down between the intervening sections, in festoons
of green and color.

It can well be called a distinctive summer structure, for with the sun
streaming through its mass of vines, it shadows the walks from May until
late October. In the long winter months boxed in it stands like a
sentinel guarding the long, bare paths, and showing a leafless network
of interlacing vines.

The pergola of to-day is not like that of yesterday. When first
introduced into our gardens it was taken up on many small estates, and
so badly designed that it combined badly with the garden. It was then it
fell into disfavor and was pronounced a failure for use in our garden
plan.

But landscape gardeners, with an eye to the unique, felt that it was a
necessary rounding-out of the garden design, and rescued from ignominy,
it took its place in right surroundings, in the heart of the garden with
a border of elaborate flower designs. Garden seats were placed inside
and when it fronted on an Italian garden, a fountain was often
introduced, the musical tinkle of the spouting water giving a special
charm.

Among the many designs the simplest is a simple rustic frame structure,
appropriate for small or wild gardens. It is formed of cedar posts
driven four feet into the ground, and reaching to the height of eight
feet. This is covered with a beam or a slab roof structure over which is
trained the morning glory, the California creeper, or the grape. This
latter is much used, the picturesqueness of the ripening fruit adding to
its attractiveness. These pergolas are generally eight feet wide and
have for a flooring irregular flags through which peer grass or moss.

This type of garden furniture is perfectly well adapted to Italian,
English, or Colonial types of architecture, and is constructed often of
marble. It is not merely an ornament but a useful adjunct to a garden,
and can be made of concrete, or cobblestone, if one does not wish to go
to the expense of using marble.

There is a modern form of this feature that is a development from
century-old customs, the porch-pergola which is fast supplanting the old
covered porches of yesterday. This is designed with an open,
vine-covered roof. It gives an added charm to the exterior of the house
and furnishes a shady nook for sunny days, without the drawback of the
old porch whose roof darkened the house in winter by withholding the
sun.

No one, no matter how small their grounds, need deny themselves a
pergola. It is such an important feature and so decorative that it is
almost a necessity. For the little backyard it may be simply a rustic
porch planted in the middle of the garden. Properly laid out, it can be
used as an out-of-doors living room. Across the end a hammock can be
swung, while table and chairs can be fitted in at one side.



THE TEA HOUSE IN THE GARDEN


[Illustration: A TEA-HOUSE]



CHAPTER III

THE TEA HOUSE IN THE GARDEN


There is a delightful imaginary intimacy that seemingly exists between
we garden lovers who live in the twentieth century and those of early
days. So closely are we connected by a common band of sympathy that we
eagerly scan their books to glean here and there some important bit of
garden lore that can be introduced into our work of to-day. It is this
pleasant mingling of old and new-world gardens that gives to present-day
designs such a delightful atmosphere.

One of the old-time floriculturists, John Lyle, tells us in his
old-fashioned way, about the flowers that bloomed ages before our
grand-dames were born. "Gentlemen," he says, "what floure like you best
in all this border? Here be fine roses, sweete violets, fragrant
primroses, gille floures, carnations, sops of wine, sweete John, and
what may please you at sight." Surely we see in retrospect, the gardens
of that early day, and we come more and more to realize that all
through the ages, the hand of Man has fashioned nothing more beautiful
than a garden of flowers. The most famous poets have not found any more
ideal trysting spot in which to place their lovers.

Each individual part of the flower garden has its own distinctive charm.
It lies not solely with the flowers that bloom so profusely in the beds
nor with the marble fragments, for the romance of it all is centered in
the little summer house, as it was quaintly named by our ancestors in
the long ago. In these little tea houses, built in a retired part of the
garden, the mistress loved to spend a pleasant summer afternoon, seated
inside knitting flower thoughts into a shapely bag or reading some
delightful book, which dropped from her hand, as she sat dreamily
watching the unfolding of some favorite flower.

Let us enter one of these gardens, rich in its summer garb, walk slowly
down the path, stopping now and again to view some bud slowly unfold its
petals one by one, disclosing a new specimen to be added to the
ever-increasing number that are comprised in the floral scheme, and
waving a welcome as it is tossed to and fro by every passing breeze.

Over there against the white paling fence stands the stiff hollyhock
nodding his satiny head to greet the dainty heliotrope who glances
coquettishly up to meet his eye. Nearby is a dialetrea or bleeding
heart, the pet of the little ones, who pluck them to form tiny boats
with snow white sails to float down the lily pond. Bursting into bloom
behind the stiff box border is the old-time "piny," sending bits of
color into the sober green.

None of the old Colonial gardens were considered complete without an
ever varying assortment of bloom. There were the Sweet Williams,
Bouncing Bet, and perky little Johnny-jump-up, sending greetings to his
comrades nearby. Flowers are everywhere, they peer out at us from hidden
corners, swing their heads in very ecstasy of enjoyment of their being.

Simplicity was the key-note in the construction of those summer houses
that came into existence during the latter part of the seventeenth
century. They stand for the first type of garden furniture made in our
country, coming into vogue after the close of the grim struggle for
existence made by our Puritan forbears. Then when the tide turned, and
money flowed into the colonies, houseowners had more time to devote to
garden culture. Behind the large Colonial houses sprang into existence
gardens devoted to flowers, the owners doing the best they could with
the material at hand. These delightful little plots secluded from the
world outside by high paling fences were the homes of the old-fashioned
flowers, many of them descendants of the originals, brought over in the
ships that first touched our shores.

They were not like the twentieth-century ones constructed of marble or
concrete clothed with vines and standing in a wealth of up-to-date
blooms, showing slender marble columns and carved capitals supporting
the marble roof.

Rather are they covered with plain, every-day vines, such as the
Dutchman's Pipe with its heavy leaving, clambering roses and the Bitter
Sweet or Roxbury Waxwork, whose drooping bunches of yellow and red poke
their heads through the lattice work, making a bit of bright color all
through the winter months. This when the ground is covered with snow
livens up the surroundings. On either side are planted a wealth of
timely flowers, these include the Sweet William, the Hooded Larkspur,
and the many-colored Phlox.

Many of these little garden houses show such a variety of form that they
are interesting, fitting into their surroundings as if they had always
been there. Some are square, formed like a large box, depending for
their picturesqueness on their coverings of vines. Others are round, and
still again we find oblong summer houses, each one fitted up with seats
and sometimes a rustic table.

Occasionally, we come upon a more pretentious one that is two stories in
height. They were planned in the early nineteenth century, some of these
are still standing and among them we find that of Elias Haskett Derby,
designed by Samuel McIntyre, Salem's noted architect and wood-carver.
For years it stood on the grounds of the summer home of Mr. Derby and
to-day is so well preserved that it seems as if it had been recently
built. Exquisite carving is a feature of this particular tea house,
where rural images top the roof.

It is only in the gardens of the rich, that elaborate tea houses are
found, simple designs grace the little gardens and are in harmony with
their surroundings. The rustic summer house has its own mission to
fulfill. Its cost can be determined by conditions. Some are finished in
elaborately decorative designs while others show plain treatment.

The best kind of wood to be used for this purpose is the red cedar which
has wonderful lasting qualities. It is more expensive than the locust
but out-wears any wood on the market. Great care should be taken that
the supports be placed deep enough to avoid throwing by the heavy winter
frost. Holes should be dug at least four feet deep, and squares of stone
or cement pounded into the bottom to prevent its coming in contact with
the earth and rotting. This makes a solid foundation, and durable. Do
not have the roof made flat, so that water can stand upon it and rot it,
but raise it slightly and either shingle or thatch it.

This last is an old-time handicraft that has recently been revived.
Following the old English rule, reeds are more endurable, while straw is
admissible. An advantage of its use is that it grows handsomer with age.
In its second year it has collected moss, weeds and plants, and these,
matted down and weather-beaten, give it the hue of a gray lichen. If
properly treated it will last for years.

[Illustration: STEPPING-STONES IN A GRASS PATH]

One should, if possible, when planning the garden, include a summer
house. There is no more enjoyable feature that can be constructed on
the grounds. Its design, size, situation and type, must correspond with
the period of the garden. A formal lay-out should, in order to be
correct, receive entirely different treatment in its setting from the
Italian, while the rambling depends upon simpler characteristics to
produce correct results. Rustic tea houses fit into this project
appropriately. They would be entirely incongruous if placed in Italian
gardens elaborate in their plan and full of wonderful bits of marble
fragments transplanted from foreign lands.

Fortunately for us, there are so many different types of gardens that
one is not continually finding a repetition. Garden houses, covered with
bark, fit into simple plans, such as the rambling and the wild gardens,
their rustic effect being in harmony with the flowers and beds.

It is one thing to plan a summer house but quite another to pick out a
suitable situation. It should not be placed in the heart of the flowers
more especially where there are tall blossoms. Let the beds in the
foreground be low and show quiet colors, shading the height and
brightness as they go farther afield, the most conspicuous being used
for the extreme edge. Here, like a beautiful picture, they fit into the
landscape and produce correct effects.

Level stretches do not always bring about right results. If your ground
slopes to the garden edge why not design a rustic tea house to fit into
the hillside? Should you visit it of a clear afternoon, seat yourself on
the wooden settle and glance around you, you will be delighted with the
view obtained. Below is the garden rolled out like a carpet brightly
patterned at your feet, smooth stretches of lawn between rest the eyes
as they gaze off to the horizon when the blue of the sky seems to melt
into the masses of waving bloom.

Do not start this feature of the garden unless you have first planned
situation, size and cost, otherwise you will be disappointed, and may
feel it is more expensive than you wished. If you do not care to bed it
underneath, you will be sorry. Every house of this sort should have a
hard ashes or cement foundation in order to keep out the dampness. This
is a serious fault which if not carefully watched results in quick
rotting of the wood and constant expense. It is better to start right
and in the end it will cost less. Posts used for supports should be
made of cedar or locust, driven four feet into the ground and resting on
stone supports, used as preservatives. They can be elaborately designed
or simple in finish and if plenty of air and light are wished for,
trellis supports can be used, but if it demands shade, shingles or
canvas painted, are advisable, the former better for rounded effects and
the latter when a flat surface is used.

Marble is used prominently in Italian gardens, whose elaborate setting
demands striking effects. Give the tea house a cover of soft green
vines, dotted here and there with a bit of color and it will be a joy
forever, taking on a dignity that is in keeping with its surroundings.
Cement, no matter where it is used, is always effective. In coloring and
lines it seemingly fits into the elaborate landscape scheme and it
improves with age. There is an advantage in the use of cement, in that
it costs nothing for repairs, is fireproof, does not collect vermin, and
is never shabby. With its clinging vine cover, it is a desirable
material for use in the construction of tea houses when wood and marble
are not suitable.

There is a romantic charm in vine-clad tea houses. The clinging vine
lends a picturesqueness to the slender columns and the slanting roof
emphasizes the beauty of it all.

There are so many decorative vines that are suitable for its use that it
would be impossible to name them all.

For marble, delicate, tender climbers are the best. For concrete a
larger leaf can be used to give more stable effects, while for rustic
tea houses, the large, hardy vines and stronger climbers are more
suitable. Each one has its own use, and appears at its best in congenial
environment. The tiny canary-bird vine would make little show if allowed
to clamber over rustic supports, while the Boston or Japanese ivy are
especially adapted for this treatment. This is on account of the small,
flat leaf that clings to the side, helping out the design without a deep
massing of leaves.

[Illustration: LILY PONDS IN A FORMAL GARDEN]

Some summer houses depend upon hardy vines for their cover and others on
tender climbers whose delicate tendrils wind in and out clouding but not
hiding the exterior coloring. It is the wise man who is able to provide
a suitable over-spread for houses of this description. It must be
remembered that it is not the cover alone but the planting that
surrounds it that aids in the picturesque effect. There is as much
need of careful thought here as there would be in any part of the
scheme. For right coloring, height, and time of blossoming help or mar
the plan.

There is as much difference in the growth of vines as there is in
children. Some to be at their best require a very rich soil, while
others will do equally well if it is poorer. The important thing, if you
wish successful results, is to give them plenty of food, plenty of water
and look out for a proper insecticide, in order not to retard their
growth. A general rule that is permissible for almost any grounds is to
dig a ditch from three to four feet deep and put in the bottom a foot of
rotted manure. This can better be attended to in the fall, leaving time
for it to get well soaked into the ground and ripen before planting.
Fill in alternate layers of soil and manure until the trench is even
with the ground. In clay soil, it is better in order to lighten it to
mix in a little sand.

For a rustic summer house, where heavy planting is needed, a honeysuckle
is effective. The scarlet or Sempervirens is a very decorative variety
and this differs greatly from the Japanese one, bearing tubular scarlet
flowers that continue in blossom all summer. Of the many varieties this
is the freest and the best. Its leaves are a blueish green which make a
pleasing contrast with the coral color of the flower.

The Clematis is always effective and is the best vine of medium growth
in existence. Its small, white, star-shaped flowers, deliciously
fragrant, cover the vine completely in August. The Japanese Clematis or
Paniculata is most attractive. It prefers a sunny position, the foliage
is handsome and at the end of August it bursts into a wonderful mass of
fragrant, pure white, star-like flowers that last nearly a month.

For shady places, the Helix or English ivy is advisable. This
well-known, small-leafed ivy is perfectly hardy in this section and is
much used for covering the ground in shady places where grass refuses to
grow. Young growth sometimes gets winter killed, but this is due to
sunburn rather than frost.

For tea houses painted white and for concrete, wisteria takes a
prominent place. It grows equally well in city and country, being able
to withstand the smoke of cities. Of these the Multijuga loose cluster
is advisable. It is not so strong a grower as the Chinese varieties but
distinguished from them by long, loose clusters of purple flowers
sometimes obtaining a length of two feet.

The Crimson Glory Grape Vine, Coignetiae, is a strong grower, showing
large, heart-shaped leaves, ten inches long, deep rich green on top and
bright yellow beneath, which assume a brilliant scarlet in autumn. The
grapes are black and form a pleasing contrast to the bright colors of
the leaves.

The Canary Bird Vine is suitable for either this kind of a tea house or
a marble one. It is a beautiful, rapid, annual grower and when in
blossom, the charming little canary-colored blooms bear a fancied
resemblance to a bird with wings half expanded. Do not forget the
Cardinal Climber which is a cross between the Cyprus Vine and the Star
Glory. It attains a height of thirty feet or more with a beautiful form
like laciniated foliage and is literally covered with a blaze of
circular fiery cardinal red flowers from midsummer until frost. The
flowers are about one and one-half inch in diameter and are borne in
clusters from five to seven blossoms each. Wherever it has been grown it
has attracted favorable comments. It delights in a warm sunshiny
situation and good soil.

The Kudzu Vine or Peuraria Thunbergiana is very popular. It came from
Japan and is still rare. Its flowers are large clusters similar to a
white Hydrangea and when in flower during July and August make a
wonderful display. It is one of the best of the flowering vines to plant
against a wall as it clings naturally to any rough surface.

The plants selected for either side of the tea house need as much care
in choosing right colors as do the vines.



THE GARDEN STEPS


[Illustration: STONE STEPS ATTRACTIVELY PLANNED]



CHAPTER IV

THE GARDEN STEPS


The air was laden with the sweet fragrance of flowers. They wafted a
delightful welcome to the hardy explorers, who, worn with the long
voyage, viewed for the first time the rocky shores of New England. Their
soothing influence brought heart to the wearied men, as they revelled in
the spicy odors that brought in their train pleasant thoughts of the
wonderful gardens they had left behind them. From the sandy coast of
Florida to the bleak New England shores they felt its enticing power. So
pungent was the perfume, that it touched the heart of Barlow, one of the
commanders of Raleigh's expedition who wrote on landing on the newly
discovered shore, "We smelt so sweet and strong a smell, as if we had
been in the midst of some delicate garden. The woods were not such as we
find in Europe, barren and fruitless, but the highest and reddest
cedars, pines, cypresses, and many others of excellent quality. Of
grapes we found a plenty climbing over every shrub and tree down to the
waters very edge. I think in all the world there is not the like in
abundance."

Among the earliest settlers, came a colony of Spaniards choosing for
their home the sunny shores of Florida. Here in the heart of the
woodland they made clearings, laying out extensive grounds that followed
no set plan, but with semblance of the old-world garden. Here they
planted for coolness and shade, vines and trees, laid out their grounds
with walks, paved like mosaic with vari-colored stones. In these gardens
no semi-tropical plants, such as abounded on every side, were planted.
It has always been man's way when warring with the wilderness that lay
beyond his door, to gather into the enclosure flowers and plants that
had been dear to his heart in his far-away native land, to re-establish
the atmosphere of his old home in new surroundings.

The colonists who settled on the southern shores of Virginia, were men
of rank, wealthy men, who had left stately homes to settle in this
unknown land. In the lay-out of their gardens they introduced the
Elizabethean style of floriculture, following the fashion of the English
gardens of that day. These old gardens showed terraces, steps, leading
from walk to walk, paths laid at right angles, through which one walked
to view the spaces intricately designed with "knotted" beds and mazes,
each one of which conformed to details in the buildings of their stately
homes.

There were the first steps laid out in gardens in America, a novel
feature that has been evolved into elaborate designs with the passing of
the years. To-day no garden is complete that does not show some form of
steps or terrace.

Rockeries have come into vogue not only in large, elaborate garden plots
but in simple little home grounds. They are approached by steps of stone
that correspond with the rough, rural aspect of this feature of garden
culture. Shy wild flowers peep timidly out from their homes between the
crevices of the rock. Here in the early spring we find the cup-shaped
crocus with its yellow tongue nestled contentedly in among the brown
furred fern fronds, that soon will unfurl in dainty loveliness. Leading
from the steps are grass banks and low walks, surrounding the rockery
and affording pleasant promenades, from which to view the garden in its
entirety.

Like every other plan contrived by man, the garden step should be
fashioned to fit into its proper place, adding and not detracting from
the general picturesqueness. It depends upon the personality of the
creator as to its success, for steps while seemingly a minor detail, can
add or detract from a garden's beauty materially.

One should never swerve from the thought that practicability should be
the motive in planning stepping stones to connect different levels of
your garden. They should not be added just for appearance sake, any more
than one should wear a showy gown to attract attention. They should
carry out some well-thought-out plan.

It would be bad taste to introduce rustic steps into a formal garden, as
much so as it would to place delicately wrought slabs of marble in the
heart of a thicket. One should, that is if they wish to excel other
creators in the introduction of original ideas, think out each
individual part of the ground assigned for garden purposes and determine
where each feature can make the best showing. It is then and then only
that we come to a realizing sense not only of the kind of material that
should be used but the shape and the setting.

There should be a definite purpose in the use of this particular feature
and the most important one is that it should be so arranged that one can
reach different levels easily. There should be no precipitous pitch that
makes one feel while ascending that they are performing tiresome
gymnastic feats. This necessitates that they should be constructed on a
gradual incline, thus making the ascent so easy that one is hardly
conscious they are walking always upward until they have reached the
top, and stand on level ground. This is often not enough considered and
yet is most important.

In laying the stepping stones, there should be definite proportions
thought out between the risers, breadth of the treads and the height
between. Any variation would produce awkward results. Great care should
be taken in choosing slabs either of stone or marble that are of the
same size.

If the steps connect different parts of the garden scheme or lead to a
rock garden, they should be cunningly introduced into the side of the
ascent, placed so that they will add to the picturesqueness of the
effect. They should break the hillside pleasingly, so that when
completed they will form a pleasant picture, delightful for the eye to
gaze upon. More than this, there should be planting, not only between
the risers but on either side, and this requires careful thought, for a
stately hollyhock rearing its gorgeous stock of rich coloring would be
entirely out of place while delicate ferns or humble rock plants
emphasize the desired effect.

If the height of your step should be low, then risers, six inches in
height would be in good form, and the treads in order to correspond must
be twelve and a half inches in width. Should, however, five inches be
the height needed, then an additional inch and a half should be added to
the treads. This point is such an important one that garden owners and
landscape architects should see that it is properly carried out, if they
wish to get the right results.

[Illustration: A FOUNTAIN THAT SERVES AS A BACKGROUND FOR A LILY POND]

Ramping steps, if successfully developed, brings about an additional
ease in mounting. This can be accomplished by placing the tread so that
it shall imperceptibly slope downward. This is not an easy matter to
accomplish successfully. It requires much care, so that the steps shall
not slope too noticeably and yet enough to add to the comfort of the
garden lover who walks from path to path using the steps to aid him in
reaching the upper level of the ground. This idea of ramping is not
original, for it has been carried out in the old Italian gardens for
centuries, but it is only within recent years that it has been
successfully developed by landscape gardeners in our country.

Two important things connected with these stairways are ease and
comfort. There is no doubt but within the last few years, marvels have
been accomplished by introducing them into steep hillsides. In this way
they connect the lower level and the terrace, making it practical to
develop unused land for flower purposes.

The placing of steps cannot be determined by cast-iron rules, rather
should good taste predominate. Nothing can give such an awkward look to
your garden or terrace as a series of narrow, cramped stairs. If,
however, you should in the same place introduce a flight ample in
proportion, then even if it is a small space there will be imparted to
it an agreeable air of breadth.

Be sure that each step should extend farther to the side than the one
above it. They should be rectangular so that the outline of the stair
mass is pyramidal or circular in formation. If stone is used, a very
good result is brought about through the use of carefully selected field
stone or cobble. There are sheltering crevices in which to plant tiny
roots which when grown add much to the general appearance of the whole.
If the garden is a formal one, a design in which architectural features
play an important part, one should take great care in the arrangement of
this flight. There is nothing that gives such a delightful atmosphere as
a well-planned stairway. It conveys a much better picture than does a
vista of successive flights of steps that ascend to higher grounds.

The principal use for a feature such as this, is found to be in informal
or unpretentious lay-outs, yet, fashioned in marble it is shown in the
most elaborate Italian gardens found in this country. It takes on such a
variety of forms and is available for so many purposes that it is
fascinating to study where it will give best effects. Sometimes it helps
out in the making of a garden pool. Here it is specially alluring,
forming as it does, a step from one little world into another.

If you wish originality in your work, do not attempt to copy from the
plans of others. Surely there is no lack of material from which to draw
and there is no reason why steps cannot be placed in any sort of a
garden nook. The material depends on the style of garden, but wooden
steps are not generally advisable on account of their rotting, which
makes them need constant repair. It is far better to use stone, slabs of
granite, concrete or marble, for each one of these has the lasting
qualities that make them durable.

Measure the space carefully before the work is commenced. You should
make allowances for crevices between each step so that suitable planting
may be carried out. It is a very good idea to have the wide spreading
plants placed near the bottom, graduating to those of more moderate
growth at the top. Careful consideration should also be given to the
right planting on either side. Low plants should border the step with a
background of taller ones. They may, if you like, be used to express the
idea of balusters on either side and are much more picturesque than real
ones.

Do not forget that rich soil should be employed, for the plants need it
to grow successfully. They require sustenance just as we need meat to
feed our bodies. In many cases it can be rich loam taken from the woods,
in other instances rotted manure can be used for a foundation with a
heavy soil covering. Great care should be taken to make proper planting,
for delicate growth near hardy is disastrous, the stronger plants
absorbing the strength of the weaker ones and doing permanent harm. Do
not flatter yourself that once planted nature will do the rest. This
part of the ground demands continual care, for weeds--plants'
enemies--will intrude and must be carefully removed lest they feed upon
the soil, taking away the richness and starving the plants. Water is a
necessity, for plants like human beings grow thirsty all the more when
exposed to the dry heat of the summer season. For best effects a
sprinkler should be used and it should be borne in mind that the plants
should be thoroughly soaked and not given merely a surface treatment.
The importance of this cannot be over-estimated, or through lack of
proper drink the plants will be in no condition to put out their full
strength during their season of blossoming. Better results will be
obtained if each fall before the winter sets in, they should be given a
heavy top dressing of grit. There is nothing that plants enjoy as much
as this and it provides them with strength during the next year's
growth.

Concrete may not find favor with many garden lovers. It covers the
surface so thoroughly that there is no place to introduce growth, but a
little ingenuity and common sense removes this difficulty. Holes can be
bored through the cement, and these should be large enough to allow the
plants full scope to grow.

Many people for step planting prefer a succession of blossoming plants
while others care for growth only. If the former plan is worked out, a
charming early bloomer is the Alpine Anemone. Of these the Pulsatilla,
or "Pasque Flower," is effective. It shows rich purple blossoms, which
rising above the green leaves with their downy, feathery collarette of
green, develop into handsome seed heads, which are decorative. They
nestle into the crevices of the rocks, sending forth their exquisite
blossoms nine inches in diameter during the months of April and May.

Variety is always delightful. For this decorative purpose why not use
crocuses, "The Heralds of Spring." They thrive in any soil or situation,
but in order to obtain the best growth, they should be planted in rich,
deep, sandy loam. One of the choicest kinds is the Baron von Brunow. It
is free flowering, putting forth large blossoms, dark blue in coloring.
These can be mingled with a stripe variety such as La Majestueuse, which
shows large, violet markings, exquisite in shading. The Giants, of which
the Mont Blanc is a favorite, put out large, snow-white blossoms,
forming an effective foil for the dark blue flowers of the other
assortments.

In planting your steps do not forget to have plenty of bulbs introduced
among the other plants. The graceful dwarf anemone seemingly fit into
this early scheme, their delicate blossoms giving a touch of daintiness.
For the best results these should be planted in the fall six inches
apart and three inches in depth. Few bulbs exceed in loveliness the
Blanda-Blue, Winter Wind Flower. This is matchless in coloring,
originating in the hills of Greece, and has been naturalized in this
country, where it takes kindly to the soil and produces flowers of
charming hue. A feature of this special plant is that it blossoms during
the winter months as well as the early spring. You make no mistake if
you place it in every development of steps in your garden. It
naturalizes best in grassy places in warm soil, and it can be
distinguished by its round, bulb-like roots. Should you, however, wish
to have more than one variety, why not try the Bride, that puts forth a
single white flower, or the single Fugens, "Irish Anemone," which is
semi-double, found in shades of scarlet, blue and purple.

[Illustration: MARBLE STEPS LEADING TO THE WATER IN A FORMAL GARDEN]

Anyone can carry out their own idea as there are so many plants to draw
from, each one of which is permissible for decorative effects. In our
choosing let us not forget the Lily of the Valley. It is surely one of
the most useful of our many spring flowers, pure white in coloring and
delicately scented. For best development it should be planted in open
ground, where it quickly spreads so that unless you wish masses of it,
it will have to be separated almost every year. The Dutch Valley is an
excellent kind to choose, as it sends forth so many flowering pits. This
dainty little plant is a general favorite with everyone. Its sprays of
drooping, white, wax-like, fragrant bells give a bit of color that is
picturesque.

If you are looking for evening bloom there is the Ænothera or evening
Primrose; this has the advantage of blooming all through the summer
months. There are so many kinds, each one so beautiful that it is a
difficult matter to pick out the most decorative. Of these the Arendsii
is very popular, showing, as it does, a profusion of lovely rose-colored
flowers, and it is to be preferred to the Speciosa. Then there is the
Pilgrimi with its glorious golden clusters that seem to light the garden
during the twilight hour.

In your planting do not forget the Acre, or golden moss. This is a
creeping variety and especially suitable for rock work. Its delicate
growth makes it particularly appropriate for this use. The Vinca Minor
can be mixed with this. This is evergreen, and excellent for covering or
rockery, and can be combined with the Moss Pink, sometimes known as
creeping phlox. This latter is in bloom in May or June. It shows broad
sheets of rosy pink, white or lavender flowers, and an evergreen
foliage. As it grows either in sun or shade, it is a very decorative
plant to be used for step treatment.

For the border can be used as a setting low, old-fashioned, hardy
perennials, which are particularly adapted for grouping. In their
planting use good soil, let them be placed where there is a reasonable
amount of sunshine, keep them free from weeds and give them an
occasional surface cultivation.

It is better to set these out in the fall, so that some of them will
blossom during April and May. The late blossomers, however, can be saved
until early spring, like Asters, and Heleniums. In making the selection,
consideration should be given to those that grow in certain settings, as
while some will flourish luxuriantly in ordinary garden loam, others are
not dependable unless very rich soil is given to them.

For the outer border why not use hardy Candytuft (Iberis Sempervirens),
which sends forth a profusion of white flowers in April or May, showing
a spreading foliage that is evergreen and very attractive. With this can
be grown the Rock Cress or Arabis Albida, which from April to June sends
out sheets of pure white, fragrant flowers. Back of this one can plant
the Fleur-de-lis. They should be given a sunny position in any kind of
soil. As they come in all sorts of colors, there is no trouble in
getting them to carry out the scheme that you have in hand. The Silver
King, which is a silvery white with lavender shading, can be placed with
the Florantina, which is light lavender, and the Pallida Dalmatica,
which is lavender bloom. If you wish to carry out this color scheme
further, why not try the Purpurea, which with its rich, royal purple,
will make during the season one of the handsomest displays possible for
a setting to the low growth decoratively used in steps.



ENTRANCES


[Illustration: AN OLD-FASHIONED GARDEN IS OFTEN ENTERED UNDER AN ARCH OF
LATTICEWORK]



CHAPTER V

ENTRANCES


We view our flower-plots at their best, gazing at them through the
vine-clad entrance, as we glance down the gravel walk bordered on either
side by masses of brilliant flowers. Involuntarily, our eyes wander
along farther afield till we meet the background of trees clad in
verdant foliage, a fitting setting for the picture laid out in patches
of color, fitting into the canvas with a well-defined plan. We can but
feel as we stand looking down on this paradise of flowers that we are
thankful for the thought that first created gardens.

When they came into existence it is hard to determine, for mention is
found of flowers and the traditions of wonderful gardens, laid out long
before man had chiseled the hieroglyphics depicted on Egyptian tombs.
The love of flowers is a heritage handed down from generation to
generation.

Homer, when speaking of Laertes, trying in vain to find consolation in
his flowers, while mourning the departure of Telemachus, goes on to show
us that great men turn to gardens to heal sorrow. Philosophy was taught
by Epicurus surrounded by his beloved pupils among the flowers.

From the early Greeks the Romans took their first lesson in
floriculture. It was after their invasion of Brittany that they
introduced certain flowers and fruits, like grapes, roses and violets,
into English gardens. The art of gardening advanced steadily, reaching
its zenith in good Queen Elizabeth's time, when there were in England
many pleasing gardens, formal and stiff, to be sure, but a fit setting
for the architecture of that day.

While the garden designs abounded in beautiful walks and flowers, yet
the entrance to the grounds formed as it were the key-note to it all.

Has it ever occurred to you, as you stood hesitating at the portals of
the gardens, that these were suggestive of some well-thought-out plan,
as like grim sentinels they stand guarding the flower treasures? There
is as much contrast in this part of the plan as there is in the design
itself. Here we find a narrow, forbidding entrance, giving no glimpse of
the flowers within; again we come to a wide, welcoming one, beckoning,
as it were, for us to pass through the portals and gaze with delight on
the beauties hinted at beforehand and now disclosed to the eye.

For Colonial treatment there is nothing more dignified or stately than
the square wooden posts, inclosing a locust inner one. They are built of
white pine, one of the most lasting woods to be found in our country,
and are Colonial or Georgian in design. Many of them are ornamental,
topped with balls, urns, or torch devices and with elaborate
hand-carving, so wonderful in its design that architects copy them in
their modified Colonial houses of to-day. This was the work of one of
the most noted wood-carvers in our country, Samuel McIntyre, whose name
is a household word to architects and landscape designers all over the
country.

There are two ways of treating the entrance. One of them is by adding an
ornamental gate, corresponding in type with that of the posts. The other
is to leave the posts gateless; while both are correct, yet the former
way is more often used as it lends an air of privacy to the ground. It
also helps out the effect planned by giving a touch of picturesqueness
that would be otherwise lacking. A much too common mistake is the
introduction of Southern architecture into Northern gateways; the lines
and details do not always conform with the type of the house.

Most of these gates are hung by iron or brass hinges, but the earliest
ones use the strap hinge, which carries out the Colonial idea. The
difficulty with the strap hinge is that it is not always strong enough
to hold the gates without sagging, and the wider the entrance the
heavier the strain. While the design varies, yet rarely do we find one
constructed in the seventeenth century that is not simple and with
picket effects. The pickets have pointed tops and are sometimes
irregularly spaced, while the brace often shows an artistic curve.

Occasionally, we find the posts yoked, through a connecting arch. This
is often latticed and if rightly designed adds to the ornamental effect.
An old lantern is sometimes an attractive feature. The arch should be
painted to match the color of the posts, a very good combination for
this use is pure white lead, or zinc, combined with linseed oil. If you
do not care to mix it yourself it can be bought ready for use. For the
best effects, a thin coat should be used at first and it depends upon
how easily it is covered as to how many coats to apply. If you wish to
give a better finish, have an excess of turpentine over linseed oil in
the last coat. There is more economy in covering it properly at first,
as otherwise it will have to be re-painted each year.

With the evolution of garden culture has come a similar change in the
design and material used to form our entrances. On the large estates of
to-day, rarely if ever, do we find the ornamental Colonial. It would be
as much out of place as if the mistress of the house affected silken
brocades with wig and patches.

The white paling fence, unless for simple cottages, has entirely gone
out of style and in its place we find cement walls. Often these are
topped with a coping of limestone. The gate-posts, being formed over
strong locust posts that have been driven firmly into the ground, are
supported by brick or cement foundation.

Where the mansion shows in exterior brick, often with trimmings of
limestone, the same idea is worked out in the wall. In cases like this
an ornamental iron gate, hung on staples, supercedes the simple
Colonial ones of former days. Occasionally, the name of the estate is
interwoven in the ornamentation, or sometimes it is carved on the stone
entrance posts.

Natural material is coming more and more to be used and we find a rubble
wall, constructed from stone and boulders picked up on the grounds, left
often rough, and again filled in with red cement to make it more stable.
The rubble wall is generally topped with cement laid perfectly flat. The
entrance posts follow this same line of treatment and while they are
often left hollow for several inches down, these are packed solidly
inside with small rocks to keep them in place. The excavation is filled
in with rich soil and bright blossoming plants introduced. This gives a
bit of color scheme that is very effective as a foil for the cold gray
of the stone. Vines are often planted at the foot of the posts, the turf
being dug away for several inches, and rich loam introduced to better
insure their growth. It depends entirely upon how heavy one wishes the
covering to be as to the kind of vine planted. If it is the idea to hide
it effectively from sight and produce massing of green, an entirely
different planting should be made than if it was intended to have a
delicate coloring of green that would only enhance the color of the
background.

[Illustration: A FINE DECORATIVE IRON GATEWAY]

Right combinations are very important in this line of work. It would be
foolish to use woodwork combined with heavy stone or iron. It is
sometimes in better form to have wide slabs of granite or cement
defining several layers of brick. The height and width naturally depend
upon what it intends to imply.

Low piers of masonry capped with a pointed effect should stand by
themselves without any planting, as the latter often disfigures
architectural effects. It is not always necessary that this feature of
the exterior should be conspicuous, more particularly if the posts are
constructed of wood. Treat them to a light creosote stain, thus giving a
picturesque background for the overlapping vines. Sometimes combinations
work out well in producing artistic results. With a rough stone pillar,
it is sometimes in good taste to introduce gateways of oak, which while
effective under certain conditions, are very bad under others. These are
much more attractive the second year, when they have weathered to a
picturesque pearly gray. This color harmonizes delightfully, not only
with the walls but with the flowers and their foliage. An important
thing that should not be forgotten is the use of wooden pegs and copper
nails, neither of which are injured by rain. If you choose to use a wire
fence, let the gate-post and gates correspond for it is far better than
to combine materials inharmoniously. They are not only practical but
light and in their construction there is a chance to work into the
scheme ornamental designs. Do not finish this with a square box top,
rather give it a bit of ornamentation such as a ball or a lantern. There
can be had to-day so many ornamental lanterns, constructed of wrought
iron, that they can be purchased in almost any type desired. It is far
better not to cover the posts with vines and thus conceal the beauty of
the work. The most effective way would be to build up wire arches and
plant rambler roses back of the posts for them to run on.

The Sweet Briar, if one is looking for perfume, is desirable. They can
be purchased in single and semi-double flowers, created through the
developing and crossing of the old-fashioned variety. Rambler roses are
always in good taste. It is better to plant three or four kinds that
show harmonious coloring. There is the Lord Penzance, a soft fawn,
turning to lemon yellow in the center. This is particularly adaptable
for covering arches as it is a strong grower and abundant blossomer. The
Meg Merrilies fits into this color scheme, putting forth gorgeous
crimson flowers during the six weeks of its flowering. Combine with
these the Brenda, and you will find that this mixture lends a brightness
that is very effective. Many people object to roses on account of their
many enemies. One of the most common is the powdery mildew. This is
easily distinguished by a powdery growth of white that is found on both
leaves and shoots. Use sulphur very freely, and you will find it
disappear. The stem cancer is a serious disease, and it is found on both
the cane and the branches. In dealing with this the grower must not be
afraid to use the pruning knife vigorously, so that the diseased parts
can be thoroughly removed, in this way preventing spreading and the ruin
of the vine. From the time of its planting the rambler needs constant
attention, but it brings its own reward, in that there is no vine that
can equal it in beauty. The advantage of having a variety of colors
instead of one is readily seen, for it prevents a large mass of one
individual color.

There is a pleasure indescribable felt by lovers of plants when
designing any feature of their grounds. This is particularly true with
the gate and the planting. They must bear in mind, however, the true
purpose of gates and their proper use on country estates. It is designed
as a means of ingress, and as such, should be suited to the type of
mansion. Therefore, into its plan should be worked the atmosphere of the
residence as well as the characteristics of the surrounding country. For
instance, a wooden fence and gate-post would be entirely inappropriate
if one were dealing with a beautiful summer estate where the house was
to be built of brick.

Compositions should not be carelessly used and it should be remembered
that there is great danger in our zeal for producing something unique,
of going to the other extreme and giving an over-ornamental creation.
One cannot be too particular in making the entrance and the adjoining
fence accord with the idea one is trying to bring out in the whole plan.

The driveway is of fully as much importance as the entrance. It should
be kept scrupulously neat and free from weeds. To have it at its best
it should be thoroughly under-drained, and for this the open-joint
drain tile is advisable. It should be laid under ground and connected,
if possible, with the sewer. Properly attended to, this keeps the
road-bed dry and in good condition. The bed itself should be dug down
for several feet, a foundation of earth from six to ten inches should be
laid, over which can be thrown a layer six inches thick of either broken
limestone or chopped trap rock. Cover the whole with a screening of
limestone and finish it with gravel. Have it rolled hard and you realize
the advantage as the season ends.

The drive should be sufficiently wide for carriages to pass through
without besmearing your gate-posts with mud and dust. One should realize
that the driveway is in reality a foot-path enlarged, and should always
be kept immaculate. The gate, if you wish to prevent its sagging, should
open in the center. A two-part gate gives often a better effect than one
long one. Nothing equals iron, which can be treated in so many different
ways that there is little danger of repetition in design.

The capping is as important as the post itself. Simple square box
treatment is advisable in some cases. Balls fit into the scheme on some
estates, while Colonial urns are in keeping with wooden posts and
lantern effects belong to iron gateways. The latter, of course, are
effective for lighting at night. Gas pipes can be laid under the
roadway, connected with the ornamentation in such a way that they can be
turned on from the house.

In many entrances, side gates, similar to the main ones have been
inserted, which relieve the main entrance from use by pedestrians. They
can be so laid out as not to interfere with the use of the motor cars.
They should be separated from the main driveway by a turf border and
covered with gravel.

Planting is very effective for this feature of the ground, and trees,
that is if the right sort are chosen, are admirable, used in this
connection. White birches lend a picturesqueness that cannot be equaled,
but they are short-lived. The elm with its graceful branches seems to
fit into every landscape scheme. Do not plant them too near the posts.
If you do, their roots will reach out often causing upheaval and
creating havoc. For best effects the trees should be used outside rather
than inside the entrance. In the latter case they are too apt to cut off
the view.

[Illustration: A SUCCESSFUL ENTRANCE TO A FORMAL GARDEN]

Many people prefer a hedge and this can be planted either with or
without a fence. Arbor-vitae is practical for such use as is the
Buckthorn and the Berberis Thunbergii (Thunberg's Japanese Barberry).
This is a Japanese hedge with round, drooping habit. It leaves out in a
fine brilliant green during the summer months and from autumn until
December takes on a wonderful showing of color. During the winter months
the branches, loaded with scarlet crimson berries, make an effective
contrast with the white of the snow. Its value as a hedge is because it
is impenetrable and thickly set with spines, never growing bare. The
most popular shrub for hedge treatment is Privet-Ligustrum. It is very
ornamental with a rich dark green foliage that is nearly evergreen and
remains on the plant until late winter. It is a good grower under the
most adverse circumstances. In order to form the most effective hedge it
should be planted from ten to twelve inches apart and pruned back during
the first two seasons.

The Ampelopsis Arborea woodbine is useful for entrances. It is a
distinct variation from the other forms, making a spreading bush rather
than a strong climber. Its leaves are dark green and comparatively
coarse, and its autumn coloring is superb. The Boston Ivy clings even to
wood, its fine shoots cover walls and while it requires some covering
during the first two or three winters of its life, yet it pays. In the
fall, nothing can be so gorgeous as the varied colored tints of its
foliage.

The Clematis Paniculata should never be forgotten. It is a rapid and
vigorous climber and can be depended upon to clothe large spaces
quickly. Originally, it was introduced from Japan and is allied to our
native Virgin's Bower. The flowers are effective, borne in long panicles
which are white and their fragrance is perceptible a long distance away.
They open the latter part of August, staying in bloom for nearly a
month. Combined with this should be the Clematis Coccinea (Scarlet
Clematis), whose showy bell-shape, brilliant scarlet flowers are
produced in great profusion.

The Wisteria is adapted to almost any purpose and can be used
picturesquely on many types of entrances. The Wisteria Magnifica is
admirable and resembles Frutescens, but it varies from it in that the
clusters are larger and denser while the yellow lilac colored flowers
have yellow spots.

Among the other vines it is well to plant some that will give a touch
of color during the dark, cold days of winter when the vines lie barren
and bare, their leafless branches swaying in the wind. Why not use for
that the Celastrus Scandens (Bitter Sweet or Wax Work). It is one of our
native climbing plants and can be found in almost any part of the New
England woods, a rapid grower, with attractive, light green foliage and
yellow flowers, followed by bright orange red berries that are cheering
in the fall and lead us to forget the shedding of the foliage by the
other vines.

In order to hide the base of the vine, ferns can be planted. It is
better to use the hardy varieties rather than the more tender ones,
although a combination of the two is always attractive. Take, for
instance, the Adiantum Croweanum, which is one of the hardiest of the
maiden hair species. This, like every other of its kind, should be well
watered and fertilized, grown in a rich, open soil, with plenty of leaf
mould. There is nothing difficult in their culture and they need
absolutely no attention after planting. The Polypodium Vulgare, which is
evergreen, showing smooth, shiny fronds resembling the Boston fern, is
another that is adapted for this purpose.

With these can be combined the Comptonia, or Sweet Fern, a native plant
with fern-like, dark green scented foliage, very useful for foliage
massing on rocky, barren places, and thriving best in dry, sterile soil.
There are many more varieties and it would be impossible to mention them
all. They are, each and every one, suitable for adding to the beauty of
private gardens and estates.



BIRD BATHS


[Illustration: THE CENTRAL FEATURE OF THE GARDEN MAY BE A BIRD-BATH]



CHAPTER VI

BIRD BATHS


John Burroughs, in his description of a garden, has told us that "To
love the birds, to appreciate their place in the landscape," is one of
the most important things. It does much to bring happiness into our
lives. In the forming of a perfect garden, many things are requisite and
among them are birds, flowers, bees, and the flashing butterfly who
darts joyously from flower to flower, a thing of beauty and perishable
as the day. Should anyone doubt the truth of these assertions, let him
seat himself in some retired spot during a beautiful day in the month of
roses. He can then listen to the song of the birds, caroling as they
sway on the branches of the trees above our heads, nestling at our feet,
or hidden away deep down in the heart of the flower beds. Birds are
everywhere, they flit in and out of the garden, sipping sweet nectar
from the blossoming plants, and flaunting their bright colors when
catching the sunshine as they swing by.

God made nothing more interesting than birds and man should care for
them, giving them a distinctive place in his garden, realizing that
through their industry they free the plants from harmful insects and
slugs. The birds can be coaxed into anyone's garden, that is, if care is
taken in proper planting, giving to the plots trees and plants that they
love. Under the rose bushes place a bath, where they can come and preen
their plumage, but if possible have it placed beyond the reach of
intruding cats.

When the custom of providing drinking cups to quench the thirst of our
native birds first came into fashion, it is hard to determine.
Perchance, it was in the early days when in 1621, the colonists built
rail fences, to enclose their separate lots. Over these they trained the
wild morning glory and sweet-scented honeysuckle, the perfume of which
doubtless carried them back to the beautiful English gardens that still
existed in their native land.

Doubtless, during the life of William Penn, when he encouraged the
laying out of old English gardens, he included in the design a planting
to attract bird life. This was still further encouraged when the first
botanical garden came into existence in 1728 through the thought of
Bertram Bartran, of Philadelphia. He was a man who had traveled much and
was thoroughly versed in the art of floriculture. In his garden he
planted rare and practical seeds partly for the mere joy of carrying out
his own whims. This garden, like many others, was individual in its
planting, a quality that lent to it an additional charm.

During the early seventeenth century there were imported into seaport
towns principally at Salem, Massachusetts, unique bird baths. They came
packed in among the cargo that was stowed away in the holds of the slow
sailing ships that plied continuously between Singapore and the New
England shores. Many of these were the result of orders given by the
ship owners who wanted to set them in their posy beds, laid out at the
rear of their stately homes. Rare were these shells with their fluted
framework, and hard to find, yet so spacious that a whole colony of
feathered songsters could hold concourse within their pearly depths.

Underneath the shade of the drooping lilac, they peered out at us from
the time the melting of the snow released the snow drops from their icy
cover, thus allowing them to lift up their pure white heads as if in
rejoicing to be free, to be followed later on by the gay little
crocuses, clad in their gowns of many hues. Few of these baths are still
in existence. We come across them occasionally, however, in
old-fashioned gardens where they are treasured for sentiment's sake.

Just as the rustic bird houses, constructed of weathered boards, and
with floor covering of powdered sawdust or ground cork, have become a
necessity in the twentieth-century garden, tempting the summer
sojourners to rest their weary wings; so we must strive to create a
homelike atmosphere so attractive to the little songsters that they will
delight in revelling among the many flowers that are planted here. A
barren waste of land has no pleasure for them, neither has a garden
shorn of their favorite plants.

There is no need of being deterred from using a feature such as this. A
bird bath need not be expensive, just a simple box, zinc-lined and
painted to correspond with the surroundings. The birds are not fussy as
to the exterior of their outdoor bathroom; all they wish is comfort and
a cooling drink during the hot summer days, when the dew has faded from
the grass, and the sun hangs high in the heavens. It is then that all
nature is panting from excessive heat.

A simple zinc pan, large and wide enough, filled with fresh water daily,
is as satisfactory to them, as a marble pool standing in the heart of
the garden and surrounded by a bed of brilliant flowers. Place this pan
in the heart of a grassy knoll, at the edge of the garden proper and
watch results. You will not have long to wait before softly tripping
through the grass or dropping from their leafy covert, one by one, they
show their gratitude by revelling in the bath thus placed for their use.

The most common type, if you wish to buy a bird bath, is the cement one.
It can be modeled in any shape and to follow any line of treatment that
you prefer. The simple, plain, low-lying ones are suitable for placing
under the shadowy bush or tree. Hand carving would be as much out of
place on a bath such as this, as if one used an expensive silver bowl
for their benefit. To be sure a little ornamentation, simply worked out,
makes them more artistic. This can be accomplished through proper
planting. A delicate fern unfolding its fronds and drooping until it
almost touches the water is appropriate, as is a low-lying pine that
adds a bit of shade which is truly appreciated by your little visitors
who perch on the curb, after shaking off the dust from their wings in
the water below, and pour out their gratitude in a melody of song.

For ornament why not use a cement bath that is shaped like a large vase.
It makes an interesting feature in your twentieth-century garden, and
gives a chance to depict a favorite flower from which the garden takes
its name.

Rising stately and dignified from their floral bed, showing wonderful
and delicate carving, are marble baths exquisitely shaped and resting on
a shaft of the same material. These are fitting for an Italian or a
formal garden. They seem to blend in with an elaborate architectural
scheme such as we find in the planning for the decoration of a large
area.

There is no particular place where they seemingly do not fit in. They
are effective used as a central figure and surrounded with a circle of
well-chosen blossoming plants and they harmonize in the landscape scheme
even if used apart from the main gardens or designed to occupy a niche
in the wall. Here they are just as enjoyable as if they stood
prominently forth, the main axis around which the rest of the garden
revolves.

[Illustration: A WELL-PLACED BIRD-BATH]

They can be made much more picturesque if one trains over their side a
delicate vine whose tendrils cling to the foundation and bring out the
color effectively. Plant for the birds' enjoyment and combine with this
feature decorative beds, using not the strong colors, but the delicate,
dainty, pink, blue, white and lavender, of the many varieties that are
suitable for this purpose.

Do not let the base of your expensive bird bath rest on the earth,
rather place under it a pedestal of marble, granite, or cement. It need
not be conspicuous, a growth of turf, the planting of an ivy or some
other vine, will add much to its attractiveness, making an artistic
foundation for it.

Whoever lays out his garden plot with a thought of thorough enjoyment,
he who looks forward to sitting under the vine, will take special
thought of the birds. He will endeavor even if he is an amateur not to
make an ugly muddle in his planting, but aim for picturesque garden
vistas, and have his flowers properly balanced so they will show
harmonious massing of colors. One should be as careful not to give
sun-loving plants a shady place, as to put the shy little flowers in the
glaring sunlight.

It is a necessity if you are a bird lover, or if you wish to rid your
plants of insects and your grounds of worms, to attract the birds. This
can be accomplished by giving them not only proper planting but the
right place where they may enjoy their daily bath. If you wish the best
results, seek shade rather than sunshine. Our little friends prefer
shelter to warmth, so cater to their taste in the placing of their
drinking pool.

It is rather important that you seek a spot, just near enough to the
grounds to be companionable, there to place a mulberry tree. There is no
fruit that is more to their mind than this and it will be a source of
delight to watch the shyest birds reward you by flaunting their colors
before you as they flit in and out, feeding off the berries so
temptingly displayed for their exclusive use.

It is a mistake to look upon the robin as common and a pest. This fact
has been firmly fixed in our minds through his thieving qualities. When
you consider that he has been known to devour as many as seventy worms a
day, and multiply that by the voracity of his mate and his children, you
will then commence to realize what a benefit he is to your garden. Try
and cajole him into being a friend, and entice him to nest in the heart
of your flower patch. Listen to his song; there is a mellow quality to
his voice and he can put more expression into his music than any other
bird. There is a flash of color and a burst of sweet melody,
listen--there is a scarlet tanager, singing love songs to his mate. He
is a veritable bird of Paradise and once sported fearlessly among our
trees, but has now grown shy through being used as a target for the
sportsman's gun. Cultivate him by all means. Toll him into your garden.

Darting in and out of the garden one finds the humming bird, so tiny
that he measures only from three and a half to three and three-quarters
inches, the smallest bird in our country. There is a glint of color as
he dashes fearlessly from flower to flower, his brilliant metallic
throat and breast sparkling in the sunlight like a precious gem. The
trumpet flowers with their deep cup-shape blossoms are his special
delight, although he never scorns the sweet-scented flowers that he
finds on every side. For a moment he poises in the air motionless,
sighting his flower, then winging his flight, he drains the nectar,
uttering a shrill little squeak of delight, as he spies some especially
fat aphides on the garden foliage. These he shoots off like a streak of
lightning rapidly searching for more food.

How to attract the birds is a question that all bird lovers are seeking
to answer. It is such a simple matter that you do not have to look far
afield to obtain what you wish. There are many fruit-growing shrubs each
one of which is suitable for his majesty's needs. These should be
planted somewhere in the garden. If you prefer them surrounding the bird
bath, you will have more chance for bird study, but they will come
without that if you give them a chance and plenty of edible berries all
the year round. The red berried elder is one of their favorites, as is
the Canadensis or common elder, which flowers in June, and shows reddish
purple berries during the autumn; then there is the Arbutifolia or red
chokeberry. This is a native dwarf shrub, which is particularly tempting
to the feathered tribe. When planning for this feature, one should
remember that these bird-attracting shrubs should not be planted with
only one idea in view. They should be made to form a part of the
decorative plan, and the situation chosen should be among flowers that
would bring out its artistic value, far more than if they were grouped
in a mass. One is apt, in their enthusiasm in arranging their garden for
the birds' benefit, to forget that attractive color schemes must be
worked out, otherwise it will be a heterogeneous mass that will be an
eye-sore rather than a pleasure.

[Illustration: AN ORNAMENT DELIGHTFULLY USED TO MARK THE OPENING OF
PATHS THROUGH WOODS]

There is very little choice as to what kind of flowers to mix with the
shrubs. Take it all in all, the perennials stand first. The reason for
this is that they are more suitable for this purpose than annuals, which
have to be re-planted every year. Like the shrubs the perennials die
down in the fall and re-appear when the breath of spring sweeps over the
land, in greater profusion and showing added vigor through having
conserved their strength by resting during the winter months.

You are very foolish if you have taken no thought for the future life of
your shrub or perennial. Once planted they do not take care of
themselves and if neglected it only means the survival of the fittest.
Different species require different treatment, and a great many kinds
need to be subdivided every two or three years. The scarlet and crimson
Phlox, Spirea, and many other varieties should never be left longer
than two years, they should then be carefully gone over and an
experienced hand should determine how much should be left and what
removed. If you have planting of Iris, Shaster daisies, and Veronicas,
they can readily wait until the third year.

The ground is of just as much importance as the planting. Just because
you wish to grow flowers and shrubs, you must remember that they must
have food to live on, that this food must be properly prepared and
contain plenty of nourishment, otherwise you will have spent money and
time for naught. First of all comes fertilizing. Doubtless, in some part
of the ground you can find a corner that will be the proper place for
the compost heap. In its selection, it is better that it should be
concealed by shrubs or trellis, vine covered. It would be a blot in the
landscape if you treated it otherwise.

Every time you rake over the lawn or weed the garden, throw into a large
basket the refuse and let it form part of the compost heap. The
foundation for this should be plenty of manure and this, to be at its
best, must be well rotted and mixed in with other material to lighten
and bring about better results. You will be surprised, that is if you
have never tried it, to see how quickly it grows. Almost before you know
it you have enough to use in the garden next year. No matter how rich it
is, a liberal amount of coarse bone meal added will pay in the end.

Your fertilizer ready, as early as possible in the spring dig your
ground to the depth of eighteen or more inches. It is better if the
earth is pulverized; some people go so far as to sift it. Next put in
your fertilizer, mixing it with the earth previously removed. Give it
time to settle before planting and you will never be dissatisfied with
results.

Opinions vary as to proper time for planting perennials. Many people
feel that the spring is the safest. It is foolish to follow this plan
unless it can be accomplished as soon as the frost is well out of the
ground. Many of them are likely to die. Therefore, if you pot them in
the fall, and winter them under glass, the result will be much more
satisfactory. It is simply the working out of the garden lover's idea as
to what is correct and what incorrect as to the time of planting.

Many kinds are better massed. This applies to the Sweet William, the
Hollyhock, Delphinium, and other varieties, that seemingly belong to
the same family. The hardy Asters, which are late flowering, are
invaluable for massing. They burst into blossom at a period when the
early frosts have lolled the more tender plants, making their bright
hues a dominant feature in the garden. It is better to shade colors than
to plant one variety. For September and October blossoming why not use
the Abendrote or Evening Glow? It has a bright rosy red flower and is a
very free bloomer. Mix with that the Glory of Colwall, which is ageratum
blue, showing double flowers, grown on stout, erect stems. The pink of
the blossom contrasts admirably with the rosy red. The White Queen will
mix with these two colors very effectively. This is a pure, splendid
white and comes into blossom at the same season of the year.

A very interesting way of treating the defining line of the garden
proper is by a low hedge. Many of these are berry bearing, thus working
into the bird scheme. The Hawthorn Oxyacantha is well suited for this
purpose. It is used in England for hedges and during the time of its
blossoming shows a pure white, sweet-scented flower followed by a
scarlet fruit. The Berberis is excellent for hedging. It blooms in the
summer and is succeeded by a bright colored fruit that lasts into the
winter.

Once interested in this feature of garden culture, by careful study one
will realize what an inexhaustible theme it becomes. Color shades in
berries often help out landscape effects in winter, therefore it is best
not to plant promiscuously.



GARDEN SEATS


[Illustration: A FORMAL GARDEN SEAT]



CHAPTER VII

GARDEN SEATS


The ever-changing tide of fashion brings in its wake a constant
development of new and original ideas in the furnishing of our garden
plots. Flowers have been with us ever since the first settlement of our
country and so has a love for life in the open. This is an inheritance
that has deepened with the passing years. So rapidly has this developed
that to-day it demands our gardens as living rooms. It is this aspect of
garden life that develops new and unusual features in equipment.

While we may flatter ourselves that we as garden lovers have originated
this idea, yet it is of ancient origin. History relates that in the
gardens of the early Romans and Greeks, garden seats were found. With
the changing of styles in floral-culture the ornate came into existence,
much used during the Italian Renaissance. Reproductions of their ideas
are found in replica in many of the formal gardens of the twentieth
century.

Logs, carelessly thrown on the ground, may have been the first seats
used by our garden ancestors. Later on with the development of the
one-path posy bed, seats were hollowed out of old trees. They formed a
picturesque bit, clothed during the summer months in their garments of
green, for trailing vines were encouraged to run rampant over their
sides. These with the green arbor or pergola and the vine-clad summer
house were the three styles of seats favored by the Colonial dames.

Styles and usage of furniture in this special way are as clearly defined
as in interior decoration. The modern garden equipped with English,
American or Italian furniture, gives a pleasing variety. The principal
materials necessary for manufacture are stone, marble, terra cotta or
wood. Of these, the latter suggests less expense, while the former can
be purchased at any sum you wish.

Stone or marble are absolutely necessary in formal or Italian gardens,
as they provide a proper medium for expression that nothing else would
satisfy. Look at the gleam of the white marble shown up by its
background of green trees and see what a charm it has in the furnishing
of your garden plot. Take it all in all, it is the only right setting
for an elaborate garden, partly on account of its being a descendant of
the Italian Renaissance period which makes it desirable in designs that
follow out the character of that period. Rarely, if ever, do we find
this simple in form, but rather elaborately carved with representations
of animals or figures. As an ornamental feature, it cannot be excelled,
but as a garden seat it is not practical, being cold and hard to sit
upon. Properly speaking, it should be placed at the head of a walk or
topping the garden steps. This is on account of its decorative character
and the necessity of making it fit into the floral scheme. The price is
prohibitive except to the rich, although it varies with the elaboration
of the carving.

Terra cotta, while not as often used, has its advantages. It can be
moulded readily into any form desired. While it is not always suitable,
yet its warmth of color, which is either buff or red, makes it admirable
when one desires to bring out certain effects in the planting of beds.
It is, perhaps, the least used of any of the materials. A seat four feet
in length can be purchased for from forty dollars upwards.

Concrete seats are the kind that are most commonly used for formal and
informal gardens. We should remember, however, that we must not mix
formal and informal furniture promiscuously, otherwise the result will
be disastrous. One should bear in mind in treating this subject that
formal pieces resemble well-bred people. They fit suitably into any
place in their surroundings. It is far different, however, with informal
pieces which are entirely wrong and out of place in formal settings.
This fact applies to concrete which is suitable for almost any occasion
for it possesses almost endless possibilities as far as form is
concerned. Rightly mixed, it can be moulded into almost any shape that
you desire, which accounts for the fact that in its designs many of the
elaborate garden seats are copied. This makes it popular and constantly
in demand, on account of its less cost. To all intents and purposes, it
is quite as durable as stone or marble. It has still another advantage,
in that its neutral gray tint harmonizes picturesquely with almost any
setting of shrubbery or flowers.

The least expensive of any of the materials that is used for this
purpose is wood. It has this advantage, that it can be formed in such a
great variety of shapes that there is always found some piece that is
suitable for every taste and occasion. If you contrast it with marble or
stone, you will realize that it has the advantage of being lighter in
weight, and capable of being carried around from place to place with
little or no trouble. Take it all in all, the best place for it to be at
home in is the informal garden.

The kind of garden that most of us live in and enjoy intimately is the
plot where wooden settles and chairs are used. Care should be taken,
however, in the selection of material in order that it may have lasting
qualities. One reason for its use is that unlike marble and stone it is
not cold to sit upon, and is really comfortable. The best kind of wood,
if you can afford it, is teakwood, which lasts for centuries. It is the
most expensive, particularly the antique pieces. Those of to-day are
shoddily put together and cannot resist weathering as do the century-old
ones.

Many people prefer pine on account of less cost. This is all right,
provided great care is taken to keep it well covered with paint of the
glossy kind. The advantage of this over the other is that it can be
readily wiped clean before using. Anyone who is a garden lover will
appreciate this fact, for no matter how carefully placed, the seats will
accumulate a reasonable amount of leaves and dirt.

Plain settles and benches which belong to the informal type can be
placed anywhere, according to inclination. These need not, of necessity,
be made of plain wooden strips, but can be varied by making them rustic
in design. Use for this purpose limbs of the same size without removing
the bark. They require so little work in putting them together that a
village carpenter can accomplish this task, or if you are a genius you
can do it yourself. An objection which many people offer is that they
need repairing often, or replacing. Considering the cost, this is not a
serious objection.

For a simple Colonial cottage, such pieces as these would be appropriate
for use in your garden and you can add a tea table and a few chairs
suggestive of afternoon tea, the position being determined by views, for
the placing is of as much importance as the piece itself. If possible,
have low-growing trees droop over it to give the required shade.

[Illustration: A SIMPLE AND ATTRACTIVE GARDEN SEAT]

For the elegant mansion, the home of the wealthy, more elaborate pieces
are a necessity. One thing should not be forgotten in their choice and
that is they should be heavy enough to stay on the ground and resist the
strong northeast winds that during a heavy rain sweep over your
flower-plot.

Flagstone sometimes gives a variety as well as limestone, but there are
several other materials that give a pleasing color and texture, such as
the pink granite and the red, black and green slates. Of these, the red
is most effective when streaked with another color. Do not choose the
Quincy granite; the texture is cold in appearance and the weather never
softens the color.

A fault that must not be overlooked is to build your seats too high,
thirteen inches being the proper height. The back should always be taken
into consideration and made tall enough to support the head so that you
will be comfortable when you come to view your garden plot.

It is not always possible to have this piece of furniture placed under
the shade of a tree or shrubbery. This necessitates the planning of a
summer house, arbor or pergola. Over these, vines can be trained, so
that in reality it is much more picturesque than if you had used simply
the green shade.

Chairs can be used for this same purpose, in fact, they are very good as
they provide a variation of the general theme. They are particularly
advisable if it is a backyard garden where a settle might prove too
overpowering. Like the garden seat, they can be made of wood. Cedar and
locust are preferable if you wish pretty rustic effects. Cypress also is
lasting, and if you prefer to give it a coat of paint, it will do
service for many years.

For rustic chairs or seats, there is another idea for shelter that is
practical. It is to roof it over and shingle the board. It has
advantages over anything else in that it affords protection from the
summer sun and acts as a windbreak on cold days, besides doing away with
the dropping of insects from the leafy tangle of an arbor. No matter how
charming a garden may be in its floral arrangement, it requires
additions and accessories to display to the best advantage its worth.
Just as a house is cozy or barren according to the style of furniture
employed, so a garden is beautiful in proportion to the type of
ornaments used.

Probably the coming into style of the formal Italian type of garden has
done much to develop this feature. Until late years, scant heed was
paid to fitness, and in consequence much of the old-time charm found in
the Colonial garden was lost.

When planning for your garden seat or chair, take into consideration the
planting. In your choice of colors you should vary the scheme to fit in
with the particular seat. A white requires different surroundings from a
gray or a rustic type. Wrong coloring brings about inharmonious effects
and they should be carefully considered in the making a perfect whole.
Another thing should be thought out and that is as to whether there is a
shade provided by the over-hanging limbs of a tree or by the trailing of
vines.

Vines are always interesting. You can use them in a mass, showing one
general effect, or you can combine them. Nothing is so pretty in the
early spring as the Wisterias, on account of their being not only hardy,
but tall growers. Many people claim the best varieties are those grafted
on to specially selected stock, thus making them sure bloomers. The soil
should also be taken into consideration, for while they thrive in light,
sandy conditions, yet deep, rich earth promotes stronger growth. The
Magnifica is, perhaps, as vigorous as any. It is such a rapid grower
that it shoots up from thirty to forty feet in a season. It blossoms
rather later than some varieties which show soft, lavender blue blooms.
Why not mix this with the Chinese white, whose pure white flowers show
long, drooping clusters.

If you are looking for foliage in the early fall, the Vitis Henryana can
be used. Its leaves are decorative in effect, being a velvety green with
veins of silvery white. It is of Chinese origin and in the fall the
foliage turns to a beautiful red. For July and August blossoming, there
is the Bignonia Grandiflora or Mammoth-flowered Trumpet creeper. This is
a splendid climbing vine, perfectly hardy, giving a growth of from eight
to ten feet in a season. Its flowers, which are shown during July and
August, are orange red and trumpet-shaped, following as they do after
the Wisteria has faded, they bring about an entirely different color
scheme. This makes it practical for one to plant a succession of bloom,
making each set of flowers correspond with the coloring of the vines.

A very pleasing contrast can be brought out by combining the
magnolia-scented White Moon Flower, with a beautiful Blue Dawn. The
former is a summer climber, growing from fifteen to twenty feet in
height. It makes a beautiful shade for trellises and bears in the season
a profusion of large trumpet-shape snow-white flowers that are richly
scented and very beautiful. There is also a heavenly blue that combines
artistically with the white. One feature of this vine is its thick,
overlapping, glossy foliage, and its nightly scores of immense silky
blooms which are of rare fragrance. By actual count a strong vine will
bear from one to three thousand blossoms in a season. There has within
the last few years been discovered a new variety that opens early in the
morning and remains so nearly all day.

The beautiful blue of the Paradise Flower is used when one wishes for
this color in decorations. The clusters are large, showing from twenty
to thirty at a time and it blossoms continually from the time it becomes
established until frost.

For a rustic seat, why not try the wild grape or Crimson Glory vine? It
is so strong and hardy, notable for its heavy foliage which makes a
splendid shade and in the fall is a mass of rich crimson. We have grown
to think of morning glories as a pretty, small flower that grew in our
grandmother's garden. Many of us have not realized that they have been
developed until now they show gigantic bloom as large as the moon
flowers. They have wonderful coloring, marking and variations of
indescribable beauty. As a flowering vine they cannot be surpassed, the
flowers being borne by the hundreds and of enormous size, measuring
often five and six inches across. Many show a rich combination of
shading blended together in an enchanting way, being spotted, penciled,
mottled, and variegated in every conceivable manner.

[Illustration: STATELY LILIES ADD CHARM AND DIGNITY TO A GRAVELLED WALK]

If your garden seat is low, let your planting follow the same line, but
if it is high and conspicuous, it can be accentuated by tall plants.
Hollyhocks, with their stately stalks, are charming for this particular
use. There is the hardy perennial with the foliage dwarf and compact.
This is found in the Heuchera, which is easily grown from seed and
reaches a height of eighteen inches. Of this variety, the Sanguinea is
admirable, being the finest of all the red varieties, the flowers taking
on the shade of coral red. If you wish, instead of a solid color, to
make a combination, why not use the Sanguinea, Sutton's Hybrid, which is
found in pretty shades of pink, as well as creamy white, rose and
crimson. These blossom in July and August, their stately, well-filled
cups, giving a distinction to the seat that could not well be missed.

Fleur-de-lis, sometimes spoken of as the Fairy Queen's home, is always
satisfactory and never fails to bloom. No flower can surpass this in
delicacy of texture and coloring, and it rivals even the orchids of the
tropics in its beauty. They thrive in almost every soil, being one of
the easiest plants to cultivate, although a fairly rich earth will
materially increase the number and size of the bloom. In planting them,
nearly cover the rhizomes. The earliest flowering ones are the Germans,
which come into bloom the latter part of May or early in June. These are
followed by the Japan variety which follow closely on the former and
stay in blossom for a month. Of the German, the Lohengrin is the most
vigorous, deep violet mauve in coloring, and the flowers are nearly five
inches deep, showing petals two inches across. In direct contrast is the
Princess Victoria Louise, light sulphur yellow or rich violet red, edged
with crimson, both of which varieties are very handsome.

The double Iris is particularly beautiful for some situations. There is
the Antelope with white ground flaked with purple; the Diana, reddish
purple flaked with white; the Mount Fell, grayish white, veined with
blue and showing yellow center; and the Victor, white veined, violet
blue with purple center. Each one of these is well worthy of
cultivation.

Nothing is so beautiful as roses, be they climbing or dwarf. For the
former, why not use the Climbing Jules Graveraux, which is one of the
most valuable, ever-blooming climbers ever introduced. The value of this
is that the blooms are immense in size, being as large or larger than
any other rose. It even exceeds the J. B. Clark. These roses are
perfectly double, white, tinged with blush pink, with a yellow base. In
freedom of bloom, it is superior to either Mrs. Peary or Climbing
Meteor. Then there is the Empress of China or Appleblossom rose, a
strong rampant grower, and a very free bloomer. The buds are pointed,
being soft red, turning to lighter. It blooms from May to December in
the open ground.

Tea Roses, distinguished by the delicate tea fragrance, are absolutely
ever-blooming. They are carried through the winter even in the northern
states with careful protection. The most satisfactory method is the
banking up with soil. Of these, the yellow Souvenir de Pierre Notting
is the most beautiful. It has been introduced by one of the foremost
firms of France and is not exceeded by any rose sent out from that
country. The blossoms are large, well filled, and open easily. The buds
are beautiful and elongated. When fully bloomed, they show an apricot
yellow, tinged with golden and mixed with orange yellow. One charm of
these flowers is that the edge of the petal shades to a beautiful
carmine rose. The open flower is full and double, it being an extremely
free blossomer.

One of the latest introductions is the Lady Hillingdon, the color being
beyond description. Apricot yellow, shaded to orange on the outer edge
of the petal, and becoming deeper and more intense as it reaches the
center of the bloom. The buds are produced on long, strong, wiry stems,
which are placed well above the foliage, thus giving it a slender and
graceful effect. It is valuable in both the amateur and professional
growers' gardens. It would be impossible to enumerate the different
kinds that are used for this purpose.



GARDEN POOLS


[Illustration: A POND-LILY POOL OF A VERY ATTRACTIVE SHAPE]



CHAPTER VIII

GARDEN POOLS


With the revival of old-time garden features that has been brought about
through interest in floriculture, fascinating specialties have been
evolved. This is particularly true of the garden pool which lends itself
to almost every kind of setting. It is no new idea, this introduction of
pools into even small gardens.

The ancient Egyptians had great reverence for pools and we read of their
interest in bringing into life the sacred Lotus, giving it a prominent
place in their gardens. This may be better known to moderns as "the rose
lily." In the early days it was used for religious purposes and was a
prominent feature in their festivals. It was also used ornamentally for
feasts where the walls were decorated with the beautiful blossoms that
were repeated in the centerpiece for the elaborately-spread table. Not
content with this use for decorative purposes, it was made in forms of
garlands that were thrown over the shoulders of the assembled guests
while wreaths of the same flower crowned their brows, great care being
taken that a bud or cluster of blossoms was placed in the center of the
forehead.

Ever since that period, we read of the constant introduction of water
into gardens of every clime. While pools were not commonly used during
the Colonial period, they have to-day, with the coming in of the formal
and Italian gardens, grown to be one of the most interesting features.
The form and the immediate surroundings have been carefully thought out
and depend upon the type and the shape of the whole plan.

When the mercury registers at ninety and the whirling dust rises in
clouds, parching one's throat as it settles like a dingy pall on
sun-burned grass and drooping foliage, it is a pleasure to come suddenly
upon a pond where over-hanging plants cast lengthened shadows far over
the surface. They shelter the waxen lily cups that gleam like pearls
against a background of dark green pods--a perpetual joy and delight to
the eye.

There is no doubt but water, be it large or small in area, holds a
charm for us all. How much more if it is inhabited and made beautiful
through the use of aquatic plants and fish. These scattered apparently
carelessly over the surface of the water add much to its
picturesqueness. This is particularly true during the season of bloom
when we find varied colored cups, resting on saucers of green, lifting
their heads above the surface as if in delight with their surroundings.

Surely when you view a pond such as this you will find a double delight
in watching a flutter of wings, a hopping about on the plants and glad
dipping of little bills and uplifting of heads. These are the birds that
form a part of garden life and who are attracted here by the flowers and
the chance of a bath. Splashing and sparkling in the sunlight, they dive
into the water below, drying themselves on the large pads that float
artistically on the surface. Over yonder is a large gray cat bird
calling to its mate. We can but note the fine proportion, the poise of
the black head and the beauty of the satin gray coat which is pruned by
the hour. There is the Indigo Bird, a delightful symphony of blue and
cinnamon red. He sits swinging on a lily while his musical note comes
to our listening ears. The Ruby Throated Humming Bird swings
noiselessly over the pond, dipping his long beak here and there to
gather honey from the wide-open flowers.

It depends upon the size of the pool, the shape and the finish as to the
planting. It is a great mistake to have it so thickly over-spread with
leaves that no water is visible. A good rule to be observed is
two-thirds water and one-third lilies. This gives a chance to watch the
gold fish darting in and out for food. For a small beginning of a water
garden, why not try a pocket in the rock? It is a very easy matter to
arrange for lilies in a case like this. All you have to do is to cement
the hollow, put in your loam and plant one or two roots. It is these
diminutive water gardens that attract the birds more than the large
pools, and they form a charming vista in the garden scheme. Little
pockets of earth can be made to surround them, and here we can plant
rock-loving plants that will give a touch of picturesqueness to this
cunning little scheme.

The shape of the garden determines that of the pool. A square garden
demands square treatment in the lay-out of your design. A round garden,
to be correct, should have a circular formation for the planting of
your lilies. Then, too, the treatment of the planting should be
determined by the formality or informality of the plan. Great care
should be taken that they are not aimlessly placed but form a part of
the design. Any attempt to digress from this rule is fatal for correct
composition.

Great attention should be paid to the margin. It should not be stiff and
formal; it should rather be broken here and there, so that there will be
open spaces showing between. Copy nature in this treatment and you will
not go far astray.

In order to make this pool successful, one thing should never be
forgotten and that is that you are dealing with sun-loving plants to
whom shadow is objectionable. There is another reason why the sunshine
should fall unobstructed on the pond and that is that it shows
reflections that are effective, and bring cheer to your garden plot.

Many people consider that stagnant pools should not exist, as they are
mosquito breeders. They do not realize that the stocking of pools with
both fish and plants, carefully carried out so that they are properly
balanced, results in the water never being putrid but remaining fresh
and sweet, making a delightful water garden that is healthful and not
malaria breeding.

There are two essentials if you wish your idea to be successful; first,
that the bottom be water-tight and second, that it be proof against
frost. While these two things are easy to accomplish, yet many people
fail in them. Cement is the only proper material to be used for
foundation. Some people have an idea that puddled clay is cheaper. It
may be if properly handled, but great care has to be taken that it is
thoroughly puddled or it melts away and your work has been for naught.

Cement is the most reliable material if correctly applied. Before
putting it on, the pool should be dug out to the proper depth and size.
It should then be well packed for several inches with broken stone. Over
this should be put Portland cement, using one part of the former to
three of sand. Some people cement it for six inches while others prefer
to use two coats, each three inches thick. It should never be so high
that it will come above the frost line which is two and a half feet in
depth.

Water lilies, as well as all kinds of aquatics, will grow in any kind of
good garden soil; that is, if one-fifth well-rotted manure is added to
it. Possibly this is not to be obtained and if so, a quart of ground
bone allowed to each bushel of soil will bring about the right results.
It should be remembered that the plants should be set out so they will
get the greatest exposure to the sunlight.

[Illustration: A LILY POND THAT FILLS CHARMINGLY A CORNER OF A GARDEN]

We have supposed that you have chosen a spot for your water garden that
obtains the greatest amount of sun, also that it is sufficiently
sheltered from the winds. It has been dug down from fifteen to
twenty-four inches and then carefully cemented. Now you are ready to
plant your pool, the soil being taken into consideration. If, by some
chance, you are not able to secure the kind recommended, it can be made
of three parts rotted sod and one part cow manure. Remember that it
should be thoroughly rotted if you do not wish ferment in the water. Too
many people take little care on this subject and then wonder at the
disappointing results.

Possibly there is no place for your garden pool. In that case why not
use half barrels or tubs? They have the advantage of taking up very
little room, can easily be sunk in the ground and are really well worth
the trial. Nothing should be used that has a diameter of less than two
feet and the greater the surface space the better will be the result.
Tub culture requires two-thirds filling of soil and covering with sand
to have it the right depth. If more than one tub is used, why not make a
rockery between? It has the advantage of making another feature for your
garden, besides adding picturesqueness.

There are two ways of planting as well as two kinds of tubers. They can
be put directly in the soil, or they can be planted in tubs or boxes
that can be sunk, but the latter recommends itself as more practical.
The reason for this is that they are easily removed in winter and the
water is kept much cleaner when the earth is free from tubers. It must
be remembered that each plant requires from eight to nine square feet of
surface room so that it would be bad taste to allow too many for an
individual pool. If you wish, you can make the boxes yourself, using
pieces of board for that purpose.

Next come the gold fish. For a tub, only two are necessary, but for a
pond one hundred feet in diameter, twenty-five should be used. These
fish spawn in June and have been known to breed enough to stock a large
pond. There is an old theory,--doubted by many, that the old fish turn
cannibals and devour their progeny. These people advise the putting of
roots and stock into a tub, this is so the egg may be attached, removed,
and hatched separately. In cases like this the small fish are allowed to
grow considerably before being returned to the tub.

There are two kinds of tubers, the tender and the hardy. The latter
require practically no care during the winter months, that is, always
provided the water is deep enough to allow no freezing of the crown of
the plant. They should be planted about the first of May and both
varieties can be given the same treatment, with the exception that the
hardy variety do best when planted in soil two feet deep and covered
with six inches of water.

All pools should have planting in addition to the tubers of submerged
plants. This is to aerate the water and keep it pure and sweet. The best
kinds to be used for this purpose are Anacharis Canadensis Gigantea, and
Canbomba Viridifolia, ten of them being enough for a large pool. The
former is a giant water weed with dark green ovate leaves and light
stems. It is a quick grower and considered by authorities to be one of
the best oxygenators in existence. The latter, sometimes known as
Washington grass, is also popular. It has brilliant glossy green leaves,
fan-shaped and more beautiful than a delicate fern. In addition to this
why not use the Ludwigia Munlerti, which is one of the prettiest
submerged plants. It shows small ovate leaves that are green on the
upper side and pink on the under. This makes it distinct from any other
aquarium plant.

A great help in the way of nourishment for these water lilies is the
application when first planted or in the early spring of dried blood
manure. The proper way of using this is to broad cast it on the surface
of the water, using one pound to every ten square feet of surface.

Too many people make the mistake of keeping the water too cold. This
necessitates the filling of the pool and the leaving it to grow warm
through exposure to the sun for several days before planting. When
additional water has to be added, it should be some that has stood in
the sun for several days, as cold water injures the growth. The
condition for growth is the same for both the tender and the hardy
Nymphæas with the exception that the former should not be planted until
after warm weather sets in. It is well, however, to grow them in pots so
that they will be of fair size by June first when the weather has become
suitable for their outdoor existence.

If the pond is to be large, why not use groups, but if small, single
ones will do. For their planting, the hardy variety can be sown in
either fall or spring, as one fancies. They should have a small hole cut
through the shell of each seed with a sharp knife that they may do
better. For the tender kind, do not put them out until they are well
started. They should be sown in pots or pans, covering the seeds with
one-fourth of an inch of sand, giving them a thorough watering and
allowing them to drain for an hour. Then submerge them under two inches
of soil at a temperature of seventy degrees. These can be removed into
separate pots when they have shown two leaves. This kind is very
desirable for cutting, the best for this purpose being the
night-blooming varieties.

The Pygmæa hybrid type and the Laydekri, as well, are desirable for
hardy variety. The former is the smallest water lily in cultivation, a
free bloomer showing white flowers, one and a half inches in diameter,
while the Pygmæa Helvola, yellow in coloring, is very dainty. A
combination of these two colors is always interesting, while if you wish
the latter kind, why not try the Laydekria Rosea, which is a French
hybrid and one of the earliest in introduction. Only a few specimen
plants are found cultivated at the present time. The flowers are of
delicate pink with a deep golden center that deepens into a dark shade
of rose, presenting a novel feature in that it seemingly is one plant
showing different colors. Another variety of this same order is the
Laydekri Lilacea, three to five inches across, shading from rosy lilac
to bright carmine and sending forth a fragrance like a tea rose. The
Sultan is also very valuable on account of its free flowering, the
plants showing never less than six flowers open daily. These are of good
size Solferina red with white shading and yellow stamens. This is very
rare and therefore brings a high price.

[Illustration: THERE IS AN EVER-CHANGING BEAUTY TO A GARDEN WHOSE PATHS
ARE BROKEN HERE AND THERE BY POOLS]

Of the day-blooming varieties, we find the Capensis with flowers of rich
sky blue. This planted in contrast with the Ovalifolia, a new variety
from East Africa, produces flowers eight to ten inches across of deep
creamy white, faintly tinged with blue that deepen until the tips are
a light corn flower blue with sulphur yellow stamens. The charm of this
flower is its petals which are long and narrow, giving it a pretty star
shape.

For the night blooming Nymphæas, why not use the Dedoniensis, which
throws out large, pure red flowers often showing from twelve to eighteen
blooms at a single time, also the Dentata whose white flowers measure
from eight to twelve inches in diameter and open out horizontally.

Do not forget in your collection to include the Royal Water Lily. Of
these, the Victoria Regia is a well-known species. While the plants are
expensive, the seeds can be bought for a much more reasonable price and
are more interesting as one can watch them from their start until
blossoming. The Victoria Trickeri is also desirable. In good condition
its leaves are from four and a half to five and a half feet across, a
single plant having from twelve to fifteen leaves and producing three or
four flowers in a single week. These flowers are picturesque, being
white at the time of opening and changing to deep rose pink, admitting a
strong fragrance not unlike that of a ripe pineapple.

In addition to water lilies one should plant different aquatics, to
make a variety. There is the Sagittaria Montevidensis, which attains
gigantic proportions, growing four or five feet high with leaves fifteen
inches long, the flower towering above, the foliage white with dark
blotches at the base of each petal. Then there is the Butterfly Lily, a
tender sub-aquatic plant that forms a dense clump three to six feet high
bearing masses of pure white fragrant flowers that look like large white
butterflies borne in large terminal clusters.

The Water Poppy must not be forgotten. It is a very pretty aquatic plant
with floating leaves and large yellow poppy-like flowers, and a
continual bloomer.

The border of the lily pond is of almost as much importance as the
flowers themselves. Iris makes a good setting. Of these, the Iris
Hexagona, or Blue Flag, is interesting from the fact that it is a hardy
Southern kind, showing rich purple and blue with yellow markings three
to four inches across and resembling the costliest and rarest orchid
flowers. The Dalmatica is one of the finest of the German type. It grows
four feet high with exceptionally large flowers of fine lavender, the
falls shaded blue. The Japanese Iris is the grandest of all the hardy
ones and the best are the double varieties with six petals. Kokinoiro, a
rich royal purple with white veining is very satisfactory in growth.
Combine it with the Sano-Watashi, which is white with canary yellow
center, and the Tokyo, a magnificent large, white flower, and you will
find one of the best combinations possible.

Ornamental grasses are very effective for this use. Of these, there are
so many varieties it would be impossible to name them all. One of the
most ornamental kinds is the Zebra grass, which has long, narrow green
leaves, striped white and feathery plumed. Mix it with the Pampas grass
and you will note the artistic result. This grows very rapidly from seed
planted in the spring and is useful for decorative purposes. The Feather
grass, growing two feet in height, fits into this scheme as does the
Tricholæna Rosea, which is rose tinted, making a color scheme when
massed with the other ornamental grasses that is most fascinating.

The form and surroundings of the pool, carefully thought out, make it a
most desirable feature for both small and large gardens, and everyone,
no matter how limited their means, can indulge in one if they wish.



THE SUN-DIAL IN THE GARDEN


[Illustration: GRASSY PATHS LEAD PLEASANTLY TO THE SUN-DIAL]



CHAPTER IX

THE SUN-DIAL IN THE GARDEN


The life story of the sundial reads like a fascinating page from some
old romance of an early century. The first record of its use was in the
eighth century before Christ, when it was employed by the Babylonians
for the purpose of marking time. Later on, it came into use in England,
attached to public buildings. One of the most interesting was shown late
in the sixteenth century on the Belton House, Lincolnshire, England. It
was a representation of old Father Time and Cupid cutting stone.

A passing fad at one time was diminutive sundials, so small that they
folded and could be used much as watches are to-day. They soon became
very popular and attracted the attention of royalty, when Charles I was
seated on the throne. His collection was the largest in existence and
represented all sorts of odd shapes and forms. The Stuarts were all
interested in sundials, and Charles II had a large one designed and
placed in the garden at Holyrood.

While the first invented were crude, yet, as time went on, they became
more popular, and different materials were used, such as wood, bronze
and metal. The hour spaces were computed to comply with the locality in
which they were placed. This required a great deal of thought and it was
necessary to employ an expert workman.

Flowers and hedge plants were occasionally used to represent this idea.
One of these stood between the "Shakespeare garden" and the "garden of
friendship" at Lady Warwick's summer home. The gnomon being of yew while
the dial was worked out by the use of box, the lettering was outside and
spelled the following motto--"Les Heures Heureuses ne se comptent pas."
This, as far as we know, was the first attempt at the use of
floriculture in time pieces.

Sundials might be divided into two kinds, the perpendicular and the
horizontal. Each one of these has its own special place, the former
being used on buildings while the latter was for garden purposes solely.
In New York, one of the old perpendicular dials may still be seen on the
Dutch Reformed Church.

The horizontal was extremely popular in both England and Scotland, so
much so that no garden of any pretention was considered complete without
one or more of these ornamental time-keepers. The high favor in which
the "simple altar-like structure," with its "silent heart language," was
held in England was well expressed by Charles Lamb, who said of the
sundial, "It stood as the Garden god of Christian gardens."

It is the revival of this old-time custom that has given a delightful
touch of sentiment to the gardens of to-day, where sundials have become,
more especially of late years, a permanent fixture. Many of these have
interesting mottoes, some repeating the legends of other days, while
later designs bear on their face a modern inscription.

  "_Let others tell of storm and showers,
  I'll only count your sunny hours._"

  "_Time goes you say--ah, no!
  Time stays, we go._"

  "_I mark the time, dost thou?_"

  "_Tyme passeth and speaketh not,
  Deth cometh and warneth not,
  Amend to-day and slack not,
  To-morrow thyself cannot._"

By the time the American colonists had leisure to devote to the laying
out of beautiful gardens, the day of the sundial was drawing to a close.
The introduction of clocks had done away with the necessity of depending
upon such fair-weather time pieces, and furthermore, they were no longer
popular in other lands. So, despite its charm and value as an ornament,
it was not widely adopted in this country. Of late years, however, in
the general revival of old-time customs, this interesting feature for
gardens has come into favor.

The making of one of these time pieces can be carried out by a village
carpenter, but the purchasing of an old one had better be done by an
expert as there are so many reproductions placed to-day on the market.
All that is essential in order to work out proper results is that the
dial should have a firm and absolutely level base to rest on, and that
the gnomon should point directly towards the North Star, so that time
may be accurately computed. A stone pedestal is correct, although
concrete is often used.

The design depends largely upon the type of garden and the owner's
taste. The beautiful, carved pedestals imported from Italy are suitable
only for the formal garden, and for our simple, less pretentious ones,
wood or stone can be used, although cement has become very fashionable.
To soften the lines of a severely simple column, Ivy and other clinging
vines can be placed around the base. The location is a matter that
requires some thought, as the sundial's charm depends upon harmonious
setting. It should be exposed to the sun continuously and placed far
enough away from trees or buildings to preclude the possibility of its
being shaded.

There is no set rule that can be laid down for its placing. One is
usually safe, however, in locating it at the intersection of two paths
near a vine-clad pergola or within sight of a summer house or garden
seat. Formal gardens use it frequently as a central feature. If,
however, a water garden takes this central place, the sundial should be
at the end of some alluring path surrounded by masses of bright bloom.
The chief fault that we find in contrasting the sundials of a century
ago with those of the twentieth century is that there is now too much
sameness. They seem to follow the same lines, more perhaps, than any
other form of garden furniture.

This can be overcome by designing them yourself, working out new ideas
in the decoration and its motto. Here the gnomons offer a chance for
variation for instead of a plain, simple shaft, it can be changed into
an ornamental design that helps out in changing it from monotony to
originality.

For the simple garden, why not make one yourself? It is not a hard
matter, that is if you have any ingenuity. The only thing we must
consider is to have it set perfectly even, to be sure the pedestal is
carefully laid so that it will not tip and spoil the marking of the
hours. There are so many materials that you can construct one from,
there is no need of sameness. The most inexpensive is the rustic
sundial. This is made from a small tree trunk. It should be about six to
eight inches in diameter, tapering at the top, and show branches
irregularly cut within three or four inches of the main trunk. There is
a reason for this; it adds picturesqueness to the effect and gives
pegs for the vines to climb over. Do not top it with a wooden dial. They
are never satisfactory, for they are apt to warp and thus ruin the
entire scheme. You need not go to great expense to procure a
satisfactory one, for there are many materials to draw from, iron, brass
and slate being the most desirable. The latter are not expensive as they
cost simply the price of the material and engraving. It takes a piece
that ranges from an inch to an inch and a half in thickness and should
not be more than a foot square. For this, one should not pay more than
seventy-five cents, although if it is cut round it will be a little more
expensive. If you prefer to use brass it costs more and needs a
machinist who is used to handling this material to put it together for
you and burnish the surface. You must remember that this applies to the
dial only, the pedestal being a separate proposition.

[Illustration: THE SUN-DIAL IS A FEATURE IN ITSELF]

For a little inexpensive time piece for your garden you can make one of
wood, coloring it any shade that you like but so that it will contrast
prettily with the flowers. The only thing that you must bear in mind is
that care should be taken in its setting. If it is out of plumb it will
not keep good time. Should you, by chance, be able to procure an old
mill stone, it serves two purposes, first it is a practical foundation
and second it lends an old-time setting that is appropriate. For a
simple, every-day foundation, stones can be laid about six inches deep
and filled in with mortar. Cement is also appropriate and oftentimes
bricks can be used to good advantage.

For a pedestal, a rather good idea is to use second-hand bricks. These
can be cemented together with mortar, the red giving a touch of color to
the drapery of the sundial that is picturesque. Sometimes a boulder is
used for this purpose or a slab of stone.

If you purchase a sundial, you should bear in mind that if it is a
genuine antique, it may not be suitable for our latitude. In cases like
that it is best to have it looked after by an expert and so placed that
it will be a correct timekeeper.

We tire of the same idea continuously reproduced so why not work out a
design of your own? This is hard to do, however, unless cement is used,
when some floral design or ornamentation that is appropriate for the
garden can be introduced. For the dial the gnomon is made much more
interesting if it shows a unique formation rather than a straight
shaft, as in the sundial at Didsbury, England, where a harp is
introduced, and in another case where a dragon holds the uplifted shaft.

The situation of this feature has much to do with its practicability. As
it is a sun-loving formation, its proper place is necessarily in the
open, but whether surrounded by lawn or flowers, is something that
everyone must decide for themselves. One reason against the flower
setting is that it serves to hide the dial's meaning until you approach
it closely. The eye is attracted to the bright blooming flowers rather
than to the dial itself. This is not so if it has only a sward setting.
It then becomes a prominent piece of garden furniture, its pure white
surface standing out vividly from its surrounding of soft green grass.

Occasionally, all attempt at floriculture or gardening is abandoned.
This is when it stands in the heart of a garden at the intersection of
two paths. Then care should be taken that in immediate proximity there
should be pure white pebbles picked up on the beach. This may re-act on
the shaft, giving it an air of sameness, and in that case different
colored stones can be introduced. One can even go so far as to work out
mottos in this way, forming the letters out of highly colored pebbles.

To give it a rural appearance, some people set it in the heart of a bed
of ferns. These can be chosen from a single variety such as the Boston
fern, which is one of the most popular on account of its graceful fronds
and the durability which causes it to keep green for a long time.

Should, however, a lower growth be necessary, there is the Dreyii, which
is a dwarf variety of the same species. A much better effect, however,
is obtained by planting the dwarf fern as a border to the circle and
placing inside the Elegantissima, which belongs to the crested variety
and is especially adapted for massing. For a delicate, dainty setting,
there is nothing more beautiful than the Adiantum Ruhm von Mordrecht,
which is the most beautiful of all the maiden hair ferns and easily
cultivated. It is so graceful that it seems to add an almost poetic
touch to the foundation on which the sundial stands.

Have you ever considered placing your sundial in the heart of a rose
garden? Unconsciously, the sweet perfume of the rose does much to
increase the sentiment of this particular feature of garden culture. It
depends in part on the pedestal as to whether low roses or delicate
climbing ones should be used. If it is a plain, simple shaft, it can be
delicately draped to within a few inches of the dial, but great care
should be taken to obtain delicate coloring that will bring out the
whiteness of the marble.

One should be very careful not to have the roses grow so high that only
the dial is visible. This would spoil the idea which it represents--a
sundial in a garden. One of the most artistic ways is to plant low,
dwarf roses, near the pedestal just far enough away so there will be
several inches of space between. The roses themselves should be planted
in heavy clay loam, although light and sandy soil can be used for this
purpose. Many people make a mistake in having their rose beds too rich.
The fertilizer can be replaced, if exhausted, by fine-ground bone, which
can be used only once a year.

The dwarf Polyanthas are a charming class of ever-blooming roses with
bushy habits. The flowers are double, delightfully fragrant and borne in
large clusters, being covered with a large mass of bloom. For a
combination planting, the Baby Dorothy is very effective; it is
carnation pink, with the habit and growth similar to that of the Baby
Rambler. The latter is very effective, rosy crimson in coloring, very
free flowering, and useful in massing effects. Add to that Catherine
Zeimet, which is a great acquisition, to the Baby Ramblers, and produces
an abundance of double white flowers.

Directly around the base of the pedestal, you can plant your climbing
roses, taking great care to nip them back so that they will only show a
tracery of leaves and flowers and allow the white of the sundial to peer
through. For these, use the Lady Gay whose delicate cerise pink blossoms
fade to soft white, making a most pleasing combination of white flowers,
crimson buds and green foliage. In connection with that, why not plant
the Source d'Or, which is deep yellow, gradually paling. This bears
large clusters of double flowers, and shows fine foliage. For red, the
Wall Flower is the best, as it shows a distinct coloring and has
vigorous habits. Mix with that the Shower of Gold, a fine coppery gold
color with glossy foliage.

For the outer edge of the rose bed, do not forget those used in our
grandmother's time. They have lasted long and on account of their
sterling qualities are still popular. They have a range of coloring
and are so absolutely hardy, easy to grow and fragrant that they are
advisable for this use. The Clothilde Soupert is a good color to choose.
It is a strong, vigorous grower, putting forth large, double flowers
like a ball of snow. The color blends from soft shell pink to pure
satiny white. Mix with these the Souvenir de Malmaison, which blooms
well in hot weather, its rich colored flowers being of large size,
doubled to the center and produced in abundance.

[Illustration: AN OLD WELL USED EFFECTIVELY AS A DECORATIVE FEATURE]

For a Hybrid, there is nothing more effective than the Killarney, whose
color is a sparkling brilliant pink, the buds long and pointed, the
petals very large and of great substance, being just as handsome in the
bud form as in the full-blown flower. For a soft, pearly white, the
Kaiserin Augusta Victoria is advisable, tinting to a soft lemon, its
fragrance added to its beautifully formed flowers, make it a joy in your
garden.

A rustic sundial requires far different treatment, and only vines that
bring forth white blossoms or pale colors should be used. If Clematis is
chosen, the Duchess of Edinburgh is suitable as it shows double white
flowers that are very fragrant. Mixed with this can be the Jackmania
Alba, which is white, shaded with blue. The Fair Rosamond, if one
wishes a combination, fits in with the color scheme, being tinted white
with red stripes. The advantage of these flowers is that the blossoms
open in masses that bring out the dark of the wood and lend themselves
to picturesque effects.

Around the foot of the sundial, why not plant Poppies, making a circle
about five inches in width. The Perennial Poppies are among the most
brilliant in coloring, the graceful bright-colored, cup-shaped flowers
being borne on long stems. Mix with them the Oriental Poppies, which are
the most showy plants possible for decorative effects. To fill in the
spaces put in a package of Shirley, the combination of the three
varieties giving a most fascinating touch of color. For the Shirley, why
not use the finest mixed, as it will bring out white, delicate pink,
deep crimson, and handsomely striped varieties. The Perennial is
advantageous because it comes up every year while the Oriental are
magnificent in coloring, more especially the Grand Mogul with bright
crimson flower of immense size, the Princess Ena, bearing large, bright,
orange-scarlet and the Marie Studholme, which is a delicate shade of
salmon with a silver sheen. Nothing can give better effects for this
style of sundial than the clematis with a poppy in the foreground.

Color makes a great difference in proper planting, the white marble or
concrete and possibly wood painted white, demands a strong color to
bring out effectively the white of the surface. The gray stone is not
picturesque unless blues, yellows, or reds are used. These three colors
can be blended so that they form a scheme that is most attractive. When
it comes to brick you will have to depend upon white, or light blue for
coloring. More care should be taken with the planting around this kind
of a pedestal than any other. The red of the brick demands more covering
than any other type. The Hop vine fits into the scheme, but requires a
great deal of trimming lest it overshadows the brick, making a mass of
green without any hint of the brick below. The leaves are fine,
three-lobed, and rough on both sides while the loose paper-like
straw-yellow Hop in the fall hang gracefully from the brick, making a
fluffy but attractive covering.

Fragrance is necessary in the planting of a sundial, then why not use
the Honeysuckle? The Brachypoda is particularly effective for this
purpose. It shows white flowers in pairs, and sends forth a delicious
perfume that attracts one even before the sundial is viewed. The Hall
Evergreen Honeysuckle is also good for this purpose, being a strong
grower and constant bloomer. The flowers open white, change to buff, and
are very delicate in appearance.

This sundial should be set in a circle of green. At the edge of the
border plant Iris. This makes a more effective setting than if a whole
bed of this should be used. The well-known, beautiful Iris of Japan
displays a great variety of colors, the chief of which is white, maroon,
dark blue and violet. Most of them are veined, mottled or flaked with
different colors. There are both single and double varieties. The beauty
of this plant is that it succeeds in any good soil, that is if well
drained and given plenty of water when dry. They can be planted either
in the late summer or spring, as desirable, and should be shown in
masses, growing from two to three feet in height and lasting in blossom
for a month. For double use the Antelope, which shows a white ground
flaked with purple. Mix with it the Beauty which is a pure white. Add to
it the Mount Hood, light blue, shaded darker in the center. These can
be intermixed with the Crested Iris, a dwarf, showing handsome,
light-colored flowers, and the Snow Queen, whose large snow-white
blossoms are free flowering.

The planting around the sundial rests with the whim of the owner,
though, if out-of-the-way ideas can be evolved, it will add much to the
attractiveness of this feature of the garden.



THE FOUNTAIN


[Illustration: NARCISSUS STANDS IN THE HEART OF THE FOUNTAIN]



CHAPTER X

THE FOUNTAIN


Have you ever seated yourself in your garden, more especially on a warm
summer day, and dreamily listened to the musical tinkle of the water
that flowed from the mouth of the fountain, dripping down from the
over-flowing basin into the pool below? It is then you realize what an
attractive ornament it is for your garden for it appeals not only to the
eye but to the ear. Lowell picturesquely describes his idea of this bit
of garden furnishing when he speaks of it as "leaping and flashing," in
the sunlight.

While the pergola, the garden seat and the sundial each have their own
appropriate use, they serve one purpose only. Not so the fountain, which
never fails to convey a delightful impression of coolness, as it gurgles
and murmurs, on its way. Surely there is nothing that gives to the
garden a more picturesque charm than this, standing like a spot of color
in a vivid setting of bright flowering plants. In the pool below one
finds constantly changing pictures of the blue sky, snowy clouds or
summer blossoms, each one worthy of its floral frame.

As the garden fountain is merely an accessory and the beauty of the
constantly dripping water and the rising of the spray are what
constitutes its real charm, the conventional design can be simple or
elaborate but it should follow the garden scheme. It depends upon its
environment as to whether we make it the central feature in the design
or a setting in the wall. Lovely effects can easily be produced if one
is careful in trying to work out a right treatment, for the placing is
fully as much of importance as the planting. Balance should be the main
object.

To the amateur who has had no special training in floriculture, the
introduction of even a simple water spout is of interest. He watches its
workings with a newly awakened enthusiasm, directing its course so that
it falls artistically over the different levels of the rock garden into
the home-made concrete pool below. The introduction of this water
feature gives a distinctive touch to even the simplest little flower
plot. For a larger garden, what is more alluring than a fountain
sending forth a high, vapory stream, bursting into a cloud of filmy
spray? This is especially true when it is viewed through a vista or at
the ending of a vine-shaded pergola. Around it should be planted a
carefully selected combination of flowers or shrubs, great care being
taken that they blend harmoniously.

The size of the fountain and the breadth of the pool lend themselves
more or less effectively to producing alternating sunshine and shade on
the surface of the water. The basin is, in a way, of as much importance
as the fountain design. It is generally round, although occasionally an
oblong design fits better into the landscape effect. It should be from
two to three feet deep and so constructed that the sides slope outward
much like the ordinary wooden water bucket. There is a practical reason
for this, as it prevents cracking during the winter months. The cost
naturally varies, the size materially affecting the price.

The background demands more than passing notice. Nearness of trees is a
decided drawback, as the falling leaves, especially in the autumn, mar
the surface and clog the outlet and make it necessary to clean the basin
frequently.

The best time to plan for any garden ornament is just before the early
fall. The flowers are in their prime and one can better determine
placing than in the early spring when the garden lies bleak and
desolate.

Many garden lovers with a desire for originality feel confident that
they can rely upon their imagination to work out color schemes even
during the winter months. Fortunate is he who accomplishes this
satisfactorily. There is great danger, however, that his castles in the
air may fall to the ground through taking too much for granted. The
grounds do not always meet requirements, and the result is not only
wrong placing but an ornament that is either too large or too small for
its allotted space.

We are far too impatient to obtain results and it is this undue haste
that often ruins the composition of gardens. There is a great
satisfaction in adding to and improving our grounds, much more so than
if the whole work were developed at once. Almost every garden into which
careful thought has been placed grows with its years. Few, if any garden
lovers, but have felt a keen sense of disappointment at the finished
results of their garden schemes. What was satisfying the first year,
has later brought about unhappy combinations. It is this fact that
should be impressed on everyone's mind, if they wish a perfect lay-out.

[Illustration: A ROMAN FOUNTAIN PLACED AGAINST A VERY APPROPRIATE
BACKGROUND]

Probably everybody who has become interested in floriculture finds the
same difficulty in obtaining exactly what they wish. It is often hard to
match ideas with reality. This is another reason for curbing one's
impatience. The right things are sure to be found, that is if one is
willing to take time.

It is when comparing the gardens of the old world with those of to-day
that we are impressed with the atmosphere of the twentieth-century
garden, where nature is encouraged to be genuine rather than artificial.
This is the height of success, the bringing into harmony of paths,
ornaments, and flowers, omitting gaudy effects or over-crowding with
marble fragments. Simplicity should be the key-note in arranging this
part of our ground, a simplicity that has been worked out by careful
thought for it means hard study to obtain natural effects.

There are many materials from which our fountain can be manufactured.
The most expensive of these are marble, terra cotta and manufactured
stone, the former leading the list, while the latter is better suited to
the moderate purse. This last is, in reality, a composition of marble
dust with cement, and the result is most satisfactory, the finished
product showing a smooth surface resembling as nearly as possible that
of unpolished marble. In rare cases, however, chemicals have been used
to produce an antique look. Many people are under the impression that
manufactured stone is always white. As a matter of fact, in the finished
product, there are as many as half a dozen neutral tints shown. These
all incline to a soft, delicate gray, sometimes with a blueish cast.

Terra cotta comes next in cost. A detriment to its use is that,
particularly when it is shown in deep bronze coloring, it does not lend
itself artistically to landscape effect, through lack of contrast with
its surroundings. We find this material with both glazed and unglazed
surfaces, the former being more expensive but not as practical as the
latter. The most strongly recommended coloring is limestone gray, whose
soft, delicate finish brings out the tone of the vines, and emphasizes
the color of the surrounding flowers. Next comes the Pompeian red, only
to be used under certain conditions on account of its color. Colonial
yellow has also been introduced. The two last colors are rarely, if
ever, used for fountain designs, the gray being considered much more
advisable.

There are many reasons why cement is considered practical; its cost, its
wearing qualities, and its appropriate coloring. All these qualities
lend themselves to constructive purposes, and making it decoratively
most desirable.

The architect who suits the design of the garden to the type of the
house will take advantage of this particular material. He has his ideas
concerning the effect that he wishes to bring out, to emphasize the
design of the house. He realizes that there is something more than
interest in botany to be shown if he wishes to make this part of his
plan a success. We have grown to a realizing sense that for the best
results it is better to employ a skilled man. No clever result can be
brought out through an inexperienced person planning the grounds, that
is, unless they have natural ability such as few people possess. We have
only to go back to our Colonial ancestors and study effects. It is then
we realize the difference between home planting and architectural
planting.

Cost is not the only thing to be taken into consideration when creating
garden effects. Character should be considered as well. In order to
obtain this satisfactorily, the accessories should be planned by a
connoisseur, such as an architect becomes after many years' study of the
subject. The fountain is the most important detail and requires more
careful thought than any other part of the garden setting. It makes no
difference what its construction is, so that it fits in with the scheme.

Great care should be taken not to introduce different periods or
materials when placing garden ornaments on our grounds. Take, as an
instance, a home-made fountain and place it in close proximity with an
imported one and note the result. You will see the lack of harmony. The
Italian fountain belongs distinctively to the formal or Italian lay-out,
and should never be used, with the exception of making a central feature
on a lawn, in any other way. If you place the Greek fountain on a
hillside where landscape effects have been worked out through the use of
cascades that dash over terraces and under rustic bridges, you will see
it is entirely out of place and in the wrong surroundings.

[Illustration: AN ARTISTIC FOUNTAIN PARTICULARLY WELL PLACED]

Occasionally, we come across an iron fountain painted black or red. This
metal is cheap and stock designs can be purchased, but the very best
ones are private orders and can never be reproduced. The price varies as
with every other bit of garden furniture from a few dollars up to as
many thousands. The advantage of this metal is that it fits into places
where marble should be avoided.

Pottery fountains have been used within the last few years, and many of
them are very graceful, being turned and finished by hand. This type has
a special mission in our garden, its proper placing being in New England
where the gray rocks, hedges and evergreen predominate. This material is
shown in more colors than almost any other. These include gray, brown,
green, blue, and many shades of terra cotta. This variation of color
makes it adapted to almost any situation. One advantage in their use is
that, strongly reinforced as they are by galvanized steel wires, they
are climate-proof and practically indestructible.

The location of this special garden ornament demands serious attention.
It is often placed where it will attract attention to some special
feature that has been carefully worked out in detail. More especially
is this true when it has been inserted as a part of the retaining wall
and is surrounded by some choice vine whose flowers accentuate the
architecture.

There are so many forms and features connected with this special garden
ornament that there need never be any sameness. It is an ideal medium
with which to recreate the fauns, satyrs and nymphs of the garden.
Animals, too, are often used and so are cupids.

The planting, which is of as much importance as the ornamentation,
depends upon the size of the pool and its location. Shade requires far
different treatment from sunny exposures, while the heart of a grass
plot lends itself to little or no floral embellishment. The finish of
the pool influences the arrangement of the flowers. Should it be very
ornamental, the planting should be far enough away not to shut off its
picture effect in the landscape. If it is simply a curbing, it should
have a setting of green or of low-growing plants.

Often an effective treatment is worked out through a border of velvety
turf outlined by plants. Peonies never fail to bring out the right
coloring of the fountain, that is if they are far enough away not to
cut off the design. They are called rightly the aristocrats of the
flower garden. For mass planting, they are most effective, their great
gorgeous blossoms, daintily dyed and ranging from white to the deepest
red, their wonderful fragrance and their decorative value are
unsurpassed. They can either be planted in solid color or in a
combination that is artistic. The Couronne d'Or, beautiful white in
coloring and showing blossoms of red in the center with a halo of yellow
around, makes a picturesque contrast to the deep green of the tree
leaves. The large, double, ball-shape bloom of the Felix Crousse
intermixed with white, gives one of the most fascinating combinations of
red and white. The beauty of peonies is that they grow anywhere although
they do best in rich, deep soil and with a sunny exposure. They are
perfectly hardy, require no protection and unlike most other plants are
not infested by either insects or disease. All they ask for is plenty of
water during their growing season.

Grandmother's flowers, which are so fashionable to-day, are particularly
desirable as a planting around a fountain. The sweet moss rose trailing
through the grass and mixing its blossoms with the yellow of the Scotch
rose is often used for low effects, or where very little coloring is
advisable. The amount of planting and the height naturally depend upon
the design of the individual fountain. Those that are ornamental are so
effective that they need practically nothing to bring out right effects.

Iris is always in good form. We find it to-day so highly developed that
in comparison to the little fleur-de-lis that grows unmolested in the
neighboring swamp, it seems scarcely a variety of the same flower. As we
are able to buy both double and single Irises, we should make a choice
and not mingle the two. The double with its flowers averaging from eight
to ten inches across, is an artistic foil for the white of the fountain.
Commencing with the German, which comes into bloom about the middle of
May, we can follow the time of blossoming through the introduction of
the Japanese Iris which lasts through July. In their planting, better
effects are produced if two colors only are used. This can be
supplemented by a third if the coloring is broken by the introduction of
a thread of white. For the German, why not use the Honorabilis, which is
a golden yellow with outside yellow petals shading to a mahogany brown,
or the King of Iris, which is a clear yellow. The Florentina Alba
gives the white coloring, its flowers being very large and fragrant.
These two colors can be enhanced by the adding of the Camillian which is
a delicate blue with falls tipped a little darker shade. These are more
suited for a fountain with a low curbing or for an informal garden where
cement is used. They give a very pretty effect, their flowers being
pictured in the water below.

[Illustration: THIS WALL FOUNTAIN WITH ITS SHELL BACKGROUND AND BASIN IS
MOST FITTINGLY PLACED]

Pansies are never out of place. A very pretty idea is to have them
massed for as many as eight inches around the curb. Choose for these,
bright-colored varieties rather than dark. The tufted pansies, which are
one of the most important bedding plants in Europe, are rapidly growing
in favor in our country. One reason for this is that they flower
continuously for nearly eight months in the year. The flowers are not as
large as those of the single pansy, but their bright colors make them a
welcome addition to our garden. The rich, golden yellow, the violet with
a dark eye and the white, are all three admirable for this purpose.

Pansies love coolness and give their largest and finest flowers in early
spring and late fall. They are so easy to grow, rioting in the cool,
deep mellow beds they love, that everybody should use them. They will
endure all winter long if protected by a few evergreen vines. The size
needed for bedding for your fountain depends entirely upon the width of
the bed. The most superb specimens are found among the orchid flowering
ones. They take their name mainly from their tints and variation of
color resembling the gorgeous shades seen in orchids. These are the most
novel and distinctive strain that we have used for years.

Have you ever considered the graceful effect of ornamental grasses? They
can be used with telling effects for the margin of the fountain,
although care must be taken not to plant those that grow to enormous
height. The Euallia Japonica is appropriate. Its long, narrow, graceful
green foliage, flowering into attractive plumes, give it a distinctive
place for this purpose. Mix with it the Zebra grass, whose long blades
are marked with broad yellow bands across the leaf. Intermix with this
the hardy fountain grass which grows only four feet in height and has
narrow foliage, bright green in coloring, cylindrical flower-heads
carried well above the foliage, tinged with a bronze purple and is one
of the most valuable of the hardy grasses.

In the planting of the grasses, to make the best effect give the taller
ones the outside row, letting the low ones fall over the water,
mirroring in the surface below. One of the advantages in using this is
that it attracts birds and butterflies. Nothing can attract the
songsters quicker to your fountain than this kind of surrounding.

Occasionally, we find that instead of planting, beds are geometrically
laid out to surround this, the axis of the garden design. In cases like
this we have to depend upon the borders for effect. These can be
hedge-loving plants or they can be a solid, low planting. Scotch heather
is very pretty. It should be grown in sunny places with moist
surroundings. Its racimes of dark rose pink petals, lasting from July to
September, make it very effective for this purpose. The Japanese
Barberry can also be included, nothing equals it in artistic value. It
requires but little pruning to keep it in shape, while its fruit or
berries, assuming rich brilliant colors in the fall, are most effective
when used for a setting like this.

If possible, try for flowers that have fragrance. It adds so much to the
effect to breathe in the sweet odor as you sit watching the shading of
the flowers, the swaying of the birds, and listening to the musical
tinkle of the water as it drips into the basin below.





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