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Title: A Woman's Hardy Garden
Author: Ely, Helena Rutherford
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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Transcriber's note:

      Text enclosed by underscores is in italics (_italics_).



A WOMAN'S HARDY GARDEN


      *      *      *      *      *      *

[Illustration: Printer's Mark.]

  THE MACMILLAN COMPANY
  NEW YORK · BOSTON · CHICAGO · DALLAS
  ATLANTA · SAN FRANCISCO

  MACMILLAN & CO., LIMITED
  LONDON · BOMBAY · CALCUTTA
  MELBOURNE

  THE MACMILLAN COMPANY
  OF CANADA, LIMITED
  TORONTO

      *      *      *      *      *      *


[Illustration: Rose Arch and Garden Walk.

From a water-color sketch by George B. Bartholomew.]


A WOMAN'S HARDY GARDEN

by

HELENA RUTHERFURD ELY

With Illustrations from Photographs Taken in the Author's Garden
by Professor C. F. Chandler



New York
The Macmillan Company
London: Macmillan & Co., Ltd.
1930

Copyright, 1903,
By the Macmillan Company.

All rights reserved--no part of this book may be reproduced in any form
without permission in writing from the publisher.

Set up and electrotyped. Published January, 1903.

Printed in the United States of America
by Berwick & Smith Co.



  Dedication

  TO THE BEST FRIEND OF MY GARDEN,
  WHO, WITH HEART AND HANDS,
  HAS HELPED TO MAKE IT
  WHAT IT IS



PREFACE


This little book is only meant to tell briefly of a few shrubs, hardy
perennials, biennials and annuals of simple culture. I send it forth,
hoping that my readers may find within its pages some help to plant and
make their gardens grow.

  MEADOWBURN FARM
  October, 1902



TABLE OF CONTENTS


  CHAPTER                                           PAGE

     I. Introduction                                   2

    II. Hardy Gardening and Preparation of
        the Soil                                       9

   III. Laying Out a Garden and Borders Around
        a House                                       19

    IV. How to Plant a Small Plot                     35

     V. The Seed-bed                                  57

    VI. Planting                                      65

   VII. Annuals                                       75

  VIII. Perennials                                    93

    IX. Biennials and a Few Bedding-out
        Plants                                       117

     X. Roses                                        125

    XI. Lilies                                       139

   XII. Spring-flowering Bulbs                       149

  XIII. Shrubs                                       159

   XIV. Water, Walks, Lawns, Box-Edgings, Sun-dial
        and Pergola                                  171

    XV. Insecticides. Tool-room                      189

   XVI. Conclusion                                   203



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS


                                                    FACING
                                                     PAGE

  Rose arch and garden walk      _Frontispiece_
  From a water-color sketch made by George D.
  Bartholomew

  Garden gate, with Japanese gourds                    1
  September twenty-ninth

  Broad grass walk                                     5
  August twenty-fifth

  A shady garden walk                                 12
  May thirty-first

  Asters blooming in a border                         16
  September fifteenth

  A clump of Valerian                                 19
  June sixth

  _Rhododendron maximum_ and Ferns along north
  side of house, with _Ampelopsis Veitchii_          23
  July fourth

  Arch over Rose-walk covered with Golden
  Honeysuckle and _Clematis paniculata_               26
  September fifteenth

  _Rhododendron maximum_ under a cherry tree          30
  July fourth

  Vase of Delphinium (Perennial Larkspur)             33
  June twenty-first

  Vase of Peonies                                     39
  June sixth

  _Lilium speciosum rubrum_                           42
  September fifteenth

  Vase of Altheas                                     48
  September sixteenth

  Planting on the edge of lawn                        51
  August second

  Asters in rows for picking                          55
  August twenty-fifth

  Foxgloves--seedlings ready for final transplanting  58
  September twenty-ninth

  Long grass walk, with _Narcissus Poeticus_ blooming
  in the border                                       62
  April twenty-sixth

  Long grass walk, with Peonies in the border         65
  June sixth

  Long grass walk, with Foxgloves blossoming in
  the border                                          67
  June thirteenth

  Long grass walk, with Hydrangeas; Rudbeckias
  in background                                       78
  August twenty-fifth

  A single plant of Asters                            80
  September tenth

  Poppies growing in rows                             83
  July fourteenth

  A bowl of Cosmos                                    87
  September twenty-ninth

  A mass of Phlox; Rudbeckias in the background       90
  August second

  Hollyhocks in blossom                               94
  July twelfth

  A single plant of Delphinium (Perennial Larkspur)   97
  June twenty-first

  Yuccas in blossom                                  103
  July twelfth

  Bed of Peonies, on edge of lawn                    106
  June sixth

  A single plant of Phlox                            112
  August twenty-fifth

  Vase of Canterbury Bells                           115
  June twenty-first

  A single plant of Foxgloves, White Sweet
  William in front                                   119
  June thirteenth

  Vase of Foxgloves                                  122
  June fourteenth

  Summer-house covered with Clematis and Crimson
  Rambler Roses                                      126
  June twenty-first

  Rose bed carpeted with Pansies                     129
  June twenty-first

  Canterbury Bells blooming in a border              133
  June twenty-first

  _Lilium auratum_ growing behind Peonies and
  Columbines that bloomed earlier                    140
  August tenth

  Vase of _Lilium auratum_                           144
  August second

  Vase of _Lilium speciosum album_ and _rubrum_      147
  September sixth

  Garden arch, covered with Japanese Gourds          151
  August twenty-seventh

  Vase of Phlox; single blossoms actual size         154
  August second

  _Spiræa Van Houttei_                               158
  May thirty-first

  _Hydrangea paniculata grandiflora_                 161
  August twenty-sixth

  Vase of _Hydrangea paniculata grandiflora_         165
  September tenth

  Vase of double Hardy Sunflowers (_Helianthus
  multiflorus plenus_)                               172
  September fifteenth

  Vase of Monkshood                                  176
  September thirtieth

  Sun-dial in center of formal garden                179
  August second

  The Pergola (first summer)                         190
  August twenty-fifth

  Tritoma (Red-Hot Poker Plant)                      197
  September twenty-eighth

  Bringing in the flowers                            204
  September sixth

[Illustration: Garden gate, with Japanese gourds

September twenty-ninth]



INTRODUCTION



CHAPTER I

INTRODUCTION


Love of flowers and all things green and growing is with many men and
women a passion so strong that it often seems to be a sort of primal
instinct, coming down through generation after generation, from the
first man who was put into a garden "to dress it and to keep it."
People whose lives, and those of their parents before them, have been
spent in dingy tenements, and whose only garden is a rickety soap-box
high up on a fire-escape, share this love, which must have a plant to
tend, with those whose gardens cover acres and whose plants have been
gathered from all the countries of the world. How often in summer, when
called to town, and when driving through the squalid streets to the
ferries or riding on the elevated road, one sees these gardens of the
poor. Sometimes they are only a Geranium or two, or the gay Petunia.
Often a tall Sunflower, or a Tomato plant red with fruit. These efforts
tell of the love for the growing things, and of the care that makes
them live and blossom against all odds. One feels a thrill of sympathy
with the owners of the plants, and wishes that some day their lot may
be cast in happier places, where they too may have gardens to tend.

[Illustration: Broad grass walk

August twenty-fifth]

It has always seemed to me that the punishment of the first gardener
and his wife was the bitterest of all. To have lived always in a garden
"where grew every tree pleasant to the sight and good for food," to
have known no other place, and then to have been driven forth into the
great world without hope of returning! Oh! Eve, had you not desired
wisdom, your happy children might still be tilling the soil of that
blessed Eden. The first woman longed for knowledge, as do her daughters
of to-day. When the serpent said that eating of the forbidden fruit
would make them "as gods," what wonder that Eve forgot the threatening
command to leave untouched the Tree of Life, and, burning to be "wise,"
ate of the fateful apple and gave it to her Adam? And then, to leave
the lovely place at the loveliest of all times in a garden, the cool
of the day! Faint sunset hues tinting the sky, the night breeze gently
stirring the trees, Lilies and Roses giving their sweetest perfume,
brilliant Venus mounting her accustomed path, while the sleepy twitter
of the birds alone breaks the silence. Then the voice of wrath, the
Cherubim, the turning flaming sword!

Through trials and tribulations and hardly learned patience, I have
gained some of the secrets of many of our best hardy flowering plants
and shrubs. Many friends have asked me to tell them when to plant or
transplant, when to sow this or that seed, and how to prepare the beds
and borders; in fact, this has occurred so often that it has long been
in my mind to write down what I know of hardy gardening, that other
women might be helped to avoid the experiments and mistakes I have
made, which only served to cause delay.

But just this "please write it down," while sounding so easy and
presenting to the mind such a fascinating picture of a well-printed,
well-illustrated and prettily bound book on the garden, is quite a
different matter to one who has never written. When you diffidently try
to explain the chaos in your brain, family and friends say, "Oh! never
mind; just begin." That often-quoted "_premier pas_!"

To-day is the first snow-storm of the winter, and, while sitting by
the fireside, my thoughts are so upon my garden, wondering if this or
that will survive, and whether the plants remember me, that it seems as
though to-day I could try that first dreaded step.

Living all my life, six months and sometimes more of each year, in the
country,--real country on a large farm,--I have from childhood been
more than ordinarily interested in gardening. Surrounded from babyhood
with horses and dogs, my time as a little girl was spent out of doors,
and whenever I could escape from a patient governess, whose eyes early
became sad because of the difficulties of her task, I was either riding
a black pony of wicked temper, or was to be found in a lovely garden
with tall Arborvitæ hedges and Box-edged walks, in the company of an
old gardener, one of my very best friends, who for twenty years ruled
master and mistress, as well as garden and graperies. Under this old
gardener, I learned, even as a child, to bud Roses and fruit trees, and
watched the transplanting of seedlings and making of slips; watched,
too, the trimming of grape-vines, fruit trees and shrubs; so that while
still very young I knew more than many an older person of practical
garden work. Then, as I grew older, the interests of a gay girl, and,
later, the claims of early married life and the care of two fat and
fascinating babies, absorbed my time and thoughts to the exclusion of
the garden. But as the babies grew into a big boy and girl, the garden
came to the front again, and, for more than a dozen years now, it has
been my joy,--joy in summer when watching the growth and bloom, and
joy in winter when planning for the spring and summer's work. There is
pleasure even in making lists, reading catalogues of plants and seeds,
and wondering whether this year my flowers will be like the pictured
ones, and always, in imagination, seeing how the sleeping plants will
look when robed in fullest beauty.



HARDY GARDENING AND THE PREPARATION OF THE SOIL



CHAPTER II

HARDY GARDENING AND THE PREPARATION OF THE SOIL


It has not been all success. I have had to learn the soil and the
location best suited to each plant; to know when each bloomed and which
lived best together. Mine is a garden of bulbs, annuals, biennials and
hardy perennials; in addition to which there are Cannas, Dahlias and
Gladioli, whose roots can be stored, through the winter, in a cellar.
All the rest of the garden goes gently to sleep in the autumn, is well
covered up about Thanksgiving time, and slumbers quietly through the
winter; until, with the first spring rains and sunny days, the plants
seem fairly to bound into life again, and the never-ceasing miracle of
nature is repeated before our wondering eyes.

I have no glass on my place, not even a cold-frame or hot-bed.
Everything is raised in the open ground, except the few bedding plants
mentioned whose roots are stored through the winter. Therefore, mine
can truly be called a hardy garden, and is the only one I know at all
approaching it in size and quantity of flowers raised, where similar
conditions exist.

[Illustration: A shady garden walk

May thirty-first]

I have observed that, with few exceptions, the least success with
hardy perennials is found in the gardens of those of my friends whose
gardeners are supposed to be the best, because paid the most. These men
will grow wonderful Roses, Orchids, Carnations, Grapes, etc., under
glass, and will often have fine displays of Rhododendrons. But to most
of them the perennial or biennial plant, the old friend blossoming in
the same place year after year, is an object unworthy of cultivation.
Their souls rejoice in the bedding-out plant, which must be yearly
renewed, and which is beautiful for so short a time, dying with the
early frost, I was astounded last summer on visiting several fine
places, where the gardeners were considered masters of their art, to
see the poor planting of perennials and annuals. I recall particularly
two Italian gardens, perfectly laid out by landscape gardeners, but
which amounted to nothing because the planting was insufficient,--here
a Phlox, there a Lily, then a Rose, with perhaps a Larkspur or a
Marigold, all rigidly set out in single plants far apart, with nothing
in masses, and no colour effects.

To attain success in growth, as well as in effect, plants must be so
closely set that when they are developed no ground is to be seen. If so
placed, their foliage shades the earth, and moisture is retained. In a
border planted in this way, individual plants are far finer than those
which, when grown, are six inches or a foot apart.

First of all in gardening, comes the preparation of the soil. Give
the plants the food they need and plenty of water, and the blessed
sunlight will do the rest. It is wonderful what can be done with
a small space, and how from April to November there can always be
a mass of bloom. I knew of one woman's garden, in a small country
town,--house and ground only covering a lot hardly fifty by one hundred
feet,--where, with the help of a man to work for her one day in the
week and perhaps for a week each spring and fall, she raises immense
quantities of flowers, both perennials and annuals. For six months of
the year she has always a dozen vases full in the house, and plenty to
give away. More than half the time her little garden supplies flowers
for the church, while others in the same village owning large places
and employing several men "have really no flowers."

I remember returning once from a two weeks' trip, to find that my
entire crop of Asters had been destroyed by a beetle. It was a
horrid black creature about an inch long, which appeared in swarms,
devoured all the plants and then disappeared, touching nothing else.
Such a thing had never before happened in my garden. One of the men
had sprayed them with both slug-shot and kerosene emulsion to no
effect,--and so no Asters. My friend with the little garden heard me
bemoaning my loss, and the next day sent me, over the five intervening
miles, a hamper--almost a small clothes-basket--full of the beautiful
things. It quite took my breath away. I wondered how she could do it,
and thought she must have given me every one she had. Yet, upon driving
over in hot haste to pour out thanks and regrets, lo! there were Asters
all a-blow in such quantities in her garden that it seemed as if none
had been gathered.

Except by the sea-coast, our dry summers, with burning sun and, in
many places, frequent absence of dew, are terribly hard on a garden;
but with deep, rich soil, and plenty of water and proper care, it will
yield an almost tropical growth. Therefore, whenever a bed or border
is to be made, make it right. Unless one is willing to take the trouble
properly to prepare the ground, there is no use in expecting success in
gardening. I have but one rule: stake out the bed, and then dig out the
entire space two feet in depth. Often stones will be found requiring
the strength and labor of several men, with crowbars and levers, to
remove them; often there will be rocks that require blasting. Stones
and earth being all removed, put a foot of well-rotted manure in the
bottom; then fill up with alternate layers, about four inches each, of
the top soil, taken out of the first foot dug up, and of manure. Fill
the bed or border very full, as it will sink with the disintegration of
the manure. Finish off the top with three inches of soil. Then it is
ready for planting. If the natural soil is stiff or clayey, put it in
a heap and mix with one-fourth sand, to lighten it, before returning
to the bed. Thus prepared, it will retain moisture, and not pack and
become hard.

[Illustration: Asters blooming in a border

September fifteenth]



LAYING OUT A GARDEN AND BORDERS AROUND THE HOUSE

[Illustration: A clump of Valerian

June sixth]



CHAPTER III

LAYING OUT A GARDEN AND BORDERS AROUND THE HOUSE


Perplexities assail a would-be gardener on every side, from the day it
is decided to start a garden. The most attractive books on the subject
are English; and yet, beyond the suggestions for planting, and the
designs given in the illustrations, not much help is to be derived in
this latitude from following their directions. In England the climate,
which is without great extremes of heat and cold, and the frequent
rains, with the soft moist atmosphere, not only enable the English
gardener to accomplish what would be impossible for us, but permit him
to grow certain flowers out of doors that here must be housed in the
winter. Daffodils and Narcissi bloom in England, near the coast, at
the end of February and early in March,--Lilies-of-the-Valley in March.
Many Roses live out of doors that would perish here during our winters.
Gardening operations are begun there much earlier than in this part, at
least, of the United States, and many of the methods for culture differ
from those employed here. In England there is excess of moisture;
therefore, care in securing good drainage is essential, while here,
except in low places near streams, special provision for drainage is
rarely necessary. It is more important to have a deep, rich preparation
of the soil, so that plants may not be dried out. A serious part of
the gardener's work during the average summer consists in judicious
watering of the garden.

One writer will say that this or that plant should have sun, another
that it does best in the shade. One advocates a rich soil, another
a light sandy soil; so that after all, in gardening, as in all else
in life, experience is the best teacher, either your own or that of
others who have already been successful under similar conditions.

A garden is almost sure to be gradually increased in size, and its
capacity limited only by the grounds of the owner and his pocket-book.
The possibilities and capabilities of a couple of acres are great, and
will give the owner unlimited pleasure and occupation.

Individuality is one of the most marked of American characteristics;
hence, in making a place, whether it is big or little, the tastes and
individuality of the owner will generally direct his efforts, and no
hard and fast rules can be given.

In starting a garden, the first question, of course, is where to plant.
If you are a beginner in the art, and the place is new and large, go to
a good landscape gardener and let him give advice and make you a plan.
But don't follow it; at least not at once, nor all at one time. Live
there for a while, until you yourself begin to feel what you want, and
where you want it. See all the gardens and places you can, and then,
when you know what you want, or think you do, start in.

The relation of house to grounds must always be borne in mind, and
simplicity in grounds should correspond with that of the house. A craze
for Italian gardens is seizing upon people generally, regardless of the
architecture of their houses. To my mind, an Italian garden, with its
balustrades, terraces, fountains and statues, is as inappropriate for
surrounding a colonial or an ordinary country house as would be a Louis
XV drawing-room in a farm-house.

[Illustration: _Rhododendron maximum_ and Ferns along north side of
house, with _Ampelopsis Veitchii_

July fourth]

What is beautiful in one place becomes incongruous and ridiculous in
another. Not long ago, a woman making an afternoon visit asked me to
show her the gardens. Daintily balancing herself upon slippers with
the highest possible heels, clad in a costume appropriate only for a
fête at Newport, she strolled about. She thought it all "quite lovely"
and "really, very nice," but, at least ten times, while making the
tour, wondered "Why in the world don't you have an Italian garden?"
No explanation of the lack of taste that such a garden would indicate
in connection with the house, had any effect. The simple, formal
gardens of a hundred years ago, with Box-edged paths, borders and
regular Box-edged beds, are always beautiful, never become tiresome,
and have the additional merit of being appropriate either to the fine
country-place or the simple cottage.

[Illustration: Plan for a Small Plot]

For a small plot of ground, like the one before mentioned, the plan
of which is on page 24, the matter is simple, because of the natural
limitations. I love to see a house bedded, as it were, in flowers.
This is particularly suitable for the usual American country house,
colonial in style, or low and rambling. Make a bed perhaps four feet
wide along three sides of the house,--south, east and west. Close
against the house plant the vines. Every one has an individual taste
in vines,--more so, perhaps, than in any other ornamental growth. If
the house be of stone, and the climate not too severe, nothing is
more beautiful than the English Ivy. It flourishes as far north as
Princeton, New Jersey. I have never grown it, fearing it would be
winter-killed.

_Ampelopsis Veitchii_, sometimes called Boston Ivy, grows rapidly,
clinging closely to the wall and turning a dark red in the autumn, and
is most satisfactory.

The Virginia Creeper, and the Trumpet Creeper, with its scarlet
flowers, are both beautiful, perfectly hardy, and of rapid growth. All
of these vines cling to stone and wood, and, beyond a little help for
the first two or three feet, need not be fastened to the house. Care
must be taken to prevent the vines growing too thickly to admit sun and
air to the house.

If the house be of wood, the question of repainting must be
considered. Both the White and the Purple Wistaria, which can be
twined about heavy wire and fastened at the eaves, Rambler Roses and
Honeysuckles may be grown. They can be laid down, to permit painting.
But, if the house be of wood and well covered with vines, put off the
evil day of painting until it can be deferred no longer, and then have
it done early in November. Never, never permit it to be done in the
spring, or before November, unless you would take the risk of killing
the vines or of losing at least a season's growth. The house surrounded
by my gardens is colonial, something over a hundred and fifty years
old, stern and very simple. Tall locusts, towering above the roof, and
vines that cover it from ground to eaves, have taken away its otherwise
puritanical and somewhat uncompromising aspect. These vines are mostly
the ordinary Virginia Creeper, which I had dug from the woods and
planted when the first fat baby was two months old. Now their main
trunks are, in places, as large as my arm. They have never been laid
down. Whenever the house has been repainted, I have been constantly
by, and admonished the men to gently lift the heavy branches while
painting under them, and not to paint the light tendrils. When the
master-painter has remonstrated, that it was not a "good job" and took
three times as long as if the vines were laid down, my reply has been,
that "three times" was nothing in comparison with the years it had
taken to grow them, and that stunting or killing the vines could never
be a "good job."

[Illustration: Arch over rose-walk, covered with Golden Honeysuckle and
_Clematis paniculata_. September fifteenth]

Among the creepers are the Crimson Rambler Rose and the Honeysuckle. In
three years the Roses have grown above the second-story windows.

_Clematis paniculata_, with its delicate foliage and mass of starry
bloom in early autumn, is particularly good to plant by veranda posts
in connection with other vines. It grows luxuriantly and is absolutely
hardy. The large white-flowered Henryi and purple-flowered Jackmani
Clematis, though of slow growth, should always have a place, either
about a veranda, a summer-house or a trellis, for the sake of their
beautiful flowers.

While waiting for the hardy vines to make their first year's growth,
the seeds of the Japanese Morning-Glory, the Japanese Moonflower and
_Coboea scandens_ may be planted. All of these will grow at least ten
feet in a summer, and cover the bare places. But I would not advise
sowing them among the hardy vines, except the first summer. In their
luxuriance they may suffocate the Roses and Clematis. The seeds of the
Moonflower must be soaked in hot water, and left over night, before
sowing. So much for the vines about a house.

In front of the vines, and on the south side in the same bed, plant
masses of Hollyhocks, from eight to twelve in a bunch, and Rudbeckia in
bunches of not more than five, as they grow so large. Hollyhocks and
Rudbeckias plant two feet apart; they will grow to a solid mass. In
front of these, again, put a clump of Phloxes, seven in a bunch, and
Larkspur, _Delphinium formosum_ being the best. On either side of the
Delphinium have clumps of about a dozen _Lilium candidum_, which bloom
at the same time. Edge the border with Sweet Williams, three kinds
only,--white, pink and dark scarlet.

I should not advise making all the borders around a house alike. The
easterly one will be most lovely if planted with tall ferns or brakes,
taken from near some stream in early April, before they begin to grow.
These will become about four feet high if you get good roots and keep
them wet. Plant in among them everywhere Auratum Lilies, and you will
have a border that will fill your heart with joy. On the north side
of the house it is not possible to have much success with vines, as
they need the sun. They will grow, but not with great luxuriance. Here
plant two rows of the common _Rhododendron maximum_, which grows in our
woods. I crave pardon for calling it "common," since none that grows is
more beautiful.

In front of these plant ferns of all kinds from the woods, and edge the
border with Columbines. If these Rhododendrons do not grow in your
vicinity, they can be ordered from a florist. In the hills, about five
miles from us, acres of them grow wild, and twice a year I send my men
with wagons to dig them up. They stand transplanting perfectly if care
is taken to get all the roots, which is not difficult, as they do not
grow deep. Keep them quite wet for a week after planting, and never
let them get very dry. A good plan is to mulch them in early June to
the depth of six inches or more with the clippings of the lawn grass,
or with old manure. When once well rooted, the Rhododendrons will last
a lifetime. They seem to bear transplanting at any season. Some think
they do best if taken when in full bloom. I have always done this in
April or late October, and, of a wagon-load transplanted last October,
all have lived. Many of these were like trees, quite eight feet tall
and too large to be satisfactory about the house, so they were set
among the evergreens in a shrubbery.

[Illustration: _Rhododendron maximum_ under a Cherry tree

July fourth]

In cold localities, where the thermometer in winter falls below zero,
Rhododendrons should be mulched with stable litter or leaves to the
depth of one foot, after the ground has frozen. They should also have
some protection from the winter sun, which can be easily given them by
setting evergreen boughs of any kind into the ground here and there
among them. Rhododendrons are as likely to be killed by alternate
freezing and thawing of the ground in winter as by summer drought.

The lovely _Azalea mollis_, and many beautiful varieties of imported
Rhododendrons, are usually described as "hardy," but I cannot recommend
them to those who live where the winters are severe. In such places
their growth is very slow, and many perish.

Maidenhair, the most beautiful of the hardy ferns, is to be found in
quantities in many of our woods, particularly those covering hillsides.
Their favorite spot is along the edges of mountain brooks. I know
such a hillside, where Maidenhair Ferns are superb. But nothing
would induce me to venture there again, since I have been told it was
infested with rattlesnakes, and that the woodchoppers kill a number of
them every year. This fact, too, gives me scruples about sending the
men to dig them up, although it is an awful temptation.

All ferns should be transplanted late in the autumn, or very early
in the spring before the fronds are started, as they are very easily
broken. This is particularly the case with ferns from wet places. When
planted on the east or north side of a house, the tall ones at the
back, and Maidenhair and other low varieties in front, they make a
beautiful bank of cool green. They must be kept moist, however, to be
successful, and in dry weather require a daily soaking.

[Illustration: Vase of Delphinium (Perennial Larkspur)

June twenty-first]

The Cardinal Flower, whose natural haunt is along the banks of streams,
and whose spikes are of the most beautiful red, can also be safely
transplanted, and will bloom in deep, rich soil equally well in shade
or sun and will be very effective among the Ferns. About the end of
November, after cutting the dead stalks, cover each plant with a piece
of sod, laid grass-side down. Remove this the first of April, and the
little sprouts will soon appear above the ground. Cardinal Flowers
bloom for nearly a month--during the last two weeks of August and first
two weeks of September.



HOW TO PLANT A SMALL PLOT



CHAPTER IV

HOW TO PLANT A SMALL PLOT


I am frequently surprised to hear people say, "Oh, a flower garden is
very nice, but such a trouble!" I have heard this expression several
times from friends who employ a number of men and have large places
with extensive lawns, shrubberies and vegetable gardens, but without
flowers, except, perhaps, a few annuals growing among the vegetables.

Yet no one is indifferent to the beauty of garden, or unobservant of
the improvement which even a few flowers can make around the humblest
cottage. Think of the pretty thatched cottages one sees everywhere in
England and France, covered to the eaves with Roses and Clematis, and
surrounded by flowers growing wherever they can find root in the tiny
gardens. Yet all this is the result of only a half hour's daily care
after the long day's work is done.

One should begin with a few plants--perhaps a dozen only--and the
"trouble" will soon become a delight, unless one is devoid of all love
for flowers.

[Illustration: Vase of Peonies

June sixth]

Whenever I hear remarks on the "trouble" of a flower garden, I think of
those peasant homes, and also of a little plot grown and cared for by
a certain tenant farmer's wife I know. She has six children, and must
cook and bake and clean for four men in addition; yet, some time every
day, she finds a few minutes to tend her flowers. She has a border
along the fence four by fifty feet, filled with perennials; a border
across the front of her house with Phlox and Funkias, and a couple of
beds with Asters, Poppies, Balsams, Portulaca and Pinks. The perennials
were given her, a few at a time. She separated the roots, saved the
seeds to raise others, and has been able in this way to increase her
borders. The seeds of the few annuals she buys do not cost more than a
dollar a year. Thus, for a trifling expenditure and a short time every
day, this woman makes her humble surroundings beautiful, while her
soul finds an object upon which to expend its love of beauty, and her
thoughts have a respite from the daily cares of life.

Many people have the mistaken idea that a flower garden, however small,
is an expensive luxury, and are so convinced of this, that they never
venture any attempt at gardening, and pass their lives knowing nothing
of its pleasures.

Let us suppose some one is starting a suburban home in a simple way,
and see how flowers can be had for many months at small cost. If one
has a place in a town or village, the plot of ground not over fifty
by two hundred feet, still the possibilities are great, and the owner
can easily gather flowers for herself and her friends from April until
mid-November. A house or cottage on such a piece of ground generally
stands back from twenty to fifty feet, with a gravel or flagged walk
running to the street. If the owner be a beginner in gardening and
expects to do most of the work herself, let her commence with a few
plants in a small space. As the plants thrive and become beautiful,
the care of them will give an added pleasure to life, and, little by
little, the beds and borders can be increased.

In beginning to plant a small plot, the most natural place first is
a border, say two feet wide, on either side of the walk leading from
the house to the street. Have these borders dug out and made properly.
Then, if the owner wishes to see them continually abloom, bulbs must be
planted, to give the early spring flowers. Tulips can be had for eighty
cents a hundred, _Narcissus Poeticus_ for sixty-five cents a hundred,
and Yellow Daffodils for one dollar and twenty-five cents a hundred.
Hyacinths are more expensive, and cost from four dollars a hundred up.
If a hundred each of the Tulips, Narcissi, Hyacinths and Daffodils
were planted they would make the borders lovely from early in April
until late in May. The Daffodils will bloom first, then the Hyacinths,
followed by the Narcissi, and the Tulips last, if care is taken to buy
a late variety.

There should certainly be three or four Peonies in the borders,--pink,
white, and dark red; good roots of these can be had for about
thirty-five cents each. Once planted, they should not be disturbed for
years; and, although the first season they may not yield more than two
or three blossoms, in each succeeding year the flowers will increase
in number. A friend told me, not long ago, that she had counted sixty
blossoms upon each of several of her plants.

There should also be at least a dozen Columbines (Aquilegias) to bloom
the end of May and the first of June. The roots of these can be bought
for a dollar and a half a dozen, or they can be raised from seed; in
the latter case, however, they would not bloom until the second year,
being perennials.

No border can be complete without Delphiniums (Larkspur). Good-sized
roots of the _Delphinium formosum_, lovely dark blue, are a dollar
and twenty-five cents a dozen. _Formosum Coelistina_, the light blue
variety, is two dollars and a half a dozen. Then, of course, there must
be other perennials,--Phlox, at least a dozen plants in the different
colours, which will cost a dollar and a half.

A few Lilies will add greatly to the beauty of the borders. Tiger
Lilies, which are only sixty cents a dozen; Auratums, which can be had
from eighty-five cents a dozen up, according to the size of the bulbs;
_Speciosum rubrum_ from eighty-five cents a dozen up, and Candidums,
or Madonna Lilies, a dollar and a half a dozen. German Iris, a dollar
a dozen, and Japanese Iris, at a dollar and a quarter a dozen, should
also have a place.

[Illustration: _Lilium speciosum rubrum_

September fifteenth]

Excellent Gladioli can be bought for a dollar and fifty cents a
hundred, and these will be most satisfactory if planted in the border
about May fifteenth in groups of six to ten.

A dozen Chrysanthemums of the hardiest varieties to be obtained, and
costing a dollar and a half a dozen, will, with the other plants
mentioned, about fill two borders two feet wide by thirty long. It
would also be well to sow the seeds of some Calendulas, Nasturtiums
and Asters wherever there may be a vacant place. Or better, perhaps,
sow the seeds in boxes in mid-April, and transplant to the border the
early part of June. The first cost will be the only expense for these
borders, except in the case of the Auratum Lilies, which will die out
in about three years, and of the few flower seeds. The only care needed
is to keep the borders free from weeds, to stir the soil every week,
and to water after sunset in dry weather.

It will be seen, from the following list, that such borders can easily
be made and planted at a cost of less than thirty dollars. This can be
reduced by omitting the Hyacinths. Directions for planting are given
elsewhere.

                                           PRICE

  Tulips                                   $0 80
  Narcissi                                    65
  Daffodils                                 1 25
  Hyacinths                                 4 00
  Peonies                                   1 40
  Columbines                                1 50
  _Delphinium Formosum_                     1 25
  _Delphinium Coelestina_                   2 50
  Phlox                                     1 50
  Tiger Lilies                                60
  Auratum                                     85
  _Lilium rubrum_                             85
  _Lilium candidum_                         1 50
  Japanese Iris                             1 25
  _Iris Germanica_                          1 00
  Chrysanthemums                            1 50
  Flower seeds                              1 00
  Three days' work, at $1.50 per day        4 50
  Manure                                    1 50
                                          ------
        Total                             $29 40

After a year or two, the owner of the cottage may want to increase the
flower garden, and the next place to plant is close about the house. It
is to be taken for granted that the house and piazzas have the proper
gutters. This is necessary, of course, for the preservation of the
house, and without gutters the drip from the eaves would be such that
nothing could grow directly against the house.

The bed might be three feet wide and run across the front of the house
on either side of the steps. The owner would probably wish to plant
vines over the porch or piazza, in case it has not already been done.
The best for this purpose are mentioned elsewhere.

Should the house front the south, east or west, nearly everything
can be grown; but should it face the north, nothing but Ferns and
Rhododendrons would be successful on the front. Dahlias of the Cactus
variety, in different colours, could be planted at the back of the bed
on one side of the steps. Get good-sized roots, plant them two feet
apart. They will grow against the house like a tall hedge. If planted
the third week in April quite deep, say eight inches, they will begin
to bloom about the sixth of July, and continue to be covered with
flowers until killed by frost. In front of the Dahlias, plant white
Phlox. In front of the Phlox sow a row of _Centaurea_ or Cornflowers,
the Emperor William variety. These should be sown early in April, will
begin to bloom by June tenth, and, if they are not allowed to go to
seed, will blossom all summer. Sow in front of the Cornflowers, at
the same time, a row of white Candytuft, of the Empress variety. This
also will bloom continuously if the flowers are cut as soon as they
wither. On the other side of the steps, at the back of the bed, plant
Rudbeckia (Golden Glow) two feet apart. The roots should be bought and
planted, preferably in October, otherwise as soon as the frost is out
of the ground in the spring, as they start very early. In front of the
Rudbeckias plant Cannas--the Tarrytown, of most vivid scarlet hue, I
have found the best and freest-flowering of all. The roots should be
planted about May fifteenth.

On the edge of the bed, sow by April fifteenth a row of salmon-pink
Zinnias, and when they are well up, thin out to six inches apart. They
begin to blossom when very small, and will stand considerable frost.
The expense of these beds will be trifling. Rudbeckias of the Golden
Glow variety, one dollar a dozen; the Tarrytown Canna, two dollars and
a half a dozen; Cactus Dahlias, two dollars a dozen; Phlox, one dollar
and a half a dozen. The small quantity of flower seeds required will
cost less than a dollar. A man can easily make the beds in three days.
Therefore, the cost with manure will be less than fifteen dollars.

After a hard frost has killed the tops, the Dahlias, Cannas and
Gladioli should be taken up, the tops cut off, the roots well dried,
and then stored in a cellar that does not freeze. The Canna and Dahlia
roots will have grown so large that they can be divided and it will
be found that there are enough to plant, the following spring, nearly
twice the space they occupied before.

It is impossible, if successful with the borders already planned, for
the owner not to wish for more garden. She sees the neighbors' gardens
with newly opened eyes; flowers and their treatment become an absorbing
topic of conversation, and the exchange of plants a delightful
transaction.

[Illustration: Vase of Altheas

September sixteenth]

It will be seen that the next places to plant are along the boundary
lines of the property. Even if one side only be laid out at a time,
a large number of plants will be required. The owner will find great
pleasure in raising as many of these herself as possible. To accomplish
this, somewhere at the back of the place, a seed-bed should be made,
and in April the seeds of perennials and annuals sown. The border
must be made by September the twentieth and should be at least four
feet wide. Either a hedge can be placed at the back of the border, or
tall-growing flowering shrubs, such as white and purple Lilacs (not the
Persian), Mock Oranges (Syringa), Deutzia and Roses of Sharon (Althea).
These shrubs will grow about equally high, yield an abundance of
flowers, the Altheas in August, the others in May or June, and in four
or five years will form a complete screen from the neighboring grounds.

In front of the shrubs perennials can be planted, taller ones at the
back, lower-growing ones in front, and annuals along the edge. Such a
border, if from fifty to a hundred feet in length, will be a garden by
itself. The plants will do best if closely set, and every vacant space
filled in June with annuals. Weeds then have little chance to grow, and
a short time every day will keep such a border in order. The border
can be of any width from four to twelve feet, but when more than four
feet, the front edge should be made with irregular curves to avoid a
stiff appearance.

Shrubs should be set out not later than October tenth, and, as they or
the hedge would be at the back of the bed, the planting of them will
not interfere with the perennials that have already been transplanted
from the seed-bed. Hedges are so much more beautiful than any fence
that ever was built that, in towns or villages where cattle are not
allowed to run at large, hedges should, wherever possible, be used in
place of fences.

To prepare the ground for a hedge, make a trench eighteen inches deep,
put a good layer of well-rotted manure in the bottom and fill up with
earth. When the hedge is planted give it a good top-dressing of manure,
and continue this top-dressing, with a little bone-meal sown on the
surface of the ground, every spring.

[Illustration: Planting on the edge of lawn

August second]

The best and hardiest evergreen hedge is of Hemlock Spruce. Plants of
this can be bought for fifteen dollars a hundred, and should be set
eighteen inches apart.

The Privet is a favorite hedge in this country. It keeps green until
December, and leafs out early in the spring. It is hardy and of rapid
growth. Good plants are six dollars a hundred, and should be planted a
foot apart. Catalogues say that if planted in rich soil one foot apart,
a hedge five feet high can be grown in three seasons. Common Privet is
more hardy than California Privet. _Hydrangea paniculata grandiflora_
makes a beautiful low-growing hedge; good plants can be bought for six
dollars a hundred. _Berberis Thunbergii_, or Barberry, makes a fine
hedge, on account of its beautiful foliage and scarlet fruit. It is,
however, slow-growing.

The owner of a small place should avoid the temptation to scatter
flower beds about the lawn. Keep all the planting along the edges
of the property and around the house, and leave the lawn unbroken
by flower beds. The years when gardening consisted only of beds of
Coleus, Geraniums, Verbenas and bedding plants have passed away, like
the black walnut period of furniture. And even as the mahogany of our
grandfathers is now brought forth from garrets and unused rooms, and
antiquity shops and farm-houses are searched for the good old-time
furniture, so we are learning to take the old gardens for our models,
and the old-fashioned flowers to fill our borders.

The nurseryman of to-day has greatly improved the size and colour
of the old varieties of perennials, so that they are far more
beautiful than formerly, and offer a much greater choice. By skilful
hybridization a hundred or more kinds of Phlox have been developed.
In the same way, numerous varieties of Delphiniums, Iris, Peonies,
Columbines, Canterbury Bells and Foxgloves have been produced. The
old-fashioned annuals also appear in many new forms. In addition to
the pink and white "Painted Lady," the pure white and the dark purple
Sweet Peas of our mothers' time, we may now cultivate some eighty
varieties of this delicate flower. Thus the garden of hardy perennials,
annuals and bulbs will give us a continual sequence of flowers in
every form and colour from April until November, if properly made and
tended.

[Illustration: Asters in rows for picking

August twenty-fifth]



THE SEED-BED



CHAPTER V

THE SEED-BED


The possessor of a garden, large or small, should have a seed-bed,
where seeds of perennials and some of the annuals can be sown and
grown until large enough to be permanently placed. Not only will this
bed give great pleasure in enabling one to watch the plants from the
time the first tiny leaf appears, but also when laden with blossoms in
fullest beauty. The knowledge that you have raised them gives a thrill
of pride in the result which no bought plants, however beautiful, can
impart. It is not necessary to prepare the seed-bed over a foot in
depth, but the soil must be very light and fine, as well as rich. It
is best, if possible, to have a portion of the bed somewhat shaded
from the sun for a part of the day. If this combination cannot be had
in one bed, there should be a second for plants that want less sun.
Biennials must, of course, be sown every year, as they bloom but once,
then die.

Every year some perennials will disappear, killed by severe winters, by
pests of one kind or another, or dying without apparent cause. To keep
up the supply, therefore, some of each variety should be raised every
year.

Foxgloves and Sweet Williams, if allowed to go to seed, will sow
themselves and increase rapidly. The same with Hollyhocks, but, except
on the edges of shrubberies and in wild borders, it is better to cut
the stalk just before the seed is ready to fall, and save it to sow in
the seed-bed.

[Illustration: Foxgloves--seedlings ready for final transplanting

September twenty-ninth]

In my garden, some seventy miles from New York, and where the spring
opens ten days later, I sow my seeds,--the perennials about the tenth
of April and the annuals from April twentieth to May first. Buy the
seeds, if the garden is large, by the ounce or half-ounce; if small, in
the seedsman's packets. I always have the seeds of perennials soaked
for twenty-four hours before planting, and find that by so doing they
are very sure to germinate. Care must be taken, when soaking a number
of different kinds at the same time, to place the name of each variety
of seed under the glass or bowl containing the same. When ready for
planting, pour off the water and mix the wet seeds carefully with very
dry earth, in a cigar-box, which is of the right size and easy to
handle. Then sow, not too deeply, in rows about a foot apart in the
bed, covering very lightly, according to size. One-half inch is enough
for the large seeds. The very fine varieties should simply have the
earth sprinkled on them. If planted too deep they will never come up.
Seeds of annuals do not require soaking.

Pat the earth down firmly with the back of the trowel, sprinkle with a
fine sprinkler late every afternoon, and it is not your fault if you do
not have hundreds and thousands of young plants to make your own place
beautiful and to give to your friends. It is a keen delight, when a
friend says that she has not raised such and such plants this year, to
run and get your trowel and dig a bunch of this and that from the rows
of sturdy little plants. It is a pleasure to know that a bit of your
garden has gone to help make another's beautiful.

One of the greatest pleasures of a garden is in giving flowers and
plants to your friends. Every October, when arranging the borders and
separating plants, I send away great boxes of them, some to fortunate
friends with lovely gardens, but without the same varieties; some to
humble cottage gardens, and others to friends who have never grown
a flower, but would like to try. This year, having made a large new
garden, I was able to give away to friends and neighbors only about
seven hundred plants, not seedlings but large plants and roots.
Generally I can send away far more. Think what a delight this is!

A request for some plants came to me last autumn from the
baggage-master of a railroad station some twenty miles from us, who,
by the boxes of shrubs and plants that came to me, inferred that I
might have some to spare. I learned that all this man's spare time was
spent in his little garden plot, so great was his love of flowers. I
know, too, a village expressman (another whom nature intended for a
gardener), whose little plot of ground is always a mass of beauty. He
has a surprising variety of plants, and every one is a fine specimen of
its kind. His _Anemone Japonica alba_ are the finest I have ever seen,
each one sending up perhaps a dozen slender stalks of the beautiful
flowers. I have had great difficulty with this plant and have lost
dozens of them. I always drive very slowly by the expressman's garden,
burning with envy and wondering how he does it. In fact, it was only
last year that I had my first success with these obdurate plants. They
must grow under trees whose branches are sufficiently high to admit
the sun half the day. As they bloom in September and October, the tree
protects them from the frost, and in winter they should be well covered
with stable litter. They are among the few plants to be set out in the
spring, for if not well established they are always winter-killed.

It is well not to empty the perennial seed-bed entirely in the autumn,
but to leave a few plants of each variety to transplant in the spring,
to take the place of those which have not survived the winter. When the
bed is empty, in the spring, have a good coating of manure spaded in
and proceed again with the sowing.

Biennials, and also most perennials, must be raised every year to keep
up the supply.

[Illustration: Long grass walk, with _Narcissus Poeticus_ blooming in
the border

April twenty-sixth]



PLANTING

[Illustration: Long grass walk, with Peonies in the border

June sixth]



CHAPTER VI

PLANTING


I cannot impress too strongly upon my readers the importance of
ordering their plants and seeds of well-known firms. The best are
always the cheapest in the end. Inquiry among friends will generally
give the best information as to reliable seedsmen and growers. In
ordering shrubs and plants it is important to specify the precise date
of delivery, that you may know in advance the day of arrival. The beds
or borders should be prepared in advance, so that everything may be set
out without delay. Care must be taken that the roots are not exposed to
the air and allowed to become dry. It is a good plan, when unpacking a
box of plants, to sort them, laying each variety in a pile by itself,
covering the roots with the moss and excelsior in which they were
packed, and then, if at all dry, to sprinkle thoroughly. Unpacking
should, if possible, be done under cover--in the cellar if there be no
other place.

Great care must also be taken in setting out plants that ample room
be given; as the roots should be well spread out and never doubled
up. Do not be afraid of having the hole too big; see that the earth
is finely pulverized and well packed about the roots; that the plant
is thoroughly soaked, and, if the weather is dry, kept watered for a
couple of weeks. If the plants have arrived in good condition and are
carefully set out, but few should die. I have never lost a deciduous
tree, and frequently, in setting out a hundred shrubs at one time, all
have lived.

[Illustration: Long grass walk, with Foxgloves blossoming in the border

June thirteenth]

Wherever there is a fence make a border, wide or narrow according
to your space; if wide,--and it may be as much as twelve feet
wide,--always make the edge irregular, never straight. Some prefer a
hedge at the back of the border. The best effect and quickest screen
is made by planting, against the fence at the back of the border, White
Lilacs (not the Persian), Syringas, Deutzias and the beautiful new
Altheas. Plant these shrubs three feet apart. In good soil they will
send up great canes, and in four years time should be six feet high and
shut you in from all prying gaze.

In planting a border, always keep in mind the fact that it should be
blooming from May to November. Put in the plants according to height,
the tallest, of course, at the back and the lowest in front, filling
the front also with spring-flowering bulbs, Daffodils, Tulips and
Narcissi, which will blossom and be over before the plants come on. You
will thus have the longest succession of bloom. If the border is quite
wide--from four to six feet--and perhaps one hundred and fifty feet
long, it will hold a surprising number of plants.

Certain plants, in a long border with a background of shrubs, look
best in rows, in spite of all that has been written against it: For
instance, Hollyhocks, a long row of plants three deep, broken every ten
feet or so by a clump of a dozen, and in front of these a single row
of Rudbeckias, broken with clumps of six or so, and the rest of the
border planted in masses, more or less according to space, of Phloxes,
Larkspur, Lilies, Columbines, Sweet Williams, with every now and then a
good clump of Chrysanthemums to blossom when all other flowers are gone.

In filling a border along a rather short path, the plants should
always be set in clumps of from six to twelve of a kind. If the border
is narrow and has no shrubs or hedge back of it, the effect will be
better if the plants do not exceed three feet in height. Omit from
such a border Hollyhocks, Rudbeckias, Sunflowers and Cosmos. Sweet
Williams, Columbines, Sweet Alyssum, Candytuft, Nasturtiums and _Phlox
Drummondii_ can all be grown as edging for borders.

I have a border, two and a half feet wide and three hundred and fifty
feet long, that is a mass of bloom from the middle of May until the
last of September.

It may give the reader a suggestion to know its contents. Everything
is in rows, the only border in my garden where the planting is done in
this way. Along the edge is _Narcissus Poeticus_; back of _Narcissus
Poeticus_ a row of Sweet Williams, pink, white and very dark red; back
of the Sweet Williams, Foxgloves; back of the Foxgloves, Peonies and
_Hydrangea grandiflora_ planted alternately; and back of these, a row
of Hollyhocks. About two feet behind this border, a row of Rudbeckia
(Golden Glow) grows like a tall hedge.

When _Narcissus Poeticus_ has finished blooming, the Peonies come on.
Before the last Peony has lost its petals, the Sweet Williams (quite
two feet high) are in blossom, and the Foxgloves (from three to four
feet high) begin to bloom, and last for a month. While these flowers
are still lovely, the tall Hollyhocks begin to flower, each plant
sending up from three to five stalks. Then, by the time the Hollyhock
stalks are cut down, the Hydrangeas, which are trimmed back very
severely every autumn, are a mass of white. Meanwhile the Rudbeckias,
for quite six weeks, form a yellow background. The illustrations
show this row of flowers while the Narcissi, Peonies, Foxgloves, and
Hydrangeas are successively in blossom.

Early in June, I transplant into perennial borders, wherever a spot can
be found, clumps of Asters, Cosmos and other late annuals, which are
beautiful in September and October when most flowers have ceased to
bloom.

From September twentieth to October fifteenth is a busy time in the
garden. New beds and borders should be made then. The plants in all
borders four years old should be lifted, and the beds or borders
spaded deeply with plenty of manure, the plants reset, and the young
perennials transplanted from the seed-bed into their final places.
All perennial plants whose roots are sufficiently large, should now
be divided and reset. This fall planting and transplanting should be
done at about the time mentioned, for the shrubs and plants must become
well rooted before the ground freezes, or they will rarely survive the
winter. No matter how rich a bed or border may be, I always have the
hole to receive the plant made larger than is necessary, and put a
spadeful of manure in the bottom. In transplanting, my man always has a
wheelbarrow of this at his side to work from.

If there are bare places in lawns or grass paths, sow grass seed about
the twentieth of September, then roll, and the grass will be well
rooted before cold weather.

It must be borne in mind that everything possible should be done in the
fall. Perennials start early in the spring, and it is a pity, when they
are once started, to disturb them. When the frost has finally killed
everything, all the dead tops should be cut off at the ground, the dead
annuals pulled up, the borders made clean and neat, and, about the last
of November, covered with a good layer of stable litter, leaves or
straw. I have always found the plants start earlier and do better for
this slight protection.

Whenever I tell my inquiring friends of the proper preparation of beds,
and the spring top-dressing, and winter covering with manure, there is
generally an exclamation of alarm at the quantity used. But much is
required to make the garden grow. I call upon the farm for manure when
the stable supply is insufficient, and both my farmer-husband and his
manager at times look askance. But how can I live unless my garden has
what it needs! The farmer-husband looks upon my gardening as a mild
species of insanity, and cannot understand why a _little_ garden with
a few plants is not enough for any woman. By dint of much showing
and explanation through many years, he has acquired a floricultural
knowledge which enables him to tell a Rose, Lily, Sunflower and Phlox,
and of this knowledge he is proud.

All manure should be drawn out into the garden when the ground is still
frozen, in March or earlier, and placed in convenient piles, so that
the ground may not be cut up, when soft, by the wagon wheels; and also
to facilitate work when the first spring days come, and there are a
hundred things to be done. If possible, have a spadeful of well-rotted
stable manure stirred into the ground around each shrub and vine in
early spring. The result will amply repay you. Save all wood-ashes
carefully, under cover, for the garden, and scatter them on the beds
and on the grass. Get well-ground fresh bone-meal, and let all plants
have only a handful in the spring, and the reward in bloom is great. To
have good results from the hardy Chrysanthemums the soil cannot be too
rich, and I generally "give them something to eat," as a boy who helps
in the garden calls it, about the fifteenth of June and the fifteenth
of August.

Care must be taken, in using bone-meal, not to put on too much, and to
keep it away from contact with the rootlets.



ANNUALS



CHAPTER VII

ANNUALS


There are so many annuals that I will write only about the few which
are easiest to grow and are most desirable. For me a flower must have
merits for decorating the house as well as for making the garden
beautiful.

The other day I found an English book on flowers, and at once sat down
to read it, expecting enjoyment and profit from every page; but at the
end of a few minutes I came upon the following paragraph:

  "Particularly to most women one of the chief uses or functions of a
  garden is to provide flowers to be cut for the decoration of rooms.
  But I hold that a flower cut from its plant and placed in a vase is
  as a scalp on the walls of a wigwam."

And I read no further in that book.

I grow flowers to gather them, both for the house and to give away. We
keep about sixty vases full in the house from late May until October,
and never allow more than two colours in the same room. I have a yellow
room, where only yellow and white flowers, or white and blue, are
permitted; a pink room, for white and pink or pink and crimson flowers;
and a hall, whose dominant tone is a rich red, where the flowers are
red and white.

Some of the annuals, like Mignonette and Poppies, must be sown where
they are to grow. Mignonette does best in cool, rather moist soil.

[Illustration: Long grass walk, with Hydrangeas; Rudbeckias in the
background

August twenty-fifth]

Poppies, and oh! have plenty of them and all kinds. Get the Shirley
Poppies, the Giant Double, the fringed kind, and the California with
their sunny petals. Sow in great numbers wherever they are wanted, here
and there in the borders wherever there is space. If there is no other
place, sow them in rows in the vegetable garden. They are splendid in
the house, but, alas! fall too quickly.

The Shirley Poppies are almost like fairy flowers, they are so delicate
and beautiful. They are the first of the annual Poppies to bloom. Then
comes the variety which grows wild in France and Germany,--scarlet,
with black blotches at the base of the petals. Last to bloom are the
tall, fringed double and single Poppies,--white, pink and scarlet,
growing on strong stems three feet high. Poppies must be sown thinly
and the earth only sprinkled over the seeds. Sow as early in the spring
as the ground can be worked, and thin out to six inches apart when the
plants are well up.

Nasturtiums, too, should be planted where they are to grow, also Sweet
Alyssum and Candytuft. All of these make good edgings for borders. If
not allowed to go to seed they will bloom all summer.

Sunflowers, the Dwarf Double, and the tall Giant Sunflowers, are fine
in backgrounds and against fences.


  THE FOLLOWING ANNUALS SHOULD BE SOWN IN THE SEED-BED ABOUT APRIL
  TWENTIETH TO MAY FIRST

_Antirrhinum_, or _Snapdragon_, growing eighteen inches high. If sown
in early May they will bloom from August until late autumn. The same is
true of the German Ten-weeks Stocks, which have a long period of bloom.
The white ones are most lovely.

_Asters_, all varieties; sow a quantity. They are not only beautiful,
but they give an abundance of blossoms in late September and early
October, when flowers are beginning to be scarce. I prefer the Giant,
Comet, Ostrich Plume and the late-flowering branching kind. Of these
last, "Purity" (snow-white) and "Daybreak" (shell-pink) are the best,
often bearing thirty flowers on a plant and lasting, in water, five
days. A small quantity of wood-ashes stirred into the soil of the Aster
bed is a fine fertilizer and destroys insects that attack the roots.
Transplant in June to wherever they are to blossom.

[Illustration: A single plant of Asters

September tenth]

I have lately learned, that the only way to destroy the black beetle
which appears upon the Asters and eats the flowers, is to have them
picked off morning and evening and thrown into a pan containing
kerosene oil, which kills them.

_Cosmos._ The early-summer flowering variety of Cosmos will begin
to bloom in July, and, if not allowed to go to seed, will be a mass
of flowers until killed by frost. In favorable soil Cosmos grows
luxuriantly, and resembles a small tree six or eight feet high. This
plant should be staked, or it is likely to be blown down. It is very
effective when transplanted to the borders, blooming gayly when there
is not much else. The pink and crimson varieties are beautiful, but do
not compare with the white.

_Calendula_, growing about a foot high in every shade of yellow from
deep orange to pale ivory, is one of the best and most constant
blooming of the yellow flowers.

_Centaurea_, or _Cornflower_. These come in many colours, but I grow
only the tall, ragged, blue variety. If not permitted to go to seed,
they will bloom plentifully for several months. On the dinner-table
with blue and white china, and in June combined with Syringa, they make
a beautiful and unusual decoration.

_Marigold_, both the double African and the double French. These
flowers always give me a pricking of the conscience, for during the
summer, when there are plenty of others, I give them the "go by," but
in October turn to them with shame and thankfulness.

_Phlox Drummondii_ grows about six or eight inches high, and comes in
many colours. It makes beautiful borders, particularly the white, pink
and dark red.

_Plumed Celosia_, or _Cockscomb_. The new varieties are very effective.

[Illustration: Poppies growing in rows

July fourteenth]

_Zinnias._ Lately I have grown only two varieties, a vivid scarlet
and a salmon-pink. They are not only lovely when growing, but make a
beautiful house decoration, as the stems are long and stiff.

_Sweet Peas_, which no garden can do without. Several books say, plant
in autumn, very late. I have twice sown two pounds at this time,
carefully following the directions, and not one single Pea came up the
following spring. Sweet Peas should be sown in the spring the moment
the frost comes out of the ground, so that they may become deeply
rooted before dry weather. Make a trench about a foot deep and a foot
wide. Have a good layer of manure in the bottom of the trench, over
which put a couple of inches of earth, and over this earth put a good
layer of wood-ashes, again a sprinkling of earth. Then sow the Peas,
and cover them with a couple of inches of earth. As they grow, fill
in the trench, and keep on hilling up the plants until the roots are
very deep. It is well to mulch them with the clippings of lawn grass.
In this way the plants are kept from drying up, and will bloom until
October.

Sweet Peas flourish best on a trellis of galvanized wire netting. It
should be a permanent trellis, made of cedar posts set three feet deep,
so as to be below the frost line and four feet high. To this attach the
wire netting. A trench should be made on either side of the netting,
so that a double row of Peas may be sown. The quantity sown depends
on the length of the trellis; three pounds will sow a double row one
hundred and twenty-five feet long. I always sow the different colours
separately. It simplifies the task of arranging them, if they can be
gathered separately. A bowl of white Sweet Peas and Maidenhair Fern is
indeed a "thing of beauty."

_Pansies_, every one loves them. They are annuals, but do best if
treated as biennials. The most practical hint that I was able to get
from "Elizabeth's German Garden" was where she spoke of carpeting her
Rose beds with Pansies. This instantly appealed to me, as I greatly
dislike to see the earth in the beds and borders, and in Rose beds it
always is to be seen. So I bought an ounce each of white and yellow
Pansy seed, sowed it about the tenth of July in the partly shaded end
of the seed-bed, and by October first had splendid great plants. I
did not allow these to blossom, but picked off the buds, and, after
the Rose beds had been given a plentiful top-dressing of manure
carefully stirred in with a large trowel, I transplanted my Pansy
plants. Of course, they had to be covered over with the Roses the
last of November, and often during the winter I wondered whether the
dears would be smothered. On the twenty-eighth of March the beds were
uncovered, and, imagine it! there were Pansies in bloom. From April
tenth until late in August these beds were simply a carpet of white
and yellow. I never saw anything like it. It was probably due to the
rich soil, perhaps also to the free watering necessary for the Roses.
Then, in order that no Pansies should go to seed, my own maid, who is
very fond of flowers, undertook each morning to cut off all that were
beginning to wither. This required from one to two hours, but certainly
prolonged the bloom, and I could never have spared a man so long for
just the Pansies. Sow Pansy seed in the seed-bed about the tenth of
July, and transplant late in October.

       *       *       *       *       *

These are some of the more important annuals which no garden should be
without. All of them are easy to raise, and blossom abundantly. I do
not speak of the many others, but advise trying new flowers every year.

[Illustration: A Bowl of Cosmos

September twenty-ninth]

The first week in June is the time to transplant all annuals. Do it, if
possible, directly after a rain, always late in the afternoon, and, of
course, water well after transplanting. I have a method of my own for
the transplanting of seedlings, and by following it the tiny plants
never wither or are set back, and in fact do not seem to know that they
have been moved. Take a tin box, such as biscuits come in, half fill
it with water, then lift into it from the seed-bed about one hundred
seedlings at a time. With a sharp-pointed stick make holes in the bed
where the little plants are to go, and then put them in. Soak the
ground thoroughly after each patch is finished. In this way the tiny
rootlets never become dry.

All the beds and borders can be kept free from weeds and in good
condition if gone over with a trowel every five days, or once a week,
the earth stirred thoroughly, and any weeds that may have grown taken
out. It is particularly necessary, for a few weeks in the spring, to
keep well ahead of the weeds. I always think of my sins when I weed.
They grow apace in the same way and are harder still to get rid of. It
seems a pity sometimes not to nurture a pet one, just as it does to
destroy a beautiful plant of Wild Mustard, or of Queen Anne's Lace.


LIST OF ANNUALS, WITH HEIGHT, COLOUR AND PERIOD OF BLOOMING

_Asters_, all colours; one to two feet; August to October.

_Alyssum_, white, dwarf for borders; six inches; blooms all summer if
not allowed to go to seed.

_Balsam_, Camellia-flowered, pale pink, dark red, white; two to three
feet; July and August.

_Calendula_ (Pot Marigold), all shades of yellow; mid-July until killed
by frost.

_Calliopsis_ (Coreopsis), yellow with red or brown center; two feet;
mid-July, until killed by frost.

_Candytuft_, red, white, purple, Empress variety white the best, fine
for edging; six inches; blooms continually if not allowed to go to seed.

_Centaurea_ (Cornflower), all shades of blue; three feet; blooms three
months if kept cut.

_Cockscomb_, crimson and scarlet; two to three feet; August and
September.

_Cosmos_, white, pink, crimson; three to five feet; from the fifteenth
of July until killed by frost.

_Eschscholtzia_, yellow Poppies; one foot; blooms all summer.

_Godetia_, pink, crimson, white; one foot; blooms all summer.

_Marigold_, all shades of yellow; one to two and one-half feet;
mid-July until killed by frost.

_Mignonette_, average height one foot; blooms all summer if kept from
seeding.

_Nasturtiums_, all shades of yellow and red; dwarf, nine inches;
climbing, five feet; bloom all summer until killed by frost.

_Pansy_, many colours; six inches; from early spring until November, if
kept well cut.

_Petunia_, double giant-flowered the only kind to raise; white, crimson
and pink; one and one-half feet; bloom all summer.

_Phlox Drummondii_, many colours; one foot; blooms July, August and
September if not allowed to seed.

_Poppy_, all shades of pink and red, also white; one to three feet. If
several varieties are planted can be had in bloom from three to four
weeks; end of June and July.

_Snapdragon_, scarlet and white, white and yellow, pure white; one and
one-half feet; July and August.

_Stocks_ (German Ten-Weeks), white, pink, red, purple; one and one-half
feet; middle of July until middle of September.

_Sunflower_, yellow, dwarf and tall varieties, single and double; three
to six feet; all summer.

_Sweet Peas_, all colours; three feet; grown on bush or trellis; end of
June until October if kept well cut and moist.

_Sweet Sultan_, purple, white, yellow; one and one-half feet; June,
July and August.

_Zinnia_, many colours; one and one-half to two feet; July, August and
September.

[Illustration: A mass of Phlox; Rudbeckias in the background

August second]



PERENNIALS



CHAPTER VIII

PERENNIALS


Some of the perennials to be sown yearly in the seed-bed from about
April first to tenth, are the following:

_Columbines_ of all varieties, yellow, white, shading from pink to red
and from pale blue to darkest purple.

Of Columbines every garden should have plenty. Blooming about May
twentieth for three weeks, they are a perfect delight. They are very
hardy, germinate readily in the seed-bed, are easy to transplant and
need but little care. I have never been able to get them much over
three feet in height, but then I have often a dozen stalks of bloom
on a single plant, which is very satisfactory. The first dozen plants
were sent to me by a friend from his garden on Long Island; now I have
hundreds of them,--single and double, white, yellow, all shades of red
and pink, pale blue, and a blue one with a white center almost like an
Orchid; many shades of purple, also purple and white.

_Hollyhocks_, single and double, of all colours. In order to get the
desired colour effect with these, keep each variety separate.

[Illustration: Hollyhocks in blossom

July twelfth]

No one can have too many Hollyhocks. Plant them at the back of the
borders among the shrubbery, along fences, and in great clumps in any
odd corner, or around buildings; they are never amiss, and always
beautiful. I find that a Hollyhock cannot be counted upon to bloom
more than three years. First-year stalks are about four feet high;
afterwards, if in good soil, they will be from six to eight feet. There
were hundreds of this size in my garden last summer, each plant with
from three to five towering stalks of bloom. As soon as they have gone
to seed, I save what seed I want and the stalks are then cut down and
burned. By sowing the seeds as soon as thoroughly ripe and dry, plants
can be raised which will be large enough to transplant in October, and
will bloom the next year. These young plants should be given a slight
covering the first winter, that they may not be winter-killed.

When in a border, the Hollyhock, which will flourish in any soil, grows
to such an extent that Lilies or Phloxes, or anything else near by, are
likely to be crowded out, unless care is taken to cut off the lower
leaves, which become enormous. I have this done usually three times
before they bloom, beginning early in May, and great wheelbarrow-loads
of leaves are taken away at each cutting.

_Sweet Williams_, red, white and pink. These will grow from eighteen
inches to two feet. The stems are straight and stiff, and the trusses
of bloom about five inches across, with individual flowers as large as
a nickel; they keep well in water and make a beautiful edging for a
border, or give great effect when planted in masses. They bloom for
three weeks or more, and make fine decorations for church or house.

_Platycodon Mariesi_, beautiful blue; they resemble Canterbury Bells,
and, as they blossom after the Canterbury Bells, are valuable in
continuing the period of blue flowers, with the advantage of being
perennials.

_Delphiniums_, perennial Larkspurs, all varieties. These seeds I have
found more difficult to make germinate than any others, so I do not
rely upon what I raise, but purchase many plants. My best results have
come from saving the seeds from the first crop of blossoms, drying
thoroughly, and then sowing at once. I have found these seeds more sure
to germinate than those bought in early spring. Perhaps nature intends
them to be sown in this way, instead of nine months later.

[Illustration: A single plant of Delphinium (Perennial Larkspur)

June twenty-first]

One can never say enough in praise of Delphiniums. Three-year-old
plants will send up eight to ten beautiful great spikes of the richest
blue, four feet high. The moment a blossom withers, cut the stalk down
to the ground; another will immediately spring up. I had four crops of
blossoms from some of my Delphiniums last summer, so that, from the end
of June until the middle of October, there were always some of them in
blossom. Some varieties of tall English Delphiniums are very beautiful.
Among them is one, Coelestinum, of the loveliest shade of light blue,
with very large, double individual flowers. As I have said before, the
Delphinium blossoms at the same time as _Lilium candidum_, and should
be planted near by. Great bunches of these two flowers, in tall vases,
are lovely as well as unusual.

There is a horrid small white worm which attacks the roots of the
Delphinium, and gives no sign until you see the plant dying. I have
found that keeping the soil around the plant well covered with coal
ashes is a preventive. Delphiniums are hardy and long-lived (unless the
worm gets them), and, once planted, they live a dozen years.

_Coreopsis_ (Grandiflora). Every one knows the Coreopsis, which, by
continual cutting, will give abundant bloom for three months. The
variety with velvety maroon centers is particularly fine.

_Hibiscus_ is very easy to raise, and should be planted among and along
the edge of shrubbery. The plants are quite hardy, grow four feet high,
and masses of them in pink or white are fine. They bloom in August and
September.

_Rockets_, white and purple. These increase tremendously from
self-sowing, so be careful or they will suffocate all that grows near
them. I have many plants, all of which have come from a single one that
a colored woman gave me a few years ago. She is a nice comfortable old
"mammy," black as the ace of spades, with a great love for flowers and
a nice patch of them. We have exchanged plants several times. Some of
the nicest things I have in my garden came to me in this way, and it is
great fun.

Whenever, in driving about, I see a particularly fine plant in a
dooryard, I make friends with its owner, and later suggest that if she
(it is usually "she") will give me a small root of this or that, I will
bring her some plants or bulbs from my garden, of a kind which she has
not. So we are both equally benefited. In this way I was once given a
plant of _Valerian_, which has a tall, beautiful white flower with a
most delicious odour like vanilla. It blooms for three weeks in late
May and early June. From this one plant there are now in the garden a
number of large clumps several feet in diameter, and I have given away
certainly fifty roots. Valerian is a small white flower in good-sized
clusters on long stems, seen now-a-days only in old-fashioned gardens.
I am told it cannot be bought of horticulturists.

One must have _Chrysanthemums_, but where the thermometer falls below
zero there are not many to be bought, other than the pompon varieties,
that will blossom in the garden before being killed by frost, or that
will survive the winter. Year after year I have bought dozens of the
so-called "September-flowering Chrysanthemums," and have only succeeded
in making them blossom by the middle of October, by planting them on
the south side of a building, in richest soil, giving abundance of
water, and covering on all cold nights. But I have beautiful plants of
perfectly hardy, good-sized blossoms of yellow, white, pink and red,
the roots of which have come from the gardens of my farmer friends.
I have never been able to buy this old-fashioned hardy kind. In the
spring, as soon as the plants begin to sprout, divide them, setting out
three or four sprouts together. In this way the stock will increase
wonderfully.

Chrysanthemums require very rich soil, must have sun, and do best
against a building or a wall. About the first of July and the first
of September have a couple of trowelfuls of manure carefully dug in
about the roots of each plant. Buds should not be allowed to form
until September, and the new shoots should be pinched back until then,
to make the plants strong and bushy. I do not envy any one who has
only the great, solemn, stiff flowers of the prize-show variety. An
armful of the hardy garden ones, with their delicious odour, is worth
a green-house full of the unnatural things which are the professional
gardener's pride. When you can keep twenty or more vases filled from
your own garden with these last blossoms of the year, in all their
lovely colours, and not miss one of them from the plants, you will
agree with me that they are the only kind to raise.

Perennials, sown in rows in the seed-bed in April, will be nice little
plants by July, when they should be lifted and transplanted some six
inches apart. The portion of the seed-bed where the annuals were raised
can be used now for the purpose. This is particularly necessary for
Larkspur, Columbines, Monkshood, Platycodon, Coreopsis, Hibiscus and
Pinks. If, when transplanting, each plant is set with a trowelful
of manure, the result will be plants twice as large by the first of
October, when they can be again transplanted to their permanent places.

_Oriental Poppies_ and _Pinks_ should also be sown in the perennial
seed-bed.

Oriental Poppies, with great blossoms as large as a tea plate borne on
strong stems, make a grand show about the end of May and beginning of
June.

Pinks, too, should be in every garden, if only for their delicious,
spicy odor. The Chinensis, or China Pinks, are the best.

Sweet Williams and Oriental Poppies need not be moved from the time
they are sown until finally transplanted in the autumn.

[Illustration: Yuccas in blossom

July twelfth]

_Yucca filamentosa_, the hardy native of Mexico, sends up, about the
tenth of July, great stalks six to eight feet high, bearing masses of
white flowers. The individual blossoms are of creamy waxy texture and
as beautiful as an orchid. A single stalk of Yucca, in a tall vase,
will last nearly a week, and is as unusual as it is beautiful for house
decoration. Yuccas are perfectly hardy, need no protection in winter,
no fertilizer, no water in dry weather. In my garden, at least, they
have not been attacked by insects and have grown placidly on, needing
absolutely no care but to have the stalks cut down when they have
finished blossoming. They are most effective when grown in clumps, but
look very well along a fence with Hollyhocks at the back. The plants
are so inexpensive that I have bought mine, but see no reason why they
cannot be raised from seed. Small plants form near the parent stem,
and these can be separated and transplanted. A late spring frost will
sometimes nip the flower stalk that has just started, and there will be
no bloom that year. To avoid such a disaster, whenever, in late spring,
a frosty night is suspected, cover the plants with a piece of burlap.

_Tritomas_ (Red-hot Poker Plant) bloom in September and October, and
should always be planted in masses, and in full sun. They must be well
covered with leaves or stable litter late in November, or they will be
winter-killed. They increase rapidly.

_Gaillardias_ bloom all summer, and keep fresh in water for days. The
plants are covered with long-stemmed, yellow flowers with dark crimson
centers, and should also be protected in winter.

_Veronica longifolia_, a most beautiful dark blue flower, which grows
in long spikes. Veronica remains in bloom during the month of August,
and is one of the most showy flowers in the garden at that time.

_Iris_, Japanese and German, do well when naturalized in the grass.
These plants increase so, that every four years they can be separated.
Beginning with the German Iris, flowering the end of May, they can be
had in bloom until the Japanese Iris finishes blossoming the middle of
July. No Orchids are more beautiful than the Japanese Iris. A couple
of weeks before and during the period of bloom they must be kept very
moist.

Both the German and the Japanese Iris are perfectly hardy and increase
rapidly. The English Iris, of which the white variety, known as
Mont Blanc, is the most beautiful, and the Spanish Iris, in all its
varieties, are not hardy. But with careful winter covering, about equal
to that given to the everblooming Roses, they will generally survive,
and are well worth the trouble. The roots of all varieties of Iris are
very long, and care must be taken to give them plenty of room and to
plant deep.

_Peonies._ For beauty and usefulness Peonies rank with Phloxes. Large
plants will frequently bear twenty great blossoms. By raising both
early and late varieties, their period of bloom can be continued for
a month. The old, dark crimson variety is the first to bloom; the
old-fashioned double pink and double white are beautiful enough to
satisfy any one, but the new varieties give immense choice as to colour
and form.

The Japanese Tree Peonies do not die to the ground every year, like
the herbaceous kinds, but form woody branches and grow like a small
shrub. The blossoms of these Tree Peonies are truly wonderful; the only
care needed is a little fertilizer in the autumn and a slight winter
covering. They are best grown in front of the shrubbery. They blossom
before the herbaceous varieties. The herbaceous Peonies can be grown in
large beds by themselves, in borders with other plants, or as single
specimens in the grass or among the shrubs.

Peonies start so early in the spring that they should be manured in the
fall, or there is danger of breaking the tender shoots.

[Illustration: Bed of Peonies on edge of lawn

June sixth]

_Phlox._ There is no flower in the garden more beautiful, more easily
cultivated, or giving so much bloom as the Phlox. I could certainly
never have a garden without it. In mine there must be a couple of
thousand. I have a great mass, of probably two hundred herbaceous
Phloxes, growing together in one corner of my garden, the very tall
varieties over four feet high. About the fifteenth of July, every year,
this corner is a superb sight. Most of these plants are over fifteen
years old. They have been kept fine by heaviest top-dressing every
year, and by lifting all the plants every three years and digging in
quantities of manure, and also by separating each plant into three, by
cutting the roots with a spade, or pulling apart with the fingers.

The newer varieties of Phlox come in the most beautiful colours,--dark
crimson, fiery scarlet, many shades of pink, pink striped with white,
and pink with a white eye; all shades of lilac, lilac with white and
purple, the beautiful pure white, and the white with the scarlet
eye. Of all the varieties, my favorites are the snowy white, and the
salmon-pink with the dark red eye. Buy fifty large field-grown plants;
at the end of three years separate them, and you have a hundred and
fifty. They present a picture of progression much surer than the tale
of the eggs that were to do so much.

Many of the individual blossoms of my Phloxes are larger than a
fifty-cent piece; a number of them larger by measurement than a silver
dollar, and the heads also are very large. Always erect, neat and
smiling, never needing to be staked (such a task in a large garden),
when once grown they must always be dear to a gardener's heart. By
breaking off the heads of Phlox immediately after blooming, a second
crop of flowers will appear in about three weeks. The heads will not be
so large as the first, but they will amply repay the slight trouble.

Every owner of a garden has certain favorites; it really cannot be
helped, although the knowledge that it is so makes it seem almost as
unfair as for a mother to have a favorite child.

A real lover of flowers finds it difficult to cast away a plant that
has bloomed its best, even though the blossom is unsatisfactory. In my
garden there are, at present, some plants that I am longing to dig up
and burn. There are two climbing Roses that came by mistake in a large
order and were set out. They have thriven as no others, cover a very
large space on a trellis, and in June bear thousands of a most hideous,
small, purplish crimson Rose. The other plant is _Scabiosia Caucasica_.
Beware of the same. The description of it in a catalogue caused me to
feel that without it the garden was nothing. A dozen were ordered and
set out in a border, in two clumps. They grew and waxed strong, and
fairly clambered over everything within several feet of them, seeming
to be like gigantic thistles. Finally in August, on stems two feet
long, the eagerly looked-for blossoms appeared. These were described
in the catalogue as "a large head of pale blue flowers." But, to
my despair, it developed a round green ball about three inches in
circumference, with white thistle-like petals. And yet the plants had
surpassed themselves. It seems a poor reward to turn them out to die.

_Lychnis_ (London Pride). I cannot now recall any perennial except
the Cardinal Flower, which has blossoms of so brilliant a scarlet as
Lychnis, or London Pride, growing tall and erect, with its bright
colour. It is most effective when grown in large clumps.

_Monkshood_ (_Aconitum Napellus_) grows four feet high, and has a
beautiful blossom of rich blue growing in quite large clusters. The
name must come from the resemblance each individual blossom bears to
the capuchin of a monk. These plants should be grown under tall trees,
for they cannot stand too strong sun, and will blossom very late in the
autumn if protected by the trees from frost. I gathered them last year
in November.

Phloxes, Rudbeckias, Monkshood, Valerian, Lychnis, Tritomas, Iris,
Peonies and Veronica are best raised, not from seed, but by buying the
plants, and then after a time, as I have said before, dividing them.
For instance, take a fine large plant of Phlox of some choice variety,
divide all the roots and set out each one separately. From one plant
you may, in two years' time, get twenty splendid ones, and the same
with the other varieties I have mentioned.

_Rudbeckias_, of the Golden Glow variety, grow from six to eight feet
high, and must be staked, or when heavy with blossoms they will blow
down or be beaten down by the rain. Each plant will bear quantities of
long-stemmed double yellow blossoms, which resemble a double Dahlia.
These will keep nearly a week in water. When the plant has finished
blossoming, cut down the tops, and in October there will be a second
crop of blossoms just above the ground.

The Golden Glow should be divided every other year, and in this way it
is even more remunerative than the Phlox. I started with fifty plants,
and think it will soon be possible to have a farm of them.


LIST OF HARDY PERENNIALS, WITH HEIGHT, COLOUR AND TIME AND PERIOD OF
BLOOMING, ARRANGED ALPHABETICALLY.

_Aquilegia_, or Columbine, all colours; one to two and one-half feet;
tenth of May to first week in June.

_Chrysanthemums_, all colours but blue; three feet; end of September
until very cold weather.

_Delphiniums_, all shades of blue; three to four feet; July; later
crops after cutting down.

_Dianthus barbatus_ (Sweet William), red, pink, white; one to two feet;
June.

_Dicentra spectabilis_ (Bleeding Heart), red and white; one to two
feet; May.

_Gaillardia_, yellow, red center; two feet; July, August and September
until killed by frost.

[Illustration: A single plant of Phlox

August twenty-fifth]

_Helianthus multiflorus plenus_, hardy double Sunflower; yellow; four
to five feet; all summer.

_Hibiscus_, pink, white; four to five feet; August and September.

_Hollyhocks_, all colours but blue; single, double, four to eight feet;
tenth of July to middle of August; two to five stalks on a plant.

_Hyacinthus candicans_, white; four feet; last three weeks of August.

_Iris Germanica_, all colours; two to three feet; end of May to first
of June.

_Lychnis_ (London Pride), scarlet; two and one-half feet; July.

_Oriental Poppy_, scarlet, also pink; three feet; end of May and first
of June.

_Peonies_, all colours but blue; two to two and one-half feet; end of
May, for three weeks.

_Pentstemon_, many colours; three feet; August and September.

_Phlox_, all colours; two to four feet; early July until killed by
frost, if the heads are cut as soon as finished flowering.

_Platycodon Mariesi_, blue; one and one-half feet; August.

_Rocket_ (_Hesperis Matronalis_), white and purple; two feet; May.

_Rudbeckia_ (Golden Glow), yellow; five to eight feet; middle of July
to September first; second crop in October.

_Tritoma_ (Red-hot Poker Plant), orange-scarlet; three to four feet;
September and October until killed by frost.

_Valerian_, white; three feet; May and June.

_Veronica longifolia_, blue; two feet; August.

_Yucca filamentosa_, white; three to five feet; second and third weeks
in July.

[Illustration: Vase of Canterbury Bells

June twenty-first]



BIENNIALS AND A FEW BEDDING-OUT PLANTS



CHAPTER IX

BIENNIALS AND A FEW BEDDING-OUT PLANTS


There are but few hardy biennials. The important ones, which no garden
should be without, are: _Digitalis_ (Foxgloves) and _Campanula medium_,
(Canterbury Bells.)

Foxgloves and Canterbury Bells bloom in June and July for more than a
month, and give a touch of glory to any garden.

Catalogues and many gardening books say that the seeds should be sown
in early autumn, and the plants will bloom the following year. It is
true that they will bloom when sown in the autumn, but unless kept over
the winter in a cold-frame the plants will send up stalks, only about a
foot in height.

Sow the seeds of Foxgloves and Canterbury Bells in the shady part of
the seed-bed in early April. Keep the young plants moist. About the
fifteenth of July, if there are a large number of plants and there be
no other place, they should be transplanted to the vegetable garden,
where they can follow early crops of peas or lettuce. Have the ground
spaded finely, and make shallow trenches, perhaps six inches deep, in
which put a good layer of manure and cover this with earth, then set
the plants about six inches apart. Keep them well watered when the
weather is dry, and the earth thoroughly stirred. By the twentieth of
September or the first of October they should be transplanted to the
places where they are to bloom the following year. The plants should
then be a foot across, and next June will send up several stalks about
three feet high. The Canterbury Bells should be six inches across in
the fall, and the next year about two feet high.

[Illustration: A single plant of Foxgloves; White Sweet William in
front

June thirteenth]

_Foxgloves_ seed themselves with great abundance, unless the stalk is
cut before the seed ripens. In the spring I have the little plants,
seeded in this way from the year before, taken from the borders and
transplanted in rows, and find they are larger and stronger than any
others.

Foxgloves, white, spotted and pale lilac, are the pride of the garden.
Plant them back of the Sweet Williams, in clumps of six or eight, or
else with Peonies. They blossom at the same time, and the pinks or reds
of Sweet Williams or Peonies, with here and there a mass of white, and
the tall, graceful spikes of the Foxgloves rising above them, produce
so beautiful an effect that you will simply have to go and look at them
many times a day.

_Canterbury Bells._ Let any one who has been at Oxford in June and July
recall the Canterbury Bells in those loveliest of all gardens, New
College and St. Johns, and she will not rest until they have a place in
her garden. I did not know these flowers before going to Oxford, and
after seeing them could not wait to raise them from seed, but bought
three dozen plants to look at the first year. The roots that came to me
were miserable little things, and, in spite of every care, half of them
died. Those which lived and bloomed were very lovely. They begin to
blossom with us about the sixth of June, and last four or five weeks.
In colour they are white, pink, purple and blue.

Canterbury Bells and Foxgloves are biennials. They are sown one year
and grow for a year, then bloom and die. This seems a great deal of
trouble for one season's flowers, but their beauty repays the gardener
a hundred fold. They require a slight winter protection of leaves or
stable litter, but care must be taken that the tops of the plants are
not covered.


THE BEDDING-OUT PLANTS

And now a little about the only three bedding-out plants that I
grow--Dahlias, Cannas and Gladioli. I should have said four, for there
is always a large bed of about four dozen Scarlet Salvia (the Bonfire
variety is the best), whose brilliant colour and sturdy growth cannot
be spared. They begin to blossom in July. By driving a tall stake in
the center, and other stakes around the edge of the bed of Salvia, it
can be covered with burlaps or carriage covers when the nights are
frosty and preserved in all its beauty until November.

_Dahlias_ can be grown in rows in the vegetable garden, if there be no
other place for them. They are decorative and desirable for cutting.
Plant two or three tubers in a hill about the third week in April. They
should be planted eight inches deep and three feet apart, and kept well
staked. The soil should not be too rich, or they will all grow to stalk
and leaf, and blossom but little. All the varieties are lovely, the
Cactus kind more so, perhaps, than the others. In the autumn, when the
tops have been killed by the frost, the tubers must be taken up, dried
off carefully, and stored in a cellar that does not freeze.

_Gladioli_ can be planted from April fifteenth to June fifteenth, in
beds by themselves or in clumps in the borders, so that the blossoms
may be had in succession. Gladioli come in many colours.

_Cannas_, the beautiful French varieties. These, of course, are most
effectively grown in masses, and require full sun. The roots, like
those of the Dahlias, increase so that there is almost double the
quantity to plant the next spring. It is well to have the Cannas
started in boxes in sunny windows, in tool-room or carriage-house, by
mid-April. They can be kept through the winter with the Dahlias and
Gladioli.

[Illustration: Vase of Foxgloves

June fourteenth]



ROSES



CHAPTER X

ROSES


The Rose asserts her right to the title of the "queen of flowers"
through her very exclusiveness. She insists upon being grown apart from
other plants; otherwise she sulks and is coy, refusing to yield more
than an occasional bloom. I speak from experience, having tried several
times to grow Roses in the front of wide borders, where soil and sun
and everything except the proximity of other plants was propitious. But
they scarcely bloomed at all. Now, the same bushes, planted in rows so
that a cultivator may be run between them, flourish satisfactorily.
Grow Roses, then, in beds by themselves or in rows.

If one has but half a dozen Roses, let them be grown apart from other
plants.

Pansies, however, can be grown in the Rose beds, as I have elsewhere
described; Gladioli can also be planted among them without detriment to
either. The reason for this is that the roots of these two flowers are
not deep and do not interfere with the nourishment of the Roses.

Roses on their own roots should live for years, if given proper
treatment. Witness the Rose bushes in gardens, where with but little
care they have flourished more than a generation.

[Illustration: Summer-house, covered with Clematis and Crimson Rambler
Roses

June twenty-first]

Budded stock must be planted very deep. The joint should be at least
three inches under ground. Roses grown on their own roots are more
expensive than the budded stock, but a far better investment. The
budded stock is apt to send up from the parent root suckers or shoots
of Sweetbrier, Buckthorn, Flowering Almond, or whatever it may be.
These shoots must be carefully cut off. A friend told me that, when
new to Rose growing, his bed of budded Roses sent up so many strange
shoots that, not knowing what to do, he dug them all up but one. This
he kept as a curiosity, and now it is a bush of Flowering Almond six
feet in circumference.

Everblooming Roses should be set out in the spring, about the middle of
April.

Hybrid Perpetual and Hardy Roses are best set out in autumn, about
October tenth. When planting, always cut the plants back to about a
foot in height.

All Roses should be lifted every three years, late in October, and
plenty of manure, with fresh earth and leaf-mould, mixed with sand if
the soil is heavy, dug in.

After five or six years I dig up my Roses about October tenth, cut the
tops down to about twelve inches, cut out some of the old wood, cut
off the roots considerably, trench the ground anew, and replant. The
following year the Roses may not bloom very profusely, but afterwards
for four or five years the yield will be great. My physician in the
country is a fine gardener, and particularly successful with Roses.
We have many delightful talks about gardening. When I told him of my
surgical operations upon the Roses he was horrified at such barbarity,
and seemed to listen with more or less incredulity. So I asked him if,
as a surgeon as well as physician, he approved, on occasion, of lopping
off a patient's limbs to prolong his life, why he should not also
sanction the same operation in the vegetable kingdom. He was silent.

I shall not say much about Roses, because there is so much to say.
They need a book by themselves, and many have already been written. In
my garden there are not more than five hundred Roses, including the
climbing varieties. They have done very well, and have not been given
more care than other plants.

[Illustration: Rose bed carpeted with Pansies

June twenty-first]

For years I did not grow Roses, fearing they would not be a success. I
had read about the beetles and spiders and other creatures that attack
them, and dreaded the spraying and insect-picking that all the books
said must be done. But, of course, I finally yielded to the temptation
of having the very flower of all flowers, in my garden, and have found
the trouble slight and the reward great. I have them in beds in a
little formal garden, and in rows in a picking garden.

The beds and the trenches for the rows are both made in the usual way,
and every fall, in late October, before the Pansies are set out as
already described, manure is dug in, and in the early spring, about the
tenth of April, a handful of finely ground fresh bone-meal is stirred
in around each plant with a trowel. They are sprayed with slug-shot
three times between April tenth and May fifteenth, when they get a
thorough spraying with kerosene emulsion, and, as a result, my Roses
are not troubled with the usual pests.

In November the hardy perpetuals are all cut back to about two feet
in height, and the old wood is thinned out. The everblooming Roses are
cut back to a foot in height. And Roses! well, really, no one could ask
better from a garden. I have not many varieties, but when I left the
country last fall, the tenth of November, although ice nearly an inch
in thickness had formed, there were Roses still in bloom in the garden.

The very hardy Roses, which, with a few exceptions, bloom only in June
and early July, with an occasional flower in the autumn, should be
planted together, as they need but slight covering. In late November
the hardy ones get about a foot of stable litter over the beds. The
everblooming kinds have six inches of manure, then a foot of leaves,
and then a good covering of cedar branches over all. But cover late and
uncover early (the very minute the frost is out of the ground), or your
Roses will die.

If asked to name, from my own experience, the best dozen Roses,
I should say the following were the most satisfactory: General
Jacqueminot, Jubilee, Ulrich Brunner, Madame Plantier, Clothilde
Soupert, Kaiserin Augusta Victoria, La France, Mrs. Robert Garrett,
Princess Alice de Monaco, Soleil d'Or, Perle des Jardins, and Mrs. John
Laing or Baroness Rothschild. Paul Neyron and Prince Camille de Rohan
might also be added to the list.

Between Mrs. John Laing and Baroness Rothschild, it is a toss-up. Mrs.
John Laing is a healthy, strong Rose, and a most constant bloomer. But
none that grows is more beautiful than the Baroness Rothschild. Rather
a shy bloomer; still each Rose, on its long, strong stem, surrounded by
the very fine foliage that distinguishes this variety, makes a bouquet
in itself. Baroness Rothschild is also vigorous, and I have never seen
it attacked by the enemies of most Roses.

Climbing Roses have so much use, as well as beauty, in a garden, that
my advice is, wherever there is an excuse for having one, plant
it there. They do finely on the south side of a house, on arches,
summer-houses and trellises. I have a trellis along one side of a grass
walk three hundred and fifty feet long. At each post are planted two
Roses, a Crimson Rambler and a Wichuraiana. The Wichuraiana blossoms
when the Rambler is done. Imagine the beauty of this trellis when the
Roses are in bloom! On the other side of this walk there is a border
four feet wide, with shrubs at the back, filled, all of the three
hundred and fifty feet, with many varieties of perennials, also with
Lilies and annuals planted in wherever a foot of space can be found.

All of the Ramblers are good, but none blooms so luxuriantly as the
crimson. The Climbing Clothilde Soupert, Baltimore Belle and Climbing
Wootton are also fine. Of the Wichuraiana Hybrids, Jersey Beauty and
Evergreen Gem are the best. The foliage is lovely, and the perfume of
the flowers delicious.

[Illustration: Canterbury Bells blooming in a border

June twenty-first]

The Climbing Roses should be yearly enriched in the spring with manure
and bone-meal, and, after two years, some old wood should be cut out
every autumn. Many of the Crimson Ramblers and Wichuraiana in my garden
made growth last summer of splendid great canes, larger around than
one's thumb and from ten to fourteen feet long. Monday was the day for
tying and training the Roses, and often it seemed impossible for them
to grow so much in a week. It would have been incredible, had we not
the actual proof before our eyes.


LIST OF HYBRID PERPETUAL AND HARDY ROSES BLOOMING IN JUNE, WITH AN
OCCASIONAL BLOOM IN SEPTEMBER

_Red_

  General Jacqueminot
  Prince Camilla de Rohan, (darkest Rose of all).
  Jubilee.
  Baron Bonstetten.
  General Washington.
  John Hopper.
  Ulrich Brunner.
  Victor Verdier.

_Pink_

  Mrs. John Laing (constant bloomer).
  Anne de Diesbach.
  La France (blooms all summer).
  Magna Charta.
  Mme. Gabriel Luizet.
  Baroness Rothschild.
  Paul Neyron.

_White_

  Margaret Dickson.
  Coquette des Alpes.
  White Maman Cochet (blooms continually).
  Madame Plantier (blooms continually).
  Coquette des Blanches.
  Mme. Alfred Carriere.
  Marchioness of Londonderry.

_Yellow_

I know but two hardy yellow Roses:

  The Persian Yellow.
  Soleil d'Or.

The monthly or everblooming Roses, which need very heavy covering in
winter, should be planted together. The following are a few of the best
and most constant bloomers:

  Kaiserin Augusta Victoria, white.
  Bride, white.
  Clothilde Soupert, white with faint blush center.
  Madame Hoste, creamy white.
  Perle des Jardins, yellow.
  Sunset, yellow.
  Mlle. Germaine Trochon, yellow.
  American Beauty, rich crimson.
  Marion Dingee, deep crimson.
  Souvenir de Wootton, crimson.
  Bridesmaid, pink.
  Hermosa, pink.
  Madame de Watteville, pink.
  Burbank, pink.
  Mrs. Robert Garrett, pink.
  Princess Alice de Monaco, petals white, edged with blush-pink.



LILIES



CHAPTER XI

LILIES


Lilies, too, should have a book for themselves. My knowledge of them is
slight. _Lilium auratum_ (Auratum Lily), the grandest of all Lilies,
disappears after a few years. If large-sized bulbs are bought there
will be the first year from twenty to thirty Lilies on a stalk four
feet high, the second year seven to ten, the third year perhaps two
or three, but oftener none at all. If you then dig for the bulb, lo!
it is gone. The expense, therefore, of these Lilies is great, from
their having to be often renewed. Still, do not fail to have them, if
possible, for nothing can take their place. They bloom from the middle
of July for about a month.

I wrote to an authority on Lilies to ask the cause of this
disappearance. He told me that, as soon as planted in this country,
a microbe disease attacked them and they gradually disappeared under
its ravages. Botanists surely should find a specific, or antidote for
this; but perhaps, like some of the most terrible diseases of the human
being, it evades all research. Miss Jekyll, in her book on Lilies for
English Gardens, in speaking of _Lilium auratum_ says:

  "This grand Lily, well planted, and left alone for three years,
  will probably then be at its best. After this the bulbs will be
  likely to have increased so much that it will be well to divide
  them."

This would seem to imply that the Auratums thrive in England. Well,
they have climate in England, even if we have weather, and English
gardens will always fill American gardeners with despair.

[Illustration: _Lilium auratum_ growing behind Peonies and Columbines
that bloomed earlier

August tenth]

_Lilium candidum_, which blooms before the other Lilies, is hardy and
fragrant and increases rapidly. These Lilies must have full sun and
light soil. About every three or four years they can be separated,
which should be done as soon as the stalks turn yellow, as the bulb
makes an autumn growth. For this reason the Candidums must always be
bought and planted by the tenth of September. Other Lilies may be
planted in the spring, when the frost leaves the ground, or in October.

_Lilium speciosum rubrum_ thrives and increases in our climate, needs
a partly shaded location and, therefore, does well when planted among
Rhododendrons. It blooms after the Auratum, the end of August and first
two weeks of September.

_Lilium speciosum album_ blooms at the same time as _Lilium rubrum_. It
is a beautiful pure white Lily with wax-like curved petals, grows best
in full sun, and averages six Lilies on a stalk, although I have often
counted more.

_Lilium longiflorum_ blooms early in July. These lilies are very
much like the Bermuda Lily, except that they have, as a rule, about
four blossoms on a stalk, and are hardy. In my garden they have not
increased.

_Hansoni_, a Japanese Lily, flowering in June; bright yellow in color;
perfectly hardy and very desirable.

_Lilium Canadense_ (the Meadow Lily), yellow, red and orange,
increases, and is very satisfactory, but likes as moist a situation as
possible.

_Tigrinum_, the old Tiger Lilies, both single and double. These bloom
in July, increase rapidly, and by planting, when fully ripened, the
little black bulbils which form on the stalk, any number of bulbs can
be raised.

_Funkia subcordata_ is the old-fashioned white Day Lily of our
grandmothers' gardens. The broad leaves of this plant are almost as
handsome as the spikes of bloom. These Lilies flower best when grown in
the sun, but then the leaves turn yellow--so give them a partly shaded
place.

_Funkia cærulea_, with the blue blossom, is worthy of a place in
the garden, though far from being as effective as the white-flowered
variety. I also grow the kind with the small white and green variegated
leaves for the sake of the foliage, so useful in house decoration.

Funkias are not, botanically speaking, Lilies, but are mentioned in
this chapter because popularly known as Day Lilies and on account of
the lily-like form of their blossoms.

_Lily-of-the-valley_ should have a place in every garden. Absolutely
hardy, requiring no care, it blooms prolifically in early May,
fills the air with its fragrance, and is beloved by every one. The
German name for this flower, Mai Glöcken (May Bells) is particularly
appropriate. I have heard of one woman whose bed of these flowers,
four feet by fifty feet, has yielded as many as twenty thousand sprays
in one season. The pips can be set out the end of October or the
beginning of November. If the bed is quite large, when the Lilies have
finished blooming, some can be lifted here and there and transplanted.
As the pips increase rapidly, their places will soon be filled.
Lilies-of-the-valley do best in a partially shaded place, and require a
deep, rich soil, well mixed with leaf-mould.

       *       *       *       *       *

A Lily bed should be prepared, if the place is damp and drainage not
good, by digging out the soil for three feet, and putting a foot of
cobblestones in the bottom; then fill up with a mixture of good soil,
leaf-mould and sand, and very old, well-rotted manure. In the ordinary
garden that is not wet, two feet are enough to dig out the bed, and the
cobblestones can be omitted. Lilies should always be set with a handful
of sand around the bulb, to prevent any possibility of manure coming in
contact with it, as the manure will destroy the bulb.

[Illustration: Vase of _Lilium auratum_

August second]

In my garden there is no special place prepared for the Lilies, but
they are grown in all the borders, the _Rubrums_ in the shade, the
others in the sun, and this year there have been thousands of them.
If there are no woods near, where the men can gather leaf-mould, have
the rakings of the autumn leaves put in a pile, cover with boards,
and occasionally during the spring and summer have them well forked
over; the next autumn there will be a quantity of the finest thing for
Lilies, Rhododendrons, Ferns, or indeed any kind of plant. This should
be mixed in a pile in the proportion of one wheelbarrow of mould, two
of good soil, two coal-scuttlefuls of wood-ashes, one-half barrow of
old manure and two spadefuls of fine bone-meal. There is also nothing
better for the Roses than some of this mixture.

All Lilies do better if well mulched with clippings of lawn grass or
with very old manure.

The varieties of Lilies mentioned are the easiest grown and the most
satisfactory.

Lilies should always be planted in clumps of the same kind--never less
than six, and the number increased according to the size of the garden.
Alternate clumps of a dozen each of _Lilium auratum_ and _Lilium album_
planted in a border just behind Foxgloves and Canterbury Bells will
come into bloom when these two biennials have finished, the _Auratum_
first, then the _Album_; these four flowers will keep the border gay
from early in June until the middle of September.

Lilies should be planted about eight inches deep, and have a covering
of litter late in the autumn.

[Illustration: Vase of _Lilium speciosum album_ and _rubrum_

September sixth]



SPRING-FLOWERING BULBS



CHAPTER XII

SPRING-FLOWERING BULBS


Bulbs can be planted at any time in the autumn before the ground
freezes; the first week in November is as good a time as any. The cost
of Tulips, Narcissi and Daffodils is not great. They multiply and need
not be disturbed for three or four years.

_Snowdrops._ The earliest of all flowers to bloom is the Snowdrop.
After the long, cold winter, with the melting of the snow and the first
suspicion of milder air, these frail beauties send up their graceful
bells of white. With what triumph the first one is found and brought to
the house, and what a thrill of joy it gives to know that spring will
soon be here! Snowdrops can be planted thickly in the borders and also,
like Crocuses, in the grass. The foliage of both will die before it is
time to mow the lawn.

_Crocuses_, which should be planted in the grass, will begin to bloom
as soon as the Snowdrops pass. The gay little things make the lawn,
while still brown, a carpet of bright colors. I heard of a gentleman
who planted ten thousand of them in this way, and was rewarded by a
most beautiful display at a time when there were no other flowers.

[Illustration: Garden arch, covered with Japanese gourds

August twenty-seventh]

_Tulips_ I plant everywhere in the borders about four inches apart,
all kinds, such as single, double, Gesnerianas and Parrot Tulips; but
always a quantity of only one kind together. The bed where later the
Salvias are put, has three hundred Golden Yellow Tulips. When these
have faded, the Salvia plants are set out in the same bed, without
disturbing the bulbs. This can be done if the men are careful, and when
the Tulip leaves are quite yellow they are cut off (for unless allowed
to ripen the bulb does not grow and multiply). Every three years all
Tulips are dug up in the autumn, after the Salvias have died; the bed
is then made very rich, and the Tulips reset. There are generally more
than enough to refill the bed. The same treatment is pursued in the
Canna bed, only here the Tulips are double white.

Tulips will bloom from April twentieth until the last of May, if
both the very early as well as the late kinds are planted. The late
varieties are the Parrot and Gesneriana, which latter grow two feet
high and are very showy.

I have been constantly surprised to find that many good gardeners take
up all bulbs when through flowering in the spring, store through the
summer and replant in the autumn. This is not only unnecessary, but it
is better for the bulbs to remain in the ground as nature intended.
Mine have always been so treated and have been successful.

In planting bulbs in newly prepared soil, great care must be taken that
they do not come in contact with manure. To prevent this, the man
should have a box of sand, in a handful of which each bulb should be
set. Spring-flowering bulbs should be planted about four inches deep.

_Poeticus Narcissus_ and _Daffodils_, both single and double, do well
when naturalized in grass that need not be cut until the foliage of the
bulb has died in June. They also make a very good edging for a border
along a walk.

The single Van Sion and Emperor Narcissus are excellent varieties. The
old-fashioned sweet-scented Jonquil and double Van Sion, or Double
Yellow Daffodil, are as satisfactory as any of the numerous kinds named
in the catalogues. One early spring, the Double Yellow Daffodils were
all in bloom on the tenth of April.

Narcissi and Daffodils live for generations. I know some double yellow
Daffodils growing in my great-grandfather's garden, that were planted
over seventy years ago. The place was sold and the house burned about
thirty years since, and all this time has been entirely neglected. Some
one told me that Daffodils and Narcissi still bloomed there bravely in
the grass. With a cousin, one lovely day last spring, I took the train
out to this old place and there found quantities of the dainty yellow
flowers. We had come unprovided with any gardening implements, having
nothing of the kind in town, and brought only a basket for the spoils,
and a steel table-knife. We quickly found the knife of no avail, so
borrowed a sadly broken coal-shovel from a tumble-down sort of a man
who stood gazing at us from the door of a tumble-down house. The roots
of the Daffodils were very deep, and neither of us could use a spade,
so the driver of the ramshackle wagon taken at the station was pressed
into service. Handling of shovel or spade was evidently an unknown art
to him. The Daffodil roots were nearly a foot deep, but we finally got
them, several hundreds of them, all we could carry. The driver seemed
to think us somewhat mad and said "Them's only some kind of weed," but
when I told him the original bulbs from which all these had come were
planted by my great-grandmother and her daughter, and that I wanted to
carry some away, to plant in my own garden, he became interested and
dug with all his heart. The bulbs were in solid clumps a foot across
and had to be pulled apart and separated. They were the old Double
Yellow Daffodil and a very large double white variety, the edges of the
petals faintly tinged with yellow and delightfully fragrant. My share
of the spoils is now thriving in my garden. By the process of division
every three years, these Daffodils can be made to yield indefinitely,
and perhaps some great-grandchild of my own may gather their blossoms.

[Illustration: Vase of Phlox; single blossoms actual size

August second]

_Hyacinths_, too, should have a place in the spring garden. They are
more expensive, as a rule, than Tulips, Narcissi and Daffodils, but,
in large or small quantities, are well worth the money. The single
varieties are generally preferred, while, of all kinds, the white and
pale blue are the loveliest.

Nothing in the garden gives so much pleasure as the early spring
flowers. Perhaps this is because they are the first to bloom. Every one
knows how beautiful the first lovely Dandelion seems, gold-starring
the new grass. Many bulbs can be had for little money, and I would say
to all, plant as many as you can squeeze in. From April fifteenth to
May fifteenth I receive in town, twice a week, great boxes of spring
flowers from my garden, enough each time to fill sixteen to twenty
vases; yet my orders to the men are to cut always so that the flowers
cannot be missed from the garden.



SHRUBS

[Illustration: Spiræa Van Houttei

May thirty-first]



CHAPTER XIII

SHRUBS


Of the hundreds of shrubs, comparatively few survive the severe winter
climate of interior New York, or grow very luxuriantly.

Lilacs of all varieties, white and purple, single and double; Deutzias,
white and pink; and Syringa, the improved large-flowered variety, are
most beautiful. _Spiræa Van Houttei_, sometimes called Bridal Wreath,
with its long trails of white blossoms; and _Viburnum plicatum_, or
Japanese Snowball, which in late May bears a ball of bloom on every
twig and is both healthy and hardy, are also desirable shrubs. The old
variety of Snowball is attacked by a blight, the leaves curl up and
grow black and the blooms are imperfect. A few years ago I dug up all
of mine and burned them.

Altheas, or Rose of Sharon,--not by any means the old purplish red
variety, but the beautiful new double white and double pale pink kinds,
with blossoms coming in August and reminding one of Camellias,--are
indispensable. Do not fail to have _Hydrangea paniculata_, with its
great heads of white bloom, slowly changing to dull pink, and lasting
quite six weeks.

[Illustration: _Hydrangea paniculata grandiflora_

August twenty-sixth]

Japanese Barberry, a dwarf shrub, covered in autumn with scarlet
berries which remain on the bush all winter, is very ornamental. Many
of us remember _Calycanthus floridus_, or the Sweet-scented Shrub of
our young days, when the children would tie two or three of the queer
brown blossoms in the corner of a handkerchief to regale their less
fortunate companions with a sniff of the delicious odor. _Forsythia_
and _Laburnum_, or Golden Chain, both have yellow blossoms. Others are,
_Weigela Rosea_, the well-known pink-flowering shrub; _Rhus Cotinus_,
or Purple Fringe, and _Cydonia Japonica_, or Japanese Quince, deep
rose-pink, flowering early in the spring.

These all yield beautiful flowers, beside being hardy and of rapid
growth.

All shrubs should be trimmed as soon as they have finished flowering,
but only enough to prevent their becoming spindling, with the exception
of _Hydrangea grandiflora_, which should be trimmed back, at least
three-quarters of the new growth, every year.

It is important, also, to thin out the old wood of most shrubs after
five or six years.

Shrubs can be grown from cuttings if one has patience to wait for the
result. But as it takes from three to four years' time and considerable
care to grow a shrub that would cost but twenty cents, for which price
many varieties of shrubs can be bought, few people care to raise them.

On a large place it might be worth while to raise shrubs from cuttings.
And where there is plenty of space, a small nursery of them might be
kept.

At the end of June take clippings about a foot long, make a shallow
trench in good ground and plant them a couple of inches deep. They
should be well rooted, in about six weeks. If the weather be dry, after
planting them, they must be watered daily. The following spring they
should be reset, a foot apart, where they can grow until transplanted
to their final resting place. I know a beautiful hedge of _Cydonia
Japonica_, or Japanese Quince, that has been grown from cuttings.
Privet can easily be grown from cuttings, and I have raised Box from
clippings. Fortunately, the season was a wet one, for if allowed to
become dry before being well rooted, they would probably have died.


LIST OF MOST SATISFACTORY SHRUBS

_Altheas_, pink or white; blooms in August. Jeanne d'Arc, pure double
white, the best. Grows six to eight feet in five years; must be trimmed
in October.

_Berberis Thunbergii_, or Barberry, of slow growth; about three feet
high; desirable for its beautiful foliage and scarlet fruit in winter.

_Calycanthus floridus_, or Sweet-scented Shrub. It yields its brown
blossoms the end of May; slow-growing; requires but little trimming;
height, five to six feet.

_Cydonia Japonica_, Japanese Quince, has brilliant red blossoms in
early May; grows six to seven feet high.

_Deutzia crenata_, variety of pale pink, and _Candidissima_, white; of
rapid growth, and very high; six to eight feet in five years.

_Forsythia_ blooms in April with masses of yellow flowers; moderate,
quick growth; seldom over six feet high.

_Hydrangea paniculata grandiflora_, the finest of all hardy shrubs.
The flowers are great panicles of white. They bloom about the first of
August and remain beautiful for six weeks, slowly changing to a soft,
dull pink. This shrub is most effective when grown in masses of a
dozen or more, although single specimens are very fine. They must be
vigorously cut back late every fall, leaving only about six inches of
new growth.

_Lilac_, common purple and common white; also _Marie Legray_, a fine
white Lilac, and _Madame Lemoine_, a new double variety bearing very
large trusses of flowers. All of these varieties of Lilac grow high and
rapidly--frequently eight feet in six years. They require little or no
pruning. It is sufficient to cut the blossoms either before or after
they go to seed.

_Lonicera rosea_ and _Lonicera albida_, upright Honeysuckles, in shrub
form, vigorous, quick-growing, requiring but slight pruning in late
autumn. They flower in May, and in midsummer are covered with beautiful
berries.

[Illustration: Vase of _Hydrangea paniculata grandiflora_

September tenth]

_Magnolia conspicua_, with large white blossoms, blooms the middle of
April; _Soulangeana_ has large pink flowers and blossoms the end of
April. Magnolias should be pruned when set out, and should be moved
only in spring.

_Philadelphus syringa_, or Mock Orange; _grandiflorus_ is the finest.
The flowers are pure white, very fragrant and bloom about the middle
of June. The shrub grows high, is perfectly hardy and in every
way satisfactory. It should be trimmed as soon as it has finished
blossoming. Cut back about three-quarters of the new growth; it will
then send out side shoots and become continually thicker.

_Privet._ The common Privet is of very rapid growth and excellent for
a screen. It should be trimmed the end of June, but only enough to
prevent its becoming scraggly. The California Privet is not so hardy.

_Rhus Cotinus_, popularly known as Smoke Tree or Purple Fringe, grows
as high as a small tree and requires almost no pruning. In midsummer it
is covered with fine, mist-like, purple flowers.

_Spiræa Van Houttei._ This is one of the most satisfactory shrubs; is
rather dwarf in habit, growing about five feet high. The end of May it
is covered with clusters of white flowers on long, pendulous branches.
Trim as soon as it has finished blooming, cutting off about half of the
new growth.

_Spiræa Anthony Waterer,_ another Spirea, very dwarf, only about a foot
in height, and covered with bright crimson flowers from June to October.

_Viburnum plicatum,_ Japan Snowball, one of the finest shrubs. It grows
about six feet high, and is completely covered with its balls of snow
in early June. It requires comparatively little trimming.

_Weigela._--The two most satisfactory varieties of this shrub are
_Candida_, whose blossoms are white, and _Rosea_, with pink flowers.
They bloom most freely about the tenth of June, when each shrub becomes
a mass of flowers. Care must be taken to cut out the old wood from time
to time, and to trim after the shrub has finished blooming.


A FEW EVERGREEN SHRUBS

Of evergreen shrubs, _Kalmia latifolia_, or Mountain Laurel, is most
satisfactory, growing three to four feet high. It is covered in early
June with large clusters of pale pink and white flowers.

_Rhododendron maximum_, the large-leaved hardy American variety. Under
cultivation this shrub seldom grows more than six feet high; in the
woods it is found much larger.

_Japanese Holly_, a dense-growing shrub about four feet high, with deep
glossy green foliage.

_Tree Box_, generally trimmed in standard or pyramidal form and very
slow-growing.


PERENNIAL VINES AND CREEPERS

_Ampelopsis quinquefolia_, Virginia Creeper.

_Ampelopsis Veitchi_, Boston Ivy.

_Aristolochia Sipho_, Dutchman's Pipe.

_Bignonia radicans_, Trumpet Creeper.

_Clematis paniculata_, clusters of fine white flowers.

_Clematis Henryi_, large white flowers.

_Clematis Jackmani_, large purple flowers.

_English Ivy._

_Honeysuckle_, Hall's Japan, Golden Japan.

_Hops._

_Vitis Coignetiæ_, Japanese ornamental grapevine; rapid grower.

_Wistaria_, both purple and white.


A FEW OF THE BEST ANNUAL VINES

_Cobæa scandens_, purple and white.

_Moonflower_, white.

_Japanese Morning-glory_, all colors.

_Passion Flower_, blue and white; must be started very early, and if
well protected will sometimes survive the winter.

_Japanese Gourd._ This must be descended from Jonah's Gourd of biblical
fame, as it often grows from forty to fifty feet in a summer. It has
yellow flowers and gourds, and is very decorative.



WATER, WALKS, LAWNS, BOX-EDGINGS, SUN-DIAL AND PERGOLA



CHAPTER XIV

WATER, WALKS, LAWNS, BOX-EDGING, SUN-DIAL AND PERGOLA


It is not advisable to arrange for a garden of any size without
considering the question of water. Within the limits of a town supply
there is only the comparatively simple matter of laying the pipes.
But when the place is dependent upon its own water system, the amount
to be counted upon and the situation of the garden with reference to
the source of supply must be seriously considered. If possible the
garden hydrants should not be more than fifty feet apart. This greatly
facilitates watering. When further apart, plants are in danger of being
injured by the unwieldy hose. A nozzle that will regulate the flow of
water from a fine spray to a strong stream will be found convenient.

Opinions differ upon the best way to lay water-pipes through a place,
some preferring to put them but a foot under ground, and turn off
the water in winter; others lay them in trenches three and a half to
four feet deep, so that they are beyond all danger from frost. This
latter plan was followed in my garden and I recommend it as being most
satisfactory.

The watering of a garden requires nearly as much judgment as the
seasoning of a soup. Keep the soil well stirred and loose on the
surface, going through the garden, where possible, with a rake; and
if there is no room for a rake, stir gently with a trowel every five
days or once a week. In this way moisture will be retained in the soil,
since the loose earth acts as a mulch.

[Illustration: Vase of double hardy Sunflowers (_Helianthus
multiflorus plenus_)

September fifteenth]

When watering, be generous. Soak the plants to the roots; wet all
the earth around them, and do it late in the afternoon, when the sun
is low. How often have I been obliged to chide the men for watering
too early in the afternoon, and not doing it thoroughly, for, upon
stirring the ground, I would find that the water had penetrated but
a couple of inches. During long periods of dry weather, the garden,
without water, will simply wither and burn.

Rhododendrons, Ferns and Lilies suffer in dry time, even though well
mulched, and must be kept moist.

Japanese Iris blooms but indifferently unless quite wet.

When dry weather continues for a long period I divide the garden
into three parts; one part is thoroughly watered every evening, and
the following day the soil is stirred. In this way the plants suffer
comparatively little. For years we had no water supply through the
gardens, and really, in dry weather, life had no pleasure for me
because of my unhappiness at the sight of the withered garden. I would
drag watering-cans about, and beg and bribe all the family to do
likewise. Every afternoon, about five o'clock, one of the men would
fill eight ten-gallon milk-cans with water, put them in a wagon, and
drive about the place watering the flower beds and borders. Frequently
he would fill these cans three times in one afternoon. This, as may be
imagined, was slow and unsatisfactory work, and, except in the case of
a small garden, is too great a task.

Often in a dry time, after dinner, I bethink me of the Rhododendrons or
Ferns or Iris, or some other plants to which drought means death, and I
feel sure "that boy has not watered them enough." Then, in ten minutes
the garden skirt, shoes and gloves are on, and those thirsty plants
get a drenching to their very roots such as they would never receive
from any perfunctory "boy" or gardener. I go to bed warm and weary,
yet sleep is sweet from satisfaction at the thought of the garden's
happiness.


WALKS

Unquestionably, walks near the house should be graveled; they naturally
have too hard usage to keep turf in good condition. Graveled walks
should be dug out a foot or more in depth, filled in with broken stone,
this covered well with coarse gravel, and finished with a coating of a
couple of inches of whatever fine gravel is chosen. A walk thus made
will be dry and well drained and weeds have little chance to grow.

The most beautiful walks of all are those of grass. Strange to say,
they are seldom seen in this country. Through any garden, some
little distance from the house, where they will be walked on only by
those going to the garden, the turf-walks, with ordinary care, will
last well, require only the usual cutting with the lawn-mower, and,
especially if edged with Box, should be the very pride and joy of the
possessor's heart.

The ground for such walks should be spaded deeply with plenty of
manure, raked carefully and made very smooth. Prepare in September,
and by the fifteenth or twentieth sow, very thickly, a mixture of
one-third each to the bushel of Kentucky Blue Grass, Long Island Bent
Grass and Red Top. Roll thoroughly, and if the weather be dry have
the newly sown paths sprinkled daily and kept moist. The tender grass
should appear in two weeks, and will continue to grow during October.

[Illustration: Vase of Monkshood

September thirtieth]

About Thanksgiving time of the first year, cover with a layer of
straw, and uncover about the twenty-fifth of March. At this time it is
well to sow thinly some more grass seed of the same kinds, and again
roll, the reason for the additional spring sowing being to replace any
of the grass that may have been winter-killed. About the twentieth
of April spread cotton-seed meal, the best of all fertilizers for
grass, all over the paths. For years we have had the lawns covered
with stable manure in February and raked off the first of April, and
for years I have waged war with the weeds and wild grasses. But sow
cotton-seed meal early in April, and if possible give the paths a
little wood-ashes in June; the result will be a hundred per cent better
than from the use of manure. Cotton-seed meal should not be sown too
thickly, and wood-ashes must be spread thinly, so as not to burn the
grass.

The men tell me that a sharp-pointed mason's trowel is more
satisfactory than any other tool for removing weeds from the lawns and
grass paths. If this is carefully attended to the end of May, and again
the latter part of June, and only artificial fertilizer used, there
will be but little trouble with weeds in the grass.


BOX-EDGING

Box-edging should be set out in the spring, that it may be thoroughly
rooted before winter.

Great care must be taken in setting out the Box, that the row be
absolutely straight and even. The garden cord is carefully stretched;
a shallow, narrow trench is dug with the spade, and then the little
plants are placed about three inches apart, each plant against the
string. The trench is half filled in with earth, then a layer of
manure, and finally more earth packed down. Box planted in this way
should grow and thrive, especially if given, along in May, a little
bone-meal.

[Illustration: Sun-dial in center of formal garden

August second]

I write feelingly of Box-edging to-day. Last week, Holy Week, I spent
in the country, and most of my time was passed on my knees. For, when
not at church or driving the intervening five miles, I was setting out
plants in the garden, and that, like one's prayers, requires kneeling.
Four men were working, setting out plants and trees, but the earth was
so sweet and warm and brown that it was impossible to keep away from
it. With trowel in hand and joy in my heart, I set out hundreds of
little Box plants, transplanted Columbines, Foxgloves and Canterbury
Bells. Big robins were hopping tamely about, calling to one another;
blackbirds and meadow-larks were singing their refrains; the brave
plants were pushing their way through the earth to new life, and I
thought how good it was to be alive, to have a garden to dig in, and,
above all, to be well and able to dig.

With work in the garden care and worry vanish. The cook (as some cooks
of mine have done) may announce that "'tis a woild waste of a place.
I be lavin' the mornin'." The hamper of meat does not arrive on the
one train from town, or somebody smashes something very dear to your
heart,--just go to the garden, tie up some Roses or vines, or poke
about with a trowel, and though murder may have been in your thoughts,
in half an hour serenity will return. And what does it all matter,
anyway? Another maid can cook for a few days, and there are always
bacon and eggs.

Philosophy is inevitably learned in a garden. Speaking of eggs, I
think of hens. Living on a farm, of course there have always been
hens and chickens. These creatures were provided with houses and yards
and fences, and given every inducement to remain where they belonged;
yet with diabolical ingenuity they would escape from their quarters,
dig under the fence, fly over it, or some one would leave a door or
a gate open, and then, with one accord, all the flock would make for
the gardens and scratch and roll in the borders. This sort of thing
happened repeatedly, until I felt there must be a league between the
farmer's wife and the hens. But the limit of endurance was reached
when, one afternoon, coming out to look at a bed of several dozen
Chrysanthemums set out in the morning, I found the poor plants all
scratched out of the ground, broken and wilted. Then in wrath the fiat
went forth, "No more hens on this farm, those on hand to be eaten at
once." For days a patient family had hen soup, hen croquettes, hen
salad and hen fricassee, until the last culprit came to her end.


SUN-DIAL

There is no more charming and interesting addition to a garden
than a sun-dial. For hundreds of years sun-dials have been used as
timekeepers, and though some of the very old ones were occasionally
set into the façade of a building, they are generally found in the
_plaisaunce_ or garden, mounted upon quaint pedestals. Sun-dials
are supposed, by their owners, to keep accurate time, but it must
be remembered that there is always a difference between clock-time
and sun-time. While, to-day, our lives are frequently portioned into
minutes, and it would seem as if one might loiter and be lazy in a
garden, if anywhere, still even among the flowers we find a "_tempus
fugit_." For a time after my sun-dial was set, it was amusing to notice
how often, about half after eleven o'clock, and again at five, this
late addition to the garden would claim the attention of the workmen.

My sun-dial stands in the center of a formal garden where four paths
meet, forming a circle twenty feet across. The pedestal is a simple
column of marble, four and one-half feet high, slightly tapering toward
the top, with beveled corners. This is placed on a stone foundation
three and one-half feet deep, laid in cement. The pedestal I found at
the yard of a second-hand building-material man, on Avenue B, in New
York city. After it had been set in place, I wanted it rubbed up and
a chipped place smoothed. The only available man for this work, was
the gravestone-cutter from the nearest town. When he was recognized at
work in the garden by passing countrymen, they supposed, of course,
that some one was buried there, and many have been the inquiries as to
"whose be that mouny-ment."

Crimson Rambler Roses twine about the pedestal. At the corners of
the four paths are standard Box trees, which stand like sentinels,
and between them there are Bay trees in terra-cotta vases of simple
shape--copies of antique ones.

The dial made for the latitude bears this inscription, "_Utere
praesenti, memor ultimae_" (Use the present hour, mindful of the last),
which I found in an old book on sun-dials in the Avery Library, at
Columbia University.


PERGOLA

Across the end of this garden is a rustic pergola seventy feet long,
made of cedar posts cut from the woods on the farm, ten posts on a
side, each post being set four feet deep. A string-piece of heavy
chestnut rests on the tops of each row of posts. Cedar poles ten inches
apart extend across the top and project two feet over each side. The
pergola is eight feet wide and ten feet high, is easy to build and
very effective. Care must be taken to set the posts at least four
feet. At each post are planted a two-year-old root of Wistaria and
one of Virginia Creeper, and I live in the hope of some day seeing
the vines cover the pergola. The ground slopes gently where this is
built, and the first autumn after it was made, it looked, from a little
distance, so much like a section of an elevated railroad as to be very
depressing. But one must possess imagination to be a gardener, and have
the ability to see the garden as it will look "next year." So I refused
to see the pergola except as clothed with vines, and in May, with the
beautiful racemes of Purple Wistaria hanging from every rafter.

Patience and perseverance are traits necessary to the gardener. One
must not be discouraged, but determined to succeed. If a set of plants
die, or do not flourish this year, try them again next season, under
different conditions, until the difficulties are overcome. I have known
people who began gardening as a mere pastime when over forty years old,
and who have told me what an absorbing interest it had become and how
greatly it changed the whole aspect of life for them in the country.
What a delightful tie, fondness for gardening makes between people!
I know several men with beautiful places and lovely gardens in which
they take the warmest personal interest. Whenever I meet one of them
at dinner, if by chance I am not seated next to him, I am unhappy and
cannot listen sympathetically, either to the enthusiasm of the man on
one side whose heart is, perhaps, bound up in golf, or to the laments
of my neighbor on the other, who may be suffering from rheumatism or
gout, and unable to eat or drink what he wants.



INSECTICIDES--TOOL-ROOM



CHAPTER XV

INSECTICIDES--TOOL-ROOM


The enemies of growing things have certainly increased alarmingly of
late years. I cannot recall that formerly any insect was to be found
in either vegetable or flower garden, other than the potato bug,
currant-worm, cabbage-worm, and the green worm and small black beetle
on the Rose; but now there are so many horrid creatures lying in wait
until a plant is in perfection, to cut the stalk, or eat the root, or
eat the pith from the stalk so that it falls, or to devour the leaves
and eat the blossoms, that insecticides and a spraying machine are
as necessary to a garden as a spade. For a small garden a spraying
machine holding from a couple of quarts to a gallon, can be bought for
a trifling sum, that will answer the purpose very well For a larger
garden, a good air-pump, costing from five dollars upwards, will be
found an excellent investment.

One of the best insecticides is Bordeaux mixture, which can either be
bought or made. I have twenty-five gallons made at a time and keep it
always on hand. The following is the receipe:

Three pounds of blue vitriol in coarse crystals; three pounds of
unslaked lime. Slake the lime in two and one-half gallons of water;
pour two and one-half gallons of water over the blue vitriol in
another receptacle, and let both stand over night. In the morning
stir the blue vitriol until all is dissolved; then let two persons
pour simultaneously the lime water and the blue vitriol into the same
receptacle, and add twenty gallons of water; stir well before filling
the spraying machine.

[Illustration: The Pergola (first summer)

August twenty-fifth]

Bordeaux mixture is to be used for rust, mildew, and all kinds of
blight, whenever the leaves of plants have a tendency to turn black.
Hollyhocks seem to be universally attacked by rust. Spraying the plants
at the end of April, and again in the middle of May, should entirely
prevent this. I have found that Bordeaux mixture prevents the leaves
of Monkshood from turning black and falling off, if the plants are well
sprayed with it about the middle of June and the first of July.

Phloxes grown in rather shady places will, in damp weather, fall
victims to mildew on the leaves. Spraying with Bordeaux mixture the
end of June and middle of July should prevent this. Roses also have a
tendency in warm, damp weather to mildew, which can be prevented by
spraying the plants with Bordeaux mixture.

Kerosene emulsion may also be prepared, and is excellent for killing,
both the small green aphids that often cover the leaves of Roses, and
other hard, scaly insects. Following is the receipe:

Put one cake of laundry soap shaved fine into one gallon of water. When
dissolved, add two gallons of kerosene oil. This makes the emulsion.

For spraying, use one quart of the emulsion in fourteen quarts of
water. Be sure that this is very thoroughly mixed before filling the
sprayer.

Powdered hellebore, if dissolved in the proportion of one pound of
powder to one gallon of water, will destroy both the green worm on the
Rose leaf and the small dark beetle that eats the Roses. It will also
dispose of green worms on other plants.

Slug-shot dissolved, one-half pound of powder to one gallon of water,
will, if used the latter part of April and several times in May, keep
the Roses comparatively free from insects. Slug-shot and hellebore may
also be used dry and blown on to the plants with a bellows.

I have used Hellebore in my garden for many years without harm to
anything except the worms and beetles. But recently I heard of a lady
who was severely poisoned in using dry Hellebore. The wind blew it into
her face; perhaps some was inhaled, and serious illness resulted. I
mention the fact here, to caution all who use it not to let either the
spray or the powder come in contact with the skin. Some persons may be
susceptible to the poison while others are not,--presenting a case of
what the doctors call an "idiosyncrasy."

Paris green, mixed in the proportion of two tablespoonfuls to three
quarts of water and used as a spray, will destroy a beetle that
sometimes appears upon the Gourd vines.

Tobacco water will kill the black aphids which appear on the stems and
leaves of hardy Chrysanthemums. It will also kill green aphids. This
spray is made by filling an ordinary pail lightly, not pressed down,
with tobacco stems. Pour as much cold water into the pail as it will
hold; let it stand for three hours, when it is ready to use in the
spraying machine. This mixture will be good for only twenty-four hours.

Tobacco spray will also destroy the large red aphid (I call it this for
want of, perhaps, the proper name) that has recently appeared in some
localities upon the stems of the Rudbeckia (Golden Glow) and of the
single hardy Sunflower, just below the blossom.

The enemy of the Box is the white spider. The insect spins its web on
the Box and works from the inside. If the branches are pulled aside,
the inside of the plant will be found full of dead leaves in the
vicinity of the web. Recently I read in a well-known gardening monthly,
that this spider could be destroyed by spraying with kerosene emulsion.
I have some fine Box trees, and there were several white spider-webs on
each. Watering with a very strong force of water had been tried without
effect. Upon reading the article in the monthly and finding that the
spider was certainly causing disaster which might be fatal, I proceeded
to have the trees sprayed with kerosene emulsion, using it of the same
strength as for Roses. In fact, the sprayer was not re-filled, as
there was enough left in it since last using it on the Roses. About
three days after the Box had been sprayed, large, unsightly brown
patches appeared on the trees, showing that the emulsion had killed the
leaves wherever it touched them. The spider was not harmed.

I mention this experience as an example of the danger of taking all
the directions found in horticultural publications as gospel truth.
Nor should an amateur gardener ever be tempted to trifle with plant
medicines. I have a certain friend whose affection for her Roses
is more profound than her knowledge of how to treat their natural
diseases. Observing last summer that one of her most cherished Crimson
Ramblers was covered with aphids, she concluded to spray it with
"something." A bottle of carbolic acid being most available, she
tested its merits at once. The efficacy of carbolic acid as a poison
was proved beyond a doubt, for the insects became singularly dead in
a day or two, and so did the leaves; they fell off together. There
was nothing left but the forlorn stems and branches, looking like some
freak of the vegetable kingdom.


TOOL-ROOM

[Illustration: Tritoma (Red-Hot Poker Plant)

September twenty-eighth]

It is of the greatest importance to have a tool-room or closet
according to the size of the place, and to require all implements
to be kept there when not in actual use. There should be shelves
across one end or side, where shears, trowels, garden cord, clippers,
watering-cans, mallet, various mixtures for spraying, oil-cans, keys
for turning on the water, twine and all the smaller things one uses,
may be found at a moment's notice. Garden sticks painted green, in
three sizes, three and a half and four feet long, and five-eighths of
an inch in diameter, and thicker ones an inch in diameter for Dahlias,
should be kept on hand in barrels. They can be bought of lumber-dealers
in New York, where they are known as "dowels." They come in bundles
of one hundred, costing from sixty cents to a dollar and twenty-five
cents a bundle, according to size, unpainted, and the men can paint
them on rainy days. The lawn mowers and the roller (which should be
a heavy one) can also be kept in the tool-room. Rakes, both iron and
wooden, hoes, spades and shovels, the latter both long-handled and
short-handled, are best kept hung up along one side of the closet,
where the men can see at a glance what they want.

There should also be a pickaxe and a crowbar for taking out refractory
stones, and, most necessary of all things in a garden, the wheelbarrow
should be kept here, too. A sickle and a scythe must not be forgotten.

If the garden is large, a two-wheel tip-cart will prove a great saver
of labor in carting manure and soil and in the removal of debris.

On a particular shelf in my tool-room I keep my private trowel and
flower scissors, to which are attached long red ribbons as a warning of
"Hands off!" to others. There is also a clipper which I often use in
walking about to trim a bit here and there from a shrub or a climbing
Rose.

If a scrap-book be kept, in which everything of interest pertaining to
the garden can be pasted or written, it will be found a great help. In
this way items about fertilizers, insecticides, special treatment of
plants, with copies of lists ordered, can be preserved, and also, most
interesting of all, notes of when the different plants bloom each year.
I find the following under date of October 18, 1901:

  "To-day, though ice has formed three times, I have filled nineteen
  vases with flowers. They are Phlox, Larkspur, Monkshood, Salvia,
  Nasturtium, Roses, Mignonette and Chrysanthemums."

After trying many kinds of gloves for gardening, including the rubber
ones, I now use only old Suede gloves; they give sufficient covering
and permit more freedom of movement to the hands and fingers than those
of heavier material. It would be quite impossible to transplant tiny
seedlings while wearing gloves with clumsy finger-tips.

Unless a woman possesses a skin impervious to wind and sun, she is
apt to come through the summer looking as red and brown as an Indian;
and if one is often out in the glare, about the only headgear that
can be worn to prevent this, is the old-fashioned sunbonnet. With its
poke before and cape behind, protecting the neck, one really cannot
become sunburned, and pink ones are not so bad. Retired behind its
friendly shelter, you are somewhat deaf to the world; and at the
distant house, people may shout to you and bells be rung at you, and,
if your occupation be engrossing, the excuse "no one can hear through a
sunbonnet," must be accepted.



CONCLUSION



CHAPTER XVI

CONCLUSION


The character of professional gardeners seems to be changing. They have
become more perfunctory, more stubborn, more opinionated, until now
it is a really serious question with them of "the danger of a little
knowledge." To find a man who combines sobriety and a good disposition
with a fair knowledge of his business and a real liking for it, is a
difficult matter. Where but one man is kept to care for vegetables,
flowers and lawn, he is more than likely to have little interest
beyond potatoes or corn, or to be good at raising small fruits, and to
consider everything else he has to do as so much waste of time. When
first married, one of our gardeners was a German who took no interest
in flowers, and planted half the vegetable garden with "kohlrabi" and
"korn salad." We had never heard of these delicacies before, and did
not care for them. I remember also his telling me that one kind of
flower was enough to raise anyway.

If a young man with an elementary knowledge of gardening can be found,
who wants to learn, is strong, willing and intelligent, it is better
to supply most of the brains yourself. You will find your own wishes
more apt to be carried out than by the gardener who "knows it all,"
and seems to resent what he calls "interference" on the part of his
employer.

I remember, when a child, seeing my father's gardener walking about in
the early evening after his supper, smoking a meditative pipe, tying
up Roses or spraying plants, and often setting out seedlings after
sundown. He was never idle; he loved his work and attended to it. But
now it is rare indeed to see a gardener, after hours, going about his
work; _autre temps autres moeurs_.

[Illustration: Bringing in the flowers

September sixth]

Remember always that it is the overcoming of the difficulties in the
gardener's way, the determination to succeed, that gives zest to the
occupation. Did everything planted grow and flourish, gardening would
be too tame. Rust and blight, cutworms, rose-beetles and weeds, afford
the element of sport so attractive to us all. A lesson must be learned
from every failure; with renewed patience persevere until success is
reached.

I would make the strongest plea in favor of a garden to all those who
are so fortunate as to possess any land at all. The relaxation from
care and toil and the benefit to health are great, beyond belief, to
those who may have to work with head or hands. If you can snatch a few
minutes in early morning or late afternoon, to spend among the plants,
life takes on a new aspect, health is improved, care is dissipated, and
you get nearer to Nature, as God intended.

If the rich and fashionable women of this country took more interest
and spent more time in their gardens, and less in frivolity, fewer
would suffer from nervous prostration, and the necessity for the
multitude of sanitariums would be avoided.

Flower gardening is preëminently a woman's occupation and diversion.
Nearly every great lady in England takes a personal interest in her
gardens and conservatories, and knows all about the plants and flowers.
Here, the majority of women having large places leave the direction
of the flowers, as well as the vegetables and fruit, to the taste
and discretion of the gardener, and thus miss a great and healthful
pleasure.

As a rule, young people do not care for gardening. They lack the
necessary patience and perseverance. But in the years of middle life,
when one's sun is slowly setting and interest in the world and society
relaxes, the garden, with its changing bloom, grows ever dearer.

[Illustration]

[Illustration: Bed edged all the way with Sweet Williams

PLAN FOR BORDER]

[Illustration: PLAN FOR BORDER]



INDEX


  _Aconitum Napellus_, 110.

  Altheas, 160.

  _Ampelopsis Veitchii_, 25.

  _Anemone Japonica alba_, difficulty with, 61.

  Annuals--
    List, with height, colour and period of blooming, 88.
    Sowing, 78, 80.
    Transplanting, 86.
    [_See also names of flowers._]

  Antirrhinum, sowing, 80.

  Aquilegias, _see Columbines_.

  Asters--
    Destruction by beetle, 14, 81.
    Sowing, 80.

  Auratum lily, 139.
    Disappearance of bulb, 139.
    Price, 42.

  Autumn work in garden, 70-72.

  _Azalea mollis_, perishability of, 13.


  Barberry as hedge, 51, 160.

  Bedding-out plants, 120.
    [_See also names of plants._]

  Beds, rule for making, 16.

  Beetle destroying asters, 14, 81.

  Biennials, 117.
    [_See also names of flowers._]

  Bone-meal, 73, 74.

  Bordeaux mixture, 190.

  Borders--
    Around house, 29.
    Blooming from May to September, contents of border, 69.
    Planting, 29, 40-44, 67.
    Short path and narrow borders, 68.
    Small plot borders--
      Boundary lines of property, 48-50.
      Cost, 44.
      Planting, 40-44.

  Boston ivy, 25.

  Box, white spider pest, 194.

  Box-edging, 177-178.

  Bulbs, purchasing and planting, 40-44, 149-156.


  Calendula, 81.

  _Calycanthus floridus_, 160.

  _Campanula medium_, 117.

  Candytuft, planting, 46.

  Cannas, 48, 120, 122.

  Canterbury bells, 117, 190.

  Cardinal Flower, transplanting, etc., 32.

  Centaurea, _see Cornflower_.

  Chrysanthemums, 43, 99.

  Clayey soil, lightening, 16.

  _Clematis paniculata_, 27.

  Climbing roses, 27, 131.

  Columbines, 41.
    Planting, 41.
    Sowing, 93.

  _Coreopsis_, 98.

  Cornflowers--
    Blooming, etc., 81.
    Planting, 46.

  Cosmos, sowing, 81.

  Cost, _see Expense_.

  Creepers, _see Vines_.

  Crocuses, 150.


  Daffodils, 41, 152-154.

  Dahlias, 120, 121.
    Cost, 47.
    Planting, 45.
    Storage, 47, 48.

  Delphiniums, 96.

  Digitalis, 117.

  Double yellow daffodils, 152-154.

  "Dowels," 197.


  England--
    Gardening seasons, etc., 19.
    Gardens, small plots, 37.

  English ivy, 25.

  Everblooming roses, 127, 134.

  Evergreen shrubs, 167.

  Exchange of plants, 98, 99.

  Expense--
    Border planting, 40-44.
    Front beds, 47.


  Fall work in the garden, 70-72.

  Ferns--
    Border of, 29.
    Maidenhair haunts, 31.
    Planting, 32.
    Transplanting, 32.
    Watering, 173, 174.

  Flowers--
    Annuals, _see that title_.
    Gathering, extract from English book, 77.
    Perennials, _see that title_.
    [_See also names of flowers._]

  Flower garden--
    Small plots of ground, 23, 37.

  Foxgloves, 117-120.

  France, small plots, 37.

  Front of the house, planting bed, 45.

  _Funkia cærulea_, 142.

  _Funkia subcordata_, 142.


  Gaillardias, 104.

  German iris, 104.

  Gladioli, 120, 122, 126.
    Purchasing, 43.
    Storing, 47.

  Gloves for gardening, 198.

  Golden Glow, 46, 47, 111.

  Grandiflora, 98.

  Grass walks, 175-177.

  Graveled walks, 174-175.

  Ground, _see Soil_.


  Hansoni, 142.

  Hardy roses, 127, 130.
    List of roses blooming in June and September, 133.

  Hedges--
    Beauty of, as fences, 50.
    Preparing ground for, 50.
    Quick screens, 67.
    Varieties, 50-51.
    [_See also names, Privet, etc._]

  Hellebore, 192.

  Hemlock spruce, 50.

  Henryi, 27.

  Hibiscus, 98.

  Hollyhocks, 94.
    Planting, 28, 68.
    Seeding, 58.

  House--
    Painting, 25-27.
    Plan of garden to suit style of house, 21.
    Vines, _see that title_.

  Hyacinths, 40, 154.

  Hybrid perpetual roses, 127.
    List of roses blooming in June and September, 133.

  _Hydrangea paniculata_, 160.


  Insects and insecticides, 189.
    Asters destroyed by beetle, 14, 81.
    Bordeaux mixture, 190.
    Hellebore, 192.
    Kerosene emulsion, 191.
    Paris green, 192.
    Slug-shot, 192.
    Tobacco water, 193.
    White spider on box, 194.

  Iris, 104, 173, 174.

  Ivy--
    Boston ivy, 25.
    English ivy, 25.


  Jackmani clematis, 27.

  Japanese barberry, 51, 160.

  Japanese iris, 104, 173, 174.

  Japanese lily, 142.

  Japanese tree peonies, 106.

  Japanese vines, planting, 28.


  Kerosene emulsion, 191.


  Laying out a garden--
    Beds in front of vines, 28.
    Borders, _see that title_.
    North side of house, 29.
    Plan of garden, suiting to style of house, 21.
    Soil, _see that title_.
    Vines, _see that title_.
    [_See also names of flowers, etc._]

  Lilac, 164.

  Lilies, 139-146.
    Auratum lily, _see that title_.
    Border planting, 42.
    Planting, etc., 144-146.
    Watering, 173.
    [_See also names, Lilium, etc._]

  _Lilium auratum, see Auratum lily._

  _Lilium Canadense_, 142.

  _Lilium candidum_, 140.

  _Lilium longiflorum_, 141.

  _Lilium speciosum album_, 141.

  _Lilium speciosum rubrum_, 141.

  Lily-of-the-valley, 143.

  London Pride, 110.

  Lychnis, 110.


  Maidenhair fern, haunts of, 31.

  Mai Glöcken, 143.

  Marigolds, 82.

  Meadow lily, 142.

  Monkshood, 110.

  Moonflower, Japanese, 28.

  Morning-glory, Japanese, 28.


  Narcissus, 40, 152.

  Nasturtiums, planting, 79.


  Ordering plants, 65.

  Oriental poppies, 102.


  Painting of house and care of vines, 25-27.

  Pansies, carpeting rose beds with, 84, 126.

  Paris green, 192.

  Peonies, 41, 105.

  Perennial vines and creepers, 167.

  Perennials--
    Development, 52.
    List, with height, colour and time of blooming, 112.
    Planting, 49.
    Raising in seed-bed, 48, 57.
    Seed-bed, _see that title_.
    Sowing seeds, 59, 93.
    Transplanting, 102.
    [_See also names of perennials._]

  Pergola, 183-184.

  Pests, _see_ Insects.

  _Philadelphus syringa_, 165.

  Phlox, 82, 106, 111.

  Pinks, 102.

  Plan of garden, suiting to style of house, 21.

  Planting, 66-74.
    Borders, 29, 40-44, 67.
    Candytuft, 46.
    Cornflowers, 46.
    Dahlias, 45.
    Fall work, 70-72.
    Ferns, 32.
    Hollyhocks, 28, 68.
    Lilies, 144-146.
    Perennials, 49.
    Roses, 126, 127.
    Rows, 68, 69.
    Small plot, 37-54.
    Starting a garden, 21.
    Transplanting, _see that title_.

  Plants--
    Exchange, 98, 99.
    Ordering, 65.
    Unpacking, 65.

  _Platycodon Mariesi_, 96.

  Poeticus narcissus, 40, 152.

  Poppies, 102.
    Sowing, 78-79.

  Privet, purchase, etc., 51.

  Professional gardeners, 13, 203.


  Red-hot poker plant, 104.

  Rhododendrons--
    Planting and care of, 29-31.
    Watering, 173, 174.

  Rockets, 98.

  Roots, purchasing, 40-44.

  Rose of Sharon, 160.

  Roses, 125-135.
    Best roses, list of, 131.
    Budded stock, 126.
    Carpeting rose bed with pansies and gladioli, 84, 126.
    Climbing, 27, 131.
    Everblooming, 127, 134.
    Exclusiveness, 125.
    Hardy, _see that title_.
    Hybrid Perpetual, _see that title_.
    List of hybrid perpetual and hardy roses blooming
      in June and September, 133.
    Planting, 126, 127.
    Replanting and cutting, 127, 130.

  Rudbeckias, 28, 46, 47, 111.


  Salvia, 121.

  _Scabiosa Caucasica_, 109.

  Scarlet salvia, 121.

  Scrap-book, 198.

  Screens, quick, 67.

  Seed-bed--
    Empty, 62.
    Importance and satisfaction, 48, 57.
    Preparing, 57.

  Seeds, sowing, 58.

  Setting of plants, 13.

  Shirley poppies, 78, 79.

  Shrubs, 159-168.
    Evergreen shrubs, 167.
    Growth from cuttings, 161, 162.
    List of most satisfactory shrubs, 162.
    Planting, 50.
    [_See also names of shrubs._]

  Slug-shot, 192.

  Small plot, planting, 37-54.
    Borders, _see that title_.
    Front of the house, 45-48.

  Snowball, blight, 159.

  Snowdrops, 149.

  Soil--
    Beds, rules for making, 13.
    Clayey, lightening, 16.
    Manure, use of, 71-74.
    Preparation of, 13, 16, 20.

  Sowing--
    Annuals sown in seed-bed in spring, list of, 80.
    Seeds, 58.

  Spider on box, 194.

  Spring-flowering bulbs, 40-44, 149-156.

  Starting a garden, 21.

  Sticks, "dowels," 196.

  Suburban gardens, 39.

  Sunbonnet, 199.

  Sun-dial, 181-183.

  Sweet Peas--
    Sowing, 83.
    Trellis, 84.

  Sweet Williams, 95.


  Tigrinum, 142.

  Tobacco water, 193.

  Tools and tool-room, 196-199.

  Transplanting--
    Annuals, 86.
    Cardinal flower, 32.
    Fall work, 70-72.
    Ferns, 32.
    Perennials, 102.

  Tritomas, 104.

  Trumpet creeper, 25.

  Tulips, 41, 150.


  Unpacking plants, 65.


  Valerian, 99.

  _Veronica longifolia_, 104.

  Vines and Creepers--
    _Ampelopsis Veitchii_, 25.
    Best annual vines, 168.
    Care of, 25.
    _Clematis paniculata_, 27.
    English ivy, 25.
    Henryi, 27.
    Jackmani clematis, 27.
    Japanese vines, 28.
    North side of house, 29.
    Painting of house, 25-27.
    Perennials, 167.
    Planting, 23.
    Roses, climbing, 27, 131.
    Trumpet creeper, 25.
    Virginia creeper, 25.


  Walks, grass and graveled, 174-177.

  Water supply and watering, 171-174.

  Weeding, 87.

  White spider on box, 194.


  _Yucca filamentosa_, 102.


  Zinnias, varieties of, 82.


F. C.


Printed in the United States of America.



      *      *      *      *      *      *



Transcriber's note:

Apparent typographical errors have been corrected and
hyphenation standardised, e.g., sunbonnet and Sunflower are
written without hyphens throughout the book.

Unusual punctuation and original spelling have been retained,
receipe (recipe?) left as printed.

The 1930 date on the title page might be a misprint for 1903,
although there was a 1930 edition.





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