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A note to the internet reader: In the the print-on-paper edition, this chapter and the next one on vermicomposting are full of illustrations showing composting structures and accessories. These do not reproduce well on-line and are not included. Growing the majority of my family's food absorbs all of the energy I care to put into gardening. So my yard is neat but shaggy. Motivated by what I consider total rationality, my lawn is cut only when it... more...

PREFACE. The following pages apply only to those English writers on gardening who are deceased. That there have been portraits taken of some of those sixty-nine English writers, whose names first occur in the following pages, there can be no doubt; and those portraits may yet be with their surviving relatives or descendants. I am not so presumptuous as to apply to the following most slight memorials, some of which relate to very obscure... more...

INTRODUCTORY LETTER MY DEAR MR. FIELDS,—I did promise to write an Introduction to these charming papers but an Introduction,—what is it?—a sort of pilaster, put upon the face of a building for looks' sake, and usually flat,—very flat. Sometimes it may be called a caryatid, which is, as I understand it, a cruel device of architecture, representing a man or a woman, obliged to hold up upon his or her head or shoulders a... more...

INTRODUCTION The successful garden has a permanent basis. There must be some flowers that appear year after year, whose position is fixed and whose appearance can be counted on. The group classed as perennials occupies this position and about flowers of this class is arranged all the various array of annuals and bulbs. These last act as reinforcements in rounding out the garden scheme. Perennials are plants that live on year after year if the... more...

OUTLINE. 1. In my inaugural lecture, I stated that while holding this professorship I should direct you, in your practical exercises, chiefly to natural history and landscape. And having in the course of the past year laid the foundational elements of art sufficiently before you, I will invite you, now, to enter on real work with me; and accordingly I propose during this and the following term to give you what practical leading I can in... more...

A Aaron's Rod.—See "Solidago." Abelia.—Very ornamental evergreen shrubs, bearing tubular, funnel-shaped flowers. They succeed in any ordinary soil if the situation is warm and sheltered, and are readily raised by cuttings. Height, 3 ft. to 4 ft. Abies (Spruce Firs).—Among these ornamental conifers mention may be made of the beautiful Japanese Spruce Ajanensis, which grows freely in most soils and has dual-coloured... more...

THE LAWN: HOW TO MAKE IT AND HOW TO TAKE CARE OF IT   HE owner of the average small home seldom goes to the expense of employing the professional gardener to do the work of lawn-making. Sometimes he cannot afford to do so. Sometimes skilled labor is not obtainable. The consequence is, in the majority of cases, the lawn,—or what, by courtesy, is called by that name,—is a sort of evolution which is an improvement on the original... more...