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Flowers and Herbs of Early America
     

Flowers and Herbs of Early America

5.0 3
by Lawrence Griffith, Barbara Temple Lombardi (Photographer)
 

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Hounds-tongue. Ragged robin. Costmary. Pennyroyal. All-heal. These plants, whose very names conjure up a bygone world, were among the great variety of flowers and herbs grown in America’s colonial and early Federal gardens. In this sumptuously illustrated book, a leading historic plant expert brings this botanical heritage back to life.

Drawing on years of

Overview

Hounds-tongue. Ragged robin. Costmary. Pennyroyal. All-heal. These plants, whose very names conjure up a bygone world, were among the great variety of flowers and herbs grown in America’s colonial and early Federal gardens. In this sumptuously illustrated book, a leading historic plant expert brings this botanical heritage back to life.

Drawing on years of archival research and field trials in Colonial Williamsburg’s gardens in Williamsburg, Virginia, Lawrence Griffith documents fifty-six species of flowers and herbs and provides details on how they were cultivated and used. For each plant, an elegant period hand-colored engraving, watercolor, or woodcut is presented along with glorious new photographs by Barbara Temple Lombardi.

This book is a dazzling treat for armchair gardeners and for those who have visited and admired the famous gardens of Colonial Williamsburg. It is also an invaluable companion for twenty-first-century gardeners who will appreciate the specific advice of a master gardener on how to plan, choose appropriate species for, and maintain a beautiful, historic flower and herb garden.

The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is a not-for-profit educational institution that operates the world’s largest living history museum.

Published in association with the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation

Editorial Reviews

New York Times

"Gardeners enamored with heirloom seed collecting and what it tells us about our ancestors'' gardens might enjoy Flowers and Herbs of Early America. . . . The book is a beautiful compendium of cottage garden flowers, many of which have medicinal properties and are easy to grow."—Anne Raver, New York Times (Favorite garden books of the year)

— Anne Raver

Washington Post

"Basically cottage garden plants from the New and Old worlds, they all have a humble honesty about them, drawn out in the lovely photographic portraits by Barbara Temple Lombardi. Some will be as familiar to us as our forebears . . . others remain delightfully novel. I can''t wait to get seed of some of them to try myself."—Adrian Higgins, Washington Post

— Adrian Higgins

The Journal of Antiques and Collectibles
This book is a dazzling treat for armchair gardeners and for those who have visited and admired the famous gardens of Colonial Williamsburg. It is also an invaluable companion for 21st century gardeners who will appreciate the specific advice of a master gardener on how to plan, choose appropriate species for, and maintain a beautiful, historic flower and herb garden."—The Journal of Antiques and Collectibles
Horticulture Magazine

"The multilayers of information—inspirational gardening quotations, details on habit, tips for growing and period engravings, watercolors and woodcuts—provide provocative visual counterparts to the stunning photography by Barbara Temple Lombardi."—Patty Craft, Horticulture Magazine

— Patty Craft

Washington Gardener

"Gorgeous photos, interesting plant discussions, practical cultivation advice, medical uses, and glimpses into plant history . . . a luxurious gift for a gardener. . . . The photos are magical even for non-gardeners and the text is a joy to read . . ."—Cheval Force Opp, Washington Gardener

— Cheval Force Opp

Choice
"Gardeners will appreciate the advice provided on planting the seed, choosing appropriate species, and maintaining a beautiful period garden. . . . Recommended."—Choice
GardenSMART

"Any gardener would love to have this book on his or her library shelf. . . . Early America never looked or read so first-class." —Anne K. Moore, GardenSMART

— Anne K. Moore

New York Times - Anne Raver
"Gardeners enamored with heirloom seed collecting and what it tells us about our ancestors' gardens might enjoy Flowers and Herbs of Early America. . . . The book is a beautiful compendium of cottage garden flowers, many of which have medicinal properties and are easy to grow."—Anne Raver, New York Times (Favorite garden books of the year)
Washington Post - Adrian Higgins
"Basically cottage garden plants from the New and Old worlds, they all have a humble honesty about them, drawn out in the lovely photographic portraits by Barbara Temple Lombardi. Some will be as familiar to us as our forebears . . . others remain delightfully novel. I can't wait to get seed of some of them to try myself."—Adrian Higgins, Washington Post
Horticulture Magazine - Patty Craft
"The multilayers of information—inspirational gardening quotations, details on habit, tips for growing and period engravings, watercolors and woodcuts—provide provocative visual counterparts to the stunning photography by Barbara Temple Lombardi."—Patty Craft, Horticulture Magazine
Washington Gardener - Cheval Force Opp
"Gorgeous photos, interesting plant discussions, practical cultivation advice, medical uses, and glimpses into plant history . . . a luxurious gift for a gardener. . . . The photos are magical even for non-gardeners and the text is a joy to read . . ."—Cheval Force Opp, Washington Gardener

GardenSMART - Anne K. Moore
"Any gardener would love to have this book on his or her library shelf. . . . Early America never looked or read so first-class." —Anne K. Moore, GardenSMART
Library Journal

Griffith, curator of plants for the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, has drawn on a wealth of historical research and his own experiments in the field to craft a work that explores how 56 different flowers and herbs were grown and used in early America. With the intent to entertain as well as inform, Griffith discusses how early Americans viewed plants: they primarily focused on a plant's perceived usefulness. Griffith explains that his book is not meant to cover all Colonial plants but only those that he successfully grew in his own field trials. The entries are organized by how the plant is viewed today; thus, Griffith writes, most (47) of them now fall into the ornamental category. Each section features a sidebar containing plant facts and tips. Also included are a lengthy section on the historical sources used, a section on general planting information, and endnotes. The strength of the book lies in its solid historical research, smooth writing, and beautiful color photographs-by Colonial Williamsburg photographer Lombardi-and period images. Recommended for both public and academic libraries.
—Lisa A. Ennis

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780300145366
Publisher:
Yale University Press
Publication date:
10/28/2008
Pages:
304
Sales rank:
880,503
Product dimensions:
9.40(w) x 10.80(h) x 1.10(d)

Meet the Author

Lawrence Griffith is curator of plants for the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation and former garden columnist for the Daily Press, Newport News, VA. He lives on the Middle Peninsula of Virginia. Barbara Temple Lombardi is a photographer for the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. She lives in Williamsburg, VA.

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