The Private Gardens of Charleston

Overview

Beyond the magnificent old walls and gates of Charleston's distinguished historic homes lie lush, private gardens. The Private Gardens of Charleston presents a detailed view of twenty-five of these spaces in color photographs and essays that explore the diversity of gardening interests and styles, ranging from the elegant distinction of a "typical" Charleston garden—narrow, shady, and verdant and accented with the glorious color of azaleas and camellias—to an exotic garden ...

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Overview

Beyond the magnificent old walls and gates of Charleston's distinguished historic homes lie lush, private gardens. The Private Gardens of Charleston presents a detailed view of twenty-five of these spaces in color photographs and essays that explore the diversity of gardening interests and styles, ranging from the elegant distinction of a "typical" Charleston garden—narrow, shady, and verdant and accented with the glorious color of azaleas and camellias—to an exotic garden containing a rare collection of tropical palms.
Louisa Pringle Cameron presents the story of each garden with perception and intelligence, describing its background and unique artistry. She provides useful information on a variety of plants, trees, and gardening techniques that are successful in this region. The owners tell of their achievements and mistakes, offer solutions to design and other challenges, and recall the personal and social joys a garden can inspire.
Complementing the text are Cameron's vibrant color photographs, which capture texture, design, and ornamentation of the gardens in detailed perspectives, as well as inviting views from porches and walkways. The Private Gardens of Charleston offers an intimate tour of places that are rarely seen by the public, making it an ideal volume for those who love gardening, landscape design, and the beauty of nature.

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Editorial Reviews

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This gorgeous pictorial shines a light on 25 diverse Charleston private gardens. Each section of color photographs is prefaced by a history and description of the garden and its owners.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781611171457
  • Publisher: University of South Carolina Press
  • Publication date: 10/28/2012
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 104
  • Product dimensions: 8.50 (w) x 10.90 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Louisa Pringle Cameron grew up amid historic gardens in her native city of Charleston, South Carolina. Cameron is a graduate of Hollins College in Virginia and of Clemson University's Master Gardener Program in Charleston. She is an accomplished gardener, watercolorist, and lecturer.

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Read an Excerpt

In the spring of 1989, my husband and I opened our garden to the public for the first time, during the Historic Charleston Foundation's Annual Festival of Houses and Gardens. An enthusiastic visitor from Texas asked what books she could take home on Charleston's private gardens. I answered that the only one I was familiar with was Charleston Gardens, by Loutrel Briggs (1893-1977), but that it had been published in the early 1950s and was out of print. She shrugged, gave me a piercing look, and asked, "Why don't you write a new one?" And so the seed was sown and from it grew The Private Gardens of Charleston.

This book does not attempt to educate the reader about the history of Charleston gardens, for many of them are quite well-documented, especially the famous trio near the city: Middleton, Magnolia, and Cypress Gardens. Plats of some seventeenth-and eighteenth-century city gardens can be found on early tax maps. Mrs. Emma Richardson published charming pamphlets for the Charleston Museum on early plats and on the garden at the Heyward-Washington House on Church Street, describing typical flowers of the period. On the same subject, Miss Elise Pinckney wrote a fascinating account of Thomas and Elizabeth Lamboll, two early Charleston gardeners, also published for the Museum. Thomas Lamboll's correspondence with the famous eighteenth-century botanist, John Bartram, gives an idea of the tradition of enthusiasm for research, collecting, and growing plant material that started with the earliest explorations of the Lowcountry.

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Table of Contents

Contents
Acknowledgements

Introduction

The Garden of the James Huston House

The Courtyard of the Humphrey-Sommers House

The Garden of the Old Brewton Inn

An Atrium Garden

The Author's Garden

A Contemporary Courtyard

The Garden of the Thomas Rose House

A Small Colorful Garden

The Garden of the Simon Chancognie House

An Historic Garden Restoration

A Classical Garden

A Landscape Architect's Garden

A Palm Collector's Garden

The Garden of the Colonel William Rhett House

The Garden of the Colonel Isaac Motte House

The Garden of the Jenkins-Mikell House

The Garden of the William Gibbes House

The Garden of the Robert Trail Chisolm House

An Eighteenth-Century Garden

The Garden of the Benjamin Philips House

The Garden of the Colonel Robert Brewton House

The Garden of the James Veree House

The Garden of the Timothy Ford House

A Garden in Ansonborough

Garden Glimpses

Suggested Reading

Botanical Nomenclature

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