H is for Hibiscus

hibiscus

It is well known that some of the varieties of hibiscus with red flowers may be used in producing a dye of more or less temporary nature. This has given rise to the name of shoe-black plant in the Orient, where these flowers are used in blacking shoes.

The text is from a book called Ornamental Hibiscus in Hawaii, by E.V. Wilcox and V.S. Holt, published in 1913. Browse the book online or download it free from the Internet Archive.

artwork by Joanne Stanbridge 2012

G is for Geranium

geranium

Jenny’s geranium. . .first bloomed in a good man’s garden. . .from that garden it went to a dreary, miserable room in Challoner’s Court. There it became a joy and gladness past expression to a little orphan girl.

The text is from page 151 of a book called Jenny’s Geranium, or the Prize Flower of a London Court, published anonymously in 1869. Click here to browse the book or download it free from the Internet Archive.

artwork by Joanne Stanbridge 2012

F is for Fountain

fountain

Fountain basins may be planted with aquatic plants but they cannot be successfully grown with a fountain continually spouting. Where the water effect is desired omit the plants.

The text is from William Tricker’s book Making a Water Garden, published in 1913, page 18.  Click here to read the book online or download it for free from the Internet Archive.

artwork by Joanne Stanbridge 2012

E is for Evergreen

evergreen

For perfect scenery. . .covering the entire year, it would be impossible to dispense with evergreens. If used judiciously in arrangment, sparingly in the foreground, and using those of the lightest and most vivid shades of green. . .great effect may be produced, and a pleasant life-like character given to grounds that otherwise in the winter season would be barren and dreary.

The text is from F. R. Elliott’s book Popular Deciduous and Evergreen Trees and Shrubs, published in 1868, pg 57.  Click here to browse the book online or download it for free from the Internet Archive.

artwork by Joanne Stanbridge 2012

D is for Daffodil

daffodil

There are some daffodils that may never be seen by the outside world, for a coterie of six wealthy daffodil lovers in England buys up the bulbs of any new variety of exceptional beauty and merit–paying extravagant prices for the sole ownership of the coveted beauties.

This text is from page 3 of A.M. Kirby’s book Daffodils, Narcissus, and How to Grow Them as Hardy Plants and for Cut Flowers, published in 1907. Click here to browse the book online or download it for free from the Internet Archive.

artwork by Joanne Stanbridge 2012

C is for Cactus

cactus

Cacti are abundantly fitted to collect water rapidly when there is abundance; make the most of a small supply; and utilize most effectively whatever they get by being practically immune to the effects of the most rigorous drought, and at the same time be amply protected from the attacks of hungry and thirsty animals.

The quotation is from page 5 of Elmer Ottis Wooton’s book Cacti in New Mexico, published in 1911. Click here to browse the book onine or download it free from the Internet Archive.

artwork by Joanne Stanbridge 2012

B is for Begonia

begonia

They are, indeed, the very best ‘wet weather’ flowers in cultivation, remaining bright and gay as ever when the geraniums have scarcely a petal left, and petunias and others are like so many washed-out rags. The only thing the Begonias cannot endure is actual frost.

The text is from page 2 of B.C. Ravencroft’s book Begonia Culture for Amateurs, published in London in about 1894. Click here to browse the book online or download a copy free from the Internet Archive.

artwork by Jo Stanbridge 2012