Saturday, June 4, 2011

Daily Thoughts 6/4/2011 (Founding Gardeners)

Frontispiece by Jan Wandelaar (1690-1759) of Linnaeus, C. (1738), Hortus Cliffortianus. The plate shows Mother Earth, seated on a lion and lioness, holding the keys to the garden. At her feet are a pot with Cliffortia and a plan of the Hartekamp garden. To the left a negress brings her an Aloe from Africa, an Arabian woman offers Coffea arabica from Asia and a befeathered American indian brings Hernandia from America. On a pedestal is a bust, possibly portraying George Clifford. On the right is a banana in flower and fruit. A young god Apollo, with the head of Linnaeus, steps forward, bringing light in his left hand and with his right hand casting aside the shroud of darkness around the goddess. Underfoot he tramples the dragon of falsehood, a reference to the counterfeit Hydra at Hamburg exposed as a fraud by Linnaeus while on his way to Holland. (desription summarized from Stearn, W.T., (1957), in Ray Society, Species Plantarum, A facsimile of the first edition: 46)

Daily Thoughts 6/4/2011

I have been reading more of Founding GardenersAndrea Wulf is describing how the founding fathers, George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, and James Madison saw the United States as an agrarian republic focused on farming and self sufficiency.  I very much like the descriptions of their visits to gardens in England as well as their ideas about botany and horticulture.  There are descriptions of people like Benjamin Franklin collecting seeds in France and Engliand to be sent home.

No comments: