Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Antique Garden Books

I love antiques and anything that reminds me of the past; garden books are no exception. Like most of you, I have quite a large variety of garden books, but the ones that are most special are from another era.
Recently my mother gave me a little garden book that was first published in 1945 by Whitman Publishing Company. My parents were married in 1946 so I think it was new to her, possibly a gift - I forgot to ask.

This darling little book is only 2 and half inches high by 4 and a half inches long. Inside the cover is written the price -- 25 cents! Now that's a bargain, but considering my mother made 35 cents an hour back then, it took some careful thought for someone to spend that kind of money on a book. 

The name of the book is "A Guide to Garden Flowers."  It is comprised of 57 pages of prints of flowers and their descriptions, with an additional 4 pages for the glossary and index.  The glossary includes such terms as annual, bulbs, and mulch ; in other words, a real beginners book.

This precious book also had companion books available - A Guide to Field Flowers and A Guide to Woodland Flowers.  Oh, how I wish I could find those.  Maybe someday I'll come across them in an antique shop.

Flower books are eternally up-to-date.  There may be new fertilizers, garden tools, garden clothing, and professional soil blends available to us now, but a particular plant will always and forever need the same amount of sunlight and rain to flourish.  So don't be afraid to collect wonderful  antique garden books; they're such a joy to read. Knowing that my mother studied this little book as a young wife while planning her garden makes it even more special to me.

Please make your car a NO PHONE ZONE!

Don't forget to visit An Herbal Bedfellow for healthy recipes made with herbs, and also my newest blog:
Bits, Tales, and Yarns - my newest writing adventure.


Monica the Garden Faerie said...

Colleen mentioned you are a fellow Michigan blogger/tweeter. Hello! I also love old things and old gardening books. I created an 1860s-style fountain garden at a local historic property. It was fun looking through old seed catalogs trying to figure out what might have been grown here, then. Also, I used to work at the UM Transportation Research Center, and cell phone use while driving has long since proven to be dangerous and distracting. But people still do it!!

Jane Marie said...

Thanks for stopping by Monica, I enjoyed your comment. Would love to see a picture of the fountain garden you did.
I visited your blogs. Nice critter pics!

A high school senior was killed while texting his girlfriend on the way to school in December here. I hope we are all becoming wmore aware of the problem!