Garden Plants and Garden Styles

Victorian Garden Flowers

Good late Regency and Victorian flowers are legion, however, every selection must include some of the following; agapanthuses, hollyhocks, Amaranthus, Anemone hupehensis, antirrhinums, Aster, calceolarias, campanulas (especially Campanula lactiflora and C. pyramidalis), chrysanthemum, dahlias, some sorts of Delphinium, Dianthus, the most attractive sort of Dicentra, Galanthus, hyacinths, irises, Kniphofia, Lathyrus, lilies, lobelias, various sorts of Narcissus, paeonies (especially Paeonia lactiflora hybrids), poppies, especially the oriental sort, Pelargonium, penstemons and petunias, Salvia (the tender species), tulips, verbenas and, most important of all, pansies and violas.

Rose breeding really began in the early nineteenth century, and soon there were hundreds of gorgeous new hybrids. Consequently, the garden devoted to roses (once called a 'rosary' or a 'rosarium') is almost a late Georgian invention, and one that is still immensely popular. Regency and Victorian rose beds could be of almost any shape, though a group of wedge-shaped beds making a circle was always popular. The roses were all of types that did not need pruning in the may that modern ones do, so the final effect was rather attractive. Some of the varieties with floppy stems were grown in circular beds edged with wirework, and had their stems pinned ot the ground so that they made a sort of bouquet of flowers.

There are innumerable roses from this period, many of them of the utmost loveliness. The ones we like best include: 'Belle de Crecy', 'Madame Legras de St.Germain', 'Madame Plantier', 'Comte de Chambord', 'La Ville de Bruxelles', 'Madame Hardy', 'Fantin Latour', 'Tour de Malakoff', 'William Lobb', 'Boule de Neige', 'Madame Isaac Pereire', 'Madame Pierre Oger', 'Madame Alfred Carriere' and so on; there are dozens of equally lovely things to choose from.

Vast numbers of attractive shrubs were introduced during the period, and soon became widely grown, including species of Abelia, Arundinaria and other lovely bamboos, Aucuba, azaleas (try the Ghent hybrids), Buddleia, camellias in all colours, though still in conservatories or camellia houses (try C. reticulata 'Captain Rawes'), ceanothuses from the western states of America, Cotoneaster, escallonias, forsythias, fuchsias, hebes, all sorts of hydrangeas, jasmines (incuding the winter flowering sort), magnolias, olearias, Osmanthus, many hybrids of Philadelphus, Pieris, many luscious hybrid sorts of lilac, rhododendrons in abundance, Ribes, skimmias, spiraeas, viburnums.

Trees include many sorts of Abies, many maples, the famous Monkey Puzzle (Araucaria imbricata, Cedrus atlantica and C. deodara, the infamous Lawsons cypress, many sorts of juniper, spruces, larches, and various oriental species of Prunus.

Amongst the climbers, try .....

The rest of the article is in the appendix to The Garden Triumphant, available for Kindle or PC for 3.99dollars, or the UK equivalent.  Many thanks for reading, and I hope you enjoy the book!,

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