Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Marguerite's World ― More Greenhouse Camellias

Many of the Lyman Estate camellia trees are more than 100 years old and their blossoms come in all shapes, colors and sizes.

"In 1793, Theodore Lyman, a Boston merchant in the East India and China trades, acquired thirty acres in Waltham, Massachusetts, for a country seat, which he called The Vale. Lyman hired Salem architect Samuel McIntire to build the house and an English gardener, William Bell, to lay out the grounds. Bell designed an estate in the Picturesque style as advocated by the English landscape designer Humphrey Repton, with a lagoon and a white granite bridge, specimen trees, and a deer park. The estate also had a kitchen garden and a 425-foot-long brick wall used to grow espaliered fruit. In 1804, Lyman erected a three-part greenhouse in which to grow a variety of hard-to-obtain fruits, such as pineapples, figs, lemons, limes, and bananas. These two-hundred-year-old greenhouses, part of a large complex, survive today as some of the oldest examples in the country still in operation."

― Lynn Ackerman, Horticulturist

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