The Garden Guide

Book: A treatise on the theory and practice of landscape gardening, adapted to North America,1841
Chapter: Section I. Historical Sketches.

Brookline, Boston

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The seat of Col. Perkins, at Brookline, is one of the most interesting in this neighborhood. The very beautiful lawn here, abounds with exquisite trees, finely disposed; among them, some larches and Norway firs, with many other rare trees of uncommon beauty of form. At a short distance is the villa residence of Theodore Lyman, Esq., remarkable for the unusually fine avenue of Elms leading to the house, and for the beautiful architectural taste displayed in the dwelling itself. The seat of the Hon. John Lowell, at Roxbury, possesses also many interesting gardening features.* (*We Americans are proverbially impatient of delay, and a few years in prospect appear an endless futurity. So much is this the feeling with many, that we verily believe there are hundreds of our country places, which owe their bareness and destitution of foliage to the idea, so common, that it requires "an age" for forest trees to "grow up." The middle-aged man hesitates about the good of planting what he imagines he shall never see arriving at maturity, and even many who are younger, conceive that it requires more than an ordinary lifetime to rear a fine wood of planted trees. About two years since, we had the pleasure of visiting the seat of the late Mr. Lowell, whom we found in a green old age, still enjoying, with the enthusiasm of youth, the pleasures of Horticulture and a country life. For the encouragement of those who are ever complaining of the tardy pace with which the growth of trees advances, we will here record that we accompanied Mr. L. through a belt of fine woods (skirting part of his residence), nearly half a mile in length, consisting of almost all our finer hardy trees, many of them apparently full grown, the whole of which had been planted by him when he was thirty-two years old. At that time, a solitary elm or two were almost the only trees upon his estate. We can hardly conceive a more rational source of pride or enjoyment, than to be able thus to walk, in the decline of years, beneath the shadow of umbrageous woods and groves, planted by our own hands, and whose growth has become almost identified with our own progress and existence.)