The Garden Guide

Book: Fragments on the Theory and Practice of Landscape Gardening, 1816
Chapter: Fragment Xv. On Planting Single Trees.

A beautiful landscape

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The annexed landscape [fig. 190] is composed of those materials, which may rather be called tame and beautiful, than romantic or picturesque. It consists of a river quietly winding through a valley, a tower on the summit of a wooded promontory, and a cottage at the foot of the hill; a distant village spire, and more distant hills, mark the course of the valley: to all this is added a foreground, consisting of two large trees to the left, and three small ones to the right. The former can never be supposed to grow much larger, but the latter may, in time, fill the whole space now occupied by the dark cloud over them; and, in so doing, they will neither injure the landscape, nor hide any of its leading features. Let me now direct the attention to the two small fir-trees in the foreground, which appear so out of character with the scene, and so misplaced, that they offend even as they are here represented; but we must remember, that in a few years these trees will grow so high as to out-top the tower on the hill; and also spread out their side branches till they meet, to the total exclusion of all the valley, and all that we admire in the landscape. Thus, the hand which should only shade, will then be placed before the eyes; and the landscape, as well as the sun, wind, and dust, would be better excluded by a Venetian blind at once.