The Garden Guide

Book: Gardening tours by J.C. Loudon 1831-1842
Chapter: Middlesex, Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire, Wilshire, Dorsetshire, Hampshire, Sussex, and Kent in the Summer of 1832

Oxford Botanic Garden Quality

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It is much to be regretted that the city of Oxford has not a botanic garden suited to the rank which it holds as a British university. Were a small sum contributed by each of the colleges yearly, even the present garden might be rendered doubly efficient: more especially if the adjoining ground, at present occupied by Mr. Penson, were added to it, and a part or the whole of the meadows of Christ Church. But the situation is altogether bad; and, for a botanic garden worthy of Oxford, a dry, open, ample, airy piece of ground should be selected, outside of the town; say somewhere about Jeffery's Nursery. The present botanic garden might still be continued as such, on a smaller scale, so as to suit the income destined for its support. Till lately there has been a great want of botanical taste among the Oxford professors; but we hope that a taste for botany, as well as a taste for geology, is now dawning upon them; and, whenever it does, they will soon produce a botanic garden worthy of themselves. We are sure that the stocking of the different college gardens with new and ornamental articles, and naming them in the manner contemplated by Mr. Fairbairn, will contribute much to this effect. After a botanic garden is established, a zoological garden will follow; and, perhaps, ultimately, a public ornamental garden surrounding the whole city, as a breathing zone. (See V. 686.)