The Garden Guide

Book: History of Garden Design and Gardening
Chapter: Chapter 1: Gardens and Governments

Gardening in a mixed economy

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954. In mixed states of society, where a part of the population are privileged orders or hereditary proprietors, and the rest partly free and partly dependent, gardening is likely to be encouraged, more especially as an art of design. The proprietor of an entailed territory may be said to enjoy a sort of tangible immortality; for, by establishing in his person and estate a sort of local and corporeal connection between his ancestry and posterity, he sees neither beginning nor ending to his life and property. Such a being is anxious to distinguish his little reign by permanent improvements ; and those which are most likely to answer his purpose will be building or gardening. However distant the expected benefits of his efforts, they are sure to be enjoyed by his descendants, if not by himself; and even if he exceeds his income, and contracts debts which he cannot pay, he knows that the labour and property of others, which he has embodied on his estate, will remain for its benefit, and that posterity will give him credit for zeal and ambition. Hence the magnificent country palaces of our nobility are surrounded by sumptuous gardens, and a stimulus is given to commercial industry, as applied to gardening, which could arise from no other source.