The Garden Guide

Book: History of Garden Design and Gardening
Chapter: Chapter 5: Gardens in Asia, America, Africa, Australia

American garden botany

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859. America is rich in botany, especially in trees. Dr. Hosack, in the preface to his Hortus Elginensis, observes, 'that although much has been done by the governments of Great Britain, France, Spain, Sweden, and Germany, in the investigation of the vegetable productions of America; although much has been accomplished by the labours of Catesby, Kalm, Wangenheim, Schoepf, Walter, and the Michaux; and by our countrymen, Clayton, the Bartrams, Golden, Muhlenberg, Marshall, Cutler, and the learned P. Barton of Pennsylvania, much yet remains to be clone in this western part of the globe.' There were in America, at an early period, men who recommended the necessity of instituting botanic gardens, as Lieutenant-Governor Golden and Dr. Middleton of New York, in 1769 ; and, upon the revival of the medical school in Columbia College, in 1792, a chair of botany was established, and Dr. Mitchel was appointed professor. Dr. Hosack succeeded Dr. Mitchel ; and the result was, first, the latter professor's establishing a botanical garden at his own expense, and afterwards government purchasing it of him for the benefit of the medical schools of New York; and it is now known as the New York Botanic Garden.