The Garden Guide

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

Moroccan gardening

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2. Gardening in the Mahometan (Mohammedan � Islamic) States of North Africa 816. In Morocco gardening is practised chiefly as an art of culture. In the towns there are frequently gardens on the tops of the houses ; and there is always a display of garden scenery, to some extent, in their neighbourhood. 'The gardens, which extend for some distance round Laracke,' says Capel Brooke, 'are wild and luxuriant, producing abundance of figs, pomegranates, and oranges; the latter, in particular, are remarkably fine, and are equal, in flavour and size, to those of Tetuan. Our walk having made the party rather thirsty, we entered a large garden, which had formerly belonged to a Moor of rank, but was now suttered to run to ruin. The appearance of the grounds, in general, and of a shattered alcove, still showed some marks of the care that had once been bestowed upon them. Several of these gardens are very prettily situated on the slope of the hills which fall to the valley through which the Luccos winds along. The orange trees, which almost equalled British forest trees in dimensions, were completely gilded with the greatest profusion of beautiful tempting fruit ; and, for a small present of about four-pence, I was allowed to pick near 150 of the finest oranges I ever saw: these lasted me, not only during the remainder of my journey, but some time afterwards. They were of a most delicious flavour, their skins being as fine and thin as the smallest pot-orange.' (Travels in Spain and Morocco, vol. ii. p. 88.)