The Garden Guide

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

Tripoli gardens

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822. In Tripoli, as in most of the countries on the African coast of the Mediterranean Sea, the gardens are said to have no regular walks, and to be very indifferently cultivated. 'In their gnrdens,' says the author of a Ten Years' Residence in Tripoli, 'the Moors form no walks ; only an irregular path is left, which you trace by the side of white marble channels for irrigation. Their form is generally square,' as all suburban, or at least street gardens necessarily must be; 'and they are enclosed by a wall, within which is planted a corresponding line of palm trees.' (Nar., &c. p. .52.) 'The country round Tripoli,' says Cella, 'abounds in palm trees, whose bare and rough stems, spreading tops, and pointed leaves harmonise with the parched and rugged aspect of the country, and furnish the principal part of the subsistence of the natives. Their fruit equalises the tables of the rich and poor; and, being produced without culture, is favourable to happiness. Among the plantations of palm trees are many delightful gardens, full of lemon and orange trees, and protected by thick and impenetrable fences of Indian fig trees; but, except oranges, all other sorts of European fruits at Tripoli are scarce, and far inferior to those of Britain.' (Narrative of an Expedition, &c., p. 17.)