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in small leading groups, and then by effecting a union between the groups of different character, by intermingling those of the nearest similarity into and near the groups: in this way, by easy transitions from the drooping to the roundheaded, and from these to the tapering trees, the whole of the foliage and forms, harmonize well.
[Fig. 31. Example in grouping.]
"Trees," observes Mr. Whately, in his elegant treatise on this subject," which differ in but one of these circumstances, of shape, green, or growth, though they agree in every other, are sufficiently distinguished for the purpose of variety: if they differ in two or three, they become contrasts: if in all, they are opposite, and seldom group well together. Those, on the contrary, which are of one character, and are distinguished only as the characteristic mark is strongly or faintly impressed upon them, form a beautiful mass, and unity is preserved without sameness."*
There is another circumstance connected with the colour of trees, that will doubtless suggest itself to the improver of taste, the knowledge of which may sometimes be turned to valuable account. We mean the effects produced in the apparent colouring of a landscape by distance, which painters term aërial perspective. Standing at a certain position in a
* Observations on Modern Gardening.
scene, the colouring is deep, rich, and full in the foreground, more tender and mellow in the middle-ground, and softening to a pale tint in the distance.
"Where to the eye three well marked distances
The second distance: thence the third declines
In softer blue, or lessening still, is lost
In fainted purple. When thy taste is call'd
As does the Painter, and like him apply
Advantage may occasionally be taken of this peculiarity in the gradation of colour, in Landscspe Gardening, by the creation, as it were, of an artificial distance. In grounds and scenes of limited extent, the apparent size and breadth may be increased, by planting a majority of the trees in the foreground, of dark tints, and the boundary with foliage of a much lighter hue. In the same way, the apparent breadth of a piece of water will be greatly added to, by placing the paler colored trees on the shore opposite to the spectator. These hints will suggest other ideas and examples of a similar nature, to the minds of those who are alive to the more minute and exquisite beauties of the landscape.
An acquaintance, individually, with the different species of trees of indigenous and foreign growth, which may be cultivated with success in this climate, is absolutely essential to the amateur, or the professor of Landscape Gardening. The tardiness or rapidity of their growth, the periods at which
their leaves and flowers expand, the soils they love best, and their various habits and characters, are all subjects of the highest interest to him. In short, as a love of the country almost commences with a knowledge of its peculiar characteristics, the pure air, the fresh enamelled turf, and the luxuriance and beauty of the whole landscape; so the taste for the embellishment of Rural Residences, must grow out of an admiration for beautiful trees, and the delightful effects they are capable of producing in the hands of persons of taste, and lovers of
Admitting this, we think, in the comparatively meagre state of general information on this subject among us, we shall render an acceptable service to the novice, by giving a somewhat detailed description of the character and habits of most of the finest hardy forest and ornamental trees. Among those living in the country, there are many who care little for the beauties of Landscape Gardening, who are yet interested in those trees which are remarkable for the beauty of their forms, their foliage, their blossoms, or their useful purposes. This, we hope, will be a sufficient explanation for the apparently disproportionate number of pages which we shall devote to this part of our subject.
DECIDUOUS ORNAMENTAL TREES.
The History and Description of all the finest hardy Deciduous Trees. REMARKS ON THEIR EFFECTS IN LANDSCAPE GARDENING, INDIVIDUALLY AND IN COMPOSITION. Their Cultivation, etc. The Oak. The Elm. The Ash. The Linden. The Beech. The Poplar. The Horse-chestnut. The Birch. The Alder. The Maple. The Locust. The Three-thorned Acacia. The Judas-tree. The Chestnut. The Osage Orange. The Mulberry. The Paper Mulberry. The Sweet Gum. The Walnut. The Hickory. The Mountain Ash. The Ailantus. The Kentucky Coffee. The Willow. The Sassafras. The Catalpa. The Persimon. The Pepperidge. The Thorn. The Magnolia. The Tulip. The Dogwood The Salisburia. The Paulonia. The Virgilia. The Cypress. The Larch, etc.
O gloriosi spiriti de gli boschi,
O Eco, o antri foschi, o chiare linfe,
O Satiri e Silvani, o Fauni e Driadi,
"O spirits of the woods,
THE OAK. Quercus.
Nat. Ord. Corylaceæ.
Lin. Syst. Monœcia, Polyandria.
HE Arcadians believed the oak to have been the first created of trees s; and when we consider its great and surpassing utility and
beauty, we are fully disposed to concede it
the first rank among the denizens of the forest. Springing
up with a noble trunk, and stretching out its broad limbs over the soil,
"These monarchs of the wood,
Dark, gnarled, centennial oaks,"
seem proudly to bid defiance to time; and while generations of man appear and disappear, they withstand the storms of a thousand winters, and seem only to grow more venerable and majestic. They are mentioned in the oldest histories; we are told that Absalom was caught by his hair in "the thick boughs of a great oak;" and Herodotus informs us that the first oracle was that of Dodona, set up in the celebrated oak grove of that name. There, at first, the oracles were delivered by the priestesses, but, as was afterwards believed, by the inspired oaks themselves
"Which in Dodona did enshrine,
So faith too fondly deemed, a voice divine."
Acorns, the fruit of the oak, appear to have been held in considerable estimation as an article of food among the ancients. Not only were the swine fattened upon them, as in our own forests, but they were ground into flour, with which bread was made by the poorer classes. Lucretius mentions, that before grain was known, they were the common food of man; but we suppose the fruit of the chestnut may also have been included under that term.
"That oake whose acornes were our foode before
The civic crown, given in the palmy days of Rome, to the most celebrated men, was also composed of oak leaves.
It should not be forgotten that the oak was worshipped by the ancient Britons. Baal or Yiaoul, (whence Yule,) was the