THE FLOWERING WORLD OF ""CHINESE"" WILSON by Daniel J. Foley

THE FLOWERING WORLD OF ""CHINESE"" WILSON

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A collection of selections from the works of Ernest Henry Wilson, horticulturist and ""plant finder,"" whose many trips to the Orient in search of new varieties, and staff work for (later directorship of) the Arnold Arboretum in Massachusetts produced many innovations in horticulture and in American gardens. In a brief and somewhat scattered biography, Mr. Foley, formerly editor of Horticulture Magazine, outlines Wilson's career from an English boyhood to his accidental death in 1930. Of most interest to botanists and gardeners are Wilson's own accounts of his travels to China in the first two decades of the century when a Westerner faced governmental hostility, and primitive, unfamiliar travelling conditions. Wilson's single-minded enthusiasm for his quests produced some energetic if quaintly twining prose. Even the discovery that the one davidia tree he had been sent to find had been used to construct the beams of a house brought forth no uncharacteristic profanity. Always interested in plants as functions of a landscape, Wilson through his many books, now out of print, popularized the use of ornamental and unusual plants, including his own discoveries such as the regal lily and varieties of rhododendrons among others. A prime growth for the compleat gardener.

Pub Date: June 22nd, 1969
Publisher: Macmillan