Visions of Loveliness: Great Flower Breeders of the Past

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By Judith M. Taylor.

Have you ever wondered how American gardens ended up with such frilly lilacs? Or so many colors and varieties of “exotic” roses? This book uncovers the stories behind some of our most beloved plants—including tales of aristocratic collectors, scientific cultivators, and gardeners who became artists of flower breeding.

Doris Duke was interested in sustainable cultivation, and experimented with orchid breeding. We continue her legacy at NRF through the gardens at Rough Point and other properties in Newport.

“Family feuds, wily businessmen, obsessions with form and color — the history of flower breeding is a veritable botanical soap opera.…After you’ve read these engrossing tales, you’ll look wonderingly at the sweet peas, lilies and other traditional favorites that gardeners admire today.”—The Columbus Dispatch.


Ohio University Press/Swallow Press

ISBN: 978-0-8040-1157-0

Release date: December 2014

68 illus. · 424 pages · 6 × 9 in.