An Enchanting Little Book

“If, for the first ten or twelve or fourteen years of life, the children of today could have personal flower gardens in which to play, to study, to read, to work, to dream, the world tomorrow would be greatly lightened of it’s ugly and menacing burden of materialism and general faithlessness.”
I’ve had this little book on my shelf for sometime (it is actually my sisters find) and yesterday we were having breakfast outside and talking of children and gardens and I ran in to find this little book.  I had forgotten what a gem it was.  
It is a sweet book of another time.  The kind I love most.  It is meant to teach children gardening but yet offers much information and delight to adults alike.  The book is full of helpful gardening details, gorgeous drawings and actual garden plans.  The names are as lovely as the drawings….The Lavender Walk, The Sliced Cake, The Fairy Ring and The Moonlight Pleasance to name a few.  Besides the lovely plans and drawings my other favorite of this book is the listing of old fashioned flower names.  Why don’t we call our flowers Lady’s-Delight, Lad’s Love, Ragged Sailor and Never-Grow-Old anymore?  Oh the stories our gardens would tell.
The author Olive Percival seems to be a real lady of her time.  I enjoyed, just as much, reading about her life.  Flowers, children’s books, letters, writing and  beautiful things were all things she either spent her time doing or collecting and loved most.  She was quite famous for her garden teas and moon-viewing parties (what where those like, I wonder?) at her home The Down-hyl Claim in Lose Angeles.  She lived a gentle, quiet and yet meaningful life.
{image via upress.edu}
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Responses

  • LissyLou
    Commented on July 13th, 2009 at 10:24am

    That sounds like a very lovely book – and a great quote x

  • La Maison Fou
    Commented on July 13th, 2009 at 10:53am

    What a sweet book, check out the giveaway today & go shopping!
    Leslie

  • my favorite and my best
    Commented on July 13th, 2009 at 12:25pm

    truer words never spoken. love this book.
    xj

  • Scattering Lupines
    Commented on July 13th, 2009 at 3:28pm

    Your description of this book reminds me of my favorite poetry book from childhood: A Child's Garden of Verses by Robert Louis Stevenson. THanks for sharing! It sounds like an investment I should make…

  • vicki archer
    Commented on July 13th, 2009 at 3:36pm

    so sweet Trina, xv.

  • Beach Vintage
    Commented on July 13th, 2009 at 4:53pm

    What a cute illustration on the cover too.

  • Exquisite Accessories
    Commented on July 13th, 2009 at 4:59pm

    What a beautiful book, it sounds enchanting, I remember prettending to make perfume with my friend & we would put rose petals in little bottles & fill it with water. Elaine:

  • Josephine Tale Peddler
    Commented on July 13th, 2009 at 9:42pm

    The book sounds so charming. Exactly the sort of thing I love. xx

  • count it all joy
    Commented on July 14th, 2009 at 5:22am

    What a rare find indeed. Isn't it just wonderful for children's souls to connect with nature and outdoor loveliness. Who needs Wii? Meredith xo.

  • Kotori
    Commented on July 14th, 2009 at 7:36am

    I love books like this… I'm going to check it out and see if I can find it too. Thanks for recommendation!

  • Pearl Maple
    Commented on July 16th, 2009 at 2:14pm

    Delightful and enchanting, a beautiful theme for inspiring the little gardeners of the future or even ourselves. Will you share some of the pages?

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