Early American Garden Bouquets by Julia Smith Berrall

In this expertly compiled and visually captivating history, Julia Smith Berrall traces the ever-changing relationship between Americans and their gardens from the 17th century through the Victorian era. Stroll down her garden path to traverse the distance between the utilitarian plots of the early colonial settlers and the elaborate banquet-hall centerpieces of the late 19th century. Learn which flowers and foliage were available, and how they were painstakingly obtained, arranged and displayed. Drawing from portraits, still-lifes and the written accounts of early American garden writers and visitors from abroad, Berrall has assembled an indispensable guide to the accurate re-creation of early domestic spaces and a rich history for anyone seeking insight into our most delicate roots. This is more than a story of gardens and the blossoms they yielded; it is an exploration of American taste, culture, pleasure and ingenuity that illustrates our long love affair with our most ephemeral possessions.


In addition to being a concert pianist and museum curator, Julia Smith Berrall of Montclair, New Jersey enjoyed a prolific and celebrated career as a gardening expert and historian. Her previous publications include A History of Flower Arrangement(1953) and The Garden–An Illustrated History (1966), among others. Early American Garden Bouquets is her final book.