Pioneer Gardening in Toronto: the trees, plants, & lore of George Leslie
by Pat Anderson
Plant a mid-Victorian garden! In search of some old heritage fruits and vegetables? Maybe it would help to have the names of a few roses, or dahlias, or phlox that were grown back in those days.
George Leslie advertised in Toronto in 1869 that he had the largest Nurseries in the British Empire, occupying over 150 acres. One of the early members of Toronto's Horticulture Society, George Leslie and Sons Nurseries provided planting material for market gardeners and gentry alike.
For the first time since Victorian times, here is his gardening advice for planting fruit trees, grapes, roses and phlox, and compiled lists of over 1000 trees and plants he sold (he carried over 100 apple varieties, 88 pear varieties, and 120 different roses), This information has been compiled from two catalogues, dated 1853 and 1860. This book provides modern Ontario sources for some of these heritage varieties, where the author has been able to find them, as well as links to websites providing information about heritage apples and other notes.
- Pat Anderson, February 2012
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