Whether on the ground or in the mind gardens carry meaning. They reflect social and aesthetic values and may express hope, anticipation or grief. Throughout history they have provided a means of physical survival. In creating and maintaining gardens people construe and construct a relationship with their environment. But there is no single meaning carried in the word ‘garden’: as idea and practice it reflects cultural differences in beliefs, values and social organisation. It embodies personal, community even national ways of seeing and being in the world.
There are ten essays in this book, each of which examines the role of gardens and gardening in the settlement of New South Wales and in growing a colony and a state. They explore the significance of gardens for the health of the colony, for its economy, for the construction of social order and for personal identity.
For the immigrants gardening was an act of settlement and also a statement of possession. For a long time it was with memories of ‘home’, often selective and idealised, that settlers made gardens but as the colony developed its own character so did gardening possibilities and practices.
Gretchen Poiner is an honorary associate in anthropology at the University of Sydney.
Sybil Jack is an honorary research associate in history at the University of Sydney.
Forewords by Brett Summerell; Richard Neville; Robert Prince
Introduction by Gretchen Poiner1. Gardens, landscapes, wilderness: ways of seeing ourselves by Gaynor Macdonald
2. A sense of place by Gretchen Poiner
3. Garden elements: seeds, plants and their sources in colonial New South Wales by Sybil Jack
4. Cultivated wellbeing: gardens and health in colonial New South Wales by Janet George
5. Exhibiting gardening by Ailsa McPherson
6. Riverine gardens of Sydney waterways by Stuart Read
7. Garden suburbs for the people: the movement from late 19th-century New South Wales by John Ramsland
8. Planting New South Wales: the role of the Sydney Botanic Garden by Colleen Morris
9. Hollywood in Burwood: the transformation of a suburban backyard to a garden by Catherine Rogers
‘ ... this book is important because it documents the salient factors that played a crucial role in a history that has shaped and continues to shape the Australian manmade landscape.’
Dr Zeny Edwards Journal of the Royal Australian Historical Society
‘Peppered with a selection of seldom seen images this book will provide enjoyable reading and will likely become an invaluable reference work.’
Adam Woodhams Inside History
Size: 260 × 210 × 22 mm
27 colour illustrations and 29 b&w illustrations
Copyright: © 2016
Publication: 03 Jun 2016