In the early eighteenth century, the garden of Alexander Pope, the major poet and tastemaker of his age, was considered the ultimate expression of his aesthetic ideals of elegance, proportion, and classical harmony. Today, the ultimate expression of the aesthetic ideals of our age might just be Abbeville’s books about gardening—from the chic Private Gardens of the Fashion World to the artistically cutting-edge Gardens of Revelation. And with spring approaching fast and fragrant, you’ll want to pick up at least one of these volumes in time to start planning your own floral sanctum sanctorum. Once it’s blossomed, give Abbeville a call: we might be up for strolling through it with you, quoting Pope and holding forth on the aesthetics of style.
1.1. Part of the fun of having a garden is telling visitors what’s in it. A good strategy is to plant only flowers and shrubs with cool-sounding names: “snapdragon,” “phlox,” “rhododendron,” “pheasant’s-eye narcissus.” Conversely, you might want to steer clear of “bladder senna.”