The Fruits and Fruit Trees of Monticello

The Fruits and Fruit Trees of Monticello

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Lavishly illustrated, Peter Hatch's The Fruits and Fruit Trees of Monticello is not only a detailed history of Jefferson's gardens and their re-creation but a virtual encyclopedia of early American pomology. Hatch argues that fruit growing and horticulture were in fact synonymous terms in early America, influenced primarily by the importance of alcoholic beverages to the American diet. One historian has remarked how significant it was when Americans began eating their fruit instead of drinking it. The story of Jefferson's struggle to produce a useful and ornamental garden on a grand scale - so carefully documented in his letters and papers - makes for fascinating reading. His fruitery was unique in being both an Old World fruit garden and a colonial farm orchard; seedling peaches and Virginia cider apples were planted alongside French apricots, Spanish almonds, and English plums. His horticultural vision was far-reaching in scope and characteristically ahead of its time. The history of fruit growing at Monticello is a reflection of Jefferson's spirit: expansive, optimistic, epicurean, innocent, and altogether American.Peach trees, in particular, were thought capable of ameliorating soil worn out by tobacco, especially when the orchards ... Jefferson usually planted bare-root fruit trees in March or April, probably from three to five feet in height, one or two years anbsp;...

Title:The Fruits and Fruit Trees of Monticello
Author:Peter J. Hatch
Publisher:University of Virginia Press - 1998


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