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THE OXFORD COMPANION TO GARDENS by...

THE OXFORD COMPANION TO GARDENS by Geoffrey and Susan Jellicoe, Patrick Goode and Michael Lancaster (Oxford University Press: $25, illustrated). Instead of the usual collection of pretty pictures of flowers, the authors present a thorough study on the history and aesthetics of gardening in Europe, America and Asia. The 250 illustrations include recent photographs as well as contemporary drawings and plans of historic sites. “The Oxford Companion” is a sure-to-please gift choice for horticulturists, but the detailed descriptions of the layouts of the historic gardens at Versailles, Vauxhall, Castle Howard (which served as Brideshead on the PBS series) et al., and the thorough definitions of such specialized terms as treillage, ha-ha and parterre make it a useful resource for history buffs.


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