Saturday, 31 January 2009

Lago Maggiore, 1840

Notice of the Plants which grow in the open Air in the Borromean Islands (Isola Bella and Isola Madre) in the Lago Maggiore. By Signor Giuseppe Manetti.

Vegetation in these two islands is wonderful, and bespeaks the fertility of the soil and the mildness of the climate. In summer they are cooled by the breezes of the lake, and in winter the usual temperature ranges from zero to two or three degrees below it ; or if it is sometimes a little lower, it is for a few minutes at twilight, and then it never falls so low as 5° Reaum. In Isola Bella, however, which is nearer the mountains than Isola Madre, the temperature falls generally a degree or two lower, according to the prevalence of wind. The soil is calcareous, containing a little clay (argilla) and mica, which gives it a shining appearance in the sun.

The trees which in the following list are marked with an asterisk grow in both the islands ; and those not marked, only in Isola Madre.

Acacia farnesiàna, A. acanthocárpa, A. latifolia, A. longifolia 20 ft. high, A. vera, Acer oblóngum. Agapánthus umbellàtus, A. umb. variegàtus. *Agàve americana, *A. amer, picta. Amaryllis formosissmm. Anthyllis Barba. Jovis. Araucaria brasiliàna 14 ft. high, diameter of the head 10 ft.; A. Cunninghamii 14 ft. high, head 12 ft. in diameter; A. excelsa 16 ft. high, head 10 ft. in diameter. I was delighted with the effect of these three plants ; I send you a drawing of the last species. *Arbntus Andráchne; A.glauca?; A. procera; A. Unedo 18 ft. high, and occupying a space 20 ft. in diameter; A. Unedo crispus; A. U. integrifolius; A. U. latifôlius. *Aristotèlia Mácqui. Azalea índica, thirty varieties. .Baccharis halmifolia. Bánksia latifulia. Berberís empetrifolia. Búddlea globosa, В. salviaefolia. Callistèmon cítrinus, *C. lanceolàtus, C. ruscifôlius ?, *C. salignus álbus, C. rugulosus. Camellia japónica atrorùbens 16 ft. high, C. jap. pink 18 ft. high, C. jap. rubra máxima 12 ft. high, C. Sasánqua 16 ft. high, and various other varieties of C. japónica from 8 ft. to 12 ft. high. *Capparis Breynia. Ceanôthus azureus 14ft. high. Cèreus flagellifórmis. Ceratonia Siliqua. *Céstrum Párqui. *Cineraria platanifolia. *Cinnamomum Cámphora 50 ft. high, the stem 1 ft. in circumference. Cístus ladaníferus. Citrus Aurantium, C. Limonum. Clèthra arbórea. Coronilla valentina. Cunninghamia sinénsis 40 ft. high, head 20 ft. in diameter. Cupressus austràlis, C. passerinöides (? disticha nùtans Arb. Brit.). Cyclamen pérsicum. Cycas revoluta. Daphne híbrida, D. odoràta, D. variegàta, D. oleifolia. Dahlias. * Edwardsia microphylla. Elaeágnus argéntea ?. Embóthrium salicifolium. Еrica arbórea 12 ft. high, E. capitàta, E. mediterránea 10 ft. high, E. multiflora, E. polytrichifolia 12 ft. high, E. spùria. Eucalyptus nova species 16ft. high. *Euónymus japónicus, E. jap. fol. aúreis variegàtis, E. jap. fol. argenteis variegatis. Freylínia speciosa (? Buddlea glabérrima Lois.). Gnídia simplex. *Gordônia La- siánthus, *G. pubéscens. Gorterí'a rigens (Gazánia rigens). Gaultheria Shállon. Hákea pinifolia. Halleria lúcida. Juniperus bermudiàna, J. capénsis. Justicia Adhatoda. Ixia fenestràta. *Laúrus nóbilis [mentioned in our Volume for 1839, as being 62ft. 10 in high, and of which fig. 40. is a portrait reduced from a drawing kindly sent us by Signor Manetti. The remains of the letter N cut on the bark of this tree by Napoleon are still seen]. L. indica, L. tomentosa. Leonótis Leonùrus. Leptospérmum ambíguum, L. speciósum, L.tomentôsum. Ligústrum lùcidum, L. nepalénse. Lytae'a geminiflôra in full flower, last year (1839) the scape was 22ft. high. Magnôlia fuscàta 10ft. high, the space occupied by the branches is 10 ft. Menispermum laurifolium. Mesembryánthemum aúreum, M. stellàtutn. Myrica cordifolia. Nandina doméstica. Nerine undulàta. Nerium Oleander. Оlеа excelsa; "O. fràgrans 14 ft, high, and the space occupied by the ramifications 12 ft. in diameter; O. sinénsis, I think this is a variety of O. fràgrans undulàta. *Opúntia cochinillífera. * Ficus índica. Othónna cheirifólia. *Pànax aculeàta. Petróphila pulchélla. Phórmium tènax. Pinus nepalénsis, *P. palûstris (austràlis) 30 ft. high. Pittósporum Tobira 16 ft. high, the space occupied by the ramification is 16 ft. in diameter. Podocárpus nucíferus. Raphiólepis índica, R. rubra. * Rhododendron arbôreum, and thirty varieties. Rochea falcata. Salvia nóbilis, ? S. pulchélla. Thèa Bohèa, T. viridis. *Viburnum sinénse. Yucca aloïfolia, Y. dracönis, Y. drac. margínata. Zàmia hórrida. Besides these plants there are beautiful groves of .Rhododendron pónticum and máximum, with an infinity of varieties of azaleas, andromedas, and kalmias. Daphne collina, Clèthra alnifolia, Mahònia Aquifolium, M. fasciculàris, M. repens. Myrtles. Ribes sanguíneum, R. sang, angústum, R. sang, malvâceum, R. speciosum. A fine Laurus caroliniana 16 ft. high. A L. Sassafras 32 ft. high, and the stem 1 ft. 3 in. in diameter, being the finest I have hitherto seen. A Magnolia cordata 40 ft. high. Qúercus Súber 24 ft. high. Cèdrus Libàni 80 ft. high, and 2 ft. diameter in the stem. A Photinia serrulàta 16 ft. high, and the space occupied by the branches 18ft. In the flower borders are cultivated beautiful species of annual and perennial plants of recent introduction, such as Schizánthus, Collomia, Viola tricolor, V. grandiflora, Gilia, Ipomópsis élegans, Phlóx, Galárdia, Verbèna, &c. ; and more than 130 varieties of Chrysanthemum, all obtained by the diligence of that excellent gardener Renato Rovelli, who knows so well how to second his illustrious master, Count Vitaliano Borromeo, in the love of botany, who spares no expense to embellish and enrich his two fine estates with rare plants.

Monza, near Milan, March 19. 1840.

The Gardener's Magazine 1840, p. 243

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