This is a compilation of favorite articles from early twentieth century American garden magazines, edited by Virginia Tuttle Clayton, who is a curator at the National Gallery of Art. Mrs. Clayton found inspiration for this book while researching for an art exhibit, and, being a gardener herself, soon found her energy and interest diverted to creating this book.
The collection includes articles on a range of subjects by many of the most important garden writers as well as anonymous amateurs. And it is interesting that her range of choice provides an overview of the social and political currents of the day.
The editor includes samples of writings on the 'wild garden', 'arts and crafts garden', and the 'old fashion garden'--each expressive of social outlooks, both progressive and traditional. She also writes an introduction for each essay with biographical information on the author and some insights into the significance of each article.
This book is an interesting and useful introduction to some of the best garden writers and to the story of the development of gardening 'movement' in America. Mrs. Clayton includes a thoughtful introductory chapter on the magazine history, too, which I found useful, too.
I recommend "Once & Future Gardener" to anyone researching American garden history, magazine history, or women's contribution to American gardening and garden writing.