MOUNT DESERT — Caroline Seebohm will talk about her newly published book titled “Rescuing Eden: Preserving America’s Historic Gardens” when she visits the Northeast Harbor Library on Wednesday, July 13, at 5:30 p.m.
The United States has a rich tradition of landscape design that encompasses a vast variety of styles, from simple 18th and early 19th-century gardens to the lavish estates of the Gilded Age. Yet over time, in the absence of specific institutions dedicated to its preservation, much of America’s garden heritage has been threatened by creeping development and suburbanization, especially in the mid-20th century.
Today, fortunately, that trend has been reversed, and a large number of once-endangered landscapes are now accessible to the public, thanks to the Garden Conservancy, the Garden Club of America and other ardent garden conservationists, trusts and associations, as well as generous private owners. “Rescuing Eden: Preserving American’s Historic Gardens” celebrates the landscapes that serve as living, flourishing pleasure grounds for botanists, horticulturalists and nature lovers throughout the country.
Thirty gardens are presented in the book, selected for the drama of their creation and rescue and for their historical importance. Ranging from wonderful to woebegone, from grand estates to suburban plots, each garden has its own individual character, and each has been brought back from the brink through a combination of imagination and tenacity, to reveal for future generations a prospect of American’s heritage that, with love and nature’s help, will last forever.
Seebohm is a design historian and biographer. A prolific author, her books include “Boca Rococo,” a biography of Palm Beach architect Addison Mizner, “At Home with Books” and “Cottages and Mansions of the Jersey Shore,” as well as biographies of Marietta Tree, Conde Nast and tennis legend Pancho Segura.
This talk is free and open to the public. Everyone is welcome.