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In Veronica's Garden

In Veronica's Garden is the true story of a garden and the larger than life personality of its creator. This is a social history of the Milner Garden in Qualicum Beach, British Columbia, a stunningly beautiful garden nestled into the Canadian West Coast Douglas-fir forest. The book traces the life of Veronica Milner, the creative force behind the garden. Born into the Edwardian British aristocracy, she was related to Winston Churchill and Diana, Princess of Wales. As a young bride, she moved to an Irish castle. When widowed after an unhappy marriage, she remarried and moved to Canada where she built a garden in the style of Victorian garden writer William Robinson. Visitors to the garden included royalty. Malaspina University-College was gifted the garden in 1996.

Paperback: 212 pages

Publisher: Madrona Books & Pub; First Edition edition (May 2002)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 0973009608

ISBN-13: 978-0973009606

Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 7.8 x 9.8 inches

Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds

Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

Best Sellers Rank: #2,383,441 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #30 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > By Region > Canada #462 in Books > Biographies & Memoirs > Historical > Canadian #8646 in Books > History > World > Women in History

Now that I live on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, it's a short drive up the Island Highway to Milner Gardens in Qualicum Beach. A recent visit to the woodland gardens and English-style cottage with its breathtaking views of the Strait of Georgia was all the more memorable due to my reading of Margaret Cadwaladr's book, In Veronica's Garden. (The title comes from a book of the same title by poet Alfred Austin published in 1896.)Whether you can visit the garden in person or not, you can delight in its beauty in the pages of Cadwaladr's book. She has woven a fascinating story around botanical names of flowers, family histories, facts about the ownership of Milner Gardens, its famous visitors and the garden experts who have influenced it. Most of the colour photos that greatly enhance the book were taken by the author. This is an engrossing book, one of those that is difficult to put down.At the heart of the story is Veronica Milner. In fact, when author and subject met, Veronica said it was important to understand her in order to understand the garden. A garden which features over 500 varieties of rhododendrons contrasting with the majestic Douglas-firs and red-cedars of the West Coast rain forest. To gather information about the garden and its owner, Cadwaladr put many photographs of the garden in an album. As they chatted and looked at the photos, the visual cues would trigger Veronica's memory and keep her focused. Cadwaladr found this tactic to be so useful that she also took picture books from the Edwardian era, for instance, to her visits with Veronica.Within a week of meeting Veronica in 1996, Cadwaladr took her first trip to Ireland and visited Glin, the castle where Veronica lived during her first marriage to Desmond FitzGerald, the Knight of Glin.

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