Private Gardens of Philadelphia

Gibbs Smith. Apr. 2024. 350p. ISBN 9781423663935. $60. GARDENING
This volume by Philadelphia area residents Juday (board chair, IDEAL Industries Foundation) and Cardillo (photographer, Private Edens) is an exploration of garden possibilities rather than a how-to guide. Juday provides some historical background on gardens in the Philadelphia area, including the creation of grand estates by industrialists and the rise of horticultural organizations. She notes that the featured gardens represent extensive effort over a significant period of time—frequently decades—rather than being the hobby projects of casual gardeners. Nevertheless, this marvelous collection of extraordinary gardens is comprised of a broad range of garden styles, influences, and backstories. Cardillo’s vibrant and evocative photographs, including landscape shots capturing sweeping vistas and close-ups of individual plants and other intriguing aspects, complement and expand the text. The book’s trim size is large enough to allow readers to appreciate these lush photographs, but it’s not too big for a library shelf. For readers and browsers who are curious about a variety of garden types, this is sure to provide some food for thought and ideas that might be implemented on a smaller scale.
VERDICT Recommended for larger collections, especially those in mid-Atlantic states.
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