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     I HAVE found much interest and satisfaction in the growing of wild flowers and wild animals in confined spaces, especially in stocking a yard that till then was bare of material. It was hard on some of the captives--much as if I had brought wolves and albatrosses out of the wild, and restrained them to a yard in town. Others, however, were thankful, and proved it by flourishing as they had not flourished in the meadows and by the roadside. In my strolls to the country I would carry a botany box and fetch it back filled with small plants, roots and cuttings, some of which died in disgust before the week was out. I also brought toads. In the first warm weather the new-born hoppers are out in the waste places, and I would gather up half a dozen and put them into the yard, to get ripe. In time, I thought, there would be toads enough in town to be of human service, but most of them have disappeared, somewhere, somehow, and a new drove --herd--swarm--flock--what is the term ?--is required to keep the garden free from insects. With their quick and slimy tongues they catch flies, beetles, grubs and other preying creatures; and then, too, they are company. It is amusing to see them swell, as if with indignation, when you pick them up and stroke their backs, and note the blinking of their beady eyes. They have a soft and chirr-r-ring call that may be heard on a still, warm evening as you loiter among your lilies and roses, so faint and tender that it gibes with the perfume and the coming of the stars.

     There is another garden friend, too, that it is worth while to cultivate, at least, to avoid destroying: the ladybird, or ladybug. This tiny beetle with red wing cases spotted with black, the unthinking will crush, as they like to crush anything from caterpillars to elephants; yet it thrives on aphides, the slow-moving, slow-witted plant-lice that colonize on stems and leaves and suck the vegetable juices, giving them to the ants, their milkers, in tiny globules of fluid. And if you have a pool, and have failed to stock it with gold and silver fish or "pumpkin-seeds"--a gross neglect--the dragon-flies will consume a few thousands of the mosquitoes that are in such case bound to breed in it. And you are never to kill a dragon-fly, or "devil's darning-needle," even if you do believe that it stings and that it will sew up your ears. In the south it would be proper to add to the mdnage a lizard or two-harmless, pretty creatures, these, and I know people who keep snakes about their premises, because they feed on mice and possibly eat an insect now and again. Many birds have visited my reservation in town, mostly house-sparrows, that keep up an astonishing chatter even on their courtesy visits; but we have had robins, humming-birds, sea-gulls, night-hawks, and starlings are habiting some trees less than a quarter of a mile away. These starlings, which I hope are going to adopt us, are quiet, shy, with soft and flute-like speech, and prefer the security of high, remote places. They are with us from August to April, and make music at all seasons. A colony has occupied the Brooklyn water-tower for the past few years; there is a family in the trees behind the Alexander Hamilton grange, in New York, and in a certain prison that I know--remarks are not in order--the starlings nest and whistle in the vines and under the cornices. Add to the garden population, if you can, butterflies, moths and bees, and be kind to your little plowman, the earthworm, for without his burrowing and loosening of the soil it would pack like clay, and you would find it hard to grow so much as weeds. The amount of earth lifted in a single yard by these unseen helpers is, quite likely, a ton in a summer, and may be much more.

     In transplanting wild flowers from their haunts to the home grounds, note the locality in which you find them, for you must afford to them a congenial habitat. Several kinds of ferns, as well as the glossy pipsissewa and wintergreen, will desire a woody shade, saxifrage will seek for niches in rocks, and butter-and-eggs requires the sun; the pitcher-plant prefers the bog, the camomile a sandy roadside; the ghost-flower, or corpse-plant, or Indian-pipe, as it is variously called, wants footing in old leaves, moss and roots, while the arrowhead must have water. It is impossible to collect every sort of wild flower into the city garden, because it is impossible in such a space to afford all the conditions necessary to a wide variety of growth. If you are determined to have certain exotics from the next township, you can provide for them, but in making them at home you destroy the home of your faithful and domestic flowers. For instance, I kept a skunk-cabbage, for the fun of the thing, and although it refused my blandishments after a little, it went far to convince me that I could have kept it going if I had watered and shaded it more thoughtfully. I think the neighbors regarded this as unholy, yet I never scattered its leaves over their premises. If, however, I had raised skunk-cabbages, the moistening of the soil would have made the place unfit for my sweet peas, honeysuckles, petunias and zinnias.

     Dandelion, buttercup, goldenrod, mustard, butter-and-eggs, dog's-tooth violet, hawkweed, rattlesnake weed, cinquefoil, evening primrose, mullein, moth-mullein, St. Johnswort, star-grass, meadow-lily, butterfly-weed and oxalis I have raised in a city yard. The goldenrods were the pride of the place, standing so high as to conceal the moderately tall fence against which I planted them, and flaunting heads of bloom as large as a blacksmith's fist. The common white weed, which we call the daisy, I likewise cultivated with success, and an unexpected triumph was in the blooming of a pink lady's-slipper, or moccasin-flower, that I had dug on the edge of a ditch in the suburbs and replanted in poor soil, but watered generously. Of two buttercups, one flowered numerously, carrying hundreds of blossoms, while the other had fewer flowers and larger, because I had disbudded it, throwing its strength into the flowers that remained I have a notion that the common wayside aster would act in the same way and produce blossoms nearly as large as the cultivated variety, if the buds were all pinched off, except half a dozen.

     The yarrow is slowly getting its deserts by acceptance in gardens. It has an exquisite softness and fineness of leaf, which yields a pleasant nutty odor when crushed in the fingers, and it would be greatly esteemed were it not that it grows wild by dusty highways. One can not say so much for its flowers, for they are dull, grayish and inconspicuous, although the pink variety is as yet sufficient of a rarity to entitle it to garden use. The tansy, also, is a fresh and wholesome looking plant, with bunches of yellow flowers that make a good appearance in the field, and why not in the garden? Suggesting the yarrow in its foliage and the daisy in its flower, is the camomile, another familiar of the country, but less worth while as a cultivated plant, because of its low growth and raggedness.

     There is practically no end to the resources of the wild garden. The whole flora of a county, excepting the swamp flowers, can be represented in an estate that is large enough and that has some variety of surface--rocks, mold, sand and shade. We can begin our season in that garden early, with the violet, liverwort, starflower, blood-root, rue-anemone, May-apple, the trilliums, Solomon's-seal, spice-bush, the rhodora, the wild pink, the showy orchis, the polygala and wild geranium, and carry color and fragrance through the months till the snows begin to sprinkle over the last gentians, Joe-Pye-weeds, everlastings, goldenrods and asters.

     The place for a wild garden is at a remove from the house, if the space available for formal gardening is small. It is better to separate the cultivated from the wild, not that the former learn any bad habits from the other, but that the savage plants are heedlessly insistent in the matter of scattering their seed, and escapes from the wild garden into the cultivated are much more certain than escapes of the civilized from the places set aside for lilies and roses. So soon as a wild flower has established itself where it is not wanted, it becomes a weed, and is liable to the treatment accorded to interlopers. But while it is with us from choice, let us be good to it, plow the ground in which it is to stand, water it in dry seasons, even weed it when ugly and unwelcome growths threaten to overrun it or crowd the daintier residents. A surfacing of manure in the spring and of mulch in the fall will be as well appreciated by the wild flower as the tame one, and it will prove its appreciation by increased growth and livelier color. The wild flowers can be collected into beds and treated in the same manner as the geraniums and petunias, or the seed can be sown broadcast over prepared ground. And it is now possible to obtain the seed of wild flowers from mercantile growers, whose offer of it must surely be based upon an increased appreciation of natural beauty.

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