Lessons in Flower Painting - James Andrews

1835 - Charles Tilt, London - First Edition
In submitting these "Lessons in Flower painting" to the public, I beg to remark, that it has been my object to render them as plain and practical as possible. There are few accomplishments more graceful, more innocent in their tendency, and more pleasing, than the art of painting Flowers after nature.

Rare step by step instructional for painting flowers by the renowned Victorian botanical artist James Andrews, with 24 lithographic plates, 12 of which are exquisitely hand-coloured

The book begins with black and white outlined sketches of foliage followed by the same plate hand coloured with recommended colour palettes, this is repeated and then the artist is then shown a plate of black and white flower sketches, followed by the same plate now exquisitely hand coloured together with recommended colour palette, the remaining plates differ in that they focus on individual flowering plants and gatherings of various flowers, again on a black and white outline paired by hand-coloured plate without the colour palettes shown.

The individual plants are - Wild Hyacinth, Fuschia, Convolvulus (Morning Glory), Canterbury Bell, Geranium, Auricula, and Moss Rose.
 
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Price HK$ 14,000



A Plain and Easy Account of British Fungi - M.C. Cooke

1898 - W. H. Allen and Co., London - Sixth Edition, Revised
An informative Victorian-era reference to British fungi, wonderfully illustrated with 20 full page colour plates of thirty-four species and numerous woodcuts throughout the text.

Mordecai Cubitt Cooke (1825-1914) was an English botanist and mycologist. From 1872 to 1894, he edited
Grevillea, a monthly periodical devoted to the study of mushrooms.

The word ‘esculent’ means ‘edible’.
 
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Price HK$ 700



The Lorette System of Pruning - Louis Lorette, W.R. Dykes [Translator]

1925 - Martin Hopkinson & Company Ltd., London - First Edition in English
The classic work which revolutionized the pruning of fruit trees, rare in first edition and such nice condition. Illustrated with diagrams and photographic plates. 
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Price HK$ 900



Landscape Art Past and Present - Harriet Hammond McCormick

1923 - Charles Scribner's Sons, New York - First Edition, one of 1200 copies.
A finely bound copy of this wonderful work, by the indomitable Harriet Hammond McCormick, housed in a custom made clamshell case.

Published posthumously, and as explained by her husband Cyrus McCormick in the introduction, ‘
“Landscape Art Past and Present’was written by Mrs. McCormick for a meeting of the Friday Club of Chicago in February 1899’’. To the illustrations that were originally used there have been added those of ancient and modern landscapes; and a number of pictures of Walden, which was the McCormick’s home at Lake Forest. The 56 photogravure plates, and accompanying text describe such places as the hanging gardens of Babylon; Temple gardens of Edfu, Egypt; gardens of Villa Castello, Florence; Pope’s garden, Twickenham; Gardens of Versailles; the garden of “Resht-i-Behesht,” Shiraz, Persia, and numerous images of Walden itself.

An appropriate memorial to a reform-era leader of great stature’ - Arthur Miller, Lake Forest College. 
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Price HK$ 3,000



The Gardens of China - Osvald W. Sirén

1949 - The Ronald Press Company, New York - First Edition
‘Gardens of China - how delightful a subject for those who have rambled and lived in those fantastic pleasure grounds, and how strange and exotic for those who have never visited the Flowery Middle Kingdom!’

A large and comprehensive work which is both descriptive and analytic, with a chapter on ‘
Gardens in Literature and Painting’ and translations from the ‘Yüan Yeh’, the Ming dynasty treatise on gardening.

Beautifully and profusely illustrated with eleven colour plates of paintings, and 208 gravure photographic plates, the volume is additionally accompanied by drawings, sketches and plans throughout the text. The photographs of gardens were taken in Suchow and Peking by Osvald Sirén in 1922, 1929 and 1935 and include private gardens, parks at sea palaces, the Yüan Ming-yuan and the New Summer Palace.
 
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Price HK$ 3,900



The Naturalist in Manchuria - Arthur de Carle Sowerby

1922 - Tientsin Press, Tientsin - First Edition
China-born Arthur Sowerby began his career as a naturalist by collecting specimens for the Museum in Tai-yuan Fu. In 1906, he was appointed to the staff of the Anglo-Chinese College at Tientsin as lecturer and curator of its Natural History Museum. In 1908, he joined American millionaire Robert Sterling Clark on an expedition into Shansi and Kansu provinces of north China for the Smithsonian Institute. This began a long association with Clark, who financed four expeditions into Manchuria from 1913 to 1915, during which Sowerby gathered new facts and made original observations on ‘every type of country-wide and fertile plains, heavy coniferous forests, or lighter woods of deciduous trees, low, grassy hills, or high, rocky peaks, reeking swamps, the valleys of great rolling rivers, or lesser stream-cut ravines’.

Five volumes bound in three, titled:
Travel and Exploration; Mammals; Birds; The cold-blooded Vertebrates and Tunicates of the Manchurian Region; and The Invertebrates and Flora of the Manchurian Region.

A remarkably clean set, profusely illustrated with three tipped-in colour plates, three folding maps, 127 black and white photographic illustrations on 79 plates, 38 black and white sketches on 9 plates, a folding black & white line drawing, and numerous in-text sketches and diagrams.
 
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Price HK$ 32,000



A Traveller’s Notes - James Herbert Veitch

1896 - James Veitch & Sons, Royal Exotic Nursery - First and only edition, for private circulation
First and only edition of distinguished horticulturist Veitch’s compilation of notes and observations, collected during his 1891-93 tour, which took him through Ceylon, Delhi, Singapore, Java, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Australia and New Zealand, to inspect various Botanical Gardens and horticultural establishments, and undertake a plant collecting expedition.

Large and wonderfully illustrated with nine full page photogravure plates, together with a large folding colour map, and numerous illustrations throughout the text, taken from photographs by the author.

James Herbert Veitch (1868-1907) was the eldest son of John Gould Veitch, of the English Veitch nursery dynasty, started at the beginning of the 19th century, and quite possibly the most influential and powerful of all the great nurseries in the world, responsible for employing and financing the expeditions of such important botanists as Ernest Henry “Chinese” Wilson [1876-1930], Frederick William Thomas Burbidge [1847-1905], brothers William and Thomas Lobb, Charles Maries, and in turn responsible for some of the greatest plant discoveries of the 19th and early twentieth century. By the beginning of the First World War Veitch Nurseries had introduced 1,281 plants into cultivation, which were previously unknown or newly bred varieties.
 
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Price HK$ 3,000



A Naturalist in Western China - Ernest Henry Wilson

1913 - Methuen & Co. Ltd., London - First Edition
‘Ernest Henry Wilson (1876–1930) was introduced to China in 1899 when, as a promising young botanist, he was sent there by horticulturalist Henry Veitch (1840–1924) to collect the seed of the handkerchief tree, Davidia involucrata, for propagation in Britain. Subsequent trips saw Wilson bringing back hundreds of seed samples and plant collections, introducing many Chinese plants to Europe and North America.

Although much of the text is concerned with plant life, Wilson also gives a great deal of attention to the wider landscape around him. In addition, Wilson took a camera, and these volumes contain photographs of parts of China rarely seen by Europeans in the early twentieth century. In Volume 1 he discusses his journey through China and in Volume 2 describes the Chinese use of plants in medicine and agriculture.’ -
Cambridge University Press.

A superb two volume set of the first edition, profusely illustrated throughout, with 101 black and white plates, mostly form photographs, and a large folding map in volume II after page 210.
 
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Price HK$ 6,500