Over the course of the nineteenth century, gardening came to be considered a respectable profession, providing a means to an education, a good chance of advancement and decent working conditions. The hierarchy of the garden staff became just as regimented as that of domestic servants, and progression was attained by hard work, self-improvement and ambition. Training courses and apprenticeships prepared young gardeners for their trade and horticulture became recognised as a skilled profession, with the head gardener commanding a position of influence and respect and women overcoming social barriers to join their peers on equal terms.
This book explores the gardening profession within the complexities of Victorian society and the advances in science and technology that pushed the gardener further into the limelight.
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