Sterbeeck: Citricultura, 1682: Frontispiece

Sterbeeck: Citricultura, 1682: Frontispiece

Sterbeeck: Citricultura, 1682: Tree planting 

   Although oranges were said to have reached Europe as early as the thirteenth century, it wasn't until the last quarter of the seventeenth century that the Dutch enthusiasm for citrus had spread throughout Europe. The fervor of Dutch gardeners to provide evergreen orange and lemon trees in the seventeenth century is evident in this frontispiece showing gardeners planting and potting citrus trees.

   Laurels being one of the trees introduced to the Dutch reader in this book, it is amusing that all three gardeners in this picture are wearing laurel wreaths on their heads. The woman seated on the left is wielding a sharp knife and appears to be in the act of grafting. The elaborate vaulted structure in the background may be the orangery. In winter, the delicate potted citrus trees will be moved inside to protect them from frost. Note that there are potted trees on both levels of the structure, placed strategically to blend with the architecture.






Last modified: 12/1/2006 3:32 PM by by H. Hutchinson

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