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Oak Spring Garden Library Publications

The Oak Spring Garden Library has produced a series of four award-winning catalogues describing selections of the rare books, manuscripts, and works of art conserved at the Library. These books, An Oak Spring Sylva (1989), An Oak Spring Pomona (1990), An Oak Spring Flora (1997) and An Oak Spring Herbaria (2009), highlight some of the most influential and unique pieces in Bunny Mellon's collection. They are described in detail below and available for purchase here. Save 20% by purchasing the four-volume set. 

An Oak Spring Sylva : A Selection of the Rare Books on Trees in the Oak Spring Garden Library        by Sandra Raphael, 1989

An Oak Spring Sylva focuses on a unique selection of 46 books, manuscripts and drawings devoted to trees and shrubs. With vivid illustrations and rich descriptions, it covers a vast range of works - from a tiny 1555 book on oaks to early 19th-century advice on large-scale tree-planting. Among these are world-renowned books like Evelyn's Sylva, Duhamel's Traite des Arbres, and Michaux's North American Sylva, as well as rather unknown treasures, such as Marshall's American Grove, which helped introduce the riches of American forests to European gardens in the eighteenth century.


An Oak Spring Pomona: A Selection of the Rare Books on Fruit Trees in the Oak Spring Garden Library by Sandra Raphael, 1990

An Oak Spring Pomona describes 100 books and manuscripts about fruit, with illustrations taken from some of the most beautiful works on the subject, as well as from original drawings and paintings. The earliest book described is Bussato's Giardino di Agricoltura of 1592, while the latest is The Herefordshire Pomona's 19th century catalogue of apples and pears. In between, there is a fascinating range of fruit books large and small: La Quintinie's Instruction pour les Jardins Fruitiers, first published in 1690 and translated by John Evelyn three years later; Duhamel's Traite des Arbres Fruitiers; and nearly 50 others from France and Britain, among them Brookshaw's giant Pomona Britannica and a handful of pocket- sized instructional books for grafting and cultivating the best varieties available.


An Oak Spring Flora: Flower Illustrations from the Fifteenth Century to the Present Time - A Selection of Rare Books, Manuscripts and Works of Art in the Collection of Rachel Lambert Mellon (1997)         by Lucia Tongiorgi Tomasi, 1997

An Oak Spring Flora is an authoritative and magnificently illustrated presentation of the art of flower depiction in the West. The author, Lucia Tongiorgi Tomasi, selected more than one hundred items from Oak Spring's extensive holdings, which include superb manuscript florilegia, botanical prints, books of instruction of every kind, still-life and vanitas paintings, and various ornamental ceramics and textiles. Among them are examples by some of the greatest names ever to have worked in scientific or decorative botanical art : Jacques Le Moyne de Morgues, Georg Dionysius Ehret, Nicolas Robert, and Pierre Joseph Redoute.

An Oak Spring Herbaria: Herbs and Herbals from the Fourteenth to the Nineteenth Centuries - A Selection of Rare Books, Manuscripts and Works of Art in the Collection of Rachel Lambert Mellon by Lucia Tongiorgio Tomasi and Tony Willis, 2009

For An Oak Spring Herbaria, the authors selected sixty-three works from the Library’s extensive collections. The volume is thematically arranged into the following chapters: ‘Late Medieval Herbals’; ‘The Great Age of Renaissance Botany’; ‘Herbals and Plants from Distant Lands’; ‘Herbals by Herbalists, Pharmacists, and Physicians’; ‘Herbals of the Botanical Gardens and Private Gardens of Europe’; ‘Curious and Strange Herbals’; ‘Dried Specimens and Nature Printing’; and ‘American Herbals.’