The extensive garden, consisting of a “parterre,” “park,” and kitchen garden at successively further distance from the street, was installed by then-owner William Couper. He may have hired Philadelphia nurseryman Buist, author of The American Flower Garden Directory (1832)—the evidence is a single bill for arborvitae. (Persistent attributions to Andrew Jackson Downing are baseless.) Over the years, this became quite a famous place, depicted, for example, in House and Garden in November 1901. A yulan magnolia from Buist's day fell in a storm in 1992, but one of his pear trees still stands, among many other specimen trees. Archaeology has uncovered garden features, as well as evidence of the first George Read house. The garden is undergoing restoration (begun 1991); a trellis and two gazebos were reinstated in 1996, based on nineteenth-century photographs.
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