In an unclouded harmony of tastes and interests they cultivated ferns in Wardian cases
, made macrame lace and wool embroidery on linen, collected American revolutionary glazed ware, subscribed to "Good Words," and read Ouida's novels for the sake of the Italian atmosphere.
As an aside, casually displayed near one of the temperate glass houses sat a replica of the 'Wardian Case' used to transport living plant specimens back to England from all corners of the world.
He has an interest in Wardian cases, terrariums and miniconservatories and an extensive knowledge of plants.
(6.) The "Wardian Case
," developed by Nathaniel Ward, was a wooden-based and glass-topped tent structure intended to conserve moisture and protect plants from salt-spray on board.
The terrarium, or Wardian case
, as the prototype was called, protected the plants from pollution and provided the humid air that ferns need.
In the 1830s, the "Wardian case
," a kind of traveling terrarium that looked like a miniature greenhouse, revolutionized the introduction of American and Asian plants into European gardens.
Exotics that bloom fairly well in a window will bloom lavishly when you house them in a modified Wardian case
, a terrarium named after Nathaniel Ward, a 19th-century botanist-physician who discovered that plants could thrive in a sealed glass container.
Specialised Wardian cases
were made just to grow and display exotic varieties of ferns.
Fortune had extensive experience using Wardian cases
in shipping ornamental plants from China to England during the 1840s and 50s as well as tea plants to other parts of Asia (Ward, 1852).
These were shipped to India in Wardian cases
and thereafter planted in the hilly slopes of Darjeeling, 635 kilometers north of Calcutta.
After a brief stand-off with customs at the port of Islay and a half-hearted attempt at sabotage by some disgruntled Peruvians, Markham succeeded in loading 500 plants into his Wardian cases
-- the portable greenhouses used to transport plants overseas -- and despatched them to Britain via Panama.
Members of society often had Wardian cases
displaying plant life under glass as one of their main decorative accent pieces.