Ryde Social Heritage Group research the social history of the citizens of Ryde, Isle of Wight. Documenting their lives, businesses and burial transcriptions.
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Walcott Nursery, Monkton Street

Workers at the nurseries 1941

The local press was always very helpful in promoting local business and the Ryde flower growers were no exception, with seed catalogues, types and colour of flowers being grown. Horticultural Shows during the season were a big part of the social scene. The elite of the town opened their grounds for these shows and the winners of the various categories were well documented, also naming the gardeners employed that tended the plants.

In July 1899, the I.W. Observer commented that “Mr. Goble’s carnations this year are very fine, and well worth a visit to the Walcott Nurseries to see, the dry weather suiting them well, and the colours being very pure.”

Mr. Goble has a new one amongst them, the nearest approach to the colour of a soldier’s scarlet coat yet produced.  He has appropriately named it after a soldier’s wife—Mrs. Cradock, the wife of the popular Colonel of the I.W. Volunteers.

This practice of naming flowers after ladies is rather embarrassing—especially when the remark is heard “What a delicate beauty is Miss Queenie Meares,” another of Mr. Goble’s carnations.

Mr. Goble devotes one house to Malmaison’s, some of which are exceptionally fine, the blooms measuring 6in. in diameter.

The definition of Malmaison’s:  Any of various tender greenhouse carnations with stiff massive growth and large fully double usually pink flowers.
The nursery was originally called Walcott Nursery, named after his residence “Walcott Lodge,” it later became  Goble’s Nursery.

More about Mr. Edward Charles Goble here

Names of people in the photo:
From the left – Gordon Jenvey, Charlie Rigby, Dick Price, Desmond Drudge, Bob Mills

Sources: IW Observer
Image: RSHG Archive (donated)

Article: Ann Barrett