Professor Henry FraserArchitecural Historian / Heritage Consultant
Chairman, Sentinel Committee, Barbados National Trust
Writer, TV Presenter, National Orator & Motivational Speaker
Professor Emertius, Medicine and Clinical Pharmacology.
Immediate Past Dean, Faculty of Medical Sciences.
University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus, Barbados.


Article Index

COMMON SENSE & EVIDENCE # 93, for March 6

Barbados in Bloom

Professor Henry Fraser

“The kiss of the sun for pardon,

The song of the birds for mirth

One is nearer God’s Heart in a garden

Than anywhere else on earth.”

Barbados in Bloom is an absolute delight – and I mean both the magnificent photographic extravaganza just published by Wordsmith International, and the place we sometimes call Paradise. With the lower rainfall in February, after a particularly long and heavy rainy season, the colour of our gardens is more splendid every day, and I predict a spectacular garden season – both lush and full of colour.

The gardens of Barbados have always been praised by travel writers, in spite of our low rainfall and thin soil. Schombergk, in his History of Barbados (1848) refers to the gardens of Mr. Piers at Staple Grove as being the best in the island, while the gardens at Farley Hill were almost legendary. Sir Graham Briggs, the wealthy radical who supported the radical governor Pope-Henessey and was read out of the Bridgetown Club for his pains and literally exiled to Nevis, was also an avid collector, antiquarian and horticulturist. He introduced exotic plants, including the first Norfolk Pine on the island.

Governor Lord Seaforth had a great interest in plants, and Government House Gardens were virtually a “staging post” for the Botanical Gardens of St. Vincent. It still has one of the finest cannon ball trees on the island and many other exotica. And Lady Carter, designer of Ilaro Court and the gardens at Queen’s Park, had a free hand as a landscape architect. Queen’s Park tended to follow the nineteenth century Bajan-Victorian tradition of walled, geometric garden designs, while Ilaro Court, a few years later and on hilly terrain, was much bolder.

Henry Fraser Historic Houses Of Barbados Book CoverHistoric Houses of Barbados
Written by Henry Fraser & Ronnie Huges.
Available at all book leading book stores in Barbados.

Henry Fraser Treasures Of Barbados Book CoverTreasures of Barbados
Written by Sir George Alleyne and edited by Henry Fraser.
Available at the UWI Bookshop the publishers.

Henry Fraser Chattle House Book CoverBarbados Chattel Houses
Written by Henry Fraser and Bob Kiss.
Available at all leading book stores.

Henry Fraser A-Z Barbados Book CoverA-Z of Barbados Heritage
Written by Sean Carrington, Henry Fraser, John Gilmore and Addington Forde.
Available at Days Bookstore Barbados and

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