J. Horace McFarland

Breeze Hill

J. Horace McFarland looking over 'Mary Wallace' roses in his garden, June 1943. Smithsonian Institution, Archives of American Gardens, J. Horace McFarland Company Collection.

J. Horace McFarland was born in McAlisterville, Pennsylvania. At the age of nineteen, he opened a printing business, Mount Pleasant Press, which primarily published gardening and seed catalogues. He soon realized that wood cut prints did not fully represent the plants and began to explore using photography.  By 1894, he had cultivated a very successful business, which left him with the time to write, garden, and advocate for the civic and environmental causes that inspired his work. Throughout his career, McFarland stressed that photography was an opportunity that should be open to every nature lover. “No aristocratic orchids need apply,” he proclaimed.  “This is a democracy of beauty for all.”