May 13, 2016 at 12:10PM on Facebook

“The restoration of the Homestead’s greenhouse and backyard revives a less well-known yet crucial fact about Dickinson: In addition to being a poet, she was an amateur naturalist and a renowned gardener with a considerable knowledge of botany. ‘During her lifetime, Emily Dickinson was known more widely as a gardener, perhaps, than as a poet,’ the literary scholar Judith Farr wrote in ‘The Gardens of Emily Dickinson.’ But Dickinson’s two chief vocations were inextricable: Her passion for all things botanical is essential for a complete understanding of her personality, spirituality and verse.”
So Dickinson was part of that great tradition of 19th-century female naturalists chronicled in my mother Marcia Bonta’s books “Women in the Field” and “American Women Afield” (both still in print, BTW). I had no idea!
The Lost Gardens of Emily Dickinson