Ethel Harting's watercolours

2.1929.2 Image of Single Chrysanthemums, Weybridge Flower Show

Painting of single chrysanthemums, created by Ethel Harting in 1897

This vibrant watercolour showing red and purple chrysanthemums was created by Ethel Harting at the Weybridge Flower Show in 1897. It is one of over 170 of her paintings in the Museum’s collection.

A talented botanist and zoologist, Ethel Mary Harting dedicated herself to Natural History. She did this through her career as the Natural History Curator at Weybridge Museum (now Elmbridge Museum) and in her skill as a botanical watercolourist.

All 170 paintings in the museum’s collection were produced in 1897, the year of Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee. Ethel painted a variety of plants including woodland and water flowers, each painting showing her botanical knowledge and expertise. She visited many homes and gardens in Weybridge to locate her specimens, including Clinton House Conservatory, Holme Chase and Oatlands Park Hotel.

As well as taking inspiration from the local flora Ethel travelled further afield to Oakfield Gardens, the beginnings of the Royal Horticultural Gardens at Wisley; Kew Gardens; Jackman’s Nurseries at Woking and Veitches’ Orchid House in Chelsea to list but a few. People also sent her flowers to record such as the Canterbury Bells said to be from the Queen’s garden at Windsor.

Take a closer look at one of Ethel Harting's paintings

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