Mascall, Leonard 1546-1605 (approx)

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Mascall came from a family which is said to have become established in Sussex shortly after the Norman conquest. Members of the family were sheriffs in the county during the period of Richard Coeur de Lion. His house was standing as late as 1924 and in the moat surrounding it he is supposed to have placed the first carp introduced into England.

He translated the earliest gardening book from the French entitled A booke of the arte and maner, how to set stones, and sowe Pe-Pines to make wylde trees to graffe on, as al-so remedies and medicnes (sic) vvith diuers o-ther newe practise (1572). Editions followed in 1575, 1598, 1592, 1596, and 1656.

The gardening book resembles considerably the well-known medieval treatises on the planting and grafting of trees and contains beliefs handed down for a very many years. Actually he seriously considered a method which resulted in improved fruit set. In reality, the practice was a forerunner of what we now call "ringing" a tree.