Nichols says in her book English Pleasure Gardens: “The fruitful age of Queen Elizabeth [who was the monarch from 1558 to 1603] brought both the planning and the planting of the loveliest English gardens very nearly to perfection.” What does she mean in that statement?
The English shipping industry enabled the emergence of plant collecting. Now the English would cultivate plants from other countries, including America. Gardening would begin to assume a more important role as hobby, as art, as source of learning, and even as a political statement.
The introduction of terraces for the garden was important at this time as well. I remember an image of Haddon Hall, which dates from the 12th century, in the seed catalog from the Vick Seed Company in Rochester, NY of the 1870s. Vick illustrates in this case his love of the English garden, with this image below of the garden steps in the terraced Elizabethan garden of Haddon Hall.