Sir Joseph Paxton (3 August 1803 – 8 June 1865) was an English gardener, architect and Member of Parliament, best known for designing the Crystal Palace, and for cultivating the Cavendish banana, the most consumed banana in the Western world. Paxton was born in 1803, the seventh son of a farming family, in Milton Bryan, Bedfordshire. Some references, incorrectly, list his birth year as 1801. This is, as he admitted in later life, a result of misinformation he provided in his teens, which enabled him to enrol at Chiswick Gardens. He became a garden boy at the age of fifteen for Sir Gregory Osborne Page-Turner at Battlesden Park, near Woburn. After several moves, he obtained a position in 1823 at the Horticultural Society's Chiswick Gardens.
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