The Special Collections of Wageningen UR Library has among other collections an international collection of approximately 35.000 catalogues of nurseries specialized in ornamental plants, bulbs and trees. Also catalogues on fruit, vegetables and agricultural crops and seeds are available. Besides a large collection of catalogues from the Netherlands and other European countries, there are also collections from South-Africa, New-Zealand, Australia, North and South America, Japan and other non-European countries.
These catalogues are valuable for historical plant research on (agro)cultural biodiversity, the history of plant breeding and for the reconstruction of contemporary planting in historic gardens and parks.
The collection consists of two parts. The oldest and rarest nursery catalogues from 1612 onwards are described and placed among our book collections. The majority is a separate collection described as serial publications by nursery companies.