Seed and Nursery Catalogs
Andersen Horticultural Library hosts one of the largest seed and nursery catalog collections in the country. Numbering nearly 60,000 and dating from 1828 to the present, it includes catalogs from every state and 26 countries. Minnesota and other Upper Midwest companies are strongly represented.
The value of the collection rests not only on the beautiful lithographs, engravings, and photographs, but on their multidisciplinary historical importance. They document the history of the horticultural trade and provide a look at advertising and printing trends as well. They also document the introduction of specific plants into the trade, whether through discovery, importation, or hybridization.
The catalogs are kept in acid-free folders or boxes on compact shelving. Older catalogs are housed in a climate-controlled room to help preserve them. All are available for research, with an appointment. Over 1,000 current catalogs are available for use any time the library is open.
cover of Farmer Seed &
Nursery Co. 1917