Wageningen UR Library has one of the most important international collections of nursery and seed catalogues in the field of agriculture and horticulture, particularly ornamentals, vegetables and fruit, dating from 1830 to the present day. The collection comprises a total of approximately 35,000 catalogues, and is valuable for historical plant research and for the historically accountable reconstruction of parks and gardens. This unique collection was started by the Krelage family, leading growers' from Haarlem of whom the Library also obtained the Krelage-Library. The collection was owned and greatly enlarged by a number of different institutes of Wageningen UR in the past eighty years. This year 6,000 Dutch nursery catalogues from 1830 to 1950 will be microfilmed and digitalised for the National Conservation Programme 'Metamorfoze', set up by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science in 1997 for the conservation of vulnerable documents from the period 1840 to 1950. Conservation is achieved by microfilming (for high quality and durable readability), acid-free packaging and acclimatised storage. Last year the collection was packed in acid-free boxes. The first batch has now been prepared for microfilming. The Library will provide its users with digital copies from the microfilm.
Once the process has been completed, the nursery catalogues will be available online in the Wageningen Catalogue.