About Us

Established in 1829, Massachusetts Horticultural Library is the oldest horticultural library in the United States. Its Library and Archives is renowned for its books related to early agriculture, horticulture and landscape design, rare books, and seed and nursery catalogs. The Library’s collection includes over 20,000 volumes at our library in the Education Center at the Society’s headquarters in Wellesley, Massachusetts. At our off-site archives, the Society maintains 5,000 rare books, manuscripts, prints, seed catalogs, glass slides, photographs, and early records of horticultural institutions.

Our horticultural holdings provide invaluable resources to our staff, members, scholars, historians, and public. We welcome visitors, researchers, scholars, and authors to browse through the stacks at our library and to peruse our digital resources. 


Open Thursdays from 9am-1pm and by appointment.
Please email schedule an appointment.



Education Building
The Garden at Elm Bank
900 Washington Street
Wellesley, MA 02482

Guidelines And Policies

Special arrangements may be made to view historic and archival materials at the Library. Additional fees may apply. We are pleased to share our holdings with the public as part of our ongoing project to digitize our historic materials.


Book Return Policy

Borrowed Library materials may be returned to the library materials during library open hours, or by postpaid mail addressed to: Massachusetts Horticultural Society, Attn: Library, 900 Washington Street, Wellesley, Massachusetts 02482.

MHS Book Club

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Join other enthusiasts in great conversation while immersed in the beauty of the Garden. Our Book Club meets at 1:30pm in the Crocket Garden (weather permitting). Enjoy the sunshine and discussion with like-minded individuals.

Join the List for more information about this program and for our next book announcement!


Volunteer at the Library

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See what opportunities are available to volunteer at the oldest horticultural library in the United States. Contact Library Manager Maureen O'Brien with questions and interest. 

View Current Opportunities
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Massachusetts Horticultural Society is dedicated to encouraging the science and practice of horticulture and to developing the public’s enjoyment, appreciation, and understanding of plants and the environment.

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