Full speed ahead

American Nurseryman goes back a long way. For more than a century, we’ve been publishing critical information for the commercial horticulture industry, including growers, landscape professionals and independent garden center retailers. We date our premier to 1904, but in fact the magazine’s roots actually run deeper.

Way back in 1892, a veteran newspaperman named Ralph Olcott and his nurseryman friend, Charles Yates, co-founded the country’s first horticultural trade journal and called it National Nurseryman. The first issue was published in February 1893. Olcott left the magazine and his partnership in 1904 and founded a new publication, naming it American Fruits.

Olcott was a busy man. He’d already logged 30-some years at the newspaper when he branched out into trade publishing, and he continued to work at the Rochester Post-Express while he established his first two horticultural magazines. He left the daily grind in 1914 to publish the first issue of American Nut Journal, a publication that remained active until 1931. It was in 1916, however, that he changed the name of American Fruits to American Nurseryman, and he remained with the magazine until his death in 1932.

Never missing a beat, American Nurseryman continued to guide industry professionals in the successful growth of their businesses and in that year, the magazine was purchased by an experienced horticultural journalist. Frederic R. Kilner acquired the publication in 1933 to prevent his employees from losing jobs to the Depression, and the legacy of American Nurseryman was assured.

Through the turns of two centuries; through the Great Depression and two World Wars; through evolutions in the industry and revolutions in technology, American Nurseryman has continuously provided sound, reliable information to professionals in the green industry. This year, we begin our 107th “official” year of publication, and while we’ve got a solid foundation, we’re planning to spread those roots broader and deeper.

Coming up: What happened when?