The seed catalogue of today provides you with an array of colourful images & detailed information of a wide variety of flowers and plants. The first catalogue ever to be created was in 1498 by the Venetian scholar & tutor Aldine Pius Mariutius who had a keen interest in Classical literature and wanted to create a pamphlet so other people could read and enjoy the Latin & Greek classics which included works by Aristotle, 9 comedies of Aristophanes and many more. Aldine helped to setup the Aldine press printing office & the funds were provided to him from the Giovanni Pico’s family to create the printing press for his publications.
It wasn’t until 1667 when the actual first seed catalogue was produced by William Lucas a gardener who wanted to create a pamphlet containing seed prices for his customers, it consisted of drawings with plant names which was delivered by post.
Towards the 1800s and with the introduction of tropical and exotic plants entering Europe including pelargoniums, tradesman and gardeners wanted to create an easier way of presenting their plants to customers, drawings and paintings were added to the catalogue to display their colour and beauty. During the Victorian Era the Seed Catalogue was becoming evermore popular, especially the Carters catalogue of 1887 which was published at the time of Queen Victoria’s Succession to the throne.
Other catalogue’s includes Westmacott & Co 1830-40s, Dingee & Conard co 1887, Townssends, D.M Harrison & Sons, Coles 1890s which had painted images of flowers and plants