Rochester became a global center for flower and tree nurseries in the mid-1800s, fostering our identity as The Flower City. George Ellwanger from Germany and Patrick Barry from Ireland lead the way.
Their nursery catalog was issued in 1843, selling fruit trees, ornamentals and flowers, roses and green house plants across the globe. In 1888, they donated some of their land and trees to the City of Rochester to establish Highland Park (our first park), designed by Frederick Law Olmsted.
Here are a few places you can enjoy their contribution, and the continued work of other unique flower gardens and arboretums around Rochester.
George Ellwanger celebrated the establishment of the nursery by a fitting ceremony a week later when Vice-Chancellor Frederick Whittlesey affixed his seal to Ellwanger’s final citizenship papers, welcoming him officially as a new American.
So pleased were Rochesterians with the ceremony that it became a feature of the Christmas period and helped to transform a purely religious day into a social and family holiday. See also,Rochester’s First Christmas Tree.
Where are your favorite spots around our Flower City?
Share your thoughts with us in the comments. Your insight and experience is invaluable!
COVID-19 NOTE: Some of the information you find in our articles may currently be inaccurate due to closures and cancellations.
Please follow the most current recommendations from the CDC and New York State for spending time away from your home. The great outdoors can provide a well needed respite & escape during stressful times. Please move quickly through parking lots, trail heads, and scenic areas. If crowded, choose a different park, trail, or time to visit. Please day trip responsibly.