The first reference showing the existence of nursery production on Polish land comes from the end of the XVIII century. This production started to grow rapidly in the middle of the XIX century.
After Poland regained independence, the first national organization was founded in Warsaw in 1924 – the Polish Association for Producers of Trees and Shrubs. Its first president, who served until his death, was Piotr Hoser. The purpose of the Association was to bring order to the lively market, adhere to plant selection, and the introduction of quality and qualification norms. In 1926 its members started to affix the association’s logo on their price lists and catalogs, the guarantee of high quality plants and professional integrity.
In the period between the wars, nursery specialization also took place. Firms were set up that produced perennials or root stock. There were also fruit tree nurseries operated at the highest level. They were owned by outstanding pomologists, scholars and experimenters.
In the first half of the XX century, many valued Polish varieties of ornamental plants were released to the market, many known and propagated to the present. They include Fraxinus pensylvanica ‘Crispa’, Robinia pseudoacacia ‘Rozynskiana’, Thuja occidentalis ‘Aurescens’, Thuja occidentalis ‘Hoseri”, Betula ‘Hoseri’, Picea pungens ‘Białobok’.
After the Second World War, nursery production in Poland could not develop. Its revival –both private and state, did not take place until after 1956. In the 1960s, dynamic progress was noted in rose nurserymanship. Production levels grew quickly. The production of deciduous trees and shrubs also developed, in part through the qualification of nurseries. In the 1970s the production and export of roses expanded.
The country’s deepening economic crisis in the 1980s led to difficulties in selling plants and a definite slump in the production of trees and shrubs.
After 1989 nurserymen faced new challenges and opportunities. They took advantage of them, hence nursery production is the fastest growing area of horticulture in Poland.
The Polish Nurserymen’s Association was founded in the fall of 1991 by a dozen or so producers of ornamental nursery material. It quickly was noted in the chronicles of Polish nurserymanship, becoming an heir of traditions and the legacy of this industry.
From the outset, it was presumed that Association members would have to meet high ethical and professional requirements. The association was consciously shaped as a non-profit organization in order to facilitate realization of the main (initially the existence of the Association) objectives, that being cooperation and mutual assistance of association members and community integration. The idea of founding such an association was coherent with the expectations of nurserymen, who – dispersed throughout the country – had no sense of common objectives or occupational solidarity.
Initially, there were 53 members in the Association. At the present time the Polish Nurserymen’s Association is the largest nursery association in Poland.
As the association develops, new activity objectives are being marked out, such as:
- popularization of knowledge about plants, shrubs and perennials in society
- facilitating contacts between producers and sellers
- improving the quality of nursery material
- increasing the plant assortment produced at nurseries
- modernizing technologies of plant production
At the present time it is not difficult to find a farm which has achieved western European standards. Product quality is constantly being improved as well as care to prepare plants for sale. The number of specialized nurseries is increasing.
The main activity which the Association is known for includes:
- International Exhibition “Greenery is Life” and a conference for persons dealing in greenery,
- annual publication of a Catalog of Nurseries and Association Members
- organization of General Meetings of Members, as well as training and lectures during such meetings
- organization of trips for Association members,
- working out catalogs of plants recommended by the association,
- promotional activity and cooperation with the media.