Mount Hope Nurseries


Mount Hope Nursery (1840 - 1918)
(see also Highland Park, Ellwanger and Barry)

For over 167 years the Mount Hope/Highland area has been home to some of Rochester's best horticultural history and was most likely the main reason why we are today known as the Flower City (along with Flour City). It all started around 1840 when German immigrant George Ellwanger and Irish import Patrick Barry established a small 7-acre nursery near the southern border of the city. George stuck around tending to the business while Patrick traveled gathering information and specimens from around the globe.

Once Patrick was back in town the two worked to grow the business and by 1850 the nursery had grown to one hundred acres. Continuing to grow and focus on specific areas including fruit bearing plants in 1855 acreage quadrupled to 400 acres. By 1871 the nursery had grown to over six hundred and fifty acres making it the largest nursery in the world! In fact Mount Hope Nursery was so large and influential that it inspired the local industry to grow immensely thereby surpassing flour milling as Rochester's main industry.


650 acres divided as follows: