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New Jersey State
Horticultural Society

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The New Jersey State Horticultural Society (NJSJS) was founded in 1875 by a group of farmers from all over the state of New Jersey. At the time, there were few other collective groups for farmers in the state to use to collaborate and share information. The NJSHS was formed with the goals of increasing information distribution, political awareness and scientific advances.

As membership grew, with farmers from all different facets of agriculture, there was a need for subcommittees to form and focus on more specific fruits and vegetables. Subcommittees of the NJSHS included the Peach Council, Small Fruit Council, Jersey Cooperative Vegetable Council, Vegetable Growers, and Apple Institute, to name a few. At the time of their formation, the subcommittees focused on plant propagation, advance selection and plant breeding. The subcommittees governed how new varieties were introduced and distributed, and they made money through the sale of plants. The money raised was reinvested into research to continue to develop plant material. Several of these subcommittees were very successful resources for farmers, and have since branched out to become independent groups that are still in operation today.

The NJSHS was also involved in forming the New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station at Rutgers University, and continues to support Rutgers researchers, offering financial assistance to selected projects, over $350,000 to date.

The NJSHS has sponsored the Mid-Atlantic Fruit and Vegetable Convention, the largest trade show in the Northeast for commercial fruit growers, for the past 45 years. The NJSHS also sponsors the Outstanding Fruit Grower Award, given annually to selected Jersey growers. (View recipient list here.) Additionally, NJSHS sponsors the Ernie Christ lecture at the Mid-Atlantic Fruit and Vegetable Convention.

The New Jersey State Horticultural Society remains the oldest horticultural organization in New Jersey.

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Horticultural News

Horticultural News, published by the NJSHS, is a quarterly publication serving the fruit growers of New Jersey.

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