Yosef Wosk Library & Resource Centre

We are open Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday: 10.00am – 3.00pm

Saturday: 11.00am – 2.00pm

Search our library catalogue here!

  • +About the Library

    Founded in 1976, and relocated to the new Visitor Centre in 2011, the Yosef Wosk Library and Resource Centre is the largest public access botanical and horticultural library in western Canada.

    The library’s collection focuses on gardening in British Columbia and the Pacific Northwest, and covers a wide range of topics including gardening techniques, selecting and growing ornamental plants, native floras from around the world, vegetable and herb gardening, pruning and training, North American ethnobotany, butterfly gardening, native plant gardening, flower arrangement, plant hunters, garden history, pests and diseases, garden design, gardens to visit, horticulture in urban environments, botany and plant ecology, plant conservation, literature in the garden, garden art, organic gardening, environmental science and much more.

    The Yosef Wosk Library and Resource Centre’s research collection complements the living resources of VanDusen Botanical Garden. In addition to our collection, you can enjoy regular community events hosted at the library.

    Library Open hours:

    Monday 10.00am – 3.00pm
    Tuesday 10.00am – 3.00pm
    Wednesday 10.00am – 3.00pm
    Saturday 11.00am – 2.00pm
    Thurs / Fri / Sun Closed

    If you would like to connect with us before your visit please contact: library@vandusen.org

  • +Rae Warner Speaker Series

    September 26, 6.30pm – 8.00pm -In Person Event

    Topic: Beatrix Potter: Beyond Peter Rabbit
    Presenter: Spencer W. Stuart

    Register now!

    Beatrix Potter was a woman of many interests and ambitions. However, we often come to know only one of these, her children’s books. Renowned for her fabulous Peter Rabbit storybook illustrations at the turn of the Century, Potter was also involved in the study of fungi (mycology) and, later in life, land conservancy efforts in Britain.

    Join returning lecturer Spencer W. Stuart as he explores three facets of Potter’s life. Beginning with her extraordinarily successful children’s tales, of which she published twenty-three, he will delve into Potter’s lesser-known involvement with the study of mycology through scientific illustration as well as writing. Now housed in the Armitt Museum in England and Perth Museum in Scotland, these beautifully executed and famously accurate water colours continue to serve as reference to both amateur and expert mycologists alike. Finally, he will discuss her enduring legacy to the conservation of the historic Lake District of North West England, revealing not only the familiar figure we have all come to know of imagination and fairy tale but also an enthusiastic, down-to-earth naturalist caught up in the debates of the day.

    About the speaker: 
    Spencer W. Stuart holds a Masters in the History of Art from the Courtauld Institute, UK, and received the Director’s Award upon its completion. He then went on to work with Bonhams Auctioneers, focusing on Rare Books and Manuscripts in both their Toronto and New York offices. Spencer currently resides in Vancouver where he operates a collection management practice and serves as Chair of the Alcuin Society. He is the author of the recently published Contemporary Issues in Rare Book and Manuscript Collecting.
    The presentation will be followed by a library tour, with a focus on its collection of books on botanical illustration.

    Register now!

    Read about Rae Warner and her contributions to VanDusen here!

  • +Roberta Mickelson Gallery Exhibitions

    Upcoming Exhibition:

    An Explosion of Colour
    by; The Vancouver En Plein air Painters Group

    September 6 – November 28
    Admission: FREE

    This exhibition of the works of twelve painters is a sample reflecting different visions and expressions of “place.” VanDusen Botanical Garden is a place that continues to move each one of these painters in different ways, and one they discover anew all year long.

    “VanDusen Botanical Garden continues to be one of our favourite locations during all seasons. In this garden, we experience a peacefulness, worldliness, an enchantment, a delightful explosion of colour, a variety of textures, and a myriad of forms to paint.”

    The Vancouver en plein air painters group formed on April 18, 2011, when they first gathered in Stanley Park. Their love of outdoor painting, the joy of companionship, and the exchange of ideas has kept them together every week despite the often-inclement weather.

    Images include watercolour, acrylic and oil medium inspired by such places as the Autumn Stroll, Black Garden, Rose Garden, Heron Lake, Laburnum Walk and Rhododendron Walk.

    The painters’ different artistic backgrounds and life journeys are compiled in an album with biographies, images and contact information. This album is available for viewing during the show.

    See these artworks at Roberta Mickelson Gallery in the Yosef Wosk Library (in the VanDusen Visitor Centre) 10.00am -3.00pm Monday – Wednesday and Saturdays 11.am – 2.00pm from September 6 – November 28.

    All art works are for sale.
    Admission: Free

  • +VanDusen Book Club

    We are taking a break for the summer but please join us again on September 28th in-person in the Visitor Centre Guide Classroom or online for a trial hybrid meeting where we will examine the importance of fungi to the environment and to our lives.

    For more information and to register, click here.

    We purposely choose general topics to allow members to find materials that interest them and so that there is less demand on a limited number of copies of a particular book. Members are asked to read one, or as many of the suggested books as they like.

    To prepare for Book Club meetings, check out the Yosef Wosk Library and Resource Centre at the VanDusen Garden Visitor Center, your local library and bookstore for books, ebooks and audiobooks. You are also welcome to conduct your own research online.

    Download the 2023 reading list here.

    Date Theme Register
    February 23, 1pm – 2pm Animal Connections See reading list and register here!
    April 27, 1pm – 2pm Strange Journeys See reading list and register here!
    June 22, 1pm – 2pm Books by Marc Hamer See reading list and register here!
    September 28, 1pm – 2pm The Fungus Among Us See reading list and register here!
    November 23, 1pm – 2pm Deep Time to Our Time See reading list and register here!
  • +F.A.Q.

    Are you open to the general public?
    Yes! Anyone can use our library although only VanDusen Botanical Garden Association (VBGA) members are able to borrow books.

    As a Vancouver Botanical Gardens Association (VBGA) member, can I check out materials?
    VBGA members can borrow 3 books for 3 weeks at a time from our lending collection (all books with a green or orange label on their spines). Your VBGA membership card functions as your library card. Circulating items may be renewed once by e-mail or phone if they are not already overdue, and if no hold has been placed on them. All other materials are for library use only.

    Do you answer questions over the telephone? By email?
    Both! Contact us through library@vandusen.org or at 604-257-8668. The library staff and volunteers will be happy to let you know what information we have in the library on your topic and give answers and referrals whenever possible.

    Are you part of the Vancouver Public Library system?
    No, we are not.

    Do you accept donations of books and magazines?
    The Yosef Wosk Library & Resource Centre accepts donations of books. All donated material is reviewed according to the selection criteria applied to purchased material. If your donation is not needed for the library collection, it will be sold in a used book sale with the proceeds going to the library’s book acquisition budget. However, due to limited storage space, we may not be able to accept larger donations and out-of-date material.

    Can I donate a book in memory of someone?
    Yes. All gift books that are accepted into our collection will be processed with a memorial bookplate, if desired. You may contact us at 604-257-8668 for more information.

    My plant is sick. If I bring it into the library, can you tell me what’s wrong?
    We recommend you contact the Vancouver Master Gardeners Association of BC (Vancouver chapter) here. However, the library staff will help you find and use books from our reference collection on pests and diseases.

    Can I make a cash donation to the Library?
    If you wish to direct a financial donation to support the Library, to enhance the collection or donate to our Adopt-a-Shelf program please contact fundraising@vandusen.org or call 604-257-8677.

    Do I need to wear a mask in the library?
    Masks are no longer mandatory in all indoor public spaces in alignment with updates to the public health orders issued by the Provincial government. You are welcome to keep wearing masks, depending on your level of comfort.

    Contact Information:
    Marina Princz: Librarian
    Tel. 604-257-8668
    Email: library@vandusen.org
    Yosef Wosk Library and Resource Centre
    5151 Oak Street
    Vancouver, British Columbia
    V6M 4H1

    We are a member of the Council on Botanical and Horticultural Libraries (www.cbhl.net).