The New York Botanical Garden

MERTZ LIBRARY

A Visitor's Guide to the Mertz Library



Hours of Operation
Using the Library
Photocopying, Photography, and Reproduction Rights
Fees
Security Regulations
Personal Computers
Reserve Materials
Accommodations

Hours of Operation

Monday through Friday:   10 a.m. until 5 p.m.


The Library is closed on Saturday, Sunday and holidays.
* Limited access to collections on Mondays

Recorded message for hours and information: (718) 817-8604

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Using the Library



The Library makes its collections available and accessible to all users. The collections, with the exception of the Circulating Library, do not circulate except on campus to the offices of Garden staff and students in the Graduate Program and the School of Professional Horticulture. Many of the volumes as well as materials from other Library collections are fragile in nature and must be handled with great care. Photocopying is restricted for such items.

Library users are encouraged to search the online catalog by title, author, subject, or keyword, for books and journals they wish to use. A call slip can be printed out from the printers available at each public terminal. Printed call slips are the easiest and most efficient way for the Library staff to retrieve the correct material from the stacks. Users are asked to bring their requests to the Reference Desk indicating specific volumes required.

Online Catalog:

The Library's online public catalog features full bibliographic descriptions, subject headings, and author and title entries for all books and journals held in the collections. In addition, there are several searchable databases for special collections and archival materials. Terminals for searching the catalog are located in the Library Reference Room.

Circulation:

The Library makes its collections available and accessible to all onsite users. The collections, with the exception of the Members Circulating Library, may not be checked out except on campus to the offices of Garden staff and students in the Graduate Program and the School of Professional Horticulture. Many book and journal volumes are fragile in nature and must be handled with great care. Copying is restricted for such items. Items which are marked ‘FRAGILE’ or housed in a wrapper or any kind may only be used in the Library. Additionally, rare books, special collection and oversized materials may only be consulted in the Library.

Members Circulating Collection

The Circulating Collection is a select collection of some 4,000 titles of popular books focused on basic botany, gardening, and landscape design and is housed in the Mertz Library's Shelby White and Leon Levy Reading Room. These books may be borrowed for home use, for up to three weeks, by Members of the Garden, volunteers, staff and students enrolled in the Graduate Program and the School of Professional Horticulture. The collection features basic reference works, books written by Garden staff, books on Bronx history, garden photography, botanical illustration, floral design, home gardening topics and even a selection of children's titles. This collection is the largest of its kind in the northeastern United States. Those who would like to check out materials from the collection need to first register for a Library card which can be submitted to the Library Information Desk.

Applying for a Library Card

Garden Members wishing to borrow books from the Members Circulating Collection must have a valid Garden Membership card. An application form for Circulating Library borrowing privileges is available at the Circulation Desk. When approved, a Library barcode label will be applied to the Member's valid Garden Membership card.

Stack Access

The Library stacks are closed to the public. Only Garden staff and students in the Graduate Programs, long term visiting researchers and the School of Professional Horticulture may be given stack access upon application and formal orientation. Orientation tours of the Library for new users are given by appointment only. An overview of regulations regarding stack access for qualified staff and researchers accompanies each application.
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Photocopying, Photography, and Permissions



Photocopying:

Only the Library's Book Edge Copier may be used for photocopying Library materials. This machine is designed to copy bound volumes, page-by-page, while minimizing any damage to the volume's binding.
Fragile materials, folios, items of large size or unusual shape, volumes in wrappers, rare books, and volumes that are broken or contain fragile/acidic paper may not be photocopied or scanned.
Fold-out maps or plates, archival material and artwork may not be copied or scanned without consulting the Reference staff. In many instances staff can provide copies using scanning equipment for items which can not be photocopied due to their size or condition.

Personal Digital Photography:

Photography of Library materials by users is permitted when the images will be used solely for personal reference. Reference staff for assistance. The Library can provide high resolution scans for a fee. All requests are to be accompanied by a completed scan request form. Please consult the Library’s current fee schedule for prices.

Scanning:

The use of portable digital scanners and flat bed scanners is not allowed. The Library has scanners designed for book copy work. Arrangements to scan material from the collections should be made with the librarian on duty at the Information Desk. The Library provides a scanner for complimentary use which allows users to save images to a USB drive or to email. Use of this scanner is subject to copyright regulations and volume controls.

Permissions:

All images from The LuEsther T. Mertz Library’s collections which are to be used for commercial purposes must be licensed by the Garden's Product Development Division. Request to reproduce images from the collection for scholarly purposes or one time publication should be discussed with the Librarian. Please consult the Library’s current fee schedule for pricing information pertaining to your request. Our preferred citation is ‘The LuEsther T. Mertz Library of The New York Botanical Garden’. We request that one copy of all published works making use of images from our collections be submitted to the Library at the time of publication.

A ready made selection of several hundred images from the Library’s collections can be found by searching the website of Art Resource, the world’s leading art stock photo archive. Simply type the phrase ‘Mertz Library’ into the search box found on the home page of the company’s website.


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Fees


The Library's current fee schedule can be viewed here.

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Security Regulations



No food or drinks (including bottled water) are allowed in the Library.

Lockers and a coat rack are located just outside the main entrance to the Library. Visitors entering the Library must leave their coats, briefcases, backpacks, umbrellas, oversized packages, or similar items in a locker. Use of a locker requires the deposit of one quarter, which is returned when reopened with the key.

Cell phones and cell phone camera use in the Library are not permitted.

There is no smoking anywhere in the building.

All rare books, manuscripts and folios must be consulted at the Reference Desk in the presence of a Library staff member. Please wash hands before handling materials and use care at all times. All notes should be taken electronically or using pencil only.

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Personal Computers



Readers may use personal computers in the Reading Room. Electrical outlets and computer jacks are available at the study tables. Wireless access is available in the Library Reading Room.


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Reserve Materials



Reserving books and journal articles allows all students coming to the library to have equal access to materials listed on a course reading list. Reserve materials do not circulate and can only be consulted in the Library.
Instructors should email their reserve reading lists, two weeks before classes start. This allows library staff to process the books for the reserve shelf, and to recall books that have been charged out. Instructors should be certain to provide the dates their course will be taught and full bibliographic citations from the library catalog for each items requested for reserve. Instructors personal copies of books and articles not found in the library’s collections can also be put on reserve and signed out by students for use in the reading room.
All materials will be removed from the reserve shelf at the end of each course. Additional reading materials from the library’s collections are placed on reserve at the Library Information Desk for those wishing to read more about an exhibition currently on view on the grounds or in the Art Gallery.

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