Francis Masson (August 1741 – 23 December 1805) was a Scottish botanist and gardener, and Kew Gardens’ first plant hunter.
Masson was born in Aberdeen. In the 1760s he went to work at Kew Gardens as an under-gardener. Masson was the first plant collector to be sent from Kew by the newly-appointed director Sir Joseph Banks. He sailed with James Cook on HMS Resolution to South Africa, landing in October 1772. He stayed until 1775 and sent back to England over 500 plant species. In 1776 he went to Madeira, Canary Islands, the Azores and the Antilles. In 1783 he collected plants in Portugal and in January 1786 returned to South Africa, remaining until March 1795.