Chelsea Physic Garden
It’s hard to believe that nestled in the heart of Chelsea on the bank of the Thames is London’s oldest botanic garden. Home to 5000 different species of medicinal, herbal, edible and useful plants, Chelsea Physic Garden was founded by the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries in 1673, in order to grow medicinal plants.
Opening the garden so close to the river allowed the apothecaries to make the most of the warm air currents and enabled easy access via barge. The proximity enabled plants from all over the world to be introduced and grown in Britain, paving the way for the global seed exchange scheme which still continues to this day.
Constructed from Burmese teaThe glasshouses here were built during the Victorian period of 1902 and are significant in terms of their architecture and design. Housing a tropical corridor, Pelargonium Collection, fernery and Carnivorous & Cactaceae Collection, the glasshouses are amongst some of my favourite in the UK.
You can also find herb gardens with culinary and medicinal plants, botanical order beds, glasshouses, rare plants and tender species; as well as the largest outdoor olive tree in Britain. Guided tours around the gardens are complimentary and give a great insight into the wide range of species.
Tranquil and calming, we stopped by Chelsea Physic Garden after a morning of meetings in July and it was the perfect spot to reflect, unwind and reconnect.
How To Get There: Chelsea Physic Garden is a 10/15 minute walk from Sloane Square tube station
66 Royal Hospital Road
Winter Opening Hours: Monday – Friday: 11am – 4pm
Admission: Adults: £9.5