physic gardenChelsea Physic Garden is a place steeped in history, and overflowing with stories of the great plant hunters and botanists of bygone days. Founded in 1673 as the apothecaries’ garden, it was established to train apprentices in plant recognition and cultivation. It is the second oldest botanic garden in Britain, founded 52 years after the Oxford Botanic Garden.

chelsea order bedThe mild micro climate by the banks of the river Thames made it perfect for growing more exotic plants, and it still contains some amazing specimens, and holds an important international reputation for the exchange of seeds and ideas.

chelsea physic oliveThere are some real gems to be seen here; the largest outdoor, fruiting olive tree in Britain makes its home in the garden, along with one of the oldest examples of a rock garden, built with lava brought back by the intrepid explorer Joseph Banks.

If you have even a remote interest in medicinal plants or ethnobotany then this garden is not to be missed. The last ‘behind the scenes’ tour of this year is being hosted on 1st October, 11.30 – 1pm, (£25 per person) and will be led by the head gardener, Nick Bailey. There will also be access to parts of the garden not normally open to the public.

chelsea physic glasshouse

For more information about the garden visit

You can find out more about the tour HERE

For opening times click HERE

For ticket entry prices click HERE