About the Garden

Chelsea Physic Garden, Cultivating Plants and Ideas since 1673

Chelsea Physic Garden is an independent charity, dedicated to demonstrating the medicinal, economic, cultural and environmental importance of plants to the survival and well-being of humankind.

(c) Charlie Hopkinson

Tucked away beside the Thames, Chelsea Physic Garden is a celebration of the beauty and importance of plants. A unique living collection of around 5,000 different edible, useful, medicinal and historical plants is contained within its sheltering walls. This hidden gem is also a peaceful green oasis  – come and enjoy a relaxing stroll and lunch or afternoon tea at the Tangerine Dream Café.

The Garden’s warm microclimate means that many tender plants flourish here including a number of rare and endangered species. It has the largest outdoor fruiting olive tree in Britain and the world’s most northerly outdoor grapefruit tree. From pomegranates to ginkgos, mulberries to eucalyptus, there are over 100 different species of tree in the Garden, many of which are rare in Britain.  The Glasshouses hold a collection of tropical and sub-tropical species, complemented by a Victorian Cool Fernery.

Chelsea Physic Garden is the oldest botanic garden in London and was founded in 1673 by the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries for the purpose of training apprentices in the identification and use of medicinal plants. It subsequently became one of the most important centres of botany and plant exchange in the world.

Find out more information about the Garden’s rich history here.

Find out about each area of the Garden at the links below:

The Garden of Medicinal Plants 

The Garden of Edible and Useful Plants

The Historical Walk

Island Endemic Flora

World Woodland Garden

The  Mission of Chelsea Physic Garden is to:

Chelsea Physic Garden carries out this Mission for the public benefit by:

The Garden is honoured to have as its Patron: H.R.H. The Prince of Wales KG, KT, GCB, OM