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.
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:
- demonstrate the medicinal, economic, cultural and environmental importance of plants to the survival and well-being of humankind.
Chelsea Physic Garden carries out this Mission for the public benefit by:
- maintaining documented plant collections in labelled and interpreted displays in a historic botanic garden
- providing programmes of educational activities, publications and events
- demonstrating the development of the science and practice of horticulture, botany and related disciplines through the historical role of the Garden
- promoting the importance of the conservation of plants and the natural environment.
The Garden is honoured to have as its Patron: H.R.H. The Prince of Wales KG, KT, GCB, OM