If you ever have the chance to go to London, be sure to check out Chelsea Physic Garden. This is a garden full of wonderful surprises for those who love unusual plants and for those who don’t love gardens, it is the perfect starter size to get your feet wet. This little green haven happens to be England’s second oldest botanic garden. Nestled in the heart of the bustling city of London, it was founded by the Society of Apothecaries in 1673 to encourage the use of plants in medicine (then known as “physic”).
The garden is broken up into sections with plants of medicinal use as the primary focus. Collections vary from detailing specific plants used in various regions of the world to displaying plants that produce enough therapeutic, valued compounds to be developed into drugs for human consumption and use. For example, did you know a species of foxglove contains a cardiac glycoside directly in its leaves that is used to control and prevent abnormal heart rhythms and strengthen the heart beat? Fascinating!
This little urban treasure is only about 4 precious acres but it can occupy several hours of your time so budget accordingly! Visit the Chelsea Physic Garden’s website at http://www.chelseaphysicgarden.co.uk