1st May 2012 – 14th meeting of 2012

This week we met at Charing Cross and made our way by underground to Sloane Square where we decided to have our coffee in Peter Jones store, the light and airy restaurant is on the top floor so we had our drinks and caught up with the weeks events whilst viewing the rooftops.

Although there had been heavy rain earlier and was still overcast most of us decided to press on and we made our way to Chelsea Physics Garden through the sidestreets off Kings Road admiring the houses on the way.

Thankfully, the Chelsea Physic Garden was open for visitors today as we had been disappointed previously. Surprisingly there are no concessions for seniors and the ticket price was £9 but the kindly man at the entry kiosk won us over with the time he spent handing out leaflets and giving advice!

Chelsea Physic Garden was founded by the worshipful Society of Apothecaries of London in 1673 and is the oldest London botanic museum in a unique living form.

Instead of waiting for a tour armed with our maps we walked around the various beds with some lovely plants all clearly marked with names and category. We admired most of the flowering plants but we were dismayed to find that some our favourites were in the poisonous section, including the lily of the valley! It is well set out with greenhouses, rockery and pond and although a bit muddy underfoot, very interesting to see. There is also a famous olive tree and an ancient yew.

Unfortunately a few of us who belong to the RHS had read in the magazine the New Garden of Edible and Useful Plants would be open in May but we found it still being built and not open until the 23rd May. It looked as though it might be worth a later visit to see it completed.

Luckily it only started to rain on our way back to Sloane Square so we travelled back to Charing Cross and home after a very enjoyable day.