(Photo: Colin Wing)
The Royal College of Physicians (RCP) was founded in 1518 and is a registered charity that aims to ensure high-quality care for patients by promoting the highest standards of medical practice. Its present grade I-listed building was designed by Sir Denys Lasdun in 1964 and is an award-winning museum and venue.
The RCP's garden of medicinal plants (all of which are labelled with their botanical name) has flourished and matured over the last 10 years. Themed areas of plants associated with medicine from different regions of the world surround the building, making a verdant home for plant knowledge and beauty.
Additionally, the eight small gardens along our Regency terrace of St Andrews Place contain plants that were used to make medicines in the College's first Pharmacopoeia
, published in 1618, all of which are described in Culpeper's Herbal.
The garden is both beautiful and educational. The plants - from which we obtain local anaesthetics, treatments for swine flu, leukaemia, diabetes, cancers, cardiac problems, asthma, scurvy and intestinal worms, as well as narcotics, hallucinogens, ecstasy and more - are endlessly fascinating.