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Brimming with flowers, trees, wildlife, and pristine pathways, the Cambridge University Botanic Garden, in Cambridge, United Kingdom, offers a peaceful place for visitors to enjoy the natural life. The garden maintains more than 8,000 plant species and at least nine National Plant Collections.
When the Botanic Garden opened in 1846, it replaced the university’s garden located at the centre of the city. The plants and research now present over 40 acres of the university’s land to those wishing to spend the day exploring the plethora of species.
Professor of Botany John Stevens Henslow developed the garden to accommodate his magnificent tree collection. He also set the stage for future students of Cambridge to analyse the nature of species and question historically accepted theories. Henslow’s student, Charles Darwin, famously developed the theory of evolution based on his research of the natural world.
Visitors to the Botanic Garden can view the Cantab collection of plants, those named after a member or those discovered at Cambridge University. These include the purple clusters of Ceanothus ‘Cynthia Postan,’ the cactus-like Cambridge Prickly Pear, and the long red-leafed Cambridge Oak.
Those seeking an international flair at the Botanic Garden should make their way over to the Glasshouse Range. The climate-controlled houses grow and care for plants from mountainous, oceanic, and tropical environments. The glasshouse also explores the evolution of plant life from before flowers to the appearance of carnivorous plant species.
Humans aren’t the only visitors to walk the garden grounds, though. While perusing, people have the opportunity to see a variety of birds, reptiles, and invertebrates. The keepers of the Botanic Garden maintain the robust wildlife to not only liven the environment, but naturally control the presence of pests and diseases.
Whether visiting in the fall, winter, spring, or summer, be sure to walk the paths of the Botanic Gardens. The trails lead anyone on a natural journey beyond the streets of today’s bustling cities.
Map of Cambridge University Botanic Garden
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