New at Kew this summer Kew is celebrating the International Year of Biodiversity with a wide-ranging series of events, exhibitions and guided walks. Running from 29 May to 5 September, the summer festival includes free-flying exotic butterflies in the Princess of Wales Conservatory, the new PLANTastic Play area in Kew’s woodland, a photography exhibition of Kew’s wild flora and fauna, and an exciting programme of walks led by Kew’s volunteer guides. Find out more below.
NOW–29 JUNE WALK: Biodiversity in a Native British Woodland This tour explores the Natural Areas around Queen Charlotte’s Cottage and ventures into Kew’s managed British woodland, an area not normally open to the public (see also p38). Every Tues, Thurs & Sat, until 29 June, 2.30pm, from the Pagoda, £5 per person. Booking essential – call 020 8332 5604 or email email@example.com.
NOW–26 SEPTEMBER EXHIBITION: International Garden Photographer of the Year Enjoy breathtaking images from this prestigious competition (see also p30), showing the beauty and diversity of plants around the world. It’s sure to inspire you to get your camera out. Daily, until Sun 26 September, outdoors near the Marianne North Gallery.
NOW–26 SEPTEMBER KEW PALACE: Open Kew Palace, the former home of George III, offers a unique insight into the lives of the royal family in the late 18th century. Various additional items belonging to George III are on show for the first time this year to celebrate the 250th anniversary of his accession to the throne. Daily, until Sun 26 September, 10am–5pm (from 11am on Mon), prices (in addition to Gardens entry): adults £5, accompanied under-16s free, senior citizens/ students (with ID) £4.50, free to members of Historic Royal Palaces; tickets available at Kew’s gates or in the Palace’s Welcome Centre; for more details go to www.hrp.org.uk/KewPalace.
NOW–30 SEPTEMBER WALK: Biodiversity – what’s it all about? Did you know that every breath we take depends on plants? Discover what biodiversity means and why it’s so important. Learn about biodiversity hotspots, the importance of the rainforest, plant and animal interdependence and Kew’s conservation work around the world. Daily, until Thurs 30 September, 12 noon, from the Guides’ Desk, Victoria Plaza, free.
29 MAY– 5 SEPTEMBER DISPLAY: Butterflies, Bugs & Beasties Find out how pollination works through a range of displays in the Princess of Wales Conservatory, including walk-through tropical butterfly zones, large-scale sculptures, audio installations and film screenings on pollination. There will also be roving guides to explain more. Daily, from Sat 29 May–Sun 5 September, Princess of Wales Conservatory.
From 29 May: enjoy free-flying butterflies in the Princess of Wales Conservatory
29 MAY–5 SEPTEMBER CHILDREN’S FUN: PLANTastic Play Explore the new natural woodland play area, designed to help children learn about plants as they play. There’s a leaf maze explaining photosynthesis, crawl-tunnels showing how roots absorb water, fungi sculptures and much more (see also p48). Daily, Sat 29 May–Sun 5 September, near Queen Charlotte’s Cottage.
60 l KEW Summer 2010
29 MAY–5 SEPTEMBER EXHIBITION: Wild Kew Be inspired by this exciting collection of Heather Angel’s photographs, showing the diversity of Kew’s plants and wildlife. Daily, Sat 29 May–Sun 5 September, Nash Conservatory.
29 MAY–5 SEPTEMBER PALM HOUSE: Whispering in the Leaves Listen to the sounds of a tropical rainforest as you walk among the lush vegetation of this glorious glasshouse. Daily, Sat 29 May– Sun 5 September, Palm House.
29 MAY–5 SEPTEMBER SELF-GUIDED WALK: Biodiversity Trail Discover the amazing biodiversity all around you at Kew on this self-guided family trail. Sat 29 May–Sun 5 September, pick up a leaflet at any gate.
2 JUNE MEMBERS’ EVENT: Kew Social Meet fellow Kew members in the Orangery, where a range of refreshments is available to purchase. Then choose from four seasonal guided walks. Wed 2 June, 10am, Orangery, walks depart 10.30am, 10.45am, 11am & 11.15am. No booking required.
7–18 JUNE COURSE: Kew School of Botanical Illustration On this ten-day course, tutor Annie Farrer shows you how Kew’s botanical illustrators www.kew.org