The present mansion was built in 1590 by Sir Edward Culpeper - a distant relative of Nicholas, the famous herbalist.
Did you know?
- In 1963, Sir Henry bequeathed Wakehurst, with a generous endowment, to the National Trust.
- On 1st January 1965, the estate was leased for the benefit of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
- All money generated from entrance fees and profits from shop and plant sales go towards both its upkeep and the continuation of the scientific work carried out here.
Sir William Boord owned the estate from 1890 to 1902, and it was Gerald Loder, later Lord Wakehurst, who started to develop the gardens. He was passionate about plants and helped sponsor many collecting expeditions, particularly to eastern Asia, still the world's richest source of temperate flora. He was keenly interested in Southern Hemisphere plants and built up an outstanding collection from South America, Australia and New Zealand.
On Loder's death, Wakehurst was bought by Sir Henry Price who, with his wife, Lady Eve Price, was equally enthusiastic about plants, and in their care the estate matured richly and was widely admired.