What’s on at Kew Gardens and Wakehurst this June

This month, Kew’s glasshouses reopen alongside a series of exhibitions and events to bring the gardens at Kew and Wakehurst to life.

Release date: 27 May 2021

  • Kew’s Palm and Temperate Houses now open to the public following the easing of Covid-19 restrictions.
  • Immerse yourself in the Secret World of Plants, with interactive installations and plantscapes across Kew Gardens.
  • Wakehurst events include workshops and nature evenings.
  • Witness the brightest colours ever seen as part of Naturally Brilliant Colour at the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanic Art.
  • Wellbeing events including Forest Bathing and Temperate House Yoga at Kew Gardens.
  • Horticultural highlights include wisteria, peonies, lupins and wonderful wildflowers.

Glasshouses now open

Following the easing of lockdown restrictions, visitors are once again able to enjoy the spectacular temperate and tropical worlds encompassed within Kew’s iconic glasshouses this June. Housing some of the world’s rarest and most threatened plant species, the Temperate House is home to 10,000 species and is the world’s largest Victorian glasshouse. Kew’s Palm House contains a plethora of tropical plants from some of the most at-risk ecosystems around the world and allows visitors the opportunity to experience the magic of the rainforest in person.

Secret World of Plants

The Secret World of Plants continues at Kew this June. The immersive summer festival explores ‘what plants really mean to you?’ by embracing the wonderful world of plant biodiversity through newly commissioned interactive art installations using music, sound and colour. At the centre of the festival are six huge ‘plantscapes’ celebrating British biodiversity and warning of the fragility of these plants, as well as the myriad of other wildlife which they support. Images available here.

Naturally Brilliant Colour 

Kew’s Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art welcomes visitors back for its first exhibition of 2021. Naturally Brilliant Colour presents the brightest hues ever seen to visitors for the first time, and features a stunning spectrum of artwork, including an immersive kaleidoscope featuring Pure Structural Colour, created by Lifescaped lab to replicate the boldest colours seen in nature. Images available here.

Events at Wakehurst

This June, Wakehurst, Kew’s wild botanic garden in Sussex hosts a variety of events, including evening badger watching in the Loder Valley Nature Reserve and elderflower sparkling wine workshops, hosted by master brewers of botanicals, Old Tree Brewery.

Badger watching: Tuesday 1st, 8th, 15th & 22nd June | 7.15pm – 9.30pm | Loder Valley Nature Reserve | Included in general admission | Adults only

Elderflower sparkling wine workshop: Saturday 12th & Sunday 13th June | 11am – 1pm & 2pm – 4pm | £35 (includes entry to the gardens and car parking)

Wellbeing at Kew

Wellbeing events this June include Tai chi, cycling, Temperate House yoga and Forest bathing, all supporting physical and mental wellbeing within the unique and inspiring surroundings of Kew Gardens.

Tai chi: Friday 4th, 11th, 18th & 25th June | 9am – 10am | Mediterranean Gardens | £35 (includes entry to the gardens and 20% discount in our restaurants)

Summer Cycle: Wednesday 2nd June, 5.30pm- 9pm (last entry 8pm) | Thursday 10th June,  6pm – 9.15pm (last entry 8.30pm) | Wednesday 16th June, 6pm – 9.30pm (last entry 8.30pm) | £20 Adult, £10 Child

Temperate House Yoga: Tuesday 22nd & Thursday 14 June | 7.30am – 8.45am | Temperate House | £45 (includes entry to Kew Gardens and 20% discount in our restaurants)

Forest bathing | Monday 7th, Saturday 12th & Tuesday 29th June | 10.30am – 1pm | Arboretum | £60 (includes entry to Kew Gardens and 20% discount in our restaurant)

Horticultural highlights 

Horticultural highlights on display this June at Kew and Wakehurst include peonies, roses, alliums and lupins. Wakehurst’s Coronation Meadow of native flowers and grasses are beginning to bloom, and Kew’s Great Broad Walk Borders showcase a spectacular range of colourful summer plants. Images available here.

What we are doing to keep visitors safe

The safety and wellbeing of our visitors is of the utmost importance to us and we are continually monitoring and responding to the Covid-19 pandemic as it evolves. We are adhering to government advice in our planning to ensure visitors and staff remain safe while enjoying Kew and Wakehurst. Safety measures will reflect government advice at the time of the exhibition run and will be clearly communicated across RBG Kew’s channels and onsite.

All visitors, including Members, must pre-book a ticket and timed slot for entry to Kew Gardens.

For more information or images, please contact the Press Office at pr@kew.org.


Notes to Editors

About Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew 

The Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew is a world-famous scientific organisation, internationally respected for its outstanding collections as well as its scientific expertise in plant diversity, conservation and sustainable development in the UK and around the world. Kew Gardens is a major international and a top London visitor attraction. Kew Gardens’ 132 hectares of landscaped gardens, and Wakehurst, Kew’s Wild Botanic Garden, attract over 2.5 million visits every year. Kew Gardens was made a UNESCO World Heritage Site in July 2003 and celebrated its 260th anniversary in 2019. Wakehurst is home to Kew's Millennium Seed Bank, the largest wild plant seed bank in the world. RBG Kew receives approximately one third of its funding from Government through the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and research councils. Further funding needed to support RBG Kew’s vital work comes from donors, membership and commercial activity including ticket sales.

About Wakehurst

Please note that Wakehurst is referred to just as Wakehurst, not Wakehurst Place. It is not a National Trust property.

Wakehurst, Kew’s wild botanic garden in Sussex is home to the Millennium Seed Bank and over 500 acres of the world’s plants including temperate woodlands, ornamental gardens and a nature reserve. It is situated in the High Weald of Sussex, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and focuses on wild plant collections. The Millennium Seed Bank houses and protects seed from the world’s most substantial and diverse collection of threatened and useful wild plants, making it the most biodiverse place on earth.

RBG Kew receives just under half of its funding from Government through the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and research councils. Further funding needed to support Kew’s vital work comes from donors, membership and commercial activity including ticket sales. 

In March 2021, RBG Kew launched its 10-year strategy Our Manifesto for Change 2021. The institution’s ultimate goal is step up to help to end the extinction crisis and contribute to creating a world where nature is protected, valued by all and managed sustainably. In the wake of a global pandemic, and with the future of the planet in peril, the strategy represents a public commitment by RBG Kew to do everything in its power to reverse the environmental devastation of biodiversity loss and climate change.  The five key priorities are 1) Delivering science-based knowledge and solutions to protect biodiversity and use natural resources sustainably 2) Inspiring people to protect the natural world 3) Training the next generation of experts: 4) Extending our reach 5) Influencing national and international opinion and policy.

On May 25th RBG Kew launched its new Sustainability Strategy – committing to become Climate Positive by 2030 and marking a step-change in our urgent action to tackle the climate and biodiversity crisis.