The Botanic Gardens
August 26, 2005
The Botanic Gardens

The Botanic Gardens was founded in 1765, a mere two years after the British gained a firm foothold on St. Vincent. The gardens occupy approximately 20 acres of fertile, well watered lands at the foot of Mt. St. Andrew. The entrance is sited about 1 mile out of Kingstown along the Leeward highway.

The first curator of the gardens was George Young who was the doctor to the military forces stationed in the island at that time. He was an avid horticulturist. It is due to Dr. Young, that by 1773, the Gardens had won world wide acclaim.{{more}}

Captain Bligh of “Mutiny on the Bounty” fame brought to St. Vincent on January 23, 1793, 530 breadfruit plants from Tahiti to be distributed to other islands so that the fruits would serve as food for the workers on the estates. One can still see today a sucker from one of the original plants.

Tall palms line the central path which leads to the steps of the grounds of Government House, which is situated at the northern end of the Gardens. Enhancing the central path is a Doric Temple, which once held an Allamanda Fountain.

One of the added attractions of the gardens is the endangered St. Vincent Parrot, Amazona Guildingii, the national bird. Also located at the gardens is the Orchid House, built in 1998 with the assistance of the Taiwanese Agricultural Mission. In 2004 a tree was planted at the Gardens in remembrance of Vincentian Andre Cox who died in the September 11, 2001 attack of the World Trade Centre buildings.

Today, the Gardens remain equally popular with locals and visitors. It is maintained as an attractive, soothing retreat where many go to admire the many beautiful trees, flowers, lawns and colourful foliage plants, or just relax, exercise or take a romantic stroll.

It serves as a venue for studying, weddings, family celebrations, and other special events. It is open from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.