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Thu 27 Jul

Plants and Power – Botanical Imperialism: A Summer Social

3.30 - 4.45pm

National Botanic Gardens of Ireland, Glasnevin, Dublin 9

€5 IASW members/€ non-members

 Join members on a summer social, taking a guided walk in the beautiful surroundings of the Botanic Gardens. 

Plants and Power – Botanical imperialism

‘The greatest service rendered to any country is to add a useful plant to its culture’ – Thomas Jefferson, 1800. Throughout history, plants have supplied us with food, medicine, and other essentials; as empires expanded and fell, staple crops failed or flourished. From the key role of botany in European empire-building, to the ‘Colombian exchange’ of American tomatoes, tobacco, and maize with ‘Old World’ grapes, sugar cane and dandelion, these changing global fortunes and power relations are represented in our collections. Explore through this tour a fascinating cornucopia of species both familiar and strange from our organic vegetable garden, exotic tropical glasshouses, and Herbarium artefacts collection.

Devised by guide Charlotte Salter-Townshend, the walk will explore the geographical origins of plants and the role certain plants played in empire building, the development of slavery and international trading routes.

Read an article about the tour: