McVicar releases plant list for Chelsea "Modern Apothecary" garden

Jekka McVicar has released further details of the RHS Chelsea show garden she is designing for the St. John's Hospice, including a full plant list.

Artist's impression of A Modern Apothecary. Image: Supplied
Artist's impression of A Modern Apothecary. Image: Supplied

The renowned herb farmer has won 62 gold medals as a floral marquee-exhibitor and will make her show garden debut at Chelsea 2016 with 'A Modern Apothecary', to be built by Crocus.

The design is based on extensive conversations with doctors and care professionals about ways to improving health within the context of gardens and plants. The garden will be relocated to the hospice after the show to provide a calming, reflective space for patients and their families.

"In Ayurvedic medicine, when one is poorly, doctors often ask patients to sit in the herb garden. The simple act of sitting within a garden, surrounded by plants, has a calming effect and can lift spirits," explained McVicar.

She has designed a soothing garden, with wellness at its heart, to highlight the vital relationship between medicine and nature. Grown at Jekka's Herb Farm, the plants featured in the garden wille research-based and known to be beneficial to the health and wellbeing of society.

Curves and symmetry throughout the garden enhance a sense of calm and peacefulness in the garden. Following curves and circles can ease tension and allow a person to unwind as they walk, McVicar explained.

Scented plants line the curving paths toward the water feature. The water provides the interactive focal point, sound and movement to the garden. Specially designed oak benches provide a place to sit, to be surrounded by scented plants for tranquil reflection.

New to the RHS Chelsea Flower Show, the outer part of the garden is given over to a herb ley, packed with native herbs and grasses. Enclosing the garden, espalier apple trees, columns of yew and hawthorns provide safe seclusion for quiet reflection. The whole garden is overseen by a sculpture of Asclepius's staff, which is the symbol of healing.

"I hope that the garden can provide the patients of the St. John's Hospice and their families comfort through sensory stimulation, and above all a place of quiet reflection," McVicar said.


Allium schoenoprasum  Chives
Allium fistulosum  Welsh Onion
Aloysia citriodora AGM  Lemon Verbena
Amaranthus tricolor 'Red Army'  Red Amaranth
Apium graveolens  Celery Leaf, Wild Celery
Artemisia abrotanum AGM  Southernwood, Lads Love
Artemisia absinthium  Wormwood
Artemisia dracunculus  French Tarragon
Atriplex hortensis var. rubra  Red Orach
Beta vulgaris ‘Bulls Blood’  Beetroot, Bulls Blood
Beta vulgaris subsp. cicla var. flavescens 'Rhubarb Chard’ AGM  Rhubarb Chard
Borago officinalis  Borage
Borago officinalis 'Alba'  White Borage
Brassica 'Red Frills'  Red Frills Mustard
Brassica rapa rubra Chinensis Group  Red Pak Choi
Calendula officinalis  Pot Marigold
Carum carvi  Caraway
Chamaemelum nobile  Chamomile, Roman Chamomile
Chamaemelum nobile 'Flore Pleno'  Double Flowered Chamomile
Chenopodium bonus-henricus  Good King Henry
Crataegus laevigata  Hawthorne
Cynara cardunculus AGM  Cardoon
Foeniculum vulgare  Fennel
Foeniculum vulgare 'Purpureum'  Bronze Fennel
Humulus lupulus  Hops
Isatis tinctoria  Woad
Laurus nobilis AGM  Bay
Lavandula 'Fathead'  Lavender Fathead
Lavandula 'Helmsdale'  Lavender Helmsdale
Levisticum officinale  Lovage
Linum perenne  Flax, Linseed
Marrubium vulgare  Horehound
Melissa officinalis  Lemon Balm
Mentha requienii  Corsican Mint
Mentha spicata 'Tashkent'   Tashkent Mint
Mentha suaveolens 'Variegata'  Pineapple Mint
Mentha x piperata 'Black Mitcham'  Black Peppermint
Mentha x piperata f. citrata 'Chocolate'  Chocolate Peppermint
Micromeria fruticosa  Mediterranean Rock Mint
Myrtus communis AGM  Myrtle
Ocimum kilimandscharicum 'African Blue'  Basil African Blue
Origanum dictamnus  Cretan Oregano
Origanum vulgare 'Compactum'  Compact Oregano
Origanum syricum  Syrian Oregano, Za’attar
Perilla frutescens var. purpurascens  Purple Shiso
Petroselinum crispum  Parsley
Rosmarinus officinalis 'Lady in White'  Rosemary Lady in White
Rosmarinus officinalis 'Sudbury Blue'  Rosemary Sudbury Blue
Salvia lavandulifolia  Narrow Leaved Sage
Salvia officinalis 'Greek'  Greek Sage
Salvia officinalis 'Purpurascens' AGM  Purple Sage
Tanacetum parthenium  Feverfew
Taxus baccata AGM  Yew
Thymus 'Fragrantissimus'  Orange Scented Thyme
Thymus 'Iden'  Iden Thyme
Thymus 'Jekka'  Jekka's Thyme
Thymus 'Peter Davis'  Thyme Peter Davis
Thymus 'Porlock'  Porlock Thyme
Thymus 'Silver Posie'  Silver Posie Thyme
Thymus pulegioides  Broad Leaved Thyme


Achillea millefolium  Yarrow
Hypericum perforatum  St John’s wort
Origanum vulgare  Wild oregano
Rumex acetosa  Sorrel
Sanguisorba minor  Salad Burnet
Filipendula ulmaria  Meadowsweet

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