The Florentine botanic garden is also known as “il giardino dei semplici”, which brought to English means the simple garden. The name itself gives us an idea that it isn’t one of those gardens that glow with beauty, watching all different varieties of flowers blooming and smiling at you. This garden has always been known for its medicinal herbs. Most of you will be wondering, if its not beautiful then why is it so famous?….Well theres always a reason why…It simply is one of the oldest gardens in the world. To be precise the 3rd oldest botanical garden present in our planet.
Back in the old days, Cosimo I of the Medici family had rented this land from the Dominican nuns to make off it what is now called, il giardino dei semplici. It was during the 16th century, due to negligence, that the garden suffered a deterioration. After the death of Luca Ghini, who took great care of the garden with all his skill and devotion unlike those who followed, that brought the garden to this fate.
The 17th century brought a brighter future to these botanical plants thanks to Cosimo III. It was later in this period that the study of Botany was separated from the study of Medicine. The garden was then given to the Academy for experimental study. A regular process of plantation of herbs took off with scientific interests laid on the cultivation of different species. The Herbarium Cetrale Italicum or in simpler terms the biggest collection of Italian plant species is what brings many visitors until today, to this garden.
Since 1900 AD, a successful project saw the botanic garden reunited with the Botanic Institute of Florence. This fusion brought the Institute’s inventory, which included a large quantity of books on botany to il giardino dei semplici. Since then the garden was open to the public transforming itself into a museum.
Changes were not yet over for this good old garden, since to every ones misfortune(almost), the Second World War broke out. Without diminishing human casualties, there was a whole lot of renovation to be done in the garden since the flowerbeds were used as burial grounds for those who gave there lives in the war.
Continuous operations brought the state of the botanic garden back to normal with a collection of botanical species coming all the way from Asia. The adventure of this botanical garden still continues and those of you who visit this area will be proud to have witnessed a garden that carries until today the history of our ancestors.