Press Releases

Discover tropical plants, past and present with National Museum Wales at the RHS Flower show in Cardiff

The sun is shining and trees are blooming… Spring is in the air! For those who are looking for something special to do in Cardiff, why not visit the Museum’s marquee at this weekend’s Royal Horticultural Society Flower Show in Cardiff, Friday 17 – Sunday 19 April.  Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales will offer hands-on, family-friendly activities including hunting for fossils and identifying exotic tropical plants.

The stand will feature some of the museum’s collection of wonderful botanical illustrations accompanied by colourful fruits and flowers from the tropics (supplied by Waitrose Pontprennau and PJS Flowers). Visitors of all ages will have the opportunity to learn how familiar plants like cacao and coffee first came to Britain through the voyages of discovery. 

With a little patience, fossils can easily be found. Visitors who are just starting out collecting or are more experienced will be encouraged and helped by the museum scientists to find some incredible plant fossils that grew 300 million years ago when even Wales had a tropical climate!

Arthur, the giant prehistoric millipede of the Museum will be exploring a replica Carboniferous landscape, and there will be a display of spectacular creepie-crawlies that have stowed away on cargo ships to reach Britain.  A highlight of the display is a guest appearance by a mysterious tarantula that recently featured on the BBC news.

Chris Cleal, from the Natural Sciences Department, Amgueddfa Cymru said, “We’re delighted to be at the RHS Show again this year. It’s an opportunity to introduce visitors to the range of exciting plants that grow in the tropics now, alongside fossilised plants that once grew in tropical Wales. Using stunning eighteenth-century botanical illustrations and specimens from the rarely seen economic collection, we’ll be explaining how familiar foods such as tea, pineapples and chocolate were discovered and first described in the tropics”.

Visitors who want to learn more about nature or to get up close and personal with dozens of natural history objects under the microscope, can visit the I Spy ...Nature! at National Museum Cardiff. This hands-on exhibition is allowing visitors of all ages to experience how scientists’ observations lead to new discoveries; an opportunity to experience how a Victorian naturalist sketched the natural world, or how modern technology allows scientists to image objects in 3-D.

Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales operates seven museums across Wales including National Museum Cardiff, St Fagans National History Museum, the National Roman Legion Museum, Big Pit National Coal Museum, the National Wool Museum, the National Slate Museum and the National Waterfront Museum.


Entry to the Museum is free, thanks to the support of the Welsh Government.

There is an entrance charge for the RHS Show.




Notes to Editors:

Details of the RHS Show on the Royal Horticultural Society’s website: