Alnwick Garden is the beautifully landscaped park named after the castle of the same name of Northumberland, a county in north-east England on the border with Scotland. It is home to a garden with over 100 varieties of plants among the most poisonous and deadliest on the planet which lies among a large waterfall, tree houses and splendid paths of flowers and plants of all kinds. Its name is Poison Garden, a space protected by a black gate bearing two skulls as a sign of danger of death. It is, as the name suggests, a potentially fatal place where it is strictly forbidden to smell or touch any plant.
The Poison Garden is a real space specialized in poisonous plants where species such as Strychnine, Belladonna, Hemlock, Laburnum and also the terrible Brugmasia are grown, capable of causing an aphrodisiac effect before killing. The garden also features educational crops of opium poppy, cannabis and coca. The garden, which can only be visited in the company of a guide, has above all a didactic-educational purpose to teach visitors, particularly children and teenagers, the effects that some plants have on man. All the most dangerous and toxic plants are kept inside huge cages and every visitor must keep a safe distance as even the aroma of the plants cause unpleasant effects.
The poison garden was only added to the Alnwick complex in 2005 by the now Duchess of Northumberland Jane Percy, with the help of Jaques and Peter Wirtz, famous Belgian landscape gardeners. The entire Alnwick Garden complex extends over 14 hectares and is divided into different areas that have more than 16,000 European plants, a large cherry orchard, a fantastic rose garden and a gigantic greenhouse of about 6000 square feet. However, the Poison Garden remains its main attraction, an interesting and incredibly fascinating place that today attracts over 800,000 visitors a year.
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