The Chelsea Physic Garden—originally established as the Apothecaries’ Garden—remains true to its healing roots, containing approximately 5,000 plants of every hue in its walled microclimate embrace.

It is not for nothing that Italy is known as a nexus of good food, where, at the end of the day, it is all about the seeds.

Gardens are magical places in the true sense of magic: conjuring up marvellous and compelling results mostly by harnessing the secret forces of nature. And, aptly for magic, some intriguing gardening happens under the cover of night.

The avocado looks good enough to eat, as do the banana, six figs on a stem, mango, papaya, and cashew nuts. There is one catch though: they are all made of glass. These, together with 4,434 other exquisite botanical pieces, form Glass Flowers, a permanent collection at the Harvard Museum of Natural History.

Every May, the incomparable RHS Chelsea Flower Show sports a section called Fresh Gardens whose remit is innovation. And it is here that I meet designer Anna Piussi.

The social season in London is in full swing with the vibrant 101st Academy Awards of flowers, the sold-out RHS Chelsea Flower Show, which is guaranteed not to disappoint star-struck gardening fans. Everyone who is anyone in the gardening world is here.

Of all the world’s snakes, one of the most beautiful is the sluggish yet deadly Gaboon viper, also known as the butterfly adder for the delicate pink, brown, and purple patterns that stipple its skin. It’s the favourite photogenic snake of Hollywood reptile wrangler to the stars Julian (Jules) Sylvester, who grew up in Kenya catching creepy-crawlies from the age of four.