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An oil painting of a garden party at Buckingham Palace. Queen Victoria and Alexandra, Princess of Wales are returning to the Palace in an open carriage pulled by two grey horses; in the garden, on the left, the Prince of Wales is conversing to a couple in

Their history, form and function

Buckingham Palace Garden

Photograph of the Garden Front at Buckingham Palace with the west facing Palace facade with trees either side

The Garden Front, Buckingham Palace ©

The garden at Buckingham Palace is the largest private garden in London, measuring an impressive 39 acres (16 hectares). Since the acquisition of the then Buckingham House by George III in 1762, the garden has hosted a variety of private celebrations as well as being used for official royal events, such as garden parties.

The earliest royal connection with the garden predates its royal ownership, as James I (IV of Scotland), planted a mulberry garden of around 10,000 trees close to the site of the present garden in the hope of establishing a national silk industry to rival that of the French. Unfortunately, the black Morus nigra trees were planted rather than the white Morus alba plants which are favoured by the silk worms and so the project was doomed to failure. However, one of the mulberry trees planted by James I survives to this day in the garden of Buckingham Palace.

Discover the stories behind Buckingham Palace's garden in the Royal Collection by clicking on the items below.