RHS announces record charitable investment as it gets people growing for health, happiness and the environment

  • World’s leading gardening charity invested £94million in its research, outreach and showcasing of gardening in the last financial year
  • Figures were revealed ahead of the RHS Chelsea Flower Show that will put young people and green skills front and centre

The Charity renowned for delivering the RHS Chelsea Flower Show has revealed record investments into its charitable work last year. The announcement comes the week before the world’s foremost gardening show which raises vital funds for the charity and inspires the public to get gardening.  

The RHS has invested a record £94 million into its mission of promoting gardening and horticulture over the last 12 months. This investment is £4 million more than the year before and £24 million more than five years ago. 

Across its outreach programmes, more than 2,000,000 young people have been inspired to grow while 100,000 volunteers have set about greening and maintaining community spaces. A team of 80 scientists has also worked alongside 18 academic and industry partners to deliver 30 research programmes. These include assessing the viability of peat-free alternatives, identifying new slug species in UK gardens and assessing the eco-system service roles of hedges.

The funds that the gardening charity reinvests into its community outreach programmes, horticulture, and science has increased by almost 5% compared to the previous year, with an investment of £52 million.  

In addition, the record investment includes charitable work to raise the profile of gardening and horticulture as a force for good through RHS Flower Shows and wider communications platforms.   

In 2023 the RHS website attracted 26 million visitors with 18 million visiting its more than 2,000 free advice pages for help with growing inside and out. Some 5 million people also visited one of five RHS Gardens (RHS Garden Bridgewater, RHS Garden Hyde Hall, RHS Garden Harlow Carr, RHS Garden Rosemoor and RHS Garden Wisley) RHS Shows with membership standing at 626,000 at the end of the recent financial year.  

The RHS is committed to exploring new ways to reach a bigger and more diverse audience. Recent innovations include its first RHS Urban Show in Manchester and the addition of three new world leading gardening shows from 2026.

Clare Matterson, RHS Director General, says: “Not many people associate the glitz and glamour of RHS Chelsea with providing vital charitable funds for our community outreach, education and science work, and even more than that the Show is key to our charitable purpose to promote gardening and horticulture, reaching millions of people around the world. 

“At a time when gardening has never been so important, be it for health and wellness, wildlife and the local environment or even just the sheer joy it evokes, it’s really important that the RHS makes itself, its advice and its knowledge more accessible, more relevant and more exciting than ever before. That’s why young people and green skills will be centre stage at RHS Chelsea next week and we’re looking at ways to grow our already flourishing offering.

“We know our science work has the potential to better enable the nation’s 28 million gardeners to make a huge positive collective difference in combatting pollution, preventing flooding and supporting threatened species.

“RHS community outreach is transforming places for people across the nation and creating happier and healthier communities and neighbourhoods.  For these reasons and so many more I’m immensely proud that we’re investing more than ever to get people growing for health, happiness and the environment.” 

The RHS Chelsea Flower Show runs from 21st – 25th May.


For further information, images or interviews, contact the RHS Press Office: [email protected] / 0207 821 3080.

Notes to editors

About the RHS
Since our formation in 1804, the RHS has grown into the UK’s leading gardening charity, touching the lives of millions of people. Perhaps the secret to our longevity is that we’ve never stood still. In the last decade alone we’ve taken on the largest hands-on project the RHS has ever tackled by opening the new RHS Garden Bridgewater in Salford, Greater Manchester, and invested in the science that underpins all our work by building RHS Hilltop – The Home of Gardening Science.

We have committed to being net positive for nature and people by 2030. We are also committed to being truly inclusive and to reflect all the communities of the UK.

Across our five RHS gardens we welcome more than three million visitors each year to enjoy over 34,000 different cultivated plants. Events such as the world famous RHS Chelsea Flower Show, other national shows, our schools and community work, and partnerships such as Britain in Bloom, all spread the shared joy of gardening to wide-reaching audiences.

Throughout it all we’ve held true to our charitable core – to encourage and improve the science, art and practice of horticulture –to share the love of gardening and the positive benefits it brings.

For more information visit

RHS Registered Charity No. 222879/SC038262

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The Royal Horticultural Society is the UK’s leading gardening charity. We aim to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place.