Donate / Gardens, Libraries, Museums and Collections The Botanic Garden and Harcourt Arboretum The University of Oxford Botanic Garden is the oldest botanic garden in Great Britain and forms the most compact yet diverse collection of plants in the world. Founded in 1621, the Garden was initially established as a physic garden for the study of medicine, its mission ‘to promote the furtherance of learning and to glorify nature’. Complementing the Botanic Garden main site, the Harcourt Arboretum has been part of the University of Oxford since 1963. The site comprises 130 acres containing the best collection of trees in Oxfordshire with some of the oldest redwoods in the UK, forming an integral part of the tree and plant collection of the Botanic Garden. As a department of the University of Oxford, the tradition of teaching and research at the Garden and Arboretum has continued for nearly 400 years and both continue to support teaching, research, and conservation projects at the University and beyond. The Botanic Garden - Horticultural Trainees Appeal Sowing the Seeds for the Future: supporting Horticultural Trainees who will nurture and conserve our nation’s gardens and plant collections for future generations. The Botanic Garden - General Fund Gifts will be directed towards the Botanic Garden's area of greatest need.