A Brief History of the Veitch Nurseries of Exeter and Chelsea

At the February 2020 meeting Caradoc Doy fascinated his audience with a brief history of the Veitch Nurseries of Exeter and Chelsea.  

Run by the family over two hundred years and five generations, it began in a small way on the Killerton Estate, where John Beech trialled new trees for the estate and to sell. Son-in-law James Veitch opened a shop in Exeter, then as the business grew James Junior established a nursery on the KIngs Road.  

The family sponsored numerous plant hunting expeditions across the globe from early 1800’s. 

Pioneers in horticulture, they were the first to sponsor English collectors. Many of the over 3,000 new plants they introduced are loved and grown in our gardens today.

Hortus Veitchii by James H. Veitch