Sago palms in the Singapore Botanic Gardens

The Botanic Gardens was first established by Sir Stamford Raffles in 1822 on Government Hill (Fort Canning), with the aim of growing cash crops. The Gardens was closed shortly after in 1829 due to the lack of efficient management. The current Gardens at Tanglin was opened by the Agri-Horticultural Society in 1859, after a donation of 32 hectares of land by the wealthy Chinese merchant, Whampoa. Management of the Gardens was handed over to the colonial government in 1874 and it was then that it began to adopt its present-day functions of being a public park and a botanical research facility.