Plant scientists, agriculturalists and horticulturalists played a vital role in World War 2, helping to grow the plants that kept the British people fed, and replaced drugs and other materials that were previously imported. Kew has made a lovely short video about the role of Kew Gardens during the war, which is much the same as it is today – carrying out important plant research, safeguarding collections for the future, inspiring gardeners and providing green space and solace for visitors.

There’s a brief mention in that video of a strange wartime role for Kew’s pagoda. There’s a little bit more detail in this second video, a history of the pagoda: