Giant Bamboo in the Peradeniya Gardens - Ceylon, circa 1880 Photographer:
Charles Scowen Ref:
The Royal Botanic Gardens at Peradeniya were established in 1821, six years after the final occupation of the Kandyan Kingdom by the English. Less than four miles from Kandy, the site occupies 150 acres on a loop of the river Mahaweli. Before its transformation to Botanic Garden, the greater part of the land had been a royal demesne occasionally occupied as a residence by the Kings of Kandy. William Skeen (1847-1903), Scottish, settled in Colombo in 1860 and bought the studio of J. Parting to create the firm Skeen & Co. He offered a particularly aesthetic collection of views of Ceylon to the numerous foreigners passing through.