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The Royal Horticultural Society Partners With Publicis Sapient to Launch Generative AI-powered Chatbotanist

The RHS Chatbotanist brings RHS’s world-class knowledge and deep expertise in gardening to users’ fingertips via a new mobile app

LONDON, July 19, 2023 – The Royal Horticultural Society and Publicis Sapient, a digital business transformation company, today announced a partnership to launch the RHS Chatbotanist, a bespoke Generative AI-enabled tool powered by Publicis Sapient.

The Royal Horticultural Society (RHS), a 200-year-old gardening charity, first sought Publicis Sapient’s digital business transformation expertise to devise a revolutionary gardening app, integrating the company’s core SPEED - strategy, product, experience, engineering and data & AI - capabilities in a move towards building its digital future. The mobile RHS Grow app launched in May 2023, bringing RHS’s two-century-long expertise to users’ fingertips. Using AI, it allows for instant plant identification, personalised plant collections with custom-care guidance and wishlists for future greenery.

The second stage of the partnership is the launch of the RHS Chatbotanist, which utilises RHS’s abundant knowledge and expert advice providing RHS members with highly reliable, validated gardening information at their fingertips. The RHS Chatbotanist is a holistic service powered by generative AI algorithms, enabling users to discover and find supportive content that is right for them.  The algorithm has been trained on the output of RHS’s horticultural advice over the last 5 years, to answer gardeners’ questions by its collective expertise via an AI-enabled chat.

The Beta launch of the RHS Chatbotanist will be available to RHS’s 630,000 members starting in September 2023.

“We’re thrilled to partner with and support The Royal Horticultural Society in its transformation journey.  The launch of the RHS Chatbotanist, powered by Publicis Sapient, will emphasise the charity’s support for everyone who wants to grow plants: world-class knowledge and deep expertise honed over two centuries. Using generative AI, the bot will give all users access to the most trustworthy, validated knowledge and advice to help them become better gardeners,” said Nigel Vaz, CEO of Publicis Sapient.

“We are delighted to be partnering with Publicis Sapient, a leading digital business transformation company with strong expertise in artificial intelligence, to create support for RHS members and help more of the UK’s 30 million gardeners with the RHS Grow app,” said Martine Parnell, Director of Members, Marketing and Digital from The Royal Horticultural Society.

“We’re excited about how technology is changing the way that RHS utilises its amazing depth of knowledge honed over centuries. We look forward to a successful partnership and to the delivery of the RHS Chatbotanist later this year,”  said Jon Simpson, Director of IT from the Royal Horticultural Society.

The revolutionary new RHS Chatbotanist will be available free for RHS members to test from September and available to users of the new RHS Grow app later in the autumn.



Publicis Sapient is a digital business transformation company. We partner with global organisations to help them create and sustain competitive advantage in a world that is increasingly digital. We operate through our expert SPEED capabilities: Strategy, Product, Experience, Engineering and Data & AI, which combined with our culture of curiosity and deep industry knowledge, enables us to deliver meaningful impact to our clients’ businesses through reimagining the products and experiences their customers truly value. Our agile, data-driven approach equips our clients’ businesses for change, making digital the core of how they think and what they do. Publicis Sapient is the digital business transformation hub of Publicis Groupe with more than 20,000 people and over 50 offices worldwide. For more information, visit


Since our formation in 1804, the RHS has grown into the UK’s leading gardening charity, touching the lives of millions of people. Perhaps the secret to our longevity is that we’ve never stood still. In the last decade alone we’ve taken on the largest hands-on project the RHS has ever tackled by opening the new RHS Garden Bridgewater in Salford, Greater Manchester, and invested in the science that underpins all our work by building RHS Hilltop – The Home of Gardening Science.

We have committed to being net positive for nature and people by 2030. We are also committed to being truly inclusive and to reflect all the communities of the UK.

Across our five RHS gardens we welcome more than three million visitors each year to enjoy over 34,000 different cultivated plants. Events such as the world famous RHS Chelsea Flower Show, other national shows, our schools and community work, and partnerships such as Britain in Bloom, all spread the shared joy of gardening to wide-reaching audiences.

Throughout it all we’ve held true to our charitable core – to encourage and improve the science, art and practice of horticulture – to share the love of gardening and the positive benefits it brings.

For more information visit

RHS Registered Charity No. 222879/SC038262

Media Contact

Loren Thomas