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We want to pay homage to those passionate plant lovers that came before us. And one figure we’re fascinated by is Margaret Mee.

At Mee CBD, we’re dedicated to learning as much as possible about the power of plants. And part of this educational journey means looking backwards. As enthralled as we are by the innovation and discovery coming from the CBD industry, it’s just as important we understand how we came to be in this position.

If you ever wondered where we got the name ‘Mee CBD’, it’s in honour of this remarkable artist and botanist. We’re taking a look at the life and achievements of Margaret Mee, so you can become just as fascinated by her as we are.

The early life of Margaret Mee

Margaret Mee, known as ‘Peggy’, spent her life captivated by plants. However, she began her career as an artist. During her early years, she attended St Martin’s School of Art, Westminster and Camberwell School of Art, where she received a National Diploma in Painting and Design.

Alongside her studies, the young artist became politically active, fighting against fascist regimes developing in Europe at the time. Her benevolent personality and compassion for the world would continue throughout her life.

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Margaret Mee and the Amazon

In 1952, Mee met her second husband, Greville Mee. And in 1952, she left with him to visit the Amazon Rainforest. Although the couple didn’t marry until 1980, Margaret changed her name by deed poll in 1952. Margaret and her husband ended up staying over thirty years in Brazil. During this time, Mee painted plant portraits and reported several unknown plant species. Upon arriving, she also taught art at St Paul’s, the British school in Sao Paulo. At this time, Mee’s activist nature resurged as she became one of the first people to fight against deforestation and large scale mining in the Amazon rainforest.

Returning to England

In 1988, Margaret and Greville returned to England. An exhibition at the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew showcased Mee’s artwork and findings from Brazil. At the same time, her book. ‘Margaret Mee In Search of Flowers of The Amazon Forest’ was published. Shortly after, on the 30th of November 1988, Margaret Mee died as the result of a car crash.

Margaret Mee’s legacy

Margaret Mee was a revolutionary force in botanicals, art, and environmentalism. And her work continues to live on in many ways:

Plants named after Mee

Two well-known plants are named after Mee. Heliconia chartacea var. meeana and the Aechmea polyantha. Both these exotic plants were discovered by Mee during her time in Brazil.

Mee’s artwork

Following her death, the Royal Botanical Gardens Kew held a memorial for Mee.

Mee left behind almost 500 pieces of botanical art. Her portfolio includes 400 gouache illustrations, 15 diaries, and 40 sketchbooks chronicling her findings.

Mee’s activism

One of the most valuable things Mee left behind was her passion and activism towards protecting the Amazon rainforest. Even today, we still battle with deforestation and damage to the Amazon Rainforest. Mee’s work was the foundation of this environmental movement.

The Margaret Mee Amazon Trust

The Margaret Mee Amazon Trust was established after her death. This Trust aimed to advance understanding of the Amazon and continue conservation efforts. As part of the Trust, Brazilian artists could study at Kew for free. Unfortunately, in 1996 the Trust shut down. 

Rio Carnival

In 1994, the Rio Carnival in Brazil had a Margaret Mee theme, honouring the work she did in the country.

United Nations Environment Programme

In 1990, Mee was added to The United Nations Global Roll of Honour.

Mee CBD

Mee CBD gets its name from the incredible Margaret Mee. As a pioneer in plants and an innovative thinker, Mee is one of the most prominent figures in botanicals. We hugely admire her work and hope we can develop and change the landscape of plants in new ways, just as Mee did.

Margaret Mee led an extraordinary life, full of wonder and discovery. Although sad in parts, her story and achievements need to live on, so we can understand how crucial and influential humanity’s relationship with plants is. Feel free to check our advanced formulation based broad-spectrum CBD products UK.

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