A woman who was killed by a large falling branch at Kew Gardens during a friend's three-year-old's birthday party died accidentally, a jury has found.
31 year old Erena Wilson from Hanwell, was strolling through the Royal Botanical Gardens in September 2012 when the tragedy occurred.
She died from severe multiple injuries.
It had been raining heavily in the hours leading up to the accident and tree branches are vulnerable to dropping off suddenly when they endure long dry spells followed by heavy rain.
John McLinden QC, representing Ms Wilson's family, told West London Coroner's Court said Kew Gardens failed to put up signs warning of the danger because it deemed the risk so minimal, and questioned why it had not fenced trees off.
But Patrick Blakesley, a lawyer representing Kew, said the death was a "terrible freak accident".
After just 45 minutes of deliberation, the jury returned a verdict of accidental death.
The foreman told the court the jury found "insufficient evidence to establish the cause of the branch failure".
Unions have called for a "proper debate" on the future of Kew Gardens amid spending cuts which could lead to the loss of more than 120 jobs.
The Public and Commercial Services union and Prospect warned that government funding cuts will "irreversibly damage" the work of the famous Royal Botanic Gardens.
Kew said it was facing "significant financial challenges", including a shortfall of £5 million in the current year.
The International Garden Photographer of the Year awards will take place at Kew's Royal Botanic Gardens today.
The awards are presented for what is considered the world's premier international competition for garden, plant, conservation and wildlife photography.
A rare plant has been stolen from the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew after being dug up from a shallow water lily pond.
The 'Nymphaea Thermarum' was stolen from the Princess of Wales Conservatory.
The plant vanished on Thursday, 9 January 2014. Anyone with information is asked to call police on 020 8721 5934.
An inquest into the death of a woman from a falling tree branch at Kew Gardens has been told it was a "fluke" that more people did not die in the same manner.
Erena Wilson, a 31 year old account executive, died while walking in the gardens with friends last year.
She was hit by a cedar branch that fell from a tree during bad weather.
John McLinden QC, counsel for Miss Wilson's family, told the inquest at West London Coroner's Court: "It was just a fluke that there was not more than one fatality or that other people did not suffer very serious injury."
He said that in the past Kew has taken steps to protect the public from falling branches, such as putting up warnings and cordoning off areas, but "these steps seem to have fallen away, for reasons that the family do not know".
The inquest continues.
A new festival at Kew Gardens is promoting the thousands of edible plants on display.
The IncrEdibles festival opens on Saturday and runs until November.
Some of our most treasured trees are increasingly under threat from pests and diseases.
The list includes Common Juniper, Scots Pine and Common Ash.
But now specialists at Kew are stepping in to help save them, as Martin Stew has been finding out.
The Temperate House at Kew Gardens was due to shut because of its deteriorating state. However, multi-million pound grants from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and private donations means a five-year restoration scheme can now go ahead.
The 150 year-old Grade 1 listed building is home to the South African Cycad and the Chilean Wine Palm, the world's tallest glasshouse plant.
Martin Stew spoke to the Head of Glasshouses at Kew Gardens, Greg Redwood.