Friday, July 02, 2010

Petersham Nurseries

Are you off barbecuing your breakfast somewhere nice today? Or are you stuck at home catching up on painting homework or whatever. I thought I'd take you off on a nice outing to Petersham Nurseries. Believe me you could do far worse and there's no traffic to fight etc.

They have huge sheds filled to the limit with treasures you will instantly want to own.

Like these glorious over size pots. Does one HAVE to have a garden to own these? Is it obligatory?A tree trunk table. I so need this!!! Who knew?Every place your eye lands there are divine little still life setups.Someone here is a painter, that's for sure...

Vases to your hearts content.

I'm a sucker for little decorative birds.
I picked up at least 4 this trip, including one in a Paris florist shop, where the vendeuse caught me trying to unscrew the bird from a giant stone meant to plunk in your garden.
She quickly snatched the stone away and started screwing the decorative bird back in madly.
I said, "I would like to buy the bird"
She said, "You can not"
I said, "It's OK. I'll buy the (^%$#@) stone too"
She begrudgingly sold me the bird and stone. I handed the stone back to her minus the bird and skipped out of the shop.
Tee-hee :)
They are not so uptight at Petersham Nurseries and let me buy just the bird minus the metal flower pot. It turns out the bird originates from France. I must have Frenchie taste.

This is your average Petersham Nurseries customer. If you're planning on a visit try to get a hold of a dog or three...
I took a minty tea in the caf, but the restaurant is famous, full of celebs and not easy to get a reservation in. The waitresses all wear gumboots nonetheless because of the dirt floors...
Their cookbooks by Aussie chef Skye Gynge are reknown. Very locavore-oriented with all the produce coming from their gardens and quite inventive too.
Ah...the gardens miam/YUM
When departing, it's advised you walk along the tow path back into Richmond following the river. You'll save on gas and avoid noxious car fumes irritating to the neighbors who could raise a fuss...
Why not an afternoon tea on a barge parked near the path..?
Your colorful train awaits you in Richmond station. Mine did not because it was a Sunday and I had to take a 'replacement' bus which is another story.

Meanwhile back at the Chelsea Arts Club, the awful truth has come out about so-called Tom, the resident cat. Hmmm..
Caroline R, a CAC board member and all around well informed writer has let me know that the cat is a a bit of a scallywag. Not only is Tom not Tom, but there have been many deceptions.
Me:oh I meant Tom, the CAC cat.
CR:He died.
Me:What? Well I was sleeping with someone. I mean a club cat. I wonder who it was if not Tom?
CR:They got in 2 ginger brothers.
Bubble and Squeak.
Bubble dashed into the road to his death.
'Squeak', is a large rangy cat with white paws, holds court in the billiard room.
Me:So he sleeps around and uses alliases?
CR:I'm told Squeak is very obliging in that respect.
Me:I'm feeling rather bruised and abused here, and led astray.
CR: Two can play at that game. You must make overtures to other cats if you haven't already.
So much for British common sense.
Chelsea Arts Club exhibit Granted Tom aka Squeak did a very good job assisting me prepare for the exhibit AND he sold all 15 watercolors. A sellout show! I'm pleased as punch. All is forgiven Tom or whatever your name is.
I'm happy to report the Petersham bird is behaving himself and doing exactly what he's meant to. Which is sit in teacups and macaron boxes whilst I photograph him for future watercolors - not a hard life really.
Thank you PBers for your kind comments yesterday!
More Petersham here
and here at Pigtown


Rebecca Ramsey said...

Oh my gosh, how your posts refresh me! I loved going to the nursery with you, and that story of the bird and the stone--I will be laughing all day about that. What beautiful gardens. I don't really have a green thumb, but I could hang out in those photos all day long.

Parisbreakfasts said...

Oh Rebecca!
France...there really is no other like it and thank Gawd for that!

Merisi said...

Who'd have thunk: Paris Breakfasts goes London, er, Green! And that ginger cat, tom, car, what?

Simony said...

Nurseries are one of my favorite places to visit and I could spend a lot of $$$ there! Now combine that with tea and beautiful furniture! I would go broken!

Carol said...

Petersham looks like heaven to me! I'm glad you got your bird!
PS Your new website is wonderful!

Meg Fairfax Fielding said...

I love this place!
I was there two years ago in October and even then, it was magical. I am so pleased you got to go.
We were just looking at Skye's gorgeous cookbook -
A Year in My Kitchen - over the weekend.

Happy 4th!

IsDihara said...

Such a lovely post today (who am I kidding...EVERY day!) Thank you for posting Paris Breakfasts. I couldn't (tellement) survive without them.

In-May said...

You covered and mentioned almost everything I love about life:
Paris, nursery, plants, flower, cat, dog, bird, book, tea, art, tree trunk table...

Thanks for the daily joy you bring to the readers!

sue said...

Bubble and Squeak--great names for cats, oui? I'm glad you freed that poor bird from the mean vendeuse and its captive stone. It will live a much free-er life with you in the PB aviary, posing to its heart's content over delicate framboise delicacies and teacups.

larry said...

When I was a young art student I spent a July 4th in Paris studying landscape painting. I never was a big fan of fireworks so I thought I dodged the bullet by missing the festivities back in the states. Of course I got my fill of smoke and loud noise 10 days later when my hosts celebrated Bastille Day with more fireworks than any 4th celebration I ever witnessed.

Thanks for the kind words.

Cathy said...

A visit to this lovely nursery would be perfect therapy in a too busy life. I'd best leave my wallet at home.

DeeDee said...

You are one of the few bloggers I look forward to everyday. Thank you.

Je m'appelle Cynthia said...

My love is for the glass vases, in those sugary shades of pink and blue.

I am working, with windows wide open - and a lovely breeze with birds chirping is at my side.

Oui, life is good. So nice to stop by your blog on my coffee break.

Until later...have a good holiday weekend, back in the US of A.

RamblingTart said...

So beautiful, Carol! Sigh, I just love this. :-) The big pots, chandelier, window panes. Lovely

Giulia said...

Goodness, that's near where some cousins live. Haven't been in forever.

My heart leapt into my mouth, reading that "Tom" died. Bubble RIP. Squeak, you rascal. Giulia zee gattina is scandalized. I told her what my mother told me: Oh gawd. Don't marry one of them! (When I was in my "crush on Peter Cook" period. Dangerously close to UK, in French university, young & impressionable.) No wonder, I'm confused. With that, I'm off to root for Ghana in World Cup action.

Ciao, Carol. Have a good long weekend & we are so looking forward to your Sept. show here.


(BTW, Friends in DC have a pair of tabbies by the name of Bubble & Squeak. Charming devils, deceptively good looking. Yes, half-English.)

Nikon said...

It looks beautiful there, Carol. I love the shots of the paths going through the hedges.
Have a great weekend!

foodwalker said...

Sold out!
Carol, That's fabulous.
You sold all your paitings.
What good taste the Brits have!

Steven H. said...

After so many happy visits to your PB site I thought I owed you a note to just say:


I just LOVE your site and THANK YOU for helping me to start each day with a big smile from seeing so many of your beautiful images
Have a nice weekend …wherever you are….

Parisbreakfasts said...

Giulia - don't take it to heart Giuli...
Tom lived a good long one..
It's Squeak who has been the double two-timing scallywag and taken me to the cleaners back and forth...

jeanette, mistress of longears said...

Heaven is a trip to a nursery! Especially Petersham! And as for that faithless cat, well, you know you must stick to dogs.

Cris, Artist in Oregon said...

I loved this post. Everything about it! What fun it was to virtually visit this Nursery. What a fabulous one. And Congrats on selling all your paintings. What a exciting experience. And to think you owe it all to a Scallywag Cat. LOL And a heck of a lot of Talent.
To bad you didnt get a shot of that Shop keepers face when you left with the bird only. I can just 'see' it. LOL

joanna said...

Congratulations -- a sweet cat brought you luck that and your talent.

I will miss little blue bird -- however this new Petersham bird is quite the pretty bird.

ditto on that table with the tree trunk base-- who knew I so love it too.

I guess it wouldn't a faux pas if I had one and you had one -- for I live on the Pacific North West coast with many trees and you live in fashionably New York.

Have a grand 4th,

Sonya said...

God I wish i was in the nursery rather than stuck in the office..on a saturday no less!!

cocoa and coconut said... have my dream life!

Clare said...

You did what! Quelle horreur!

I used to love Petersham Nurseries. There is similar nursery (or there used to be) between High Street Ken and Earls Court.

Kathie said...

Regardless of whether one calls him Tom or Squeak, he's still one distinguished specimen of felinity! And clearly a diplomat among cats, making friends with so many visitors at the Club.

Louis Duke Photography said...

this post is so wonderful.
i do not even feel worthy of commenting.

Anonymous said...

Oh gosh, after following your blog for so long it's really weird to come back from Paris (ironically enough) and find that you are on my side of the pond!

Hope you are enjoying your stay in England!

I'm an English redhead btw. Such a rebel! ;)


Parisbreakfasts said...

KATHIE, distinguished specimen of felinity or not, I'm uncertain that a cat who hob-nobs indiscriminately with all the club members should be forgiven so easily, no matter his sales skills in the art world...I will give it some serious thought.

Dianne said...

Waiters wearing Gumboots - I'd like that.
I also like the glass vases in those sugary shades.
Dianne xx

Kathie said...

Oh Carol, I must respectfully disagree with you. In my opinion, an indiscriminately friendly feline is vastly preferable to a fraidy cat who runs and hides whenever anyone comes up the driveway.

Both kinds have owned us, so I speak from experience when I say that I'd much rather have a kitty like our late beloved white-&-black Bruiser -- a gracious host who enjoyed spending an evening getting stroked and snuffle-purring (the best he could manage) on our guest's lap -- than the kind who cowers in the basement having a nervous breakdown (names withheld to protect the timid).

Merisi said...

I wished I could have captured the face of that girl when you gave her the gift of stone!

Sabrine d'Aubergine said...

Oh... I love visiting nurseries, but I'm afraid this is a bit too far for a Sunday walk! Anyway, reading your post brought me there... thank you!


Merisi said...

Finally, it dawns on me:
You are celebrating the 4th,
5th included! :-)

Happy 5th!

Virginia said...

Well I"ll take that cute French chair, and those fat white pots, and maybe the blue shutters........ the bird is pretty cute too!

I'm still laughing over, " Madame, you can't have it!" Sometimes I think that French shop owners really don't want to sell any of it!

Teri and her Stylish Cats ~ Coco the Couture Cat, FurryDance Brighton, and Disco NoFurNo said...

Oh, I love 'clutter' but can't have it with the cats, but I find nothing more pleasant than strolling at my leisure through a lovely nursery nearby...not nearly as nice as yours and no lunch on a barge, but still quite enjoyable.
Thanks for the lovely photos!

I got a few lovely bird door stops recently, well they were book ends but make lovely stops...

Di Overton said...

My favourite EVER Garden Centre. I could live there.

Kathie said...


"Paris Aims to Curb Apartment Rentals to Tourists":

PARIS -- Many people buy a pied-à-terre in Paris to use for a few weeks a year and to rent the rest of the time. Most of them don't realize, however, that they are breaking the law -- something the city is now trying to address.

Mayor Bertrand Delanoë, expressing concern about the lack of affordable housing in the city center, ordered an agency last year to warn property owners that renting out residential apartments for less than a year violates French law. Those who ignored the warning, he said, would be prosecuted.

Only about 25 letters have been sent since enforcement began last autumn -- most of them in response to complaints made by neighbors. And only a handful of those cases have gone to court.

But the rental industry in this most-visited city is concerned and, as more owners slowly become aware of the issue, confusion is growing. A few have pulled their properties off the market, others have deleted addresses or other identifying details from Internet listings. And dozens of rental agencies have banded together to try to save their lucrative business...

Jenn said...

Hi Carol,
I hope you are having a good summer. I love your blog and have enjoyed reading your adventures with macarons. Also love your paintings :) I am researching options to take a macaron class in a few weeks in Paris. I know you did the Ritz and Lenotre. Did you ever end up going to Atelier? I am considering that but just wondering if I will get as in depth an experience when it costs only 70 euros (vs 130) and its 2 hours (vs 4). I have taken a Lenotre class in millefeuille before and I did have a good experience, but if I can have just as much with the Atelier I would prefer to do that and save some cost. Would love to hear what you think.


Mistress of Long Ears Manor said...

OK, I have gotten up,
walked the Oz,
read the paper,
posted on Flickr,
eaten breakfast....
And still NO PB Post!
I'm tired of waiting!
I'm going back to my slovenly habits and reading it tonight!