November 16, 2018

English Gardens, It' the people and cake........part 2

In the previous post I spoke of the people that allowed our group into their lives via their gardens, and their homes

Today's post is about the families we visited that had a dream and a passion, let's meet them

The first stop for our group was Petersham Nursery, just outside London. This magical place holds a special place in my heart. In 2004, I joined an international landscape garden designer association, APLD, for a professional tour of English Gardens. We were invited to the pre-opening, alongside the press including Vogue Living, House Beautiful, etc. for an introduction evening.

Greeted with an ingenious layout and design, enhanced with candlelight everywhere,
cocktails and Filet Mignon +++++ ....... I was transfixed! They even invited us into their adjacent home

This year our group of ladies joined us.

Meet the creators, Gael and Francesco Boglione. This couple took a problem and turned it into gold.
Next to their property was a nursery. When the nursery went out of business they knew developers would come in with high density ideas. A new life was born
How about this?! A geometric thyme garden situated at their home that leads to the nursery
Appealing furniture, antiques, chandeliers, accessories, gourmet cafe and all things Garden

 The display gardens reflect the season
 Art abounds

 A portion of the cafe dining spot
Look Familiar? Sadly, an American company, Terrain, went there and copied everything. The owners were devastated and did not allow photographs for years. They have risen and added a Petersham's in Londons Covent Garden while this site prospers, wildly

But one cannot leave without delicious Cakes!

Roger and Monty Saul. As the founder of the iconic brand of leather goods, Mulberry, Roger decided to move his headquarters to London, leaving the established factory in Shepton Mallet vacant. In giving back to that community he decided to turn the factory into a design forum for the public, ala Kilver Court Design Emporium.

His vision of modern retail as an experience embodies all the senses. Remember, this is outlet shopping

One of my favorite manufacturer resides here, TOAST. Having promised myself I need to treat myself once a year, I always comply!

Really, this is at an outlet mall???? Well consider we re in England!

Centered around a former railroad viaduct, this setting rivals any renown English garden
 Look at these benches; Brick feet and one chunky piece of ancient beam, smashing in it's simplicity
What else? A delish cafe, with cake
Here is a fun video produced by Roger

Meet Iwan Wirth and Ursula Hauser, husband and wife team, originally from Zurich.
From humble beginnings of selling art, at fairs, 25 years ago.  Their empire now includes 7 galleries, around the world, with 4 in the US.

This is their rural location where they have set down roots and are raising their children
Representing over 75 artists, they engage in the arts, education, conservation and sustainability

The entire grounds was a derelict farm, quite run-down and abandoned. The existing buildings were stunningly renovated. In front of the former chapel resides a Calder installation

They have built a reputation as visionaries,  and practice sincere philanthropy.

Know what this is? How about the original use for Staddle Stones, aka "mushrooms"?
If you guessed grain storage, you are in the know. yes the staddle stones not only hold up the grain house but rats cannot get in....genius!
Newer additions house a shop, book store, educational facilities and public spaces

Then there is the art itself, contemporary art in a rustic setting

Let's head outdoors to the grounds designed and overseen by Piet Oudolf, the master mind who did the same at Chicago's Millennium Park.

 September is the ideal time to visit this serene setting with long views
 I was informed that Piet develops his own plants, of which only his clients receive. This coneflower is one of those with it's wind waving petals

The restaurant has gourmet, organic offerings
And yes, they offer a delicious regional cake, 'Dorset Apple Cake'

Want to get away?

        Join Sylvia & I to England 2019…….   
        September 11th to September 19th

drop me a line for the details, already filling!

LOCAL  N E W S…………
Join us on Black Friday, 2pm 
Bring a friend, and family members for a calm and creative afternoon with a decorative swag for your door or table

Our Fresh swag workshop will be held at the historic

Ever been?

It's like an escape to London, warm, masculine and very equestrian! Built in 1843

        Fresh   Greens
                   Have arrived!
            The shop garage is festive with an abundance of

         🎄Tree Toppers…..Sticks & more!

                     With love,


  1. Debra,
    You introduced us to Petersham years ago, through one of your wonderful U.K. posts. It reminds me of Southern California's Roger's Gardens (a much smaller version of Petersham). Your posts on England and their beautiful gardens and general landscape always provide a dose of pleasure!
    Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours, my friend.

  2. I have got to come on one of these tours sometime! Maybe next year. I am amazed at how you have found such fascinating people and their establishments and gardens. Well actually no I am not because you are the arbiter of taste and style.


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