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Shopper’s Diary: Petersham Nurseries Comes to Covent Garden

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Shopper’s Diary: Petersham Nurseries Comes to Covent Garden

August 9, 2017

There has only ever been one downside to visiting Petersham Nurseries in its bucolic patch southwest of London, and that is the trek out to Richmond to have lunch and browse the greenhouses. But now this popular garden shop has opened a city-center outpost in Covent Garden, kicking off with homewares, a florist, and a deli with restaurants to follow this autumn. We took a closer look inside the store in its opening week.

Photography courtesy of Petersham Nurseries except where noted.

 Owners Francesco and Gael Boglione, along with their daughter Lara, who has masterminded the new location, could never have replicated the Richmond site with its cavernous greenhouses and bare earth floors. Instead they have struck a balance of city and country with a light-filled Grade II-listed interior, complete with three Victorian atriums, the center of which is punctuated with a pair of Genoese chandeliers.
Above: Owners Francesco and Gael Boglione, along with their daughter Lara, who has masterminded the new location, could never have replicated the Richmond site with its cavernous greenhouses and bare earth floors. Instead they have struck a balance of city and country with a light-filled Grade II-listed interior, complete with three Victorian atriums, the center of which is punctuated with a pair of Genoese chandeliers.

Towering tree ferns, young trees, hydrangeas, and heaps of house plants make this space feel like the chicest Victorian conservatory you’ve ever seen, an effect emphasized by the stunning mirrors—both antique and new—that cover the walls.

 Just as you’d expect, there are all the artisanal tools you’ll need for urban gardening including beautiful copper watering cans and Petersham hand tools with cherry or ash handles (from £3
Above: Just as you’d expect, there are all the artisanal tools you’ll need for urban gardening including beautiful copper watering cans and Petersham hand tools with cherry or ash handles (from £32) as well as twine and organic feed.
 At the rear of the space a black stone potting bench and utility area is used for preparing pots and window boxes for customers  (the staff will pot up containers, inspired by the unusual houseplants, ferns, and succulents that are used throughout the shop).
Above: At the rear of the space a black stone potting bench and utility area is used for preparing pots and window boxes for customers  (the staff will pot up containers, inspired by the unusual houseplants, ferns, and succulents that are used throughout the shop).
 In front of the potting bench area, a bowl of Petersham&#8
Above: In front of the potting bench area, a bowl of Petersham’s heritage seeds is on display.
There are unusual pots at every turn, including this lichen-covered pot with leaf decoration (£750) standing on an antique Italian sculptor’s wooden stand (£loading=
Above: There are unusual pots at every turn, including this lichen-covered pot with leaf decoration (£750) standing on an antique Italian sculptor’s wooden stand (£1,350).Photograph by Clare Coulson.
Among the more rarified items are extremely useful and very beautiful household items, including ostrich dusters and all manner of brushes. Photograph by Clare Coulson.
Above: Among the more rarified items are extremely useful and very beautiful household items, including ostrich dusters and all manner of brushes. Photograph by Clare Coulson.

Useful homewares include myriad brushes (including the perennially useful window-blind brush for conservatory owners everywhere), ostrich feather dusters, and bottle brushes. The pressed flower botanical prints behind are available in singles frames, too (£185).

Potted citrus trees. Photograph by Clare Coulson.
Above: Potted citrus trees. Photograph by Clare Coulson.

In the opening few days every other customer was touring the store with camera in hand, and the new Petersham Nurseries is poised to be just as inspiring as the original shop.

 Here tables are laden with mossy terra cotta planters including the Ampholia Poterie Anduze vases with floral garlands (the medium size is £5). The metal mesh lampshades give the space a warm glow (from £5). Photograph by Clare Coulson.
Above: Here tables are laden with mossy terra cotta planters including the Ampholia Poterie Anduze vases with floral garlands (the medium size is £175). The metal mesh lampshades give the space a warm glow (from £185). Photograph by Clare Coulson.

Petersham nurseries shop London Covent Garden facade

Above: The new Petersham Nurseries shop is open from 10 am to 8 pm from Monday through Saturday and from noon to 6 pm on Sunday.

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