Flowers and the city

Photograph of feet and brown paper bag with Hydrangeas in it

I seem to be seeing flowers everywhere. The City is full of shop window displays on a floral theme. Oasis (who do some of the better high street windows) have stacked waist-high plastic flowers in bright colours in theirs, to show-off the floral dresses. Prêt have a picnic graphic splashed on their windows, cups and carrier bags, although it’s not up to their usual snappy visual standards. Generally the message – seen through a drizzle of warm rain – is that summer is coming.

Patches of greenery across London are packed at lunchtimes, with workers looking for a bucolic pause to their day; forgetting hay fever, grass stains and SPF15. Supermarkets are stacking Geraniums high and selling them cheap. It feels like the thing to do, to get something growing somewhere. Sales of cut flowers must surely be higher in cities like London?

But for those who do have a space to plant in – a garden, back yard or window box – there can’t be a more curated gardening experience than Petersham Nurseries in Richmond. Olive trees, tables of potted herbs, neat alpines, blowsy annuals and Geraniums that put their supermarket sisters to all looks better here. Add in some fine food and wine, people-spotting opportunities…then tie it all with a tastefully printed tag. What more could you want?

And what does the urban man in his Trickers and Ralph Lauren raincoat buy for his window boxes? Vivid blue-lilac Hydrangeas served up in a crisp brown paper bag.

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