Saturday, July 9, 2011

Pink Saturday - Columbia Road

Pink Saturday - Beverly at the blog "How Sweet the Sound" hosts Pink Saturday. Let the color pink inspire you!

Columbia Road is a narrow crescent of roadway, lined with small shops that are just a little too funky to be rightly called "boutiques."  These small cake shops, vintage shops, housewares and hardware stores are fun to browse in, but early on Sunday mornings, they aren't the main attraction that brings throngs to this East London neighborhood.

The Columbia Road Flower Market fills the street, with racks and stands full of cut flowers and potted plants. Everything from exotic orchids to mundane annuals is here for sale, and loudly hawked by Cockney-voiced vendors competing with one another for your business.

"Doy-ann-thuss! Two fer a fiver!" shouts one man, cradling an entire flat of garden pinks in his beefy embrace. "You've got lob-eee-lee-ah loike that, dah-lin', shood be four pots a fiver!"

At the stall next door, another vendor shouts, "Any two for three pounds!"

Further down the row, another vendor holds up a standard-pruned fuchsia in full bloom. "They's stolen that's woy they's so cheap! A fiver!"

I marveled at these blue Eryngium alpinum - I've never been able to grow this plant, and here were bunches of them.

Further down, a display of dahlias.

Or hydrangeas catch the eye.

As you squeeze through the crush, you might decide to take a break, buy a coffee or a pastry, and explore the little shops.

This one entices you with a phrase of poetry chalked on the door.

Inside, you find rustic pots, packets of seed, garden furniture, hats and tools.

You can even buy compost by the scoop here.

Other shops sell clothes, jewelry, or artwork.

We relaxed a bit before wading back through the tightly packed scrum. Such a sea of color and scent! It was irresistible! Though I knew it would be foolish to buy potted plants, unable to take them back to the US, there's no reason not to have cut flowers. I bought two bunches of peonies to bring back to our flat.

They lasted for days, filling our rooms with scent.

If you visit London, don't miss the Columbia Road Flower Market.


LV said...

I would truly enjoy visiting this area and taking in the sights.

ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®© said...

If you visit London, don't miss the Columbia Road Flower Market.

And bring some pounds! Lovely pics, Aunt Snow.

Ann said...

I would love to go there. The Hydrangeas just amazed me by their vibrant colors. Peonies are my favorite flower-the smell is intoxicating. Great pictures.

Holly said...

I want to go there! I love places like that - a feast for the eye and soul!
Happy Pink Saturday!

Kathryn Ross said...

Well, Aunt Snow, sounds like you're having a jolly holiday in merry old England! Your flower shop row recount had me there in an instant - loved the dialect! I expected Eliza Doolittle to show up in the next photo!

Bless you for visiting me at The Writer's Reverie! Be visiting again, I'm sure!
Miss Kathy

Emily said...

What a wonderful place to spend time. This is my kind of neighborhood and shops. I could spend hours there browsing and just taking it all in. The flower market with its beauty is a place to appreciate the wonder of fresh flowers. We visited the portobello market which sounds a lot like this. Thanks for taking me back.......

The French Hutch

Robin said...

Oh my....How lovely....
How do you get through it all and not go broke? I would want to buy everything. Thank you for taking us with you.
Have a pinkishly beautiful weekend.

Lisa said...

How beautiful!! Thank you for visiting me! Happy Pink saturday to YOU!

Daniella said...

What a wonderful market to stroll around!! So many pinks, and gorgeous shoppes!! Hope you had a wonderful time!

Jillian's Bella Rosa Antiques said...

Oh my! You picked one of my favorite flowers...they all looked gorgeous by the way. And I really appreciated the accents and everything!

How fun to be in London on Columbia Rd.

Lynn@ The Vintage Nest said...

Sounds like a road I would love to travel down g. Fascinating and I would have purchased flowers too. When we vacation I try to always have some sort of fresh flowers in our room or cottage. Thank you for visiting my old Pink Saturday. :) Hope you are all well now. xo

mypinkprettiesaboutme said...

I would love to visit London. If I ever can make it there, I hope we can shop together. We'll have a great time.