Monday, August 17, 2015

Travels with The Urban Gardener : Meet the floral artists of Zurich

This is a post which is long overdue. Way, way over past overdue, actually.
Sometimes Life tends to gleefully over-ride each and every good intention (there goes my a-post-a-week plan!) and then cunningly dump so much work and other stuff on one that we don't even realise until too late that "hey! hold on ... this isn't what I had planned!".

So, I had a year-ful of work and then all of a sudden, it was time to travel! I tell you, no one can travel like a gardener can. Especially when it's a gardener who has her senses overloaded with plants and blooms that she'd kill to grow.

For all the tropical abundance in my own garden, I yearn to grow plants which are more suited to temperate climates. Which is why a walk in Zurich (or Munich... or Salzburg ... or ...)  can turn my face this way and that, trying to saturate my vision with all the gorgeous blooms on display. It was Spring when I reached there (peak of summer here in Mumbai, who would have guessed?!) and all the trees were bursting into bloom in delicate explosions of colour (but more about them later!). And, in the little and not-so-little florists shops all over the city, colours were running riot.
I loved it! And I went up to all the florists I could talk to and felt as if I had met a kindred soul in a foreign land. And we chatted about colours and textures and fragrances and all the delicious details that true flower-lovers and growers love to explore.
Ohhh, the sheer joy of it ...!
It was at Limmatquai in Zurich that I met Fritz Schneiter. Under the arches that shelter a host of trendy restaurants and shops, cutting a rainbow-swathe across the grey cobble-stones was a sea of colour; blooms of every hue possible. (So perfectly apt that this florist shop  is called 'Blueme under de Böge' ... Blooms under the Arches! )
And behind them, at his workstation was this very genial looking man quietly at work . He soon strolled over to see which blooms had caught my eye. And I told him, "all of them!". 
We got talking about my blogging and my garden in India and my tropical flowers and how much I'm in love with his flowers. And he handed me his card, smiled and told me, "mail me some pictures of your flowers".
I hope you will read this some day, Fritz. This one's for you!

And for you, my dear readers. I hope you enjoy the floral buffet  that I'm posting for you; tulips, roses, hydrangeas, irises, peonies, poppies ... don't you just love them all?!

Thank you, Fritz. I did enjoy our talk and the flowers . Here's to you!

There's something about the streets of Zurich that act as a catalyst. Those grey cobblestones and grey skies act as the perfect counterpoint for the floral displays pulling the eye from across the street, drawing one to go and take a closer look to see if those flowers are really as gorgeous as they look. And they invariably are!
I saw these plants displayed in a small lane across the road and I just had to go check them out. Such an interesting shop! I never did discover its name but I loved it for these gorgeous peonies. And the very aesthetic displays.

Can one sightsee a city through its shops? I know many who would quickly nod their heads in agreement. As for me, I loved discovering Zurich through its florists shops. Can't wait to go back and find all the others that I missed!

(p.s. This post had to be cut shorter than expected due to a malfunction in my good ol' trusty PC where I store all my photographs. I had intended to add one more  exquisite floral artist but that will now have to wait for another post. Until later ... :)  )