Fulham Palace ... estate was owned by the Bishops of London for over 1500 years and the Palace was their country home from at least the 11th century. Vacated by the Bishops in 1975 it is now leased by Hammersmith and Fulham council and operated by the Fulham Palace Trust. Today the Palace's stately rooms house a museum, gallery, cafe and offices.source
This little excursion incorporated one of my favorite things, the train ~
It's a pleasant stroll through lovely Putney across the Putney Bridge, where you almost immediately come upon All Saints' Church ~
The parsonage is large and homey-seeming ~
I took just the quickest look at Bishops Park on the way to the Palace, as I planned a better look on the way out ~
A look back at Putney Bridge ~
Some kind of fruit tree growing along the walk by the river. Very small plums? ~
Such funny but somehow regal birds ~
The route to the Palace is through a small gate in the Park, thence through some rough woodsy ground to come upon this not terribly regal entrance ~
Once through that small door, the broad expanse of ground, the quiet, and the lack of anything palatial lent an enchanted air to the place ~
Finally I came to a kitchen garden, dispelling some of the Sleeping Beauty feel ~
The Sylvia Plath Memorial Garden ~
I duck through an arch of late-blooming wisteria ~
Then past a blue cloud of Russian sage and some greenhouses ~
Entering through the tearoom I didn't take pictures, as it seemed rude to point the camera around at the patrons. Suffice to say that it's a remarkably welcoming and homelike space, undoubtedly worth patronizing.
There is a small museum room adjoining the café, with extremely varied displays ~
Those plums do look like mirabelles, but I suspect that they are a slightly different variety. Maybe not, though since the mirabelle wiki says
In England, mirabellas grow both wild and cultivated in Essex, and there are yellow, orange and red varieties in Maylandsea and at Alresford in Hampshire. The Metz variety grows wild in Suffolk at Leathes' Ham, near Oulton Broad. One tree can also be found growing wild in North West England in Liverpool, and several may be found in the Buckinghamshire town of Milton Keynes. Red and yellow varieties have also been found recently in an ancient hedge row just outside Northampton. A lone tree found in a nature area in Hucknall, Nottinghamshire produced a massive crop in 2015 One tree is located near Capenhurst, Cheshire and fruited prolifically in 2017. In Scotland on July 2017 two trees were found growing wild at the edge of a pathway in Glasgow at Drumchapel Woods behind Kinfauns Drive They are likewise found in the Czech Republic or Republic of Poland both wild and cultivated, often at roadsides. plus one tree in Gravesend in Kent in 2017.
Nevertheless, the mirabelle ripens almost exclusively in September (maybe in late August with the current global warming, but still) -- the season is never more than about 3 weeks long. The mirabelles appear at all of the markets in France and Germany, and then 20 days later you could not find one to save your life (except frozen these days or in preserves or transformed into the mirabelle brandy of which my grandfather was a grand master, even with just one mirabelle tree in the garden).
However, I don't think that you made this thread to marvel at the plums, as there are plenty of other things about which to marvel. One thing I like about this report is that it does not show anything "spectacular" but more the delightful joys of a somewhat ordinary existence. Even the so-called "palace" is not the least bit overwhelming like the Hatfield House was. Giant wisteria is always impressive, but do you know what they were growing under the glass bells in the kitchen garden?
In any case, the religious order that was there seems to have been a bit more authentic and perhaps more interested in their faith than in the ostentation that so many of the others chose to display.
That shot of the sky is outstanding. It looks like a dance revue of jellyfish although the more devout might say that you captured "dancing angels."
I thought I had commented on the sky and plums, no doubt forgot to hit post.
Anyway, I think your mirabelles are what we call cherry plums, or is that a similar fruit, same size as cherries but more like a plum.
The sky is wonderful, that row of clouds along the top of shot are caused by little cirrocumulus clouds wth ice crystals falling out of them like rain and being carried along by the wind. Occurs at heights in excess of 30,000 ft and are called 'hooked cirrus'. Here is a piece lifted from Wiki
The clouds are high in the troposphere, the layer of the atmosphere where precipitation and most clouds occur. They are composed of ice crystals and their height is typically 8 to 10 km. They are called cirrus uncinus (from the Latin cirrus, meaning ‘a curl or tuft of hair’, and uncinus, meaning ‘hooked’). At cloud level, the temperature is typically -40 to -50°C.
Even at temperatures as low as this, the first products of condensation are believed to be water droplets, but the droplets are supercooled and freeze very rapidly. Indeed, they freeze too quickly for clouds of water droplets to become observable. The upcurrents responsible for the cloud formation are slow (typically 5 to 10 cm/s). The fall-speeds of ice crystals are, however, greater than this (50 cm/s or more), so the crystals descend.
Man is not lost, only temporarily uncertain of his position
Thanks, Bjd! It was a pleasant outing. There are so many free sites like that which can be visited in London, all of which take you to areas you might not have gone to otherwise. I could have visited Lambeth Palace garden free, but the one day a month it was open wasn't convenient for me, which I why I went to a church fair there. I reported on that here, in Replies 75, 76, 77, and 78.
Kerouac, I think whatever had been under the glass bells fried in the heat. The grass was very crisp and yellow when I was there, due to the heat wave. I don't know if I can agree about the lack of ostentation. What we now see is the secularized use of a much reduced building -- the original palace was whittled down @1715 to between fifty and sixty rooms, besides the chapel, hall, and kitchen." These being adjudged sufficient for the use of the bishop and his successorssource. That would be 50 or 60 rooms for one family, and that only during the summer months, as Fulham Palace was the country retreat for the bishop and his family. So, not really the relatively humble housing for a monastic order.
I am grateful for Mossie's explanation of the cloud formations, but adore Kerouac's descriptions!
Ahhh, Mossie ~ I think you must be right about the cherry plums. There were some trees with similar fruit on the street where I stayed, but always too high up for me to pull them down and examine them.
Thanks for the sky explanation. That sky was so striking and blue above a rather baking day. And I should even be able to remember the term "hooked cirrus"!
Just to finish about mirabelles and their season, yesterday my son arrived from Bordeaux and brought a jar of jam made from the mirabelles on the tree in their garden -- two days ago. They are also already available at my local street market.
A very fine ending to a most interesting photo-essay Bixa! I really love it because some years ago we stayed at the Premier Inn Hotel Putney Bridge. Your last photo of all brought back so many memories of our walks along that same path with the overhanging trees. I remember vaguely entering the walled garden of The Bishops Palace and being very disappointed. It was just a jumble of overgrown vegetation but I delighted myself in picking numerous dry seed heads. Maybe some of them are growing in my garden now?? The part of the gardens you saw are absolutely marvellous and I'm sorry we were so timid in our excursion but in those years I researched little, and knew mostly nothing about anything...
Thanks to you Mossie, I was delighted to find the explanation of the cloud formation Bixa snapped. Truly amazing! And a very apt description by Kerouac.
Knowing about the earlier seasons would be interesting if it weren't so scary!
Thanks so much, Tod! I wonder if you even made it to the inside of the walled garden. I entered through a heavy gate into the very jumble of overgrown vegetation you describe. However when I was there, there was a rough path visible that eventually took me to the door in the wall I showed. It's also possible things weren't as renovated at the time you were there.
I'm jealous about your staying in Putney, as I was quite taken with the place. While blundering around looking for the entrance, I came upon a family of Americans staying there and they were delighted with it.
Not wishing to add to the jealousy, I was brought up in Putney, and had an aunt who lived in Fulham and was very busy on church-y business with All Saints. Things have changed a lot on both sides of the river, over the years,but Putney's big natural advantages (being surrounded on three sides by the river and protected open green spaces) won't change.
One thing you wouldn't perhaps have been aware of is the display in St Mary's, Putney, about the Putney Debates - worth a look if you're in the area. As is the Wetlands Centre just along the riverside from Putney.
Patricklondon has steered the readers in the direction of the Wetlands Centre. I have visited it and definitely recommend a change from London museums and attractions, and go in this direction for some fresh air and animal life.
It did add to the jealousy, Patrick, it did! Great point about Putney's natural advantages preserving its charm. Thanks for those links.
Tod, thanks for the recommendation. I don't know what skin you're using, but look again at Patrick's post. He provides a link for the Wetlands and also one for an illuminating look at the Putney Debates. Back in 2009 Patrick covered the Wetlands for Anyport: anyportinastorm.proboards.com/thread/2487/wet-wild