Monday, 19 August 2013

Pots and Pithoi

In urgent need of a fresh pot to house some newly acquired plants, I jetted off to my favourite pot-stop in West Sussex this week to do a little shopping.

I discovered Pots & Pithoi in Turner's Hill several years ago whilst en route to Nyman's which is just a few miles up the road and it has now become one of my go to places whenever I am on the hunt for pretty pottage for friends, clients and also our own garden. Prince Charles gave the pots his seal of approval by granting Pots & Pithoi a royal warrant and uses them throughout the gardens at Highgrove. I love the gentle, buff tones of the Cretan ceramics and how they sit so harmoniously in the garden.

They have a huge range of over 120 designs of pot in 240 different sizes which are all made using ancient traditional Cretan techniques. Each pot is hand thrown and fired using olive pits and grapes seeds to fuel the kilns; a traditional method that harks back to the Byzantine era when these styles of urn and pot were used to store and transport precious oils, ointments and grain.

It was here that I first encountered and fell in love with one of my favourite roses. On my very first visit, early one summer, Rosa Claire Jacquier was clambering over the barn emitting the most beautiful fragrance that filled the courtyard, stirred up by the flitting wings of overhead swallows that nest in the neighbouring pot-filled barns. Such was the experience that I planted the very same rose in our garden that summer.

If you are looking for a something really unique with a history to it, owner Tara Bowles also stocks the most beautiful antique pots and ancient storage vessels from all around the Mediterranean and is on hand to offer inspiration and advice and often provides excellent tea and delicious homemade cakes which are served in a charming room overlooking the courtyard.

Pots & Pithoi
The Barns, East Street
Turner's Hill, West Sussex
RH10 4HQ


  1. I am a sucker for, addicted to, seduced by and can't get enough pots!

  2. They are not just yer common or garden B&Q pot are they? I bet they age beautifully! Good enough for Chas :-)

  3. Just my kind of place - what a great find - wish it was nearer.

  4. Geez, I could use some pot!!! No, not that kind, silly :) Some pots for my topiaries, which are getting really root bound. What a cool place, Paul. The antique pottery looks gorgeous. I'll check it out....might be headed your way this October. x Loi

  5. Oh Mr P. having fun shopping again. If I go there, I wouldn't know which one to buy. Such a huge selection of those gorgeous pots and Moroccan lanterns too. If you can please carry some of those large pots and some Moroccan lanterns then I promise we can sit down for some tea and eat some cakes to enjoy that lovely place. ��

  6. These pots are really lovely. It's interesting that they are still making them the way they did so long ago. And, the colour is so nice. Enjoy your potted plants. Pamela

  7. We've been lusting over their selection of pottery for quite some time now (via their website only), great to see glimpses of it via your pics!


    I chuckled at your, "Pot stop"....hahahhahaha

    But the colors, yes, the BUFF hue is the perfect color for a garden that is subtle and allows the plants to make the statement. Sir Paul, you've done it again. You have swept me off my feet and transported me to England, a land I must see one day. HAPPY LATE SUMMER! Anita

  9. Oh oh oh-- I love garden pots-- what a wonderful place to lose yourself--(and spend all your money!!) I'd have to come home with at least 3 or 4!! Your photos are gorgeous--

    All those pots--- sigh--

  10. Hello Paul

    Wow what a place. I would leave all me money here. I see so much I would love
    Thanks for telling us about this

    Helen xx

  11. Hello Paul,
    They are gorgeous, most of us would give their eye teeth for one of those beauties...but I am more interested in the history. You said they are antique. How old do you believe them to be? This shop has so many. I wonder how they were able to acquire them all.
    Thank you for showing them.
    Marie Antoinette

  12. Another beautiful place to visit courtesy of Paul, I have added it ti the list! I love going along on your jaunts with you. You know the best places and the lovely rose is so pretty and fun to learn about. Enjoy your summer weekend!

  13. Paul, What a find this spot is! Loving these buff pots as well. You are so right they are the perfect color to show off the plants yet not stand out too much.

    Wish we had something like this near! I adore garden shopping and tea. Not fair. Here in California it's all cactus and nachos...