Snips and clips of Phipps (Conservatory)

Begin in the shiny new entrance area of the Phipps Conservatory...including the Phipps Cafe and Gift Shop

Built in 1893, Phipps Conservatory is one of the oldest and grandest Victorian glass structures to house plants and displays in the country. It is a must see if you are in Pittsburgh…especially right now…because…

The Century Plant above the Dessert Room of the Phipps Conservatory - Image Sandie Parrott

The Century Plant is blooming…well almost… It is about 12 feet above the Desert Room. Panes of glass had to be removed so this huge Agave Americana could bloom. Typically, this plant blooms every 10 to 70 YEARS…so it isn’t going to bloom again anytime soon. The plant actually dies and puts out a new baby plant that has to start all over. The base of the plant is about nine feet across and the bloom should start opening any day…

Friday nights they play homage to the huge Agave with drink specials made from the Agave plant…Tequila (Margaritas)! This special event only happens Fridays while the Agave is blooming! There are also chef created Southwest options on the menu like the day I was there – Chicken Quesadilla with carmelized onions, goat cheese and Mango salsa…OMG! Of course the server almost killed me for requesting sour cream. The chef apparently doesn’t appreciate anyone changing or adding to his creations…come on…you have to add sour cream to a Quesadilla…right?

This is my favorite conservatory and so far in the world! Yes, it is that impressive, well kept, with wonderful floral displays, special exhibits and enthusiastic docents willing to teach and explain.

A cute but grouchy gargoyle representing one of many gargoyles scatted about the conservatory during "Gargoyles in the Garden" running through September 12, 2010

Gargoyles are everywhere during “Gargoyles in the Garden” through September 12…happy gargoyles, traditional gargoyles, scary gargoyles, female gargoyles…you name it…

This guy is my favorite!

Chihuly glass sculptures can be seen throughout most of the 17 garden rooms…including a huge firey golden chandelier in the main entry and a sunburst in the Desert Room. I like Chihuly…especially his earlier work, but if you ask me he is overexposed. It seems like every garden I visit has a Chihuly exhibition…or pieces in their permanent collection. Can there be too much of a good thing?

This sunburst sculpture by Chihuly appropriately graces the entrance to the Desert RoomChihuly glass botanical flower shapes fill this urn

A cute little girl I couldn't resist photgraphing while she played with the fountain and watering cans

These photos are just a tiny drop in the bucket for the many lovely flower related sights in the conservatory and out in the gardens…


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2 Responses to Snips and clips of Phipps (Conservatory)

  1. Wendy Burnet says:

    Hello there – loved the grouchy gargoyle – hey, is he available for purchase anywhere? Cheers, Wendy

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