MGS trip to Umbria

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John J

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MGS trip to Umbria
« on: August 24, 2017, 08:47:36 AM »
The MGS spring trip for 2018 is planned to be a one week tour of the Umbria and Lazio areas of Italy. It will take place from 13 to 20 May 2018 and will begin and end in Rome. The itinerary has not yet been finalised but it is proposed to begin in the northern part of Lazio, known as Tuscia. Heading up the western side of Umbria from Lago Bolsena to Lago Trasimeno the places to be visited will include medieval villages with their traditional regional cuisine, as well as their numerous high quality gardens. Many of the gardens on the schedule are privately owned and can only be viewed by appointment. For more information watch this space or contact me personally (my contact information is on the Cyprus Branch page of the MGS website).
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)

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John J

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #1 on: May 22, 2018, 06:39:43 PM »
Having returned from the above trip in the early hours of Mon 21st May I am still processing the many photos that I took of the exceptional places we visited. Along with the gardens, both public and private, we visited several specialist nurseries. The pictures below were from one specialising in peonies.
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)

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John J

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2018, 09:33:01 AM »
Excursions always involve a lot of walking, be it around gardens, nurseries, etc, or touring historical sites, towns and villages. However, it is possible from time to time to take advantage of the incredibly generous hospitality offered by garden owners, with a quick refreshment break.
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)

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John J

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #3 on: May 23, 2018, 11:57:09 AM »
The third specialist nursery we visited on the MGS Umbria trip was www.irisumbria.it. An amazing kaleidoscope of colours that it was almost impossible for the eyes to register.
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)

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John J

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #4 on: May 23, 2018, 12:01:51 PM »
And yet more.
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)

David Dickinson

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #5 on: May 24, 2018, 01:08:58 AM »
What a fantastic range. I had no idea of the existence of this nursery. Does Alisdair have it on his list of suppliers? It says on the site that they deliver to EU countries.
I have a small garden in Rome, Italy. Some open soil, some concrete, some paved. Temperatures in winter occasionally down to 0C. Summer temperatures up to 40C in the shade. There are never watering restrictions but, of course, there is little natural water for much of June, July and August.

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John J

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #6 on: May 24, 2018, 04:50:44 AM »
David, I believe they only began 3 years ago so are just now starting to get into their stride, as it were.
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)

Umbrian

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #7 on: May 24, 2018, 06:28:45 AM »
I live very close to Iris Umbria and only heard about it this year when told about an 'Open Day' that was held on Sunday 13th May. The weather had been awful the preceding week but that Sunday was beautifully sunny and with a friend I enjoyed an eye opening visit.
As John says, the selection is amazing and the presentation very professional.
Now  I have  a porcupine free garden I am looking forward to growing more of these spectacular flowers.
MGS member living and gardening in Umbria, Italy for past 19 years. Recently moved from my original house and now planning and planting a new small garden.

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Alisdair

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #8 on: May 24, 2018, 08:06:16 AM »
To answer David, no it's not on the list yet - to be added for the next update!
Alisdair Aird
Gardens in SE England (Sussex); also coastal Southern Greece, and (in a very small way) South West France; MGS member (and former president); vice chairman RHS Lily Group, past chairman Cyclamen Society

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John J

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #9 on: May 29, 2018, 03:08:22 PM »
Not everyone has the space to grow the sort of flowers shown above, but even in the narrow streets of an old city such as Assisi they find a way to do what they can.
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)

PennyJW

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #10 on: July 23, 2018, 06:12:29 PM »
What a fantastic trip - lots seen and learnt in various weather conditions and all great fun.  thanks to the organisers...

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John J

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #11 on: July 23, 2018, 06:28:35 PM »
What fabulous photos, Penny. So glad you enjoyed the trip. All credit to the 'boys', Filippo and Maurizio, for their hard work in organising everything, and not forgetting the lovely Sally for her, not inconsiderable, contribution. Thanks guys.
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)

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Alisdair

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #12 on: July 24, 2018, 07:56:53 AM »
Thanks so much for the pictures, Penny: Helena and I had heard how much we'd missed by having to pull out ourselves, so it's wonderful to see some of it now!
Alisdair Aird
Gardens in SE England (Sussex); also coastal Southern Greece, and (in a very small way) South West France; MGS member (and former president); vice chairman RHS Lily Group, past chairman Cyclamen Society

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John J

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Re: MGS trip to Umbria
« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2018, 11:06:13 AM »
I'm hoping that the Moderators will allow me a bit of poetic licence here as this is not exactly related to the Umbria trip.
One of the gardens we visited on the trip was Torrecchia Vecchia which had been originally designed by Dan Peason. Among the old photos that I had recently found was one that I took in 1996 and was associated with his Gold Medal winning entry at Chelsea that year. He had asked for assistance from the students and staff as Capel Manor Horticultural College in Enfield with the preparation of special domes for his rooftop garden entry. He had glass dome skylights and wanted to use green domes to mirror them. He produced 6 of what I can only describe as giant hanging baskets, 1 metre diameter and 0.5 m in height, along with several thousand plugs of assorted herbs. Our solution was to line them with green netting and put in a narrow layer of potting soil. Obviously this needed to be kept in place without adding too much to the weight, so we filled a large number of sacks with all the crushed up expanded polystyrene we could lay our hands on. We then cut out squares of plywood large enough to cover the base of each dome, drilled holes in them and wired them down tight to the domes. After flipping them over we now had 6 green domes, but not the sort of green that was required. We now had to plant each of them up with a different herb by cutting the netting and planting through it. Then came the task of not only ensuring that the plants survived but that they filled out enough to look like one very large plant. They were placed in a poly tunnel to protect them from the elements and monitored several times a day, every day, to make sure that they did not dry out. Any plants that died were replaced, any obvious gaps were filled with new plants and the months and weeks to deadline day were nervously ticked off. In the end he chose 4 of the domes to use in the garden, Thymus 'Silver Posie', Thymus 'Bertram Anderson', Helichrysum italicum and Santolina chamaecyparissus. For our efforts a number of us were selected to 'stand' on the garden during the Show, handing out information and answering questions from members of the public. I did that for two of the days and as icing on the cake was paid 40 pounds for my 'trouble'!
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)