6 Aug 2013

Italy: maintaining the land - a job well done

In case you might think that my husband, got lost in the long grass when he was tidying up the garden you can see that he managed to get to the last corner after a few days and the job was completed.
Thankfully, the weather was not too hot and the best time of the day for working in the garden was early in the morning or in the late afternoon.
All the ornamental trees are getting too thick and tall and have to be thinned out every now and again. The box hedge and the bay trees have always looked good, but DH is going to cut the top off the bay trees as it's now difficult to stretch up on a ladder and safely do the topiary.  We planted a different type by mistake (which has golden-coloured leaves) on the left hand side, but it's never done well and is getting more and more sparse.

All the grassy areas got cut three times and underneath the long grass it was very dry.  At least it was possible to get to the fruit and nut trees that mostly grow around the edge.

Our garden is one of grassy and wooded areas, ivy-clad walls, rambling roses and flowering bushes that are left to grow in a natural state.

One afternoon there were rumbles of thunder that echoed around the mountains and suddenly we had a violent hailstorm.  Next day we heard that trees were down in a lane in the village and vegetable plots had been damaged including the developing tomato plants.  Some of our grapes were bruised and split which meant they would go rotten, although most of them are sheltered by the pergola structure and the canopy of vine leaves.

These photos were taken before the storm.  There are grapes (Trebbiano and Malvasia) grown for producing white medium-dry wine for our household consumption.  It's similar to Frascati wine which is grown in the Alban Hills south of Rome.
We also have some white table grapes and some black/red strawberry grapes, which I've mentioned before, that smell and taste like strawberries.  The problem with the strawberry grapes is that they are small, have thick skins, lots of pips and leave a purple stain on the hands and the lips. However the perfume is wonderful and they are delicious!


  1. You have such a lovely Italian home Linda. Do you make the wine yourselves?

    1. We used to make wine. I will write about that aspect of our life in Italy soon.

  2. A lot of work but a labor of love. I agree, your home in Italy is gorgeous Linda. I have thoroughly enjoyed all your photos and posts.

  3. Dear Linda,

    Your Italian home and gardens are so beautiful and must be a lot of work keeping everything looking good.
    I agree the best time to work outdoors in the heat of summer is early in the morning or in the evening.
    Must be great to have the grapes and all your pretty trees and plants.

    Happy week

  4. I think one of the best parts of Italy would be having grapes growing!
    I love the photos that you post of your Italy...
    I will have to pop into your neighborhood one day.
    Tammy x

  5. PS... I like your new photo at the top of your blog!

  6. I love looking at photos of your gorgeous Italian garden! Amazing :)

  7. my favorite photos today are the fence with fog and the ones with those beautiful grapes hanging down. hope there were not to many hurt by the hail... you live in a beautiful paradise.

  8. I do love to see natural landscapes, and those roses look delightful.

    Wow, that storm does look something....but, wow, wow, wow, re your grapevines, I not even slightly jealous....not one little bit!!!xxxx

  9. hello
    votre mari doit-être épuisé , en plus il doit faire chaud
    les fruits sont très en avance , en Normandie il faut attendre 1 mois de plus:::::
    vous avez une superbe maison , vous y habitez beaucoup de mois ?
    bonne fin de semaine
    edith(iris) France

  10. How lovely to have all the fruits right at your finger tips.
    I would be in heaven just living there. I don't know how you
    can leave it, it is so beautiful!

  11. Your gardens are all so beautiful. Italy is a beautiful land and I'm glad you share your part of the land with us. The grapes remind me of those grown here in the San Joaquin Valley. Many small Italian wineries are in our area, having been around for decades. Much of the rootstock originally came from Italy.

  12. It all looks so idyllic, Linda. Don't you ever wish you could spend much longer there, instead of just shorter visits now and then?

    There have been some very damaging storms in France too, especially in the south-west.


Thank you for your kind comment which is much appreciated. Have a lovely day.