The invitation is to put your hands in the earth also in this remnant of summer that turns to autumn, “because it is true that spring is an explosion of colors, but plants bloom twelve months a year. Not for twelve. months in a row, but every season has its blooms – says Filippo Pizzoni, vice president of Orticola, the market exhibition that tomorrow returns to Milan in a September edition and therefore extraordinary – Even when I design gardens I pay close attention to autumn because it is a melancholy season that often brings with it the sadness of the end of the holidays. And then it is important that the garden presents new blooms, which may be less known, but no less beautiful “.
Hence the idea of organizing a September version of the most famous flower fair in the city, which since 1996 has welcomed thousands of enthusiasts and onlookers to the Montanelli Gardens. “Skipping another year was unthinkable, both due to the close relationship we have with our faithful and passionate public, and with the city that has always hosted us – continues Pizzoni – September was the only possible window, but it will be an exception. : for 2022 we have already booked the traditional second weekend in May “, when we will celebrate our 25th birthday, which should fall in 2021 but has been postponed for obvious reasons.
The autumn fair will therefore be an exception: the same in formula but different in substance because the plants and colors will be completely different, and because the pandemic brings with it some inevitable news. The first is that entry is only allowed with the Green Pass. The second, perhaps the most delicate, is that tickets can only be purchased online (11 euros, www.orticola. Org) by choosing the day and time slot (morning or afternoon), in order to stagger the admissions that can be a maximum of 5,000 people take turns. Tickets can also be bought in front of the gates, but the organizers’ fear of becoming a disincentive for the public, also given the uncertainty of the weather. The third is the duration: compared to the traditional three days (Friday – Sunday from 9.30 to 19), this year the garden will also open on Thursday afternoon (from 15 to 19) to everyone, while the opening party is by invitation only with the parade of floral-themed hats is canceled.
Even if the summer was bad because the hail ruined many plants, the historical nurserymen will almost all be there and they will bring seasonal plants such as chrysanthemums that bloom until the first frosts and only in Italy are linked to the dead (in Japan they are the symbol of life), violets, dahlias and asters, but also some qualities of late flowering roses, azaleas and rhododendrons found in historic Italian gardens. The rare plants, the tropical ones, the aromatic ones and many curiosities such as the lespedeza with the beautiful cluster flowers that last until the end of October, the Japanese maples, the Nothofagus, which is the southernmost plant in the world, the Oxydendrum arboreum, unique plant because it is the only species of its genus, a deciduous tree that gives its best in autumn when its leaves are tinged with purple-red and Rhus chinensis, a large shrub with yellow, orange and red leaves.
The calendar of meetings for adults and children has been confirmed between the garden and nursery workshops and chats with experts who will give useful advice on how to plant gardens and terraces. This year’s proceeds will be used for the redevelopment of the Cerbiatti flowerbed in front of the Natural History Museum and the Perego Garden.