i took my third trip to Verona recently and it turned out to be my favorite trip.  All three trips were initiated becauseof tickets to see Zucchero at the area.  The first trip Zoe and I spent most of our time in the center where most of the tourist hang out.  For us it was too noisy and crowded.  The second trip we stayed on the other side of the river and the only time I went to the center was the night I went to the fabulous arena for a concert.

This trip I also stayed on the other side of the river and explored a little of the outskirts of the historical center and I discovered Giardino dei Giusti.  This is considered one of Verona’s marvels.  Regarded as one of the most gorgeous Italian Renaissance Gardens it was planted in 1580 by the Giust family who later changed their name to “Giusti dei Giardino” because of the importance of the gardens. The property also includes a Palace that I will show in my next blog.

The gardens contain age-old trees, gargoyles, fountains, grottoes (which echo strangely) and ancient inscriptions all immersed in a carefully landscaped setting which take advantage of the various levels of the terrain.

”Over the centuries it has been visited and celebrated by many illustrious characters who walked in the shade of its trees: from Goethe to Emperor Joseph II, passing through Cosimo III of the Medici, Mozart and Tsar Alexander. Its history began in the fifteenth century when the Tuscan Giusti family moved to Verona, establishing its own wool dyeing activity in this area. In the second half of the sixteenth century, Count Agostino Giusti re-established the camps behind the palace, recreating a typical Renaissance Tuscan garden, following the philosophy en vogue at the time of the Boboli of Florence. The choice of the garden design depended on the particular morphology of the available area: a flat ground expanse, delimited to the north by a massive cliff that is inert on the Colle di San Pietro, followed by a further small strip of land , slightly wavy, extends to the east beyond the boundaries of the lower one.”

http://www.verona.net/it/monumenti/giardino_giusti.html

I visited the gardens on a Monday morning, the weather was perfect and the only person there was the gardener and the turtles.

What also made this so perfect was that I could bring Zoe. In Florence I cannot bring Zoe to the Boboli or Bardni Gardens.  She loved it and she was a perfect little lady.

 

“The Second World War hit this garden hard. Plants were overturned and uprooted and terribly damaged, and it is not taken into consideration whether they were common plants or precious varieties. Currently, given the continuous care that has been provided, the Garden has been restored to its former beauty. The statues aligned among the tall cypress trees, the marble memories of past ages, the fountains with their trickle of water, the tubs covered with moss, where water lilies float, stress and give importance to this Garden, which has rightly been declared a National Monument.“

http://www.verona.com/en/guide/verona/giardino-giusti/

 

This time of year there weren’t a lot of flowers in bloom so the ones that were really stood out.  I plan to return in the spring.

 

I love moss.

There is also a grotto. Not as dramatic as the one at the Boboli but impressive in it own way.

You never know what is going to inspire? Sometimes it’s the ordinary that turns your head.

It’s important to look down.  This pathway appears like a work of art.

 

This was my favorite discovery.  The bracket fungus has a different story to tell, one of slow death. Many trees with this sort of picturesque shelf growing at right angles up the trunk are either displaying their death warrant or they’re already dead. Oak and sweet chestnut battle these parasites with more success, but beech and birch literally fall apart.