You have read many times where I have said “this is one of my favorite places in Florence.” Now I am going to say this is my favorite place in Florence, Giardino Torrigiani.  On the Otranto side of the Arno river, about a 10 minute walk up Via dei Serragli is the largest privately owned garden in Europe. You could easily pass by without even noticing it, and many locals don’t even know it’s here. 

I discovered it a couple years ago when I was planning my solo adventure through Italy,  from my Florence guru,Girl in Florence. I read about it and found out they did small group tours. I emailed immediately and arranged for a meeting when I arrived in Florence. I was hooked and since I have been living here I have been another 5 Times.

The gardens are very well known for its botanical garden and also for extraordinary wealth of trees and plants from all parts of the globe created in the 16th Century. Besides being a park like setting it is the home of the Torrigiani family.

I have been collecting pictures for this post from my many visits this year.  You will see it through several seasons.i have found I like it as much in the fall as I do in the spring .

 This is also a working garden run by Vieri Torrigiani.  He rents and maintains plants, trees and florals to the finest hotels in Florence. Social events, conferences, movie sets and just about anything large or small that require flowers or trees.Vieri is also the tour guide.  He is a historian when it comes to the property.  He is charming with a great sense of humor and I learn something new every time I’ve been there. 

This is one of the family homes on the property where each floor belongs to different family members  I like to call it the Downton Abbey of Italy  


All my visits to the gardens this year have resulted in showing it off to my out of town visitors  I love to see their vases as they are walking around.  You just don’t expect this secret garden to be here in the middle of Florence.


You cannot inter this gigantic towere any more, do to some crumbling bricks. It can be seen from many parts of Florence and occupies a majestic point in the gardens  

I love everything about this bench.  Moss is so under rated.



The property is not flat land as you can see by this great view of  the other family home.  It was flat to begin with but the architect of the gardens wanted different levels to enhance the views.



If you look close you can spot a little bird nest.


One of my visits here I was able to inroduce 3 Florentines to the gardens.  This was a real highlight for me. This is my friend and Italian teacher Lucia who had a visitor from Boston.

This is Cecilia and Marco who I have known for many years. Cecilia planned John and my first trip to Italy through her company Unusal Italy back in 2001. We didn’t actually meet until I came here for a week in 20015. Talk about a watershed moment. Her and Marco have a fabulous villa in Tuscany that they rent out called Podere Scopicciolo.They have introduced me to many new things here so showing them the gardens was very exciting.

A little river runs through, dry in this picture but I have been here when there was water.

Another reason I love coming here is for Zoe. She always has a great time and occasionally meets up with a friend. There are several family dogs but we only see them occasionally.


I have yet to catch the water Lily’s in bloom.  My mission for next spring.

There are two greenhouses.  


The second greenhouse is massive and is rented out for big events.  On my first visit to the gardens that evening Maserati had rented it to showcase a new car and had a sit down dinner for 500 people.  Earlier this year durning fashion week Gucci had a cocktail party here. Fashion week is a busy time here with plant renting and parties.


There also is a very healthy vegetable garden and composting is done.


I hope I have done this place justice and you are enticed to see it for yourself.  I had a difficult time editing because I wanted to show everything .  There is a part 2, aperitivo in the study and the B & B on the property.