Many years of work, research, memories, stories told by the elderly: many little components that led
to the creation of this new website.
A website that is not only a virtual catalogue: it tells the story of a firm, a family, and the
passion for ancient fruits that has been handed down from generation to generation.
More than 1200 ancient and forgotten fruits' varieties, ancient grapes, fruits of the past: a world
of flavours and scents, colours and shapes, traditions and values that we often risk to lose.
I really dedicated a lot of time (including holidays and festivities) to rebuild this world of lost
information and I would like to share with you my passion, dear friends and enthusiasts of the
ancient fruits.
During these months of research and collection of all the documents, I have recalled my experience
and reflected on it, while looking at the thousands of pictures taken to the secular plants or the
single fruit. And sometimes, looking at that picture, I remembered that that tree does not exist
anymore.
Trees that have gone through so many things: they endured freezing winters, like the ones in 1918,
1929 and 1953; torrid temperatures and exceptional dryness, like in 2003. With their old and solid
roots they have overcome several adversities, and if they die it is because they are old.
With the advent of mechanization, these trees represented an obstacle for the tilling machines. Some
were eliminated, some trimmed, others used to make firewood; then they had to leave room to the
cement.
I would say that it was a real war: unfortunately we have lost many varieties that nobody will ever
be able to recreate.
It is also bizarre that while we census ornamental trees, we do not normally worry about the census
of many fruit-bearing trees, those fruits that for several years were the only food that our
grandparents had.
I remember that my father Mario said in our local dialect that his dinner during the 30s and 40s
consisted of “un pom e un pes ad pan”, which means an apple and a piece of bread...if it was
possible, as they could not always afford that piece of bread!
For this reason, my family and I work to recover these ancient varieties with the aim not to leave
anything out when doing so, as we can save a variety even with few buds.
It is certainly a passion the one that my father transmitted to me, and this pushes me to look for and
save old fruit varieties. I would even say that it has almost become a mission: it is something I feel
inside, the need to avoid the extinction of ancient fruit-bearing plants and to recultivate them with
care and love.
My father, that I consider a great teacher, said that cultivating a plant in the nursery is like risinga baby: it requires continuous care, you have to notice its signals and needs to let it survive to its
first year of life.
Believe me, when I am in the nursery, with the stocks that every year produce little new plants, I
really feel peaceful. I spend almost every Sunday at the nursery, talking to my plants, finding out
secrets that nature teaches us and savouring the unique flavour of a mature fruit picked directly
from the plant.
I am happy because also my children are very passionate: I think that I was able to “engraft” in
them a passion for ancient fruits.
I would like to thank all my customers and enthusiasts who point out old varieties that need to be
recovered, and my collaborators.