We have created a display garden here at Casa Nova, where you can see irises alongside some of the plants that best complement them. Click here for a photo album of the first opening of the display garden in 2018 or here for the most recent album, of the 2020 bloom season. You will also find other albums of our photos on Flickr here. There are raised beds for bearded irises, boggy areas and a pond for waterloving irises and beds displaying irises alongside peonies, roses, clematis and an array of perennials. You can follow our work in progress photo album on flickr and we are also posting updates on our blog. We will be adding lots more photos in due course.
The gardens are in a beautiful location, with panoramic views across the Niccone valley to a grand amphitheatre of mountains, the Marche to the East, Umbria to the South and Tuscany to the West. We hope to create a garden that is worthy of its theatrical setting and allows time and space for contemplation. The intention is to open the display gardens to visitors during the iris season. They will also provide a year-round amenity for guests renting our two holiday rental properties on the Casa Nova estate.
To date we have over 650 cultivars of bearded irises, nearly 250 types of roses, both classical and modern, 150 types of peonies and 50 types of clematis, as well as an array of Siberian irises, hardy geraniums, other herbaceous perennials, grasses and bamboos. The lower part of the Casa Nova estate was cleared of old, exhausted apple orchards a year ago. We have planted olives on the top section and the rest is reserved for the gardens.
We drew up the plans in 2014 (quite literally, drawing everything out on a 5 metre wide topographical map in 1:50 scale). In the autumn of 2015 we built and planted the raised display beds for irises, which you can see just coming into flower for the first time in the photos above. In 2016 we built a pond for water irises, constructed a stream and waterfalls, built pergolas and landscaped a series of terraces to create walks between mixed borders of irises, peonies, clematis and roses.
Whilst the garden will be brand new and will obviously need some time to mature, there is already an impressive display. We will be opening the gardens to the public during the bloom season in May of each year: see our FAQs for further details. However, please note that all visits will be during our published public opening hours and the gardens will shut to visitors when the iris season closes.