The Italian Lakes – our favourite trees and shrubs…

A selection of our favourite Trees and Shrubs of the Italian Lakes in Northern Italy by Karen Mariconda

Pruned trees are the fashion in Lombardy in Northern Italy
Pruned trees are fashionable in Lombardy, Northern Italy

Trees and Shrubs grow lusciously in the lakes of Northern Italy. Shaped shrubs and trees such as domed Camellias, Photinia Red Robins, Magnolias and Pines are the fashion.

Shaped Pine Trees in Lago Maggiore
Shaped Pine Trees in Lago Maggiore

Even pruned and shaped Japanese Acers are abundant whereas in the UK these are rarely shaped.

Japanese acers - pruned to shape
Pruned Japanese Acer Bloodgood in Lombardy, Italy

If visiting this pristine and serene area be sure to visit the Giardini Botanici di Villa Taranto on Lake Maggiore for stunning views and some very ancient trees. Of particular interest were a couple of Cornus Contraversa Variegated – the Wedding Cake Tree. We would estimate that these were around 8-10m in height and glorious in this park-like environment. Every corner of these gardens had a new surprise.

Cornus Contraversa Variegata - The Wedding Cake Tree for sale UK
Cornus Contraversa Variegata – The Wedding Cake Tree

A grouping of Dicksonia Antarctica Tree Ferns was a real treat for us, as one of our very favourite plants. These were spectacular specimens (although we were told off for walking on the grass to get these photos!).

Dicksonia Antarctica growing in Northern Italy
Dicksonia Antarctica growing in Northern Italy

Trachycarpus Fortunei Palms we expected to grow well, being the hardiest palm in the world, but they are surprisingly rich and lush dark green in the areas surrounding the Italian Lakes and the foliage grows shorter than normal probably due to the colder weather conditions in the winter.

Trachycarpus Fortunei growing in Lago Maggiore
Trachycarpus Fortunei growing in Lago Maggiore

Deep pink, glorious blue /purple and white hydrangeas grow abundantly all along the lake areas. Hydrangea Paniculata (white flowering) seems to grow particularly large and bushy and has established itself well in this location. It is a new best-selling plant now at our Plant Centre in Enfield, North London.

Hydrangea Paniculata growing alongside the lakes in Northern Italy
Hydrangea Paniculata growing alongside the lakes in Northern Italy
Aucuba Japonica and Hydrangea Paniculata growing in Italy
Aucuba Japonica and Hydrangea Paniculata growing in Italy

Leaving the lakes and travelling to the nearby mountains of Macugnaga, Monte Rosa the streams and valleys are covered with masses of ferns, Himalyan Birch, pines and other enormous conifers.

Pine Trees growing on the mountainsides in Lombardy - Northern Italy

Dramatic scenery and stunning architectural plants are everywhere in this incredibly peaceful area.

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