Sunday, 1 May 2011

Roof and Courtyard Gardens and vertical living in Italy

A few weeks ago we came back from our honeymoon in Southern Italy. We spent 8 days in Sorrento and the Bay of Naples. What struck me the most during this journey was how vertical and green Italy is... Most Italian towns and villages are built on the steep side of mountains.

Italians love their gardens. Even the steepest terrain doesn't prevent them from growing their tiny gardens everywhere.

While walking the narrow streets of Sorrento, I looked up to see the overflowing roof gardens.

 They are squeezed into narrow spaces in almost every street.

 And here is another roof garden:

This region of Italy is famous for growing lemons and oranges. We had tea in this hotel and enjoyed another pretty garden, decorated with the replicas of famous Roman statues.

I sneaked into the courtyards to take some photos. I am always on the lookout for the inspiration for my paintings and I find the colors in this courtyard garden very inspiring.

Around the corner from a busy street was this peaceful place with a tall palm tree growing between two houses.

And this is what I found behind some old gates that were left ajar:

Here is another photo from the same courtyard garden:

Italians grow plants wherever they can. The lack of land is no obstacle. They create beauty out of nothing, just with a little sunshine and loving care. 

I hope to start gardening again as soon as we move. I can't wait!

Yolanta :)


  1. Thank´s for sharing your honeymoonpictures. I love Italy!!!!I hope to go in June to Cabella.
    Will I see you ????

    Big hug!!

  2. I would love to go, but I will be in Poland in June. Big hugs to you Elisabet!!

  3. Wonderful post! My husband and I fell in love with Italy in 1998 when were dating and I was a young undergraduate. The sight and scent (and taste) of the lemon trees and orange trees and olive trees of Sorrento, Capri, Napoli, etc were so amazing and you've really captured the feeling of the place. I love that you shot private gardens... I do that in new orleans. I really love italy, I've been lucky enough to travel from New England to Italy several times over the years and am planning on visiting again in March 2012. We love Rome for the art, history, ruins, culture, architecture and etc but we really want to do more in the beautiful south again this time. In 2006 we stayed for over a week on Capri... that was gorgeous, especially with day trips off the island. Thanks for a magical post.

  4. Oh thank you so much for this comment! It brought back the memories.