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An exhibition celebrating the art and architecture of landscape with the aim of instructing the public, as well as disseminating the concept of “biophilia” and biodiversity. The Conserva della Neve returns for its 16th year at the Parco dei Daini in Villa Borghese from the 14th to the 16th of September. The traditional exhibition cum flower and garden market hosts only select nurseries, chosen amongst the most prestigious throughout Italy and Europe. Internationally renowned figures including artists, intellectuals, and landscape architects will be present for the occasion, celebrating the floral realm with over 120 exhibitors from around the world. For two days, Green will be the mainstay and visitors will be able to shop for plants, see the sector’s latest products and exchange information that would not otherwise be available in more conventional circles, making the festival unique not only in Italy, but throughout Europe.
This year, the show will give special relevance to the relationship between the arts and the natural world, with installations, conferences and literary presentations.
Visitors will also be able to take guided tours of the Secret Gardens, led by municipal staff.


For the 16th edition of the Conserva della Neve, The Orange Garden will be showcasing two installations located in front of the Conference Tent. Conceived deliberately for the Conserva, these two separate installations engage with our diverse relationship with nature, aiming to explore and advance our perception of biodiversity.

Costanza Chia’s project, Spazio AH, consists of a space delineated by large canvases painted with colourful, quasi-abstract landscapes and ecosystems inspired by the earth’s energy. The public will have the opportunity to engage with the space by taking part in a meditation guided by the artist. This bodily performance is meant to reawaken the vital energy which is found in every one of us, and in conjunction with an act of self-reflection, aims to create a sense of union between the individual and their surroundings. This exercise will allow the participants to re-evaluate their local ecosystem, stimulate their sensorial perception, and deepen the state of awareness of their environment. These sessions will take place twice a day for the duration of the fair. When the meditation is not in session, the space may be used as a site for rest and reflection.

Conceived by Eleanor Begley, the second installation entitled Lo Stormo consists of large-scale fabricated objects and small ready-mades found within Villa Borghese and the surrounding areas. Lo Stormo is inspired by the mating rituals of bowerbirds in which collected organic and inorganic materials are composed into intricate, colour coordinated structures. These miniature ecosystems created by the artist highlight the different mechanisms of understanding and perceiving biodiversity. Collecting and assembling discarded objects and organic found material, the artists purses a reflection on the multiplicity of our own ecosystem, transforming inimical objects into informative ones.

The Orange Garden was founded in 2015 by Arturo Passacantando and Tommaso de Benedictis as a nomadic cultural initiative. The Collective curates exhibitions with the aim of opening a discussion between local and international artists.

Costanza Chia works and lives between Rome and London. In 2016 participates in Aporia organised by The Orange Garden on Via dei Volsci, Rome and in June 2017 The Orange Garden organises her solo show Humans: Behave on Via della Penitenza, Rome. From October to February 2018 the artist attends a residency program at the Scuola Internazionale di Grafica, Venice. In January 2018 she inaugurates Piece of Me, solo exhibition curated by Deirdre Kelly at SIG Gallery, Venice.

Eleanor Begley lives and works between Rome and London. A recent graduate from the Ruskin School of Art, Oxford (First Class), in 2016 participated in Aporia organised by The Orange Garden on Via dei Volsci, Roma. In 2017 she exhibits in Relay: Rot, Exeter College Chapel, Oxford; Illfitting, Exeter Cohen Quad, Oxford; Open Source Artists, The Oxford Academy, Oxford. In 2018 she participated in the St Hilda’s Feminist Festival, Ruskin School of Art, Oxford.


Conferences and literary presentations will take place throughout the three days and will be held in the Moroccan conference pavilion “Makhzen”, made available by the organisers. The pavilion will be located in the central court of the exhibition area.

Friday, 5:00pm:
Alberta Campitelli, art and garden historian, will unveil an unfamiliar corner of Villa Borghese, presenting the book, “Atlante letteriario di Villa Borghese. Ambientazioni della narrativa a Roma” or A literary atlas of Villa Borghese: Narrative settings in Rome, by Fabrizio Bramerini (Fefè Editore) for which she contributed the preface in collaboration with Valter Fabietti. The historical park is one of the most famous in Rome and perhaps all of Italy. It is a real and beautiful location, which has served as a setting for many imaginative scenes described by great authors in books of all kinds: from Moravia to Ammaniti, from D’Annunzio to Moccia and from Pasolini and Pirandello to Garcia Màrquez and Veltroni. The book is a map of these literary locations, describing fourteen of the Villa’s most famous settings and its surroundings (Piazza di Siena, the Pincio and the zoo), constructed through a beautifully curated collection of over 300 of the most beautiful quotes from over 200 novels and short stories by 130 writers, classified by 8 central themes: love, folly, amusement, nature, etc.

Alberta Campitelli, art and garden historian, was Director of Villas and Historical Parks for the City of Rome for 30 years. She has planned and directed, in collaboration with other professionals, important restoration and renovation projects for gardens and buildings in Villa Borghese and Villa Torlonia as well as other smaller parks. She has published numerous studies on historical villas and gardens, particularly in and around Rome. Most recently she has written a volume on the Vatican Gardens (2009) and another on Roman villas from the 15th to the 20th Centuries (2012). She will soon publish a volume on Italian villas. She has participated in numerous conferences both in Italy and abroad, she is a lecturer on Museum and Cultural Heritage Management at LUISS University. She is also an advisory member of ICOMOS – the International Scientific Committee on Cultural Landscapes, she is Vice-President of the Association of Parks and Gardens of Italy, and a member of the board of Galleria Borghese. In 2013, she was given the title of Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres by the French Government for cultural collaborations between Italy and France, the same year she also received the Frentano d’oro, being it’s first, and presently, only female recipient.

Saturday, 11:30am:
“From mark to circumstance: how art and music are moving in today’s world”. Why do we talk of music and art in this edition of the Conserva della Neve? Simply because the garden is art: art and music together. Anna Peyron is the owner of “Roses du temps passé”, a renown nursery specialising in antique roses and has an impressive background as a gallerist. Together with Walter Branchi, gardener and composer, they will discuss, through their artistic and biophilial backgrounds, which transformations should occur today in art. For Walter Branchi music, as an art, cannot be separate from the location in which it occurs, because it is only through harmony with the environment that art (and therefore the music) can find its existence and completeness. For Anna Peyron, knowing how to see, knowing how to distinguish authenticity from the counterfeit, the mediocre from the masterpiece, being able to propose and teach poetry, beauty, and values is what equates a good gallerist with a good nursery owner. The aim for both is to create culture.

Anna Peyron defines herself as an anomaly within the world of nurseries. She entered the plant and garden world with all the enthusiasm and curiosity of a neophyte, albeit with a degree of alacrity. Until then she had worked in the contemporary art gallery Galleria Sperone in Turin, with whom she had collaborated since 1966 for the inauguration of a show on Robert Rauschenberg, in a time when Conceptual artists were taking their first steps towards galleries, soon to be followed by what would later be called “Arte Povera”. These were ten important and formative years, which Peyron defines as compelling and totalizing. She later moved to Castagneto Po, where she opened a nursery in 1981 called “Deserto, Cacti e Succulente” or “Desert, cacti and succulents”. She encountered the Rose at the Chelsea Flower Show in London in 1984. She was particularly struck by a stand that had recreated a small Elizebethan garden, where, among the vases of carnations and lilies she spotted seductive alba, gallic and damascene roses. She returned to Italy with a treasure: a small catalogue containing only a few black and white photos illustrating a rich text of historic and botanic notes. She soon established contact with Scarman and he also became impassioned by the project. A season passed, and in the nursery, cultivated in an open field, their first 2000 plants begin to flourish. The rose garden took form and a new Italian catalogue of roses goes to print. “Roses du temps passé/Vivaio Anna Peyron” is born. This is how her story with roses is came to be; a stark change in profession, but one that at the same time continues to be strongly tied to art: namely, the art of gardens.

Walter Branchi is a gardener and composer. He taught Electronic Music Composition at the Conservatory “S. Cecilia” in Rome and at the Conservatory “G. Rossini” in Pesaro. He was a member of the musical group “Gruppo di Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza” from 1966 to 1975. He is one of the founders of the “Studio di Musica Elettronica R7” in Rome, created in 1967. He is also the founder of LEMS – an electronic laboratory for experimental music in Pesaro, and in 1978, together with Guido Baggiani, he established the “Associazione Musica Verticale”. He collaborates with the Italian office of UNESCO for music and technology and has written technical and theoretical articles and books on music such as; “Technologia della Musica”, “Intervalli e sistemi d’intonazione” and “Verso-l’uno”. He has spent much time in the United States and Canada. In 1979, he was a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Princeton, where he completed the first of a series of compositions entitled “Intero”. In 1983, he was invited to be visiting composer at the Centre for Computer Research in Music and Acoustics at Stanford University and in 1984 was invited to be composer in residence at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver (BC), where he taught musical composition. In 2011, he was the first artist in residence at the Ronald Fleming Foundation, where he composed “Mysterium tremendum et fascinans” especially written for the gardens of Bellevue House in Newport, Rhode Island. That same year, the New York publishing house, Open Space, published his book “Canto Infinito: Thinking Music Environmentally”. His volume, “Il Pensiero musicale sistemico: scritti 1975 – 2014” is now available at “Aracne Editore”. Walter Branchi is also one of the leading global experts on roses, specialising in Tea, China and Noisette roses. In 2014 he released “99 years of Tea, China and Noisette roses (1825-1924)”, published by “La Treggia”, a Perugia-based editor.

Saturday, 5:00pm:
To explore the garden as a poetic and existential space is the aim of the book “L’anima in giardino. Arti e poetiche del benius loci” (Derive Approdi, 2018). The volume is a collection of the main exponents of the idea of the modern garden. Marco Martella appealed to philosophers, architects, art historians and gardeners to contribute pieces to his French magazine, “Jardins”. The book is a curated anthology of a selection of these pieces, carefully translated into Italian. Among those published in the anthology are Hervé Brunon, Fernando Caruncho, Gilles Clément, Marina Fresa, Marco Martella, Pia Pera, Giuseppe Penone, Franco Maria Ricci and Franco Zagari. The garden, be it antique or modern, stately, utilitarian or for pleasure, hidden or public, is a laboratory. Since time immemorial, humans have experimented with it to explore their interactions with the planet, in the midst of nature and culture. There was a time where the garden embodied dreamscapes and ideals of beauty and cosmogony. Today, they have become primarily places of resistance, because the garden is and will remain always a place.
Marco Martella will be talking with Andrea Di Salvo.

Marco Martella is a garden historian living in Paris. He has become a central figure of his field and is internationally known in the community for his conferences and his magazine, “Jardins” (Ponte alle Grazie), dedicated to the philosophy and the poetics of gardens, established by Martella in 2010. He directed proceedings for the international conference “L’héritage d’André Le Nôtre” (2013, parc de Sceaux). “Tornare al giardino” is the first essay written under his name, having previously published two books under the pseudonym Jorn de Précy for “E il giardino creò l’uomo” (2013) and Teodor Cerić for “Giardini in tempo di Guerra” (Ponte alle Grazie, 2015). His is the author of the script for the film “Empreintes” by Hervé Bernard (2015).

Andrea Di Salvo, since 2010, is the author of the column “Vìride – Critica del giardino” in “Alias”, the cultural supplement of the Sunday edition of the newspaper “Il Manifesto” ( He curates the series “Habitus” for “Derive Approdi” on gardens and landscapes (Gilles Clément, Lucilla Zanzazzi). He is a historian by training, obtaining his MPh. in Venice, he has worked in publishing and for over ten years has taught publishing and techniques of new media at the Sapienza University in Rome. With a Master’s in Landscape architecture from the Quasar Institute in Rome, he studies gardening and landscapes. In 2010 he won at the International garden festival of Ponte de Lima in Portugal.

Sunday, 11:30am:
“Abbracciare gli alberi” or “Hugging trees” (Saggiatore) is a volume by Giuseppe Barbera and will be presented by Rita Biasi. The oldest certified tree in Italy is a Heldrich’s pine that grows in Calabria on the side of the Pollino massif. It was born in 1026, younger then than its northern greek namesake born in 941, which is considered the oldest living being in the Mediterranean. The oldest in the world is a Norway spruce (what we have come to know as the Christmas tree) that grows in Sweden and is said to have turned 9550 years old. Anchored to their roots, trees are immovable. They procure their own nutrients though chlorophyll, transforming solar energy into organic matter. They do not have ears, legs or eyes. They have tissue perennially at the embryonic stage, ready to create all the necessary organs, making them virtually immortal. Perhaps it is because of this that Man, constantly dissatisfied with its condition, has never stopped looking for them. Giuseppe Barbera, a Sicilian agronomist has long been engaged in protecting the environment and the landscape. He explores the impact that the most evolved members of the plant world have on poetry and literature since early history: from Homeric poems, and earlier still, the Epic of Gilgamesh. The Epic is a tale recounting the first man to have felled a tree (a large cedar growing in the mountains along the Euphrates) and upon completing this act of deforestation, inadvertently sets in motion cataclysmic climate change, leading to a period of aridity, bringing about the collapse of Mesopotamian society. “Abbracciare gli alberi” gives the reader a sense of lightness, of subtle happiness and peace, even when reading about the butchery perpetrated by the mafia through their unlicensed constructions in the Conca d’Oro of Palermo; a natural garden of legendary beauty, which prompted Goethe to write that he had found Eden on Earth. The book brings a pervasive sense of wellness which does not leave the reader even after finishing, it is like a root that takes hold, invading one’s interior space and changing outlooks and relationships towards the exterior.

Giuseppe Barbera is a professor of Tree Cultivation at the University of Palermo. He has won numerous prizes for his books on natural history, including the prestigious Grinzane Cavour for “Tuttifrutti”, a book that recounts Mediterranean fruit trees, bridging the gap between science and literature (Mondadori, 2007). For the FAI, he curated the rescue of the Kolymbetra in the Vally of the Temples as well as the Garden of Donnafugata on the island of Pantelleria. He is a member of the Scientific Committee of the Benetton Foundation Research Centre.

Rita Biasi has a degree in Agricultural Science from the University of Bologna. She is a member of the Istituto di Coltivazioni Arboree, a specialized centre within the University of Bologna, conducting research on a plethora of subjects, form biology, physiology and genetic improvements, to the propagation and cultivation of trees for agricultural purposes. At the University of Bologna, she completed her Doctorate in Tree Cultivation. She has conducted seminars on the safeguard and development of tree systems in rural landscapes, gardens of historical significance, and urban spaces. Her seminars contributed to research doctorates in “Arboreal systems both in agricultural and forest settings” at the Univeristy of Palermo and in “Planning and Management of the Environment and of the Landscape” at the Sapienza University in Rome. She is an associate professor for the SSD AGR03 (Arboricoltura e Coltivazioni Arboree) at the Università degli Studi della Tuscia, near Viterbo. She is a member of the academic board for doctoral studies in Landscape and Environment at Sapienza University and is the president of the academic board in Planning and Design of the Environment and Landscapes of a joint programme between the Università della Tuscia and Sapienza University in Rome. She is currently a professor of viticulture within the degree programme on Food and Aenological Technologies, and is a professor of agricultural systems for the joint degree programme (Tuscia-Sapienza) within the department of Planning and Designing of the Landscape and the Environment as well as in the programme on Tree Cultivation and the Landscape within the Master’s Programme for Landscape Architecture at the Sapienza University in Rome.


There are numerous associations that will be present throughout the three days, but the activities proposed by the Associazione Nazionale Donne dell’Olio and by the Unione Mediterranea Assaggiatori Olio (U.M.A.O) are of particular note.

The Associazione Nazionale Donne dell’Olio together with the Associazione Olio di Puglia Dialoghi Fluidi, reflecting their respective missions, have created and developed a series of games that will challenge the participants’ capacities, while bringing them closer to the world of olive oil. The aim is to introduce, both adults and children, to the concepts, terminology and typical aromas of oil, to reinterpret oil as an ingredient as well as creating an olfactory and gastronomical experience. One can participate entirely in the experience or try only certain stages. The activity can be conducted as a group or individually.
The activity will be held at their exhibition stand on the following dates and times:
Friday the 14th at 4:30pm
Saturday the 15th from 10am to 1pm and from 4pm to 6pm.
Sunday the 16th from 10am to 1pm and from 4pm to 5:30pm.
Reservations should be made directly at the stand.

The mission of the U.M.A.O has long been focused on healthy eating. This year they will provide oil tasting courses at their headquarters on Via Ardeatina, 524. The courses will include guided tastings intended to highlight the secrets and virtues of oil. Here are number of courses that will be on offer:
Friday the 14th at 4:30pm: Tasting short-course on extra-virgin olive oil – When oil is “EVO” classified, it is good and healthy.
Saturday the 15th at 11:30am: Tasting short-course on cheeses – Breaking down the myths: a noble protein concentrate derived from milk.
Saturday the 15th at 16:30pm: Tasting short-course on olives – How could something so small contains a wealth of taste and wellbeing?
Saturday the 15th at 17:30pm: Having a nose: what a sense! A sensorial game – Anyone can try to recognize products and substances through smell.
Sunday the 16th at 11:30am: Tasting short-course on chocolate – Not all good things have to be bad for you…
Sunday the 16th at 16:30pm: Tasting short-course on virgin olive oil – Let’s learn to recognize the extra-virgin olive oils that have become an Italian excellence.
Sunday the 16th at 17:30m: Having a nose: what a sense! A sensorial game – Anyone can try to recognize products and substances through smell.

Elizabeth Clainchard will create an artistic recreational space “Il Cantiere dei Sogni” or “The Workshop of Dreams” with wooden games provided by Kapla.

Always for the children, our most welcome guests, Ecologistica will be teaching tree climbing techniques.

Romana Giardini will offer laboratories in which children can learn how to repot vegetable and herbs.

The Mediterranea project is a nursery that specialises in Mediterranean plants, while also conducting a professional training programme for refugees and asylum seekers. They will present their exclusive cocktail (understandably named “Mediterranea”) every day from 5pm onwards in exchange for a contribution to their activities. The recipe is a secret, so you can only find out if you come try!
Aromatic salts and sugars: Chef Stefania Barzini will be at the Mediterranea stand for a few short culinary labs in which participants will learn new techniques to flavour their dishes. Together with the chef, participants can prepare different aromatic salts and sugars made with fruits and herbs.
The culinary labs will be held on the following dates and times:
Friday the 14th from 4pm to 5pm
Saturday the 15th from 11am to 12pm
Sunday the 16th from 11am to 12pm
Cost for participating: 15 euros (a bag of aromatic salt or sugar is included)
Meditarranea wants to develop diversity and opportunities for social growth within the communities and populations along the Mediterranean basin. It was created in early 2018 through the synergy created by the Vicenziana Family, the Cooperativa Sociale Tre Fontane – the managing organisation for a number of SPRAR centres around Rome, the non-profit organisation Linaria, as well as Margherita Grasselli. Meditarranea is located in Rome in Via della Nocetta, 191 in a two-hectare plot belonging the Congregazione della Missione. The nursery is at the heart of the project, in which a collection of typical Mediterranean plants is being curated thanks to the idea and help of Susanna Magistretti, the manager of Cascina Bollate, a nursery established in 2007 in the Bollate prison in Milan. The collection includes plants for all uses and traditions, of all landscapes, histories, techniques and knowledge; they are part of an ancient culture and communal to all peoples located around the Mediterranean.

A team of arboreal cultivators and teachers “Arboverde” will hold workshops and micro-seminars on pruning ornamental, fruit, and olive trees. Themes touched upon will include: ornamental tree pruning – how to do it and best practices; the correct planting of a young tree in one’s garden; reasons for not pruning a tree; how to prune an olive tree destined for production; how to cultivate citrus trees in vases; and utensils for pruning: advice on how to use them.
The workshops and micro-seminars will be held on the following dates and times:
Friday the 14th to Sunday the 16th at 10:30 am and 11:30 am and in the afternoons at 4:30pm and 6pm.

For the duration of the exhibition, Stefano Assogna will consult with the public at no charge, on problems related to plant ailments and diseases and how to manage them. Our “Garden Tutor” has chosen the slogan “Learn to correctly manage your garden, vegetable garden and orchard”.

The travelling children’s bookshop “Ottomassimo”, will provide activities aimed at our younger guests.
Reading Corner: Will be available for families and all books will be available to peruse or read.
Themed bibliography and book exhibition: A range of books on related themes will be available to the public.
Readings: The booksellers will choose a series of readings inspired by the exhibition’s themes. Book readings will be held twice a day, once in the morning and again in the afternoon. Each reading will host up to 30 children.
Ongoing laboratory: The bookshop will set up a table with an ongoing laboratory at which participants are invited to stop and create for 10 minutes.

The Associazione per le Unità di Cura Continuativa Moby Dick will make educational material available, including illustrated and informative documents regarding the association’s mission. They will also provide recreational activities for children and adults, such as: creation and decoration of botanical and animal-themed masks, games with prizes, a lab on recycling: illustrating creative way to recycle paper and plastic.


The excellent refreshment stand by Giorgio Antonini will be available for visitors of the exhibition with an enticing range of choices.
Assortment of fish, truffle, porcini mushrooms and vegetarian tartines
Savory croissants, little nibbles, stuffed Genovesi
Supplì, arancine, croquettes, small pizzas with tomato sauce
Sandwiches with meat, fish, vegan and porchetta
Stuffed white pizza and a selection of tramezzini

Large salads with fish or meat
Salads with barley, spelt, couscous, various kinds of rice

Chicken curry with basmati rice
Breaded cutlet with salad
Vitel tonnè with seasonal vegetables

Vegan plates made with seitan

An assortment of cold seasonal pastas
Mezze maniche with three kinds of tomatoes and bufala mozzarella
Small penne with mushroom ragù and truffle cream
Mezze maniche with fruit of the seas and fresh tomato
Small penne with salmon

Prosciutto from Amatrice with bufala mozzarella
Trio of bruschette (tomato, sausage, aubergine with smoked provola cheese)
Veal roast with potatoes
Marinated salmon with citrus fruits and yoghurt
Fried calamari and julienned vegetables

“Conserva della Neve” Baskets (Reserved for staff and exhibitors)

Day 1 – Mezze maniche with tomato and mozzarella, turkey strips, fruit
– Mezze maniche with tuna and tomato, salmon carpaccio with citrus fruits, fruit
Day 2 – Small penne with salmon, small fried goods, fruit
– Small penne with ragù and mushrooms, veal roast with potatoes, fruit
Day 3 – Cannelloni with bolognese ragù, roast, fruit

Assortment of ice-creams