During the winter months 2019-2020, La Mortella Gardens can be visited only with guided tours. Tours must be reserved in advance and will be led by authorized guides.
The guides will accompany the visitor to explore the most unusual aspects of the garden, showing them plants that perhaps go unnoticed by the general public in Spring and Summer when they are not in bloom. During the winter season La Mortella does not go dormant and does not loose its vegetation; on the contrary the garden is green and lush, dotted with exotic flowers and cheerful colored fruits, to the delight of those visitors coming from colder climates,.
What immediately catches the eye is the sumptuous blooms of the camellias, starting with the elegant Camellia sasanqua, followed during the season by the williamsi, japonicas, reticulatas; but it is impossible to ignore the dazzling purple flowers of Bauhinia blakeana, the "orchid" tree of Hong Kong, or the splash of color of ripe citrus fruit that blends with the fragrances of the rarest and most delicate South African Buddleja. The pergola of the tea house will be bright with innumerable large yellow trumpet-shaped flowers of Solandra, the Mexican vine known as "Copa de oro” (Gold cup). Climbing to the upper garden, visitors will enjoy spectacular views of the sea and the town of Forio, accompanied by the blue flowers of the creeping rosemary that cascades with its aromatic branches, along stone steps and dry walls. The ascent will be rewarded with the exciting blooms of the Aloe collection, which in winter light up with red, yellow and orange flowers. The Mediterranean maquis, in full bloom thanks to the autumn rains and the cool season, colored by the berries of strawberry trees and myrtles, will be the backdrop to the extravagant corollas of South emisphere plants, such as Mimosas, Grevilleas, Proteas. Japanese maples will offer a blaze of autumnal color in the oriental garden that surrounds the Thai house, before losing their leaves and leave the place of honor to the graphic shapes of the bamboo. In late winter, oriental magnolias will bloom, painting fairytale images in the Valley garden.
The guided tour includes a detailed introduction to the extraordinary history of the gardens, starting from the biographical events of the founders, the famous English composer Sir William Walton and his Argentine wife Susana, who moved to Ischia immediately after the Second World War. The guide will narrate the origin of the garden, the involvement of landscape architect Russell Page, the painstaking work and passion that the couple invested to create an enchanting landscape from scratch. Visitors will learn how Lady Walton created a Foundation to ensure the future of the garden over time, and will hear the stories of musicians, concerts and the artistic programs that the Foundation supports. It will be possible to visit the museum with the composer's manuscripts and the imaginative puppet theater by Lele Luzzati.
This is a visit that will leave lasting memories, exploring of a garden full of atmosphere and poetic suggestions.
Every Thursday at 2.30pm. Guided tours must be reserved in advance.