The giardino delle Rose di Firenze or Rose Garden is one of the most fascinating and evocative places that this Tuscan city can offer. It is found perfectly nestled within the magnificent artistic and cultural patrimony belonging to one of the most beautiful and most frequently visited cities in the world. The Rose Garden is a must to be visited together with the other attractions, aboveall during particular seasons, like the Spring.
In the area called, Oltrarno, in viale Giuseppe Poggi, this splendid and lavish park is a feast for the eyes for those who look down from Piazzale Michelangelo to admire the natural beauties laid out before them.
What is the Rose Garden of Florence?
The creation of the garden dates back to 1865 and was the work of the architect Giuseppe Poggi, the same man who designed Piazzale Michelangelo. It was a time in which the newly born “Regno d’Italia” (the Reign of Italy) would be moved from Turin to Florence and the town hall had every intention to make this urban layout as attractive and important possible.
From “Podere di San Francesco”, owned by the Philippine priests, this space was then divided into different sections with terraces and it was decided that they be filled with a splendid collection of roses, hence the name of the garden itself. At first, this green corner of our Florentine paradise was open to the public only during particular periods of the year, (part of the springtime). But today the Rose Garden is open from 9 am to sunset all year round except on Christmas, New Year’s Day and May Day.
Natural Beauties of the Garden
In a list dating back to 1902, the garden contained over 1,000 varieties of roses and about 4,000 exemplaries, irrigated by a watering system designed by the architect Poggi which, even today, represents one of the most interesting technical attractions of the area. Moreover, 160 varieties of roses have been added since the last century as well as new structures and furbishings that make the Rose Garden of Florencen even more comfortable and welcoming. Today it is possible to visit and find about 370 varieties of roses, totalling about 1000 exemplaries in all. Among these flowers, it is quite evocative to think how it is possible to smell the perfume of roses dating back to the 16th century and to close your eyes and re-live the atmosphere of Florence from the start of modern times. That faraway Florence, which is nevertheless as splendid now as it was then, as it left behind the pomp and splendor of Medieval art and literature to turn towards a more flourishing and interesting future found in the magnificent Renaissance.
Antique roses and modern wonders
One of the most interesting and fascinating characteristics of the rose garden is the particular way in which it is able to unite the beauty of a long gone era to the essentials of the modern world.
This particular union is above all thanks to certain adaptations carried out during the 1990s and early 21st century. These changes display the introduction of new parts to visit that are right by Piazzale Michelangelo. In 1998, the garden received a gift from the the city of Kyoto, Florence’s twin city, the Japanese oasis “Shorai”, which today is a food court for anyone wanting to sit down and relax in this pleasant and floreal atmosphere. In 2011, the garden was enriched with 10 bronze sculptures and 2 more in plaster created by the Belgian artist Folon. These works were donated by the sculptor’s wife to the Town of Florence in order to honor her husband’s will; he passed away in 2005 but now has inextricably tied his name to Florence.