Tuesday, August 17

How A Dutchman Helped Our Italian Garden Grow...

Meet Hans Vissers - Botanist Extraordinaire

We live deep-deep in the Italian countryside hundreds of kilometers away from Holland - so how did a kooky Botanist from Amsterdam help our garden grow?? Last winter while living in Amsterdam, one snowy day, we visited the Botanical Gardens for fun -little did we know that Hans would single handily donate over 100 diverse species of flowers, fruits and vegetables to our organic farm/ garden 1500 km away! From heirloom allium to exotic basil and beans - Hans Visser of the VU Botanical Gardens in Amsterdam has graciously colored our property pretty!

Queens Orange - Lathryus beans and climbing vine

Spice Boys - Thai Basil


Hans is passionate, enthusiastic and educational - it is an absolute pleasure to have him personally guide you about the gardens - hours later your filled with sweet smells and an urge to help this garden stay alive and share its beauty with others. Upon hearing our story and what were are growing in our garden & farm, he lite up - even more animated than before and started loading us up with seeds, starters, growing tips and more to bring back to Italy.

Painted Lady climbing vines
After years of collecting rare seeds through the university, he is now donating them to us (and others around the world) - thus ensuring that they continue to grow, reseed and spread bringing new life to our garden and others for years to come.


Sadly, the Hortus Botanicus of VU University Amsterdam, The Netherlands, is threatened with closure by the University’s Executive Board due to new construction planned at the school. (Read more here)

The VU Hortus houses a very rich plant collection with more than 6.000 species. This small but charming botanical garden contains a greenhouse complex with various climates, under which a tropical greenhouse, a sub-tropical greenhouse, an orangerie and many more greenhouses. The exceptional cactus and succulent greenhouse is the largest collection in The Netherlands.

Through the 40 years of its existence the VU Hortus has built up a large collection of plants, trees and shrubs with natural-historical value. It is open to the public throughout the year, without entrance fee. In summer, from May till October, even on Saturdays.


Help Save Amsterdam's Botanical Garden and join us by SIGNING the online petition.


Photos of our patio, pool and garden with flowers from the VU

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