MaMa in Bloom

PH Gianluca Brizi

“To be born once is not enough,

we come into this world to be born all over again.”

Spring in the Marca Maceratese feels like an invitation from nature: to bloom once again, as our hills turn back to green; to free our spirits, and to paint our days the same colors of our vibrant territory, which makes every view as bright as the rainbow.

This year more than ever, we need to embrace this hope-scented invitation. In such hard times, we should rediscover all those precious antidotes for our body and our mind, such as the simple and regenerating pleasure of gazing in wonder at our green hills.

A triumph of Nature, a swarm of festivals and celebrations liven up our cities and villages. A kaleidoscope of traditions to celebrate men and nature, days getting longer, pink-colored sunsets, and the warm air caressing our thoughts.

How can you enjoy all of this in our 55 Municipalities? Here’s some suggestions for spending the most amazing time in this incredible Impressionist painting that is Spring in the Marca Maceratese.

Wild flowers

PH Riccardo Biagetti
Wild flowers in Monte Cavallo, photo by Riccardo Biagetti

Talking about flowerings, perhaps the flowering of lentils that floods the Plains of Castelluccio is the most known. However, each year and with no human intervention, between the middle of May and the beginning of June, a natural miracle happens on the plateau overlooking Sarnano.

On the Piani di Ragnolo (Ragnolo Plains), nature explodes into the finest of bouquets. Even the world’s best florist wouldn’t be able to do such a good job: we’re talking about the flowering of wild orchids, a totally spontaneous phenomenon which encompasses 51 different species of orchids in the same habitat. This is a precious feat, especially since we can only count one hundred species in Italy.

These wild species are very different from their exotic counterpart, usually seen in new homes and offices. Characterized by their straight stem and spike-like inflorescences, these plants vary for their shapes and colors, evoking more or less suggestive and definitely curious names. The Orchis Purpurea, with its typical purple color, is the most known. However, it is not uncommon that you observe other species, such as the Ochis Simia, also known as the Monkey Orchid, as well as the Orchis anthropophora, also called Man Orchid, as well as the Ophrys, with its flowers resembling the furry bodies of bees, in order to attract other pollinators. We won’t spoil too much, so you can go and see for yourself, but just know that orchids are not the only things you’ll find. There, dancing in the fields, are also mysterious and mythological asphodel flowers, fine and solitary daffodils, magical cornflowers, divine peonies, and the romantic forget-me-nots. But also poppies, gentians, buttercups, and violets.
In short, take your camera, come here and get mesmerized. Remember, orchids of the Sibillini Mountains are a protected species, it is not allowed to pick them, or any other flower, or you’ll be fined. It is a wonderful feeling to allow the next visitor to enjoy the same spectacle nature has shown you, so be gentle and be grateful. For more information on this area, the city of Sarnano talks about it in much more detail here.  

Talking about the flowering of lentils, in the Marca Maceratese it is possible to witness the flowering of rapeseed, which paints the fields of the whole province of a hypnotic, fluorescent yellow.

Particularly, on the plateau of Taverne, a lovely hamlet in the Municipality of Serravalle del Chienti, you’ll also see the white flowres of the “red potato of Colfiorito”, as well as red poppies and green lettuce.

Blooms get their best look between the end of June and the beginning of July, turning the plateau into a painting by Monet.

Finally, you cannot miss theMontelago Plateau, in the Municipality of Sefro: here you’ll see wild flowrings, too. Wild orchids, together with white daffodils and a thousand more nuances that nature each year has to offer. A symphony of colors which, if you listen carefully, recalls Vivaldi’s “Spring”. Come and experience it!

Villages in Bloom!

Beautiful are Monte San Martino‘s apple orchards, so much so that a stop of the Tour della Sibilla is dedicated to their blooming (3rd stop – Fioritura Mela Rosa Bike, May 8, 2022); not to mention Poggio San Vicino‘s untamed brooms, which can also be found on Recanati‘s ridges, which inspired the well-known poem by Giacomo Leopardi; moreover, the flowered balconies in the alleys of Montefano, thanks to the citizen’s joint initiative to preseve the biodiversity of the territory; finally, the suggestive ritual of San Giovann’s scented water held during the celebration of Penna San Giovanni‘s patron (June 24). Can you picture how wonderful it is to lose yourself in the city alleys and the countryside roads of our Municipalities?

On our Facebook and Instagram pages we will talk in more detail about some of the virtuous and poetic initiatives related to the rebirth of our Municipalities and Nature. Each Municipality has its own ritual to celebrate the beauty and resilience of Spring, so there are plenty of festivals, celebrations, and projects to make citizens and visitors part of this yearly, small-but-great miracle!

Between sacred and profane: the infiorata!

Infiorata of Castelraimondo, photo by @gionata1972

The Marca Maceratese boasts five of these carpet flowers, one more beautiful than the other!

They occur on the celebration of the Corpus Domini, an important date for the Christian calendar that this year falls from June 1619. This event is so important that our villages put on their best party clothes to celebrate this triumph of ancient traditions and modern creativity.

Let’s start with Castelraimondo, which perhaps boasts the most creative infiorata of the region. An explosion of colors covers the main street of the city which, especially at night, it resembles a magnificent open-air movie set.

The Infiorata of Corridonia runs through a two-thousand-meter path, decorated with leaves and other natural materials, and is accompanied by tastings of flower-based dishes. A pleasure for your eyes and palate!

Monte San Giusto mixes together sacredness, faith and art. The solemn procession along the streets of the historic center is guided by evocative floral artistic designs created by the citizens. Planning for the event goes on for months, and the community is all hands-on-deck.

The Infiorata of Montelupone is a great celebration of gifts, exchanges, and collective commitment. Some offer flowers from their own garden, others separate the corollas from the stems and order them according to the color, while others carefully deposit the petals on the pavement like a large mosaic. A joint work of art that gives the city a totally new look, making it always different one year after the other.

On Ascension Day, the Path of the Santissimo Crocifisso Sanctuary in Mogliano becomes a work of art thanks to the paintings in flowers made by the local associations.

It’s time to say goodbye for now, but if you liked this short, colorful and scented excursus just know that these are only a few of the many stories linked to spring blooms in the Marca Maceratese. We will tell more about all of this on our socials, along with other interesting fun facts.

Follow us and have a happy Spring!

PH Luca Buratti
Flowering of daffodils, hamlet of Taverne in Serravalle del Chienti, photo by Luca Buratti

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Mama’s tips:

“Li Vurgacci” – This path, which winds through wooden bridges and footbridges, combines the beauty of nature with its proximity to the old town centre. It begins where the waters of the Potenza River cross Pioraco, in the place where a series of waterfalls, vortexes, pits and gorges, created from years and years of erosion, come to life, almost if by magic. Here there are also some rest areas where you can stop for a nice picnic.

Paper and Watermark Museum – Here you can have a rare experience, which consists in observing the hand-made creation of sheets of paper by the gualchiera, which will also allow you to witness the incredible use of tools and techniques typical of the 14th century.

River shrimp festival – In August, do not miss this event with food stands open for lunch and dinner, which pays tribute to one of the most incredible delicacies of the territory
– a crustacean of unique sweetness and flavour.

Souvenirs – Are you looking for a souvenir that will allow you to relive the town’s spirit? Then you have to buy one of the incredible filigree paper artifacts produced in the extraordinary Gualchiera Prolaquense.

Pioraco

Mama’s tips:

So much to do! – The main events of the town are the Italian Regularity Championship for Vintage Motorcycles (an Italian Classic Car Race Event, in June), “Città del Miele” (lit. “City of Honey”, in July), Festa della Montagna (Mountain Festival, in July), the Sagra degli Arrosticini (Arrosticini Food Festival), “Giornata Bandiera Arancione del TCI” (Orange Flag Day, in October) and Sagra della Castagna (Chestnut Festival, in October).

Green break – Are you ready to get lost among many trails, the conservation area of Polverina and Lake Boccafornace? The natural beauties of this territory will leave you speechless!

Enjoy! – The local cheeses, honey, chestnuts, legumes, beef, lamb, Varnelli liquors, trout and freshwater fish will enrich your table with unforgettable moments!

Rebirth – The community of this town rich in art and history is tenacious and eager to make you fall in love with the natural beauty offered by their territory.

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