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after one month of rain, 2022 blur_edited_edited_edited_edited.png

Our land and olive groves

Annotated aerial-EN.jpg
In the above aerial photograph, made in 2022, the colored area represents Poggiosole's seven hectares (about 17 acres) of land. Towards the left is our front gate (gray dot and property name), and inside the yellow-bordered shape of our perimeter fence is what most guests will remember: the fienile with its two lodgings, the parking area and pool (behind which our vegetable garden and solar panel matrix), the inner olive grove with its rusty gate leading to a few rows of vines, the first few dozen trees of our outer grove and the wide open field (our campo alto) one can cross to walk the 400 meters to the hamlet of Romita. But as this annotated image shows, there is much more besides. And since 2022 we've been busy tidying it all up, so that future guests will feel invited to explore further, marvel at the wizened trunks of our older olive trees, picnic in the undulating campo basso, stargaze from the lower grove or, for the very few: brave a pack of wild boar rooting in the outer grove before dawn. 😉

The broader context is the Chianti fiorentino, the portion of the historic Tuscan wine-growing region that's closer to the Florence-Siena axis. By car, Poggiosole is within 35 minutes of Certaldo Alto, San Gimignano, Monteriggioni, Greve, Lamole, Montefioralle, and Castellina and Radda in Chianti as well as Florence itself. Closer in are the towns of Barberino, Marcialla, San Casciano, Mercatale, Monteriggioni, Badia a Passignano, and Panzano. Siena and Volterra are less than an hour away. 

Chianti is hilly and rural but far from wild. Although there are some untended wooded areas, this land has been farmed for centuries, primarily to produce wine, olive oil, and pecorino (sheep's milk cheese). The vistas are a patchwork of the striated texture of vineyards, the smooth expanse of open fields and the densely dotted pattern of olive groves punctuated by the narrow silhouette of the Mediterranean cypress set against big skies. The climate is very dry in summer; visiting from mid-June to mid-September you will be hard-pressed to find green grass, unless the area is artificially irrigated. The resulting contrast between the ochre-colored meadows and the dark green foliage of drought-resistant olive, vitis vinifera, oak and maple trees along with abundant thorny brush and sparsely scattered, pale-yellow stuccoed or stone houses give the Tuscan countryside a unique palette and visual rhythm. 

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