Ninfa: The extraordinary tale of an English country garden which thrives in the heart of Italy

Mar 03, 2019 223

BY: Charles Quest-Ritson

I first heard about Ninfa when I was barely out of school. It was an English garden made around the ruins of an abandoned Italian town somewhere south of Rome. Lots of people seemed to know the owners, but we didn’t, so it was some years before I wangled an introduction, passed through the garden gate and found myself in Paradise.

I wrote about it ecstatically in my first book, The English Garden Abroad, nearly 30 years ago, but Ninfa has a way of working ever deeper into your skin and, eventually, I had to dedicate a whole book to it. This was published in 2009 as Ninfa: The Most Romantic Garden in the World and is the only book I’ve ever written on spec, without a publishing contract until I’d finished it.

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