the sharecropping period, which was a culture of self-sufficiency, fruit
and vegetable work was taken over by women. In Le Marche region fruit and
vegetable growing began thanks to them.
The female touch is visible through a thousand details: more precision in
tomato planting, in alternating rows with flowers. Tradition that find
their place particularly in tow natural gardens and agrarian paradises:
the Aso and Tronto Valleys. Were nearly all kinds of products of the earth
grow easily, thanks to their micro clime.
The best-known product of this area are: broccoli cauliflower of Fano (late)
and Jesi (early). Research show that the cauliflower was born in this
region and then brought to many European countries. Nowadays it represents
the most interesting product and is even getting more and more importance.
The premature artichoke of Jesi (called violet) and the one of Ascoli:
according to history, Caterina de’ Medici used to be very fond of this
sort of vegetable. Artichokes are very important for their pharmaceutical
The early one of Jesi, picked at the beginning of March and usually grown
without weed-killers, stand out for its fragrance, tenderness nd the
largest number of edible leaves. The we must mention fennels of
Loreto, broad beans of Ostra, scarola salad, gobbi of
the Macerata province and the red potatoes of the plateau of
Colfiorito (Macerata), undamaged by parasites, and the high quality white
The best apricots are grown in the hills surrounding Macerata and in
Sassoferrato area, while Angelica pears come from Serrungarina. The peaches
of the Also Valley (Ascoli Piceno) are also well-known. The peach
cultivation, native to China, is excellent in this territory because of
its mild temperature and rainfall. We mustn’t forget the pink apples
of Amandola, which are very small but very tasty and not comparable to
anything of their kind (according to the Latin poet Orazio). This species,
along with the cucuccetta shaped pears of St. Emidio, face the risk
A great deal of tasty fruit of country trees, such as sour cherries and
black cherries from Cantiano, plums and quinces, are picked just to
make the traditional delicious jams, and the same happens to blackberries.
A specific attention should be given to herbs, described long time ago by
the naturalists of Le Marche in the XVI century. This region is among the
three Italian regions, which have the largest quantity (70 hectares) of
herbs useful for pharmaceutical perfumery and grocery industries. Once
spontaneous, the main plants still today are coriander, passiflora
and levantino and also green anise, issopo,
lavender, lemon balm, mint, sage…
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