Garden Blog

Sustainability, organic & heirloom permaculture garden Blog

For over 30 years we have been involved in organic living and every issue related to it. Through this time, we have always tried to respect every part of nature in our work and in the way we live. Through actions & sharing we want to creat a sustainable agricultural system based on the old traditional ways. We want it to be a valuable resource and teaching farm for visitors from all over the world.

Farm Shop Maso Plaz

In our antique farm-shop you can find a large variety of fresh fruit and vegetable products from our own garden. There are also juices, wines, liquors, teas, ham and sausages or home baked bread. We also offer typical products from local producers such as olive oil from the Garda Lake region, Groppello wine or “Schüttelbrot” from Ultental.

We also have a small garden shop where you can purchase plants throughout the season that are adapted to our climate. From spring to autumn, we offer a nice variety of hardy plants like flowering and ornamental shrubs, trees and herbs. They are provided as potted plants and sold from the table.

Vendita diretta

Heirloom Fruits & Vegetables at Maso Plaz

The production of fruit varieties is one of the main pillars of our concept. Within the range of plants, we grow stone fruits (peaches, apricots, plums and cherry varieties), pomaceous fruits (apples and pears), nuts, raspberries, strawberries, currants, gooseberries, blackberries, and aronia berries from the Andes. We place particular importance and care on the old varieties of apples and pears, and there are always small quantities of each variety used in our kitchen or sold in the shop. Vineyards are new to the farm, which are possible thanks to new resistant varieties where there is no need for the use of chemicals. Hazelnuts and walnuts are plentiful on the farm, and there is also access to a hazelnut forest to enjoy the shade.

Frutta e Verdura

Farm Vegetables in Trentino

We have brought over 30 years of organic gardening experience to Maso Plaz and have applied those principles to our numerous vegetables gardens and beds in mixed cultures. We also show you how to create your own self-sufficient garden. Our own garden is a year round source where we provide all the basic foods we need.

Our assortment includes lettuce, beans, cabbage, peas, chilis, pumpkins, cucumbers, tomatoes and root vegetables. The garden also has special varieties, such as asparagus, cardy and salsify. The yearly rotation of cultures between the various beds keeps the soil fertile and our plants healthy and tasty. We use no chemicals and only use organic fertilizers for our gardens.

All products are found in our shop, with large quantities of tomatoes, pumpkins and potatoes.

Antichi alberi di pera 

Our plants

 

Herbs

Herbs are the “tender helpers.” There is an infinite quantity of plants that enhance the quality of our garden, give us natural medicines, and spice up our dishes. These plants are intelligent and grow everywhere. Also, the “weeds” are herbs and can have medicinal purposes. Visitors to the herb garden can see how different plants grow, while stimulating all the senses.

Lavanda

Our “Garden of biodiversity” is our contribution to the conservation of traditional and old varieties of fruits and vegetables and in preserving their original aromas and tastes.

2010 has been declared the “International year of biodiversity,” despite the fact that the concentration and domination of the world market is moving agriculture in a different direction and not allowing producers to grow in a sustainable way. The market is dictating agricultural methods, requiring more intensive farming methods to meet the demands of the wholesale distributors who provide goods for the “large market.” The farmers, therefore, have to produce mass quantities of products to meet the demands.

Interview with Alois Margesin in the Programme A come Alpi di RTTR

 

Because of this, Maso Plaz is dedicated to a sustainable agricultural system based on the old traditional ways of growing the fruits, vegetables and herbs that have traditionally been grown in Northern Italy. Visitors have the opportunity to learn about plants and varieties in danger of extinction and at the same time experience the beauty of nature and the conservation of plant species within the model of an ornamental and permacultural garden. One can find agricultural crops, medicinal plants and ornamental plants, all in their original and GMO-free (Genetically Modified Organism) form.

Campo fiorito

Visitors will enjoy the flowerbeds, Mediterranean landscapes, vegetables, mixed vegetable crops, tomato varieties, pumpkins, soft fruit, lavender beds, aromatic and culinary herbs, colorful trees, lemons, oranges, orchids, creeks and lakes. The experience will awaken and arouse all the senses and provide a beautiful and relaxing environment for the entire family.

Visitors can enjoy lawns for sunbathing, swimming ponds, natural scenic trails and panoramic points. The local dishes from the farm’s agritourism restaurant will delight visitors with an authentic Italian dining experience. In addition, our high quality fruits, vegetables, and natural products and plants can be purchased at a reasonable price.

Giardino

Permaculture Garden Layout

The 35.000m2 garden will be an ornamental park where visitors can walk through paths starting at the parking area about 100m from the farmhouse. Along the way, visitors will find a sunbathing area and a swimming pond.

Ape

Nearby one will find the farm’s very own Bar and Restaurant, and after crossing the orchard and ornamental lake, one can visit the beautiful little Chapel and Madonna. Within this area, visitors will find berry shrubs, a tomato house, asparagus cultures, cabbage beds and a large fruit garden which is grown in a permacultural system.

After touring the gardens, visitors can linger in areas that provide a panoramic view of the entire Val di Non. During autumn’s Indian summer the valley floor is bursting with fall colors surrounding a beautiful lake. At the end of the visit, there are animal stables, an herbal garden, vineyard, lavender beds and potato, grain and pumpkin fields.

Scientific Thesis at Maso Plaz:
"Annual vegetable intercropping, its unfluences on arthropod fauna and crop production in comparison with monoculture systems"

From 26th May 2012 to 1st September 2012 Christian Kofler from Algund conducted a research at Maso Plaz for the "Bachelor in Agricultural Science and Agricultural Technology" at the Faculty of Science and Technology of the Free University of Bozen/Bolzano.

The experiment focused on the ability of permaculture to face the needs in productivity and to quantify its self-protection-capacity. However, since permaculture is a too widely spread subject, Christian focused on one of the kez techniques of permacultural production: intercropping.

The conducted experiments worked on three different intercroppings of annual vegetables: carrots and onions; leeks and tomatoes and further cabbages and celeries. For each of the polycultures were planted the corresponding monocultures an monitored the insect populations and crop-production, aiming to compare between the two agronomic techniques and the different intercrongs.

The experiments were carried out on Maso Plaz. The provided surface on an altitude of 1,000 m a.s.l. led to the splitting of the 9 eexperimental plots on three locations.

The insect populations were monitored using 4 yellow- and 4 blue sticky cards on each experimental field. Additionally there was installed on each field 1 pit-fall trap.

The harvest data were recorded weighing each plant (except carrots which have been weighed per row) according to the plant-physiology and the form in which they were sold at least one, but generally two or more times and the weight were registered according to its qualitz in three quality categories.

Insect samples were collected every two weeks between the 26th of May and the 1st of September. The results of the analyses showed per each field an individual population dynamic. However, also trends were found for fields of each locations.

The harvest was analysed by calculating he land-equivalent-ratio (LER) using the recorded harvest weights. Additionally, the average production per square meter was calculated and a quality development monitoring for the individual harvest have been made.

Under the aspect of productivity only the intercropping of carrots and onions produced less compared to the corresponding monocultures. Concerning the calculated LER, the tomatoes - leeks intercropping produced the same quantity of produce than its related monocultures. The combination of cabbages and celeries is the most productive companion planting of all the three combinations.

For more detailed information Christian Kofler can be directly contacted at:

Tel. +39 3664244565