Step into Giromagi and you find yourself in the most wonderful world of exotic cactuses and succulent plants exhibited amongst vibrant colours and textures.
Gianni, Romano, Marcello, Giulio – the four brothers behind this inspirational venture – bring to the Val di Chiana a totally new experience. Their father’s love of cactuses saw him selling compositions in the local market place, while the brothers have developed Giromagi into the number one seller of exotic plants on the Italian market and the second in Europe. To date they export to 74 countries worldwide.
Located in Terontola, Giromagi Garden offers over 3000 sqm of space to exhibit cactuses and succulents originating from every corner of the world to their very own creation: euphorbia meloformis variegata.
The story behind Giromagi dates back to 1966, with Patrizio Pipparelli nourishing his passion for plants in his greenhouse of a few square metres. A family man, who had worked for the railways, proposed on retirement to his eldest son – who was studying agronomy – to start a business in cacti and succulents. Having persuaded a rather dubious bank manager of the viability of the endeavor, they were granted a loan. At the onset, they travelled through Italy looking for flower shops and garden centres that would be interested in their plants.
This was the beginning of their networking which took them to international fairs to search out ever-rarer varieties of plants. They would bring them back to Terontola where they would reproduce them in greater quantities, as well as producing hybrids over time. It’s such a specialized field that in 10 years Giromagi has created one such hybrid cultivar.
Giromagi's euphorbia meloformis variegata
Nowadays, the numbers speak for themselves – Giromagi has a production area of 50,000sqm – spread across 4 greenhouses around the Lago Trasimeno area, as well as two recent acquisitions in Sicily and the Canary Islands. On site they have circa 800 species of plants at any one time and place on the international market over 10 million plants a year.
A diverse workforce of professionals runs the business – from sourcing, identifying, reproducing and ensuring that the plants grow in their optimal environmental conditions - to the logistic teams spread across four continents and speaking more than 10 languages. An elaborate online platform allows you to order a specific plant – which the team has photographed from multiple perspectives to capture its very detail, and then prepares and sends it on its way. The platform is in English and Italian – and provides detailed information on the species, its characteristics, habitat, how to care for it (including reproduction hints) and any other known curiosities such as the origins of its name.
The logistics team receives orders and responds to customers’ needs and requirements, including sorting out compliance and certification with demanding legislations and restrictions in markets such as Canada, USA, China and Japan. The plants are individually wrapped by expert hands and packed in Giromagi branded boxes made of 100% recyclable materials.
Sustainability is central to the Giromagi brand, with attention to ecological packaging, the recycling of all production components and an environmentally friendly process. The shipment of orders is fast and reliable, thanks to the high-performing logistic set up, space optimization and annual planning together with their clients.
Giromagi offers a variety of services besides supplying cacti or succulents for private collections or as gifts. Cucinelli and Mariano Di Vaio organized their fashion shoots amongst the giant cacti, while Giromagi design studio experts provide consultancy services to conceive and build large gardens, indoor and outdoor green areas, urban furnishings and even exclusive settings for public and private events.
Profits each year are reinvested into the company, and there are promises of some interesting developments in the coming spring.
I’d highly recommend paying a visit and then you’ll see that you’ll want to return again and again.
Location: Giromagi Garden Centre, Terontola, Venella. (Coming from Cortona, it is just 50 metres – on the left hand side of the road - before the Castiglione del Lago entrance to the Bettolle-Perugia ring road).
Opening times: Everyday – Monday to Sunday (excluding 25th/26th December, 1st January, 15th August and Easter days), at the following times:
- Summer opening hours: 9am – 1pm / 4pm – 8pm
- Winter opening hours: 9am – 1pm / 3pm – 7pm
Tel. 0575 67380