The people of Italy enjoy a climate with hot, dry weather in the summer months and unpredictable winters that vary in temperature and precipitation. The climate naturally, is dependent on the region of the country. Hundreds of plants are native to Italy, and are scattered throughout the country. Different plants thrive in different areas, dependent on their nature with some that thrive in the mountainous regions while others do well in the plains, valleys and areas near the ocean.
Native Italian Flowering Plants
The Aquilegia vulgaris is a flowering plant in the columbine family which is native to Italy. It is mostly found in shady, damp areas throughout the plains, valleys, mountains and Mediterranean regions. Also native to Italy, growing primarily near the Mediterranean Ocean, are honeysuckle, roses, jasmine, lilies, rosemary lavender, geraniums, daisies and agapanthus. Other flowering plants which are native to the valleys and plains in the central region of Italy, include bougainvilla, wild orchids, primrose, periwinkle, belladonna and red lilies. Because the northern region of Italy is mountainous and is a cooler climate than other parts of the country, the native flowers which grow in this area include more hardy species such as the glacial buttercup, the alpine crocus, the trumpet gentian and the alpine pansy.
Native Trees In Italy
wild unripe figs on the tree in santorini Greece image by Antony McAulay from Fotolia.com
The Italian fig tree is commonly found growing wild in the Mediterranean region of Italy. The Norwegian spruce, found throughout the northern region of Italy is a hardy tree that can grow to reach as high as 200 feet tall. The Aleppo pine is an evergreen tree that is native to Italy as well, and is found throughout the entire country. It is very adaptable to the entire country and all climates. The Arbequina olive tree is a hardy plant that grows well in cool but not cold environments. It does best in the humid to semi humid climates of the Mediterranean and the valley and plains in Italy.
Native Vegetables of Italy
Italy is the original home of many vegetables. Some of these include olives, broccoli, parsnips, carrots and artichokes. Many people are not aware of this, but the word "broccoli" is the Italian word that is plural for "broccolo", which is a reference to the flowering top of the broccolo plant. Parsnips are native to Italy as well. These vegetables have documented origins from as far back as the 15th century, with cookbooks from Italy using large amounts of parsnips. The artichoke is a plant that is native to the Mediterranean area of Italy, with many of recipes from years passed originating from Italy.