News from the Palace

Palazzo Parisio gardens get new winter look

January marks the beginning of a new year – a time for planning and preparation for the year ahead. This philosophy is imperative in the business world, however it is just as important in the garden.

The gardens at Palazzo are known for their bursts of colour as the different varieties of bougainvillea creep over the baroque walls. To keep these at their most beautiful, they are getting the chop this week.

Laura Vigliansi, from Sun Island Nursery in Sicily, is in Malta this week overseeing the maintenance required as our resident gardeners Raymond Caruana and new addition to our garden staff Salvatore Califano climb the ladders with garden shears. 


“For the bougainvillea to flourish in the summer it’s really important to have it pruned in the winter. This is something we do every year and even though it’s sad to see the flowers go today, it’s for the long term benefit of the garden.” 

“If you don’t prune it in the winter when it comes to flowering season, the plant will only blossom at the ends. If you want them to flower close to the wall for that explosion of colours, you have to cut them down in the winter,” Laura said.

Laura goes on to say that another reason to prune the bougainvillea is that, when they aren’t pruned, the plant gets very dry close to the walls and this provides the perfect opportunity for rodents to nest. Clearing everything in the winter ensures the gardens remain free of pests so guests can enjoy their lunch undisturbed. 

The walls also need a little bit of air in the winter. Keeping them covered in plants all year round means that the damp never has a chance to dry out and this will damage the walls in the long run. 

So even though the garden may look a little dreary in the winter months, we are expecting the first leaves to be back by March and flowering again by June. As Theodore Roosevelt said, nothing worth having comes easy, and these weeks of bare walls will certainly be worth it come summer. 

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