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Donnafugata collaborates with FAI in Palermo

Water – a precious resource: that is the theme that Fondo Ambiente Italiano (FAI) has adopted for its next national conference, due to be held in Palermo from 23rd to 25th February. Donnafugata is proud to announce its partnership with FAI for this event.

Donnafugata donated a Giardino Pantesco (meaning garden of Pantelleria) to FAI back in 2008. To mark the ten-year anniversary of this event, the Sicilian company has been invited to present to the conference this extraordinary example of an efficient agronomic solution designed to cope with the scarcity of water, a resource that is as precious to Pantelleria as it is to the rest of the planet.

Thanks to its size (11 metres in diameter and up to 4 metres in height) and the lava stone used for its construction, this circular garden provides the best microclimatic conditions needed to ensure the survival of an extraordinary and centuries-old orange plant known locally as Portogallo, or the Portugal orange plant.

The Giardino Pantesco represents an ingenious and self-sufficient system able to defend citrus trees from the two main threats to their survival on the island – wind and the scarcity of water.

The garden walls, erected around the tree, protect it from the wind and provide shade, which reduces the evaporation of moisture from the soil and the plant’s transpiration rate.  Even in the absence of irrigation, the condensation of atmospheric humidity during the night can help to meet the plant’s water requirements: dew deposition, which can reach considerable levels, is facilitated by the porosity of the rocks and the dry stone structure (which increases the deposition surface).

Pantelleria – and the Giardino Pantesco – are therefore an extraordinary symbol of traditional farming knowledge that the company presents to over 2,000 visitors every year, who come to visit Donnafugata’s  vineyards and wineries in the Khamma district of Pantelleria.

Further details of this initiative will shortly be published in the Events section of our website.

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