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Flowers and Flavors

The canals in bloom like you've never seen

There are some weekends where you escape Milan, almost out of routine rather than for necessity, but sometimes the plan is to stay. It’s the eve of Design Week in the city and there is a fervor of workers and composers, a hustle-bustle of foreigners that give a cosmopolitan touch. But that’s not all: just once a year the shores of the Naviglio (Canal) transform into a colorful, perfumed and busy flower market, in a unique framework. The initiative is called “Fiori e sapori” (“Flowers and Flavors”) and hosts more than 200 floriculturists coming from all of Italy and many schools of floriculture.

You can smell the country agricultural fair in the air with customers of every kind which praise or comment at every stall. You’ve got everything you can think of, from whirling cacti thickly covered in quills, stalls specialized in tight bouquets of buttercups, layers of aromatic herbs or cases of violets or mini carnations. But there’s more: flower compositions are here too, plants that emerge from scary dinosaurs and ferocious animals or the more tranquil antique books.

Walking around has worked up our appetites? The fair is baptized “Flowers and flavors” for a specific reason, therefore typical and genuine foods are here too. Herbal teas, essences or jars of honey and conserves also. And that’s not all: the shops, ateliers, restaurants, cafes of the entire area stay open to serve the visitors. We take the opportunity to sit at a table outside and enjoy lunch kissed by the sunshine, while canoes and the fleet dart through the water trickling by as they sail the river.

We’re all set and we take the chance to walk along the Darsena where we notice a mamma duck with a platoon of baby ducks following along. It is time to go home now, we didn’t go that far but it was even better than leaving town.

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