Lemons into lemonade, NO limoncello!
The wonderful language school in Sorrento, Sorrento Lingue, has sent me this post on the Lemons of Sorrento.....They have also promised some other wonderful stories to share with us....
The "gardens" terraced for the cultivation of citrus fruits are a unique feature of the Sorrento peninsula. The lemons hanging from the trees of the Coast, in systems with terraces, are mostly of a quality so sweet, slightly sour flavor and round, which is called "Pane” (bread), as it can easily be eaten in slices for dessert with or without the addition of a spoonful of sugar.
The Sorrento gardens are easily recognizable by the characteristic "pergola", the traditional protection of citrus groves of Sorrento. The pergola structure was established as a defense against adverse environmental conditions, and thanks to two key elements: windbreaks and hedges, is used to protect the plants since lemon and orange trees, are particularly sensitive to wind and cold.
In addition to this important feature, coverage determines some changes in the characteristics of citrus. The low light and temperatures often slows vital functions of the plant, so that the bloom is concentrated in late spring from the month of May. Fruit ripening is, therefore, late and the harvest takes place between spring and summer each year.
In addition to the aesthetic appearance of the pergola is one of the most fascinating landscape of the Amalfi-Sorrento Coast.
At the end of the 800's the landscape of Peninsula Sorrentine was full of citrus so as to occupy about 40% of the total area. With the passage of time farmers began to specialize in the cultivation of oranges and lemons. To protect them from the cold they built "the pagliarelle" placed on trellis made with chestnut poles.
In 1830 fair trade in citrus fruits. The oranges were collected and transported to the warehouse with carts pulled by donkeys. Then they proceeded to selection and then into packaging boxes.
After collection, the work was mainly done by women called “incartatrici" (wrapping), as the fruits wrapped in colored tissue paper, on which was engraved the name of the company, the brand and the quality of the fruit.
Later, other women called "maestre” (teachers) put oranges in crates to be transported to the port of Marina Piccola in Sorrento or Marina di Cassano in Piano di Sorrento: here the crates were shipped to be transported across Europe and America.
Thank you Valeria for this wonderful post.
On your next Italian adventure take Italian lessons at Sant’Anna Institute-Sorrento Lingue
and live as an Italian!
and live as an Italian!