Valtellina is steep and rocky, with very little flat valley bottom for farming. The only way to go was up: the inhabitants from the earliest times terraced the sheer hillsides, carrying stones and hauling earth. Much of this work was carried out during the eighteenth century, when an increase in the local population led to an increase in the productivity and extent of Valtellina’s cultivated grounds, in a heroic effort that resulted in the over 2000 km of dry-stone walls that can still be seen today.
The terraced vineyards spread over the slopes for 50 kilometres, reaching an altitude of 700 metres.
The terraced vineyards enjoy their own microclimate. In winter the ground rarely freezes, and snow does not last long. Thanks to these conditions, it’s possible to grow succulents and other plants accustomed to warmer climates, such as olive trees. Oleanders and mimosas thrive, flower, and fruit in Valtellina. Due to their conformation and their placement on steep slopes, our terraced vineyards must be cultivated entirely by hand.