One of the leading vegetable nurseries in Emilia Romagna, Vivai Garattoni Umberto in San Mauro Pascoli, produces around 100 million plants every year. The main products are leaf vegetables, fennel, celery, and brassicas. There is also the organic division.
Technicians Carlo Valois, Cristian Magnani and Mirco Tonini with Romina Garattoni
"The company was set up by my father, Umberto, in 1982. Then, after his untimely departure, it was taken over by my mother, Umberta Casalboni, myself, and my sister Monica. We are located in an area that specializes in vegetables at the border between the Forlì-Cesena and Rimini provinces, but we also have clients in Emilia, Tuscany, Marche, and other areas in central Italy."
A bird's eye view of the nursery in San Mauro Pascoli (Forlì-Cesena)
The company boasts almost 60 greenhouses covering 4 hectares in total. There was constant growth up until 3-4 years ago, "now we have stabilized production. The panorama is changing all the time: there are fewer producers, and those who remain deal with larger areas."
"It is not easy to find workers and, most of all, they are not easy to train due especially to the turnover. We invest time and money in training, and then workers suddenly go back to their country of origin, and we need to start from scratch."
The San Mauro Pascoli area specializes in vegetables, and it went through a crisis around twenty years ago when diseases affecting the lettuce root system seemed to leave no escape. "The soil was tired. That is why some diseases were particularly invasive. Then tolerant and resistant varieties were selected, thanks to the research of seed companies and, today, controlling some diseases is much simpler also thanks to greater rotations."
Sowing can be carried out in formats 3x3 for manual transplants and 3.7x3.7, suitable for transplanters. Cells (available in various formats) are sowed with specific machines, and mechanical or manual re-staking of plants is used for some types. To obtain the highest percentage of germination possible and the highest germination energy, the sown material is entirely packaged in germination units.
"We carry out our work with passion and dedication following what Umberto Garattoni imagined 40 years ago, i.e., being at the service of growers and the vegetable world."
For more information
Vivai Garattoni Umberto
Via Lambro, 353
47030 San Mauro Pascoli (FC)
Tel.: +39 0541.936720