Spring in Val di Non is by far the longest in Trentino. As early as the end of February, heather colours with purple the many walks near the villages. Everything is full of flowers and colours until July: from heather to crocus at high altitude, from the elegant globeflowers to the tenacious rhododendrons.Here we tell you in which areas of Val di Non these bloomings occur, ranging from the earliest to the latest, and the best walks to admire them. So get ready for a truly colourful read!
The blossoming of Heather
Heather (Erica L.) is a very hardy plant that is not afraid of the cold and is therefore the first to blossom, as early as the end of February.
In sunny spots, such as along the edges of forest paths and roads, they immediately turn a strong purple colour. It spreads to shrubs that, once in bloom, form beautiful pastel coloured cushions.
In Val di Non, there are many walks that skirt the heather-rich woods. As they are at low altitudes and exposed to the sun, the snow leaves early on these walks and already by the end of February it feels like spring.
Not surprisingly, the best-known walk is the Heather Route (Sentiero dell'erica), which starts at Lake Smeraldo near Fondo and leads up towards the botanical garden.
Another classic is the 'Merlonga Walk', a flat and scenic route with Heather shrubs on one side and panoramic terraces over the Coredo lakes and the Sanctuary of San Romedio on the other.
The blossoming of Crocus
Crocuses (Crocus L.), in the popular imagination, are the flowers that herald spring. The fact that they peep out of the last patches of spring snow, however, leads to their being mistaken for another flower, the Snowdrop. It is actually Crocus Vernus, a perennial plant that populates high-altitude pastures but also meadows near villages.
Unlike heather, the blooming of Crocus actually feels like a surprise. Because it is a bulb, its presence remains concealed until the long purple petals of its flowers suddenly appear!
Since the blossoming of Crocus goes hand in hand with the melting of the snow, the flowers start appearing in March in the meadows near the houses and then reach the alpine pastures at high altitudes around the beginning of June.
A walk tinged with the typical violet of Crocus is the one that leads from the centre of the village of Tret to the scenic viewpoint above the Tret waterfall. It is a short, sunny walk and if you continue beyond the viewpoint, you will reach the province of Bolzano and the pretty village of San Felice.
To admire the Crocus blossom at high altitudes, on the other hand, we recommend the slopes of Mount Peller. Here - at an altitude of 2,000 metres a.s.l. - the Crocus blossom around May. The timing depends very much on the climate: for example, a winter with little rainfall will bring the Crocus flowers into bloom earlier!
*Beware: in spring there is still snow on the north-facing section between Malga Clesera and Lago delle Salare. We recommend staying on the sunny section between Passo della Forcola, Malga Tassulla and the Peller mountain refuge!
The blossoming of the Globeflower
In June, time comes for the blossoming of the Globeflower (Trollius europaeus). The name Globeflower perfectly describes their shape and colour: a slightly flattened sphere with incredibly intense shades of yellow.
Although in some locations the Globeflower is in full bloom, it is a protected plant and we urge you not to pick its flowers!
It is also toxic: in fact, it is wisely avoided by animals and also for this reason its blossoms are perfectly preserved!
The Globeflower blooms from the beginning of June and colours with yellow the many pastures over 1,300 m a.s.l. in Val di Non.
To admire the Globeflower's blossoming, we recommend the walk up to Lake Tret: the path cuts straight through and climbs with a constant gradient up to the lake. If you prefer a less steep yet longer walk, we recommend you follow the easy forest path instead.
Another corner of Val di Non rich in large meadows that in June turn Globeflower yellow is the one between the Predaia mountain refuge and malga Rodeza. The mountain refuge can be reached by car. From there, an easy forest path leads in about 30 minutes' walk to malga Rodeza. This first part of the classic hike up to the scenic Corno di Tres mountain crosses large, sunny pastures, the ideal environment for the Globeflower.
The blossoming of Rhododendrons
The last great and spectacular late spring blossoming in Val di Non is that of the Rhododendrons (Rhododendron L.). Actually, we are very close to summer because the Rhododendron is a plant that only grows at altitude and spring arrives a little later up here.
In Val di Non, the undisputed theatre of Rhododendron blossom is the Maddalene mountain group. We are in the area of Rumo in a part of Trentino that borders on South Tyrol.
The Maddalene group is known and appreciated for the hospitality of its well-kept mountain pastures, for the many hiking trails away from the crowds, and for the abundance of streams and lakes.
The rich larch vegetation at an altitude of 1,800 metres a.s.l. thins out and makes way for lush Rhododendron shrubs. In June, they turn an intense pink colour that completely covers the sunny slopes of the Maddalene peaks.
As you may have guessed, to admire this flowering you will have to venture to higher altitudes. We recommend the hike to Lake Trenta starting from Malga Bordolona, which can be easily reached by car from the village of Bresimo. If the hike is too demanding, you can only walk the stretch between the malga Bordolona Bassa (lower) and malga Bordolona Alta (higher).
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