Minoprio Foundation is a natural reservoir of about sixty hectares of plants, 25 km from Milan and 10 from Como.
The heart of the Foundation is Villa Raimondi, built in the eighteenth century, which now houses the executive offices. The villa shows nineteenth century interventions on the façade, lightened by the tympanum bearing the family crest and the open gallery. Some rooms on the ground floor are frescoed and have mosaic floors. The wing facing the Seveso river leading to the botanical garden is particularly attractive: more than 300 main tree species and roughly 1,600 shrubs and small trees grow in the seven hectare garden. Amongst the monumental specimens are a magnificent Magnolia grandiflora, a secular lime tree and a Sophora japonica “Pendula”. More than 100 varieties of azaleas and rhododendrons, 130 varieties of camellia, 200 varieties of perennials, Japanese maples, trees and hedges, 70 dwarf conifers, 50 varieties of iris, 40 of tree and herbaceous peonies, 20 hydrangeas, 70 ground cover and shrub roses, 14 species and varieties of wisteria, 25 species and varieties of ornamental grasses also grow in the park. An orchard of over 20 hectares contains collections of old fruit varieties (more than 100 varieties of fruit trees and 30 soft fruits) and there are also greenhouses with tropical, Mediterranean and pumpkins collections.
The level of preparation of the pupils of the Floro Orto Frutticoltura School, responsible for looking after the plants, is appreciated by the public, more than 50,000 visitors a year, who flock to visit this treasure. It is a natural archive, open to students and plant-lovers, who can enjoy the expertise of the personnel on the guided tours.