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Hotel  La Ville Catania

Botanical gardens

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Via Claudio Monteverdi, 15
Post code I-95131 Catania Sicily Italy
Tel. 0039 (0) 95 7465230 - Fax 0039 (0) 95 7465230

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The university of Catania is the earliest one in Sicily; it was founded by Alphonsus the Magnificent of  Arragon in 1434. The first Chair of Botany was established only in 1788 within the context of Medical and Chemical studies. Seventy years later, in 1858, Francesco Tornabene Roccaforte, in a benedictine monk and holder of the Chair of Botany, strongly contributed to lay the foundation of the eagerly awaited Botanical Gardens. The buildings were originally designed by the Chair of Architecture, Prof. Mario Distefano, whilst Prof. Tornabene saw to the plant arrangement.

The Main Building

The Institute Buildings as referred to in the original plan designed by architect Distefano and approved in 1857 comprised the Lecture hall, the Herbarium, and a library. Situated at the end of the central path widening in the shape of a semicircle from the main gate in Via Etnea, the building façade appears to be larger than it really is thanks to an outstanding portico with double-lined columns on top of a white marble staircase. The building columns are of the ionic order, the ceiling is coffered.

Main Collections the Succulents

The numerous plants being grown in the Botanical Gardens are arranged in collections, some of which are quite remarkable. The collection of succulents plants is certainly the most relevant of the general garden; due to their peculiar shapes and structures they are amongst the most interesting plants from a didactic and ornamental point of view. By way of subsequent acquisitions, the collection currently comprises about 2000 species being grown both outdoors and in greenhouses

The Palm Collection

No less interesting is the Collection of Palms, due to Sicily’s mild climate they can be cultivated outdoors.This collection consist of about one hundred specimens, some of which quite large in size.

Orto botanico: via Antonino Longo 19, Catania,  Opening: from monday to friday h.9,00-13,00, sunday closed. Visits on request.


Catania Hotel La Ville - Via Monteverdi, 15 - Post code I-95131 - Catania Sicily Italy
Tel. 0039 (0) 95 7465230 - Fax 0039 (0) 95 7465230 - VAT 03634070878 -
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