Station 11

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The walls of the Bastia

The summit of Mount San Michele was bordered by fortification walls dating back to the late Scaliger age, fixed on protruding limestone of the lower Miocene (from 23 to 15 million years ago), outcropping from the ground. In this way the walls, built in limestone blocks and binder in mortar with quicklime, resulted in a remarkable structural stability. The wall to the east of the church served as a containment to the external terrace of the same. To the south of the church was the cemetery area in use until the fifteenth century and then reused also on the occasion of the plague of 1630.

BLACK PINE Pinus nigra, Family Pinaceae
Native to Austria, it is planted as a windbreak, adapts to poor soils and was also used for reforestation after the Second World War on the southern slope of Monte San Michele. However, it is not suitable for living at an altitude of less than 500 meters and therefore easily falls ill in our area, and it is common to see large, silky white cocoons in the shape of flasks 30-40 cm in diameter on its branches. These are the nests of very hairy caterpillars of a nocturnal butterfly belonging to the Notodontidae, the processionary moth. Some birds (titmice, hoopoe, cuckoo) contribute to its control and must therefore be protected. In the pine processionary moth (Thaumetopoea pityocampa) the caterpillars that have emerged from the nest in search of fresh leaves arrange themselves in single file, the head of one is in contact with the abdomen of the one before it, thus making very long processions

Neither caterpillars nor nests should be touched because the bristles and their fragments penetrate the skin, causing a very itchy rash; the consequences are more serious if the eyes, nasal mucous membranes, mouth, respiratory and digestive tracts are affected.

CIPRESS Cupressus sempervirens, Family Cupressaceae
It is native to eastern Mediterranean countries and is a distinctive feature of the landscape around Lake Garda. The best known form is the pyramidalis, the wood is resinous and prized for the manufacture of furniture, as the aromatic smell keeps moths away. It is a long-lived plant, sometimes exceeding the millennium, and also grows to a height of 25 metres.

The Cypress in the myth
In a Greek myth, Cyparissus was a young hunter from an island in the Aegean Sea. One day, during a hunting trip, he saw a deer that was sacred to the nymphs. He accidentally hit it with his spear and killed it. Having realised his mistake, Cyparissus despaired and, despite Apollo trying to dissuade him, asked the gods for permission to mourn forever: he was thus transformed into a thousand-year-old tree. The tall, sombre trunks of the cypresses indicate from afar that there is a cemetery in that place; they represent mourning, but also salvation, hope.

1. East-facing retaining wall
2. Cemetery area
3. Boundary Wall
4. Boundary wall of the upper terrace
5. Retaining wall of the middle terrace

The publication of the historical-archaeological information has been authorized by the Superintendence SABAP VR-RO-VI

The CTG El Preon APS Group has decided to dedicate this route among nature, history and tradition to the memory of one of the group's founding members, Romano Giacomelli, a tireless supporter of Cavaionese culture and education, who passed away in 2022.