24 Apr 2008

Plantation House Ecotourism Site

Plantation House Ecotourism Site is located on 2 acres of land in the Cayman Islands in the Caribbean Sea. The Site is a working small farm, agritourism site and residence specialising in the limited-scale growing of tropical and sub-tropical fruits, nuts, spices, vegetables, medicinal and ornamental plants, and their products.

All of the traditional Caribbean plantation crops such as sugarcane, coffee, cacao, tobacco and pineapples are grown alongside newer crops such as atemoya, dragon fruit, santol and jaboticaba. Agro-tourism visitors and locals are able to easily view these crops and learn much about growing their own within limited spaces.

The Site also has a small waterfall, stream and pool combination, a seperate reflection pool, and a fresh-water fish pond. There are many species of birds (including chickens) and the occasional agouti or iguana roaming in their natural habitat.

The Garden Shop (opening November 2010) will offer fresh juices and food, preserves, teas and coffees and there are several garden structures such as gazebos and stone terraces that offer quiet places to sit and enjoy.

Plantation House Nursery is also located on the Site and has plants for sale in pot sizes ranging from 1/2 gallons to 15 gallons, as well as seeds and cuttings. Visit us at Plantataion House Ecotourism Site from November 2008 onwards and enjoy a bit of the old Caribbean way of life.

18 Apr 2008

Mangosteen Update on Earth Day 2008

I have been nurturing 2 Mangosteen plants for 2 1/2 years. These were grown from seed taken from store-bought fruit.

The trees (2 survivors from about 20 seedlings) have been growing in various sized pots under a "Geffner" Atemoya tree and are now at 3-gallon size. This Earth Day, if all goes well, they will find their permanent home in a specially constructed 60 cubic yard raised bed and kept under shade screening for another 2 years. Wish me luck please, after Mangosteen is the Queen of Fruits (smile). Happy Earth Day 2008!!

16 Apr 2008

Abiu Update April 2008

About 4 months ago I put 2 air layers on my Abiu tree (now 17 months since planting). High winds had broke off one of the layers earlier and the other was dying back so yesterday I decided to cut it off. There were no roots formed as yet but the layer had significant root callousing. In doing this I also found to my surprise that 2 tiny fruit had already formed.

9 Apr 2008

April 2008 Breakfast

My breakfast this morning was a mixture of tree-picked East Indian Mangos chased with me munching my way though freshly-pulled 'French Breakfast' Radishes and 'Chantenay' Carrots. Sounds like a crazy combination but all of this is possible here in Cayman. My toddler daughter(last) did'nt like the radishes though (maybe the underlying peppery taste) but instead opted for a "Cayman Brac" naseberry (sapodilla, nispero).

She is 1 1/2 years old and the other morning she was eating a "June Plum" or (Ambarella/Golden Apple/Tahitian Quince/Pomme cythere) and I offered her a piece of mango to which she promptly dropped the June Plum and kicked it away from her feet (with her little boots) and took the mango, and in one motion it went from my hand to her mouth - I smiled to myself and thought 'even the little ones know the difference'. PS. not saying that a June Plum is not a nice fuit to some but probably not in the same league as a fresh mango!!

We did about 400 new plantings of Okra and Cucumber on the weekend and about 2,000 square feet of 2 corn varieties from New Zealand, for testing. Got some rain recently - very encouraging as it heats up - rains which we hope will continue.

Breadfruit, Bottlers, and Papaya are starting to mature now at Plantation House so these will also be available at the Saturday mornings Farmers Market at The Grounds under the Stacey Watler Agricultural Pavilion in Lower Valley - in addition to passion fruit, cucumber, eggplant, june plum, guava, carrot, hot pepper, relish/season pepper, sweet pepper, and radish.