If you haven’t visited ECHO near Ft. Meyers, FL: put a tour on your day trip schedule. They have a nursery and shop with edible plants and seeds. But most interesting for our group are the extensive orchard and experimental gardens where they research and demonstrate the best plants and practices for reducing world hunger. This month our speaker is David Erickson, the President and CEO of ECHO. The topic of the talk will be an overview of ECHO’s mission and their work around the world.
Our annual holiday feast this year is Thursday, 12/20 at 7:00 pm at the Port St. Lucie Botanical Garden Pavilion.
UPDATE: Sunday 12/9, we learned that the Botanical Garden will be closed on our meeting night, so we are cancelling this year. Hope to see you all at our January meeting at the regular time.
From the Garden on 12/9: “Sorry for late notice, but the City just confirmed to us that they’re going to be re-staining ALL of the sidewalks at the Gardens Dec 17-22, essentially closing the Gardens and Pavilion to all groups, visitors and meetings during that week. Rare fruit, of course, is on our calendar during that week. Please accept our apologies for the cancellation of your regular meeting date.”
Our speaker this month is Ira Smith, the topic–
“The World of Annonas”.
Ira Smith is a native Floridian and grew up on Singer Island in the 1950’s when the ocean front was dunes, sea oats and sea grape and the lakeside was mangrove estuaries. As a child his hobbies were fishing, diving and collecting and trading mollusks (seashells) with his friends and acquaintances. When Ira was fifteen years old he bought his mother a grafted mango, Kent variety, and has been interested in tropical fruit trees ever since.
Ira did a stint in the Navy from 1962 to 1965, then went to Palm Beach Junior College and Florida Atlantic University. In 1974 began his own business designing Continue reading
This month we learn from the experience of Brian Patterson, who grows heirloom tomatoes and greens using hydroponics. Brian was born and raised in West Palm Beach and found his passion for farming when he purchased some land in Indiantown, Florida in 1994.
“I originally started with fish farming growing tilapia and red claw lobsters. However after visiting a hydroponic tomato farm, I was hooked on this high tech method of farming. I quickly purchased a greenhouse and started to produce red tomatoes for several years. The production was phenomenal, but market prices were low. We then switched over to heirloom tomato production and haven’t looked back since. Continue reading
Even though everyone in our club is interested in rare tropical fruit, a few members are currently without a place to grow trees. Apartments with no yard, landlords that don’t want any changes, restrictive HOA rules. What to do with that green thumb?
This month’s speaker is Ann Nyhuis (Ni-hice…long i sound) of “A Garden’s Glory“.
The topic is microgreens along with a microgreen demo, something every one of us can benefit from learning about. Folks near Stuart may have already seen Ann’s web site or her booth at the Stuart Green Market with her Piatto FrescoTM takeaway microgreen plate. These fresh plates of Microgreens simply sit on your kitchen countertop continuing to grow with daily watering in the bottom tray and with a minimum of four hours of indirect light (either sunlight or kitchen lighting). They’re perfect for any kitchen! And no need for a yard.
Ann leads workshops in the community. Be sure to keep a look out for A Garden’s Glory Microgreen Thumb Club invitations on their website, Facebook and Instagram pages.
. A Garden’s Glory Website Facebook Instagram
Alex Salazar grew up in south Florida and has had a long time passion for mangos. In 2011 he founded Tropical Acres Farms, Inc now in West Palm Beach. Over the years he has collected over 250 cultivars of mango, and is still planting more.
Alex will return this month to teach us the best horticultural practices for growing mangos. He will cover planting, choosing varieties, preventing disease, fertilizing, pruning.
7:00 p.m. at the Port St. Lucie Botanical Garden,
2410 SE Westmoreland Blvd. PSL
Mike Winterstein has worked at the USDA Subtropical Horticulture Research Station (SHRS) in Miami since 1994, the last 17 years as an Agricultural Research Technician (essentially a grower who collects and maintains a lot of data). Mike specializes in their subtropical and tropical fruit, cacao, and sugarcane collections. His work includes following Best Management Practices, propagation (IE: grafting), setting up and executing collection and research plantings, collecting Continue reading