Saturday, March 14th, 2020 was field trip day for members of the Rare Fruit Council. We ventured south, deep into Monroe County, and landed at Big Pine Key’s Grimal Grove with the intent to plant some rare fruit trees.
Grimal Grove is an interesting place. Adolf Grimal established the grove in 1955, the same year we established our club. It was Adolf’s exotic journeys and fruit collecting trips that helped us establish southern Florida as the place in the continental US to cultivate rare fruit species. We are thankful for Adolf’s lifelong membership.
Today Grimal Grove is owned and directed by Patrick Garvey who, as a member, maintains the Grove’s relationship with the Rare Fruit Council. We’re looking forward to the fruits of the breadfruit initiative they have underway.
Fruit trees often take years to become productive, so it’s important to plan ahead and continually replace lost trees. To that end, we were happy to donate the following tree species to the grove:
Annona muricata, soursop seedling
Annona squamosa, ‘Na Dai’ sugar apple, grafted (x2)
Artocarpus heterophyllus, ‘Katie’ jackfruit, seedling
Artocarpus heterophyllus, ‘Banana Crush’ jackfruit, grafted
Capsicum annuum, Bahamian bird pepper
Coffea arabica, coffee Arabica
Diospyros nigra, ‘Matt’s Giant’ black sapote, seedling
Garcinia humilis, achachairú, seedling (x2)
Synsepalum dulcificum, miracle fruit
We were on such a roll while visiting that we planted even more than we brought including:
Artocarpus camansi, breadnut, seedling
Blighia sapida, ackee, seedling
Paullinia cupana, guayana
Mammea americana, mamey apple, seedling (Donated by Warren Condon, Tropical Fruit & Vegetable Society of Redland, TFVSR)
Special thank you to all the volunteers that helped make this a fruitful day: Lydia M. Cuni, Carla Hatten, Richard Hawkins, Cheryl Solomon, Dr. Matthew Snow, Dr. Stephen Vernon, and Jorge J. Zaldivar.
See you next time!