Florida? In summer? Are you nuts?
If you’ve read any previous posts, you already know the answer to that question. But in this case, there is a reason to the madness. In a nutshell — a coconut shell, that is — South Florida will someday be our new home. About one month before Hurricane Andrew arrived in 1992, Joe and I purchased a house. Each year since, we have traveled to Fort Lauderdale several times a year to do the most relaxing of vacation activities: yard work. And as we go about our palm tree trimming and bundling and bagging of debris, we do a lot of planning and dreaming.
And that’s what makes this visit’s yard clean-up so amazing. As we began to tidy up the yard, many of the fallen coconuts were plantable — because with a shake, we could hear liquid inside. And one of the coconuts had even begun to sprout.
Joe is cuckoo for coconuts, and if he could, he would plant them all over South Florida — a Johnny Appleseed for the subtropics. Or as we joke: Joey Coconuts.
To plant a coconut, which is a seed — a really, really BIG seed — simply dig a shallow hole and place the coconut so that half of it can be buried. Add heat and moisture and more heat. They can even be covered with saw dust to really turn up the heat. In time, a green shoot will break through the hard shell, eventually looking like this.
And in a few years, mighty coconut palm trees from big coconuts grow.
The next surprise came from friends, who presented me with a decorative but inedible pineapple. The color, a pinkish orange, is stunning — and my friends assured me this plant is easy to grow. It’s not even fussy about light or shade.
Simply cut off about 1/4″ from the bottom.
Place in dirt and cover up to the side shoots. My friends say this will take root, and eventually a spike will appear, topped by a decorative pineapple, which means more plants.
And watching us the entire time was a mother duck and her baby — dreaming and making plans.