Re-Energized and Back to the Garden

March 13, 2009

I apologize for any emails, comments or gardening questions that went unanswered over the past couple of weeks as I took advantage of a little down time to visit the lovely island of St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Before you get too envious let me mention that the trip wasn’t exactly filled with rest and relaxation like a typical Caribbean getaway. Most of my time was spent far away from the usual tourist spots on the rather isolated Creque Dam Farm, home of the Virgin Islands Sustainable Farm Institute.

Bushskills Caribbean Rendezvous

I arrived at the organic farm community just in time to participate in the 3rd annual Bushskills Caribbean Rendezvous. This event featured a variety of workshops focused on preserving and sharing primitive outdoor skills such as plant fiber craft, edible weeds and bush medicines, fire making techniques, ancient fishing methods, palm weaving, basket making, and much more.

The trip also provided an opportunity to explore a whole new world of exotic fruits, vegetables, and organic farming practices of the Caribbean. Visiting St. Croix was a much different experience from last summer’s journey to forage for seaweeds off the San Juan Islands, but I realize how much I love island life, the climate, and hospitality that I’ve encountered on my visits.

Sights and Flavors of the Virgin Islands

There will be much more to share about what’s going on at the the Virgin Islands Sustainable Farm Institute and my experiences there as soon as I finish unpacking and catching up with the emails, voice messages, and texts that piled up while I was away. I also need to plan the spring garden, get some seeds started indoors, and revive my Gardening Secrets Newsletter.

Until the next post here are some sights from St. Croix to tease you and test your knowledge of tropical plants. Click on the photos for an enlarged view and identify them all if you can:

blossom and small fruit 300x225 Re Energized and Back to the Garden

medicinal juice fruit 300x225 Re Energized and Back to the Garden

small fruit tree 300x225 Re Energized and Back to the Garden

tasty tropical fruit 300x225 Re Energized and Back to the Garden

uncommon tree fruit 300x225 Re Energized and Back to the Garden

tropical nut 300x225 Re Energized and Back to the Garden

caribbean fruit basket 300x225 Re Energized and Back to the Garden

Just in case I made it sound like the trip was all business, I’ll admit there was a little time spent off farm engaging in pleasurable island activities such as snorkeling, playing, and soaking up the sunshine with new friends on some of St. Croix’s beautiful beaches!

beach time 300x225 Re Energized and Back to the Garden

caribbean sunset 300x225 Re Energized and Back to the Garden





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