Working around the yard

There was a lot of cleanup around here after the recent big rains. Lots of debris everywhere and plants down or washed away. Most of the 200 or so pineapples we have along the driveway were washed over and laying flat on the ground. Kelley managed to get them all back upright and it looks like they should do well.

The pineapple plants are back up and looking good.

The rains also washed away a lot of the logs we had as borders around the house and garden. It’s a good thing we have a lot of trees around here, just pick one out and cut it to size. One doormat washed away, but Kelley found it 50′ out in the bush. As for the solar pathway lights, they’re probably lighting up some animal’s den right about now. Anyway, the new borders are up around the casita and yard, plants are back in shape and new solar lights are on the way. Everything is looking good again, and all that rain really gave the plants a major growth spurt.

New log borders around the casita and the plants are back where they belong.

Ruben finally got a small section of our other property chopped down, so it was time for us to cut a road in and decide where we wanted trees. Lots of rocks and stumps had to be removed, but now you can drive on the property. Our neighbor gave us a truckload of coconuts that were starting to grow, so we planted a bunch of them along the property line. We also planted 4 Avocados, 13 Mangoes (5 types), 3 Malay Apples, 1 Soursop, 2 Lemons, 1 Valencia Orange, 1 Mandarin Orange, 1 Yellow Grapefruit and 1 Red Grapefruit. Besides all the new trees there were already Bananas, Plantains, Guava and Jamaican Lime trees on the property. Most of the new trees are around 5′ tall, about half of them we’ve grown from seed, and the others we bought. It will take some time before all these really start producing, but once they do we might just have to set up a fruit stand.

Digging out rocks and stumps and scraping in a road.

Up on this other lot we also put in a Cortez tree. Once a year the Cortez tree will lose all its leaves and then bloom these beautiful yellow flowers for a couple of weeks, and it’s spectacular. Since we use to live on the shores of the Sea Of Cortez, we thought it was appropriate to put a Cortez tree on the property.

A Cortez tree in full bloom just down the road from us.

It was a decent harvest of peanuts this year and they’re all looking good. It took longer for them to dry this time because of all the rains we’ve had, but now they are ready for roasting.

Our peanuts did well with a lot of 3-4 nuts per shell.

Our Roselle or Jamaican Sorrel plants are ready to start harvesting and should be for the next month or so. Sorrel is a type of annual hibiscus plant that gets beautiful pink and red flowers. After the flower falls off, the “fruit” will develop for about a week or so before it’s ready to pick. The fruit itself is used to make wine, jellies and other stuff.

We planted twice as many Jamaican Sorrels as last year all from seeds we saved from previous plants.

We like to dry ours and use it to make a red flavorful tea. It has a slight resemblance to cranberry juice, and of course it has many health benefits. Mexican restaurants serve this sweetened and it’s called Jamaica. We don’t sweeten ours and it’s still very tasty. Usually we’ll grow enough to last us all year, and in fact we just used our last little bit from last year, so the timing is perfect for these plants.

Jamaica tea would make an excellent low-calorie mixed drink.

We’ve got a few black pepper plants growing around here and they are doing good. They’ve been in the ground a few years now and haven’t really started producing yet, but we did find a few peppercorns on one of the plants. We dried them out and then gave them a try. Wow, that was a strong black pepper flavor and we can’t wait till the plants really start producing. Black pepper is something we use constantly around here and is one of our favorite spices.

One of our Black Pepper vines growing on a tree.

I’m sure many of you have or might have had Caladiums growing as a house plant. Here we have them just growing in the yard around the house. When planted outside in the right environment they will get a flower, which is what a bunch of ours are doing now. The one below is one we purchased from a nursery, but we do have other varieties that are not as colorful growing wild around the property.

Although it is commonly called the heart of Jesus, it is a toxic plant and care should be taken around children or pets.

Caladiums are perennial plants, meaning they will come back every year. Which is why we can walk around the jungle and not see any, then a few months later they are all over. The one below is one we found on one of our walks and relocated it near the house.

I believe this one is called a Freckles Caladium.

We’ve grown ginger in a big pot for the past few years and it does good. We usually just pick it as needed until the plants die out, then we plant some more. This is the first time that one of the ginger plants has flowered. I don’t know why the ginger plants have never done this before, it’s such a beautiful little flower.

Ginger flower in bloom. One or two flowers open from the bud at dusk each night.

When we were moving plants the other day we found the smallest little frog we’ve seen. Not sure what kind it is or even if it’s a frog or a toad. Anyway, just had to share a picture of this little guy.

This is a tiny little frog.

The other night we were watching TV when Kelley heard a noise on the porch. We looked outside and there was a Kinkajou up on the beams of the porch just hanging out. Recently every night we hear and see him in the trees around the house, but this time he decided to get a little closer. He was up there a good 3 hours until we turned the lights out and went to bed. We only got a couple of pictures of him as we did not want to blind him.

We think he might have been after our dragon fruit we had sitting on the porch.

We still have a bunch of lobsters left in the freezer. After eating a few “the normal way” we decided to start looking up other ways to serve them. There was a lobster pot pie recipe that caught our attention. So Kelley got to work on this new lobster recipe and it turned out great!  She will definitely be making this one again in the future. When you come for a visit, ask Kelley really nice and she might just make one for you.

Lobster pot pie…Yummmm.

Hurricane season ends next month, which means it’s the beginning of the dry season. It’s a great time to be in Belize, but then again it’s always a great time to be here. Hope to see you down here sometime.


3 thoughts on “Working around the yard”

  1. Always enjoy your ventures~ I look forward to your blog! Amazing all the healthy yummy food and beauty that you grow! Sea ya guys soon~ miss you ❤️

  2. Dave and Kelley,
    Think with the soil in the jungle and the rains, you both have 2 green thumbs and 8 green fingers.
    Love your reports and photos and always looking forward to the next one.
    All good here in La Choya 🇲🇽👍😊💕
    Jeff @ the 4 Aces

  3. You two have been working your tails off, looks great. will get to see it close up and personal in January. See you soon.

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