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A Postcard from St Vincent

Good morning and greetings once more from Palm Island. Yesterday I went across to St Vincent, principal island of St Vincent and the Grenadines. I flew there, it took about 2o minutes in a tiny plane. They used to make me nervous but I have grown to trust the pilot and the air industry and now enjoy the sense of adventure instead. Unless it gets rocky, then all bets are off.

I went to visit a farm. By sheer coincidence, before my arrival the people who supply Palm Island with passion fruit visited, and when I arrived they came up in conversation. It sounded wonderful, so a visit was arranged.

Becky and her husband have repatriated to St Vincent in the last two years. Becky’s husband was born and raised in St Vincent but they have spent most of their adult lives in the US, returning now to farm his grandparents land, now called Madam Ground Farms. The farm is on a steep hill and is packed with passion friut, pineapple, papaya, ginger, mangos. It really is amazing how lush and fertile the land is here. Volcanic soil seems to sprout everything and at speed. It tastes great too.

They are working on an ecotourism project which I will be watching with interest. Five days is not enough here, I need to come back, spend longer and explore thoroughly.

Some highlights from the day in photos follow.

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Union Island Airport – my plane was a little bigger (but not by much!)

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Mango sellers on St Vincent

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And this is their lunch – turkey with green bananas, pumpkin & yam

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Tiny puppy hanging around a countryside bakery

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Preparing bread for the oven

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Passion fruit fresh from the vine

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Freshly dug ginger

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Cheerful red roof

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Cocoa pod

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Cocoa pod up close

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Breadfruit tree. This was knocked over in the last hurricane and lots of new trees sprouted from the old one.

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Freshly harvested okra

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Mango

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Kojo, one of the farmers I visited

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Baby pineapple – had no idea they started pink!

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Mature pineapple

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… we harvested it

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which was more fun than I expected :)

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Looking for fallen nutmeg below the nutmeg tree

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Harvesting papaya

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Loofah, straight from the tree

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Pirates of the Caribbean fans might recognise this (I haven’t seen it!)

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lunch

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Creole chicken – delicious

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Spotted this guy cooking lobster on the beach from the ferry on the way back

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Gorgeous sailing boat at sunset (again, from the ferry)

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I like food. I like to make food. Eat food. Photograph food. Write about food. Mainly in London but when I am lucky or organised further afield.

11 Comments

  1. How lovely! Some of my Jamaican relatives have a farm somewhere near Ocho Rios, and we visited once when I was 12. I can remember being amazed by the pineapple plants – I don’t think I had any idea what they looked like when they were growing. One of the things I find fascinating about the Caribbean is all the fruit you never see anywhere else. Breadfruit being one of them – it’s pretty good fried in butter for breakfast. Did you have a otaheite apple? Looks like a red apple but skin is thin like a peach and tastes like a rose smells. So weird the first time.

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  2. Wow, Niamh, it looks like a fabulous island and seems to produce lots of the food that I love! You’ve given a fab picture of the island life in your photos (which was gorgeous by the way!) Enjoy the rest of your trip :)

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  4. Hi there, that seem to be a lovely place for vacation and the lobster lunch just looks delicious. I agree with Maria, these photos of the island are so beautiful, thanks for showing them : )

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  5. Love the photos of the cocoa pods, ginger root, and pineapple! I’ve never seen them right before or after harvesting.

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    • Yes, it was fabulous. They taste amazing fresh too. The cocoa beans pre fermentation and sun drying are deliciously sour, well at least the stuff around them is.

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