Without trees to generate oxygen, humans would have to retrieve it from scuba tanks and the minty breath of local supermen. Breathe deeply with today's Groupon: for $4, you get one admission to Fruit & Spice Park's 37th Annual Redland Heritage Festival in Homestead (an $8 value). The festival spans the weekend of January 21–22.
Fruit & Spice Park’s yearly celebration of the bountiful, seed-strewn Redland draws crowds of green-thumbed thousands who stroll among rows of vendors peddling plants, crafts, and adoptable fruit trees. A children’s area nurtures gardening tendencies in young stem tenders, and pony rides and face painting provide allow kids to emulate heavily tattooed cowgirl role models. Traditional Irish music and live animal shows entertain throngs of wide-eyed admirers, as alligators, crocodiles, and other exotic creatures show off their scaly majesty and entry-level accounting skills. Festival grounds are open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., making it easy to while away the day browsing elegant houseplants or gift-worthy trinkets.
Fruit & Spice Park sprawls across 37 acres, hosting more than 500 varieties of fruits, vegetables, herbs, and nuts. Boasting North America’s only tropical climate, the lush setting yields abundant specimens including 70 kinds of bamboo and edibles such as fiji longan and jaboticaba. Legs meander freely through banana groves and african baobab trees or follow a guide during tours commencing three times per day.
The Fruit and Spice Park
At The Fruit and Spice Park operated by the Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation, and Open Spaces Department, a 37-acre subtropical realm nestled in the heart of the historic Redland community, visitors flock to surround themselves with tropical agriculture. Featuring more than 500 varieties of exotic fruits, herbs, spices, and nuts from around the world, almost 200 varieties of mangos, almost 100 varieties of bamboo, more than a dozen jackfruit trees, and numerous other exotic edibles, the array of plants and foliage is grown and maintained on-site. Guests can sample fallen fruit, learn with a staff of experts that regularly conducts classes, workshops, and botanical tours year-round, visit and herb and vegetable garden, stroll through shady banana groves, and take in the majestic African baobab trees. A gift shop allows visitors to take home unique gifts and treats, and the Mango Café offers up lunch and smoothies.