Six on Saturday – Mangos, Tortoises and Moonlight

I find something of interest every week in my garden and share it with others gardeners via Six on Saturday. To see more interesting items from other gardens, visit Jon at

Above is a Gopher Tortoise, ambling down my shell driveway. These tortoises are endemic to Florida, large – this one is probably 18 inches long and long lived, 50 to 60 years. They are known for making gigantic burrows and sharing them with all sorts of other animals, rattlesnakes included. I am not sure where this one lives. They are not known to travel very far from home and shouldn’t be moved unless necessary. He turned and went back up my driveway and continued down the street.

This morning I noticed the scents of summer are coming on. Several of my neighbors have large Arabian Jasmine shrubs and they are at their sweetest in the moonlight and early in the morning. I don’t have one, don’t need one! In my garden the Tropical Gardenia (Tabernaemontana diviricata) – above and Sweet Almond Bush (Aloysia virgata) – below are flowering and there are buds on the Moonvine.

I planted my summer veg – edible Hibiscus. These are called Roselles (Hibiscus sabdariffa). The leaves and flowers are edible. These grow to about four feet and the flowers are harvested in the fall. The calyx of the flower is harvested and used to make tea, jam and jelly – tastes a bit like cranberries. Young leaves may be used in salad similar to Arugula.

I have harvested and eaten my first Glenn Mango. These are good, low in fiber and have a coconut mango flavor.

This is a Pickering Mango. It is still ripening on the counter. I had these last year and they are yummy.

That’s all from my garden this week.

Happy Gardening…


Six on Saturday – Pole Beans and Papayas

It’s time for Six on Saturday. A garden meme based in the UK; hosted by The Propagator. The concept is to post photos of six items of interest from your garden. Follow this link to see more:THE LINK.

I have flowers, fruits and vegetables coming along in my garden. Today I had a papaya for breakfast and picked pole beans. I may make a Papaya Seed dressing for the beans later, this papaya had especially peppery seeds.


The Mango trees are busy making fruit and they are big enough to see the difference in varieties. This is a Nam Doc Mai, a fiberless Thai dessert Mango.


This is a Pickering, a condo Mango – dwarf varieties that bear fruit early.


A pineapple flower, just starting.


Buds on the Lotusleaf Begonia


And  buds on the Leonitis, I love these spiky ball buds and flowers. I am proud of these, started from seed in September.


That’s my six from South Florida.

Happy Gardening.

Mango, Tango – no Rain, Though

It is Mango season here in South Florida and eventually someone with a tree finds me, to my giddy delight. One of my neighbors is a Chef and has a tree. We have discussed what kind it is – he thinks a Haden – I think it might be a type locals call Peach Mango, it has the slightest aftertaste of peach. Whatever it is, it’s peachy  Maybe that is a Haden anyway. The locals call one of these a Strawberry Mango..

Here is a bowl of Mangoes from a guy down the street:

Assorted Mangoes

Assorted Mangoes

This included the Strawberry and Peach Mangoes – Peach I could tell, Strawberry not so much, although one had a redder colored interior. All were good and I devoured them, my husband had a bite, maybe two.

Chef Mangoes

Chef Mangoes              

These are the Mangoes from the Chef, Peach, maybe..Haden variety. Divine, yes, after all the other Mangoes were devoured, I made Granita from two and a half of these. Granita is made by taking 3 and 1/2  cups chopped Mango, simple syrup made from raw Hawaiian Cane Sugar and the juice of one lime – put this in a blender, blend until smooth, then put it in the freezer in a shallow container and stir every half hour or so until the mixture is slushy. I keep mine in a Ziploc bag in the freezer and mush it up as I eat it.

Even the scraps for the compost heap were pretty:



It hasn’t rained here since June 30. Things were getting pretty dry and then our well (Irrigation water comes from a well) motor just died, on Saturday morning, of course. Murphy’s Law for gardeners at work here in South Florida. The well repair people aren’t bothered much if you have city water. So, they showed up Tuesday and took the motor away – we found not having water at all doesn’t bother these people much either. So, I have been running around with a pitcher, watering things. Ugh, I am however hearing thunder in the distance..

Think I will just have a little of that Mango Granita, the Chef says it is good with Rum..