After visiting the north side of the Everglades, we headed to Long Pine Key. We of course had to stop by a few fruit and veggie stands along the way- there are a lot of farms and nurseries along the way. The most remarkable one was called Robert is Here. They had tropical fruits like mamey, canistel, guanabana, asian guava…etc. We tried a few and also tried one right there called a miraclefruit. It’s a small berry that you eat and then everything you eat afterwards tastes sweet. So we had a squeeze of a key lime before the fruit and of course it was tart. After we had eaten the miraclefruit, the lime tasted like it had been sweetened. It was delicious. There were tomato samples that I tried and again, they tasted like someone had sprinkled sugar on them! It’s such a cool fruit that scientists are studying this fruit to help the appetites of people going through chemo or for diabetics. Neat, right?
After spending some time there, we went to the Ernest Coe Visitor’s Center and signed up for a swamp walk. This walk was so cool. It was lead by a ranger intern and we just walked right into the swamp- boots and pants and all! We walked through the sawgrass for a bit as she pointed out some flowers and plants and then lead us to a cypress dome. Its a lower sinkhole in the marsh where due to the increase in nutrients, the trees are able to grow taller and create a dome. We walked into one and found all sorts of plant life- orchids and ferns and airplants! Airplants in nature! Not from the succulent dealers in downtown! The cypress dome was one of the more magical places along this trip.