Two of the places we discovered during this last trip were the MOTE Aquarium in Sarasota, and Plesscher's Orange Grove. We also visited the Lake Manatee State Park, and I'll share some really cool pictures later in the week!
One of the many special things about visiting Florida in the winter is the abundance of produce. We also visited a farmer's market and I can't wait to show you some of the pictures! I tried to read Barbara Kingsolver's Animal, Vegetable, Miracle, and while I want to agree with her - I just found myself hungry for fruit throughout the whole first half. All I know is that produce tastes even better when you're visiting a more temperate climate. The citrus and tomatoes alone make a 16-hour drive totally necessary.
But, back to the orange grove. Plesscher's is located about 40 minutes outside of Bradenton and run by Eugene Plesscher (we deduced that he's 84 years old). He and his wife bought the property in 1960 and planted citrus trees, finally harvesting three years later.
We picked 4 bushels of citrus. Ruby red grapefruits, navel oranges, and tangelos. A five-gallon bucket cost $8. And the taste - holy moly, that fruit is to die for.
The Plesscher's even have an honor system - if they're not home when you get there, just put your money in the slot.
As the season progresses, they'll be growing honeybells, white grapefruits, and valencias, to name a few. We had such a great time, and the bonus was that we'll be enjoying our citrus for several weeks! I just love exploring areas we're already familiar with - especially when it involves food!
|Eugene was giving me a lesson in how to pick navels
|we stocked up on honey, too!
If you happen to be in the Bradenton area, go check out Plesscher's -
3350 Highway 675
(County Road 675 East, 1/2 mi south of State Road 64)