Remembering Fallen Fruits

October 23, 2017
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Lopez-Bethel and her breadfruit tree
Lopez-Bethel and her breadfruit tree

When a storm takes down a beloved tree and fruits, it hurts. This past summer, we photographed Coconut Grove resident Carol Lopez-Bethel and her magnificent breadfruit (Artocarpus altilis), a tropical tree that, until recently, rarely flourished – let alone fruited – outside of the Keys.

“Last year, I got 12 breadfruit,” she says. “This year, 50.” But Irma’s high winds snapped off the treetop, leaving a five-foot stump, and toppled her mango and papaya trees. To make matters worse, a long power outage ruined her frozen homegrown bananas, mango, jackfruit, mamey and breadfruit chunks. “It was very personal,” says Lopez-Bethel. “I’m thinking about things I watched grow. It was my bounty, my gold.”

But she is not discouraged. “It has been a privilege for me to grow my own food in an urban area. And I will buy another mango tree.”

Article from Edible South Florida at
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