* The farm-fresh lunch from Paradise Farms will consist of a salad of baby greens with edible flowers, penne pasta prepared with homemade oregano pesto (guests love it!), their refreshing signature flower petal tea, and delicious sliced carambola for dessert.
Love orchids, beautiful homes, and pastoral farms? Then this is the tour for you! The Orchids, Organics & Tropical Paradise day trip includes a visit to the fabulous RF Orchids, a look at Fairchild Farm's extensive tropical fruit collections, a tour of the beautiful gardens and residence of the Brooks family of Brooks Tropicals, and a tour and vegetarian meal at Paradise Farms, an innovative organic farm. Truly, this day trip has a little bit of everything, yet every destination gives a unique taste of the wonderful things South Florida has to offer.
Specializing in fine orchids for over 50 years, RF Orchids is a world-class orchid nursery that also houses a lush tropical garden. In the years since the nursery’s founding, it has won more American Orchid Society (AOS) awards (over 1,100 since 1985) than any other nursery or individual grower. These awards include more than 75 awards for outstanding orchid culture! The orchids offered for sale grow under exactly the same conditions (some in the very same greenhouses) as their private, award-winning collections and stud plants. Vandas (and their relatives) are RF’s specialty and passion.
The Fairchild Farm is the permanent home for the living collections of Fairchild's Tropical Fruit Program and maintains one of the world's best collections of tropical fruit. The collections serve a role for the conservation of key tropical fruit species, investigation into applied horticulture, and the distribution of plants to the local, national, and international communities. The primary collections are of avocado, mango, jackfruit, mamey sapote, sapodilla, canistel, abrico (Mammea americana), caimito, spanish lime (Melicoccus bijugatus), and tamarind.
The Brooks' Garden is an exceptional tropical retreat that houses beautiful gardens. The ten-acre property is situated in the heart of tropical fruit country, surrounded by hundreds of acres of nurseries, field crops and fruit orchards. The single-family residence, designed by Florida architect Charles Harrison Pawley, marries the traditional forms of colonial Caribbean vernacular with the more contemporary details found in modern tropical architecture. The garden hosts a collection of winter-blooming perennials, displays of seasonal color, and a selection of palms and cycads. The master plan and landscape design were a collaborative effort between Debra DeMarco, DDM Horticultural Services, Inc. and Carlos Somoza Landscape Design.
Paradise Farms was founded in 1999 by Gabriele Marewski and created a showcase certified organic boutique farm from an abandoned avocado grove. The farm produces micro greens, edible flowers, baby greens, a variety of tropical fruits and oyster mushrooms and sells to the best chefs at high-end restaurants in the Miami area. Gabriele pioneered the local Farm-to-Table movement hosting the popular Dinner in Paradise series since 2005. She is an award-winning speaker and a recipient of the “Innovative Farmer Award” from the Florida Small Farms & Alternative Enterprises Conference in 2012.