Posted by: littlehouseonthebigisland | February 18, 2014

What My Garden Grows

Picture 1My friend, who has been visiting this past week with her husband, asked if I could list all of the things we grow on Magic Mountain Farm.  As there may be thousands of varieties of plants and many types creatures, I pleaded and she concurred that it would be fine to just list what we grow to sell, gift, trade, and consume ourselves.

I have often thought if there was one place on earth to be stranded, this Big Island of Hawaii is the spot.  There is such a variety of food and a good supply of fresh water, one would never need to leave, to have a plentiful, varied and satisfying diet.  Which is why I am saddened that most of the food consumed in our state is imported.

Because our volcanos are just under 14,000 feet, we have almost every climate on earth.  Yes, there is snow.  And there are deserts and cloud and rain forests and beaches, and everything in between.

Ours is primarily a tree farm.  Some trees –like breadfruit and mangos bear fruit a few hundred feet below us, but not on our land.  Here they are just pretty, leafy trees.  Crops like tomatoes and pumpkins are a rare gift at this elevation of 2,000 feet.  Yet temperatures remain mild and constant. In the forty years my husband has farmed here, he has never seen it get colder in the dead of winter, at night, than 48 degrees, and never any hotter than the mid-80’s during the day.  Plants are so sensitive though, that even a degree or two can be the difference between a tree that is decorative, and one that fruits, and this goes both ways, up and down the mountain.

So here is a partial list of some of the plants that we grow, in no particular order, for food, drink and medicinal purposes:

Avocados (5 kinds), oranges (2 kinds), pomello, grapefruit, zapote (2 kinds), peaches, plums, cherimoya (4 kinds), bananas (3 kinds), macadamia nuts (3 kinds), pecans, tangerines (6 kinds), limes (2 kinds), lemons (3 kinds), tangelos, coffee, rosemary, oregano (2 kinds), mamaki, mulberries, ginger, arugula, jaboticaba, mint, spearmint, basil, pineapple (2 kinds), loquats, aloe, guava (3 kinds), allspice, figs, curry leaf, lemon grass, thimbleberries, strawberries, vervain, moringa, eggfruit, papaya (2 kinds), poha, plantain, and when we are lucky, tomatoes, pumpkins, and mangos.

There are also wild pheasants and turkeys and pigs, and domesticated chickens.  And rats.  But the only animal product we eat that we ‘raise’ is chicken eggs.


  1. Lola just over my shoulder because we couldn’t wait. The list blew our minds. She now is now bouncing around the kitchen with mad joy . She is happy and making all kinds of jokes. The photo is beautiful. We send our love to all.

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