Davie, Fla.— Finding delicious Florida grown coconuts can be hard. But Brooklyn born farmer Larry Siegel's 40-acre coconut plantation in western Davie has made it easy. He grows tasty Malayan coconuts without pesticides, herbicides or fungicides. Instead he has herds of free-range ducks, turkeys and chickens that take care of all these concerns.
"I've been here in Florida since 1976 and I have had this property since 1997," said Siegel during a recent interview at his plantation.
He started out with the idea of having a food forest, "I had ten of everything...ten types bananas, ten types of orange, ten types of coconuts. You name it and I had ten types of it." But Hurricane Irene destroyed everything.
Then Siegel started producing mulch but came across problems with waste management. This pushed him to diversify again and settle on the idea of growing coconuts starting in 2006.
But the harsh freezes of 2008 and 2009 slowed down this idea and killed half of his plants. So he started a plant nursery business to pay for the reconstruction of his coconut plantation.
Today he has 4000 trees in different stages of maturity, "In two-years time we should be at full production," said Siegel.
He supplies many South Florida restaurants with young and mature coconuts. He also sells to the public through a mail order system.
"I ship all over the country," said Siegel with a smile.
He also sells Hawaiian Hua Moa plantains, Asian bananas, and palm trees along with other tropical plants.
To find out more about Florida Coconuts, you can go to www.florida-coconuts.com
Or call him at (954) 297-6677