We grew roselle again for all the usual reasons – ease of growing, heat-tolerance, lovely flowers, and tasty calyces But this year we were joined by so many others in our community! Santa Fe College’ joined with Florida Organic Growers to increase access and promote consumption of Floida Heritage foods in local farmers market. The project is called “Florida Heritage Foods Initiative: Connecting Local Food with Local Culture in Florida Farmers Market – and Alachua County Public School’s is a part of it. Students enjoyed planting it and watching it grow. And, when the big day came to reap the rewards, they harvested nearly 30 lbs.
Roselle was grown in an area of the garden with other crops that originated on the African continent, including okra and amaranth. Our harvest coincided with the Roselle Festival held at Frog Song Organics. We were thrilled to share our recipe for Florida Cranberry Sauce as well as apply roselle tattoos to the arms of many event attendees. It was so encouraging to see the enthusiasm for growing this wonderful plant that has roots in Florida’s heritage as well.