I have long admired the Hawaiian mantra of “living off the land”. These ideals of living a sustainable lifestyle without overconsumption and mutual respect for life is something I wish I could practice more regularly. And although I realize the lush islands of Hawai’i lends itself to being more accessible to harvesting the fruits of the land and sea, I think the ideals can be incorporated into anywhere one resides.
While on the Big Island, we spent some time at Isaiah’s grandparents’ home. Nestled on 5 acres of verdant land, their “backyard” is home to beautiful tropical flowers, fruits, and plants. On one particular day, we were able to take a hike around the grounds to explore what the land had to offer and I was thrilled to discover natural jewels around every bend.
Years ago, Isaiah’s grandfather planted a beautiful grove of Macadamia Nut Trees. The nuts from those trees were collected and combined with other co-op growers and sold to local factories (yes, the famed Mauna Loa, included). And although the nuts are no longer harvested, the trees are still abundant and grow stronger with each season.
On our “nature hike” we caught glimpses of delicious fruits, heard the calls of billy goats, and noshed on some fresh sugar cane. Below are a few snap shots of the Matsumura’s land:
Ginger Flowers, Ti Plants, and other lush greens
Macadamia Nut Trees (The little greens on the ground are all saplings)
Guavee–not to be confused with “Guava”
Lilikoi (Passion Fruit)
And even MORE Papaya
Needless to say, we thoroughly enjoyed our exploration of the grounds. With such wonderful ingredients within reach–I would never need to go to the Farmers markets! Perhaps Grandma Matsumura would let me stay with her for awhile and create recipes galore using the fruits of the land. Well…a girl could dream, right? 🙂
With that dear friends, I hope that you can find ways to practice the Hawaiian lifestyle in your lives. Start a vegetable garden….grow fresh herbs….buy locally. No effort is too small. 🙂
Much Mahalos to the Matsumura ‘Ohana for showing me “Aloha ‘Aina“. 🙂
Munching on some fresh Sugar Cane