Saturday, December 2, 2017

Cutty's tour in Grenada

As we were preparing to leave Grenada, I made a list of things that I hadn't done yet but wanted to do before we left. High on that list was a Cutty's tour.  Cutty is a Grenadian who leads custom tours all over Grenada. He came so highly recommended that I was a little skeptical that he would live up to the hype, but he certainly did. The man is an encyclopedia of knowledge about the flora, fauna and history of Grenada.

We stopped at this overlook. The bay in the center is Port Louis Marina. In front of it, on the hill, the yellow building is the prison. When it was first pointed out to us it was noted that the prisoners are not allowed the pleasure of the view over the ocean.

Our next stop was a "plantation".  It certainly did not fit any pictures that I had in my head of a plantation,  Cutty pulled to the side of the road, we got out and walked into the brush. That was the plantation, but within that brush were a myriad of plants. Fruits, vegetables, spices, and Cutty shared his knowledge of them with us. Here are just a few of the things we saw.

Ylang-ylang, known for its smell and use in essential oils.

Cinnamon tree

And the bark, which curls as it dries.

Cutty said that there were six different types of cinnamon.  I don't know if he meant in Grenada,  or overall.

He showed us the turmeric plant

And sliced off some turmeric for us.

The Frangipani caterpillar, also known as the Rasta caterpillar because of the colors. Note the turmeric stains on my hands!

The mimosa, or sensitive plant closes its leaves when touched. These were planted by the plantation owners so that they could tell which way the escaping slaves had gone by following the closed plants.

Cacao pods, source of the wonderful Grenadian chocolate. These come in two basic colors, red (shown here) and green, which ripens to yellow.

And the ubiquitous nutmeg.  The nutmeg is so important to Grenada that it is featured on its flag.

The nutmeg produces two spices. Inside the center nut is the nutmeg and the red surrounding it is the source of the spice mace. The yellow covering is used to make jam.

Farmers will plant two trees for every one they want in case one is male and non fruit producing.  The trees look the same and the only way they can be distinguished is at flowering.

Grenada is the World's second largest nutmeg exporter. They used to be the largest, but Hurricane Ivan in 2004 wiped out 90% of the nutmeg trees. They have recovered well, but they are still not up to the production of 13 years ago!

The first half of the tour included a wonderful dip in the waters at this waterfall. Cutty's tours cover all the bases!

Coming up- the rest of the tour, Chocolate and rum!

We love to hear your comments.

Mark said...

Are you back in Grenada. We thought you went to Bonaire?

Sarah said...

Just catching up on some old blog material. We are in Bonaire still.