The Key limes are back in season, even though everyone knows it’s totally impossible to grow them in North Florida:
Those North Florida Key limes are obviously just an illusion. Perhaps they’re just a reflection of some guavas floating in the sky above… or maybe, just maybe, your devious host has purchased some Key limes from the grocery store and put them in one of his wife’s bowls…
But wait! If you’ve seen my awesome small homestead gardening video (which is just $4.99 to rent or $12.99 for the full download), you see this tree in there and hear more about how I pulled it off.
Through the power of harnessing microclimates, you can grow Key limes in North Florida without even protecting them in the winter.
This year there are scores of Key limes on the tree… it’s been amazing to see them all. The fruit in the bowl are just the first few we harvested.
Key limes have a long season so this tree is going to be giving us fruit well into the winter this year. There are lots and lots of very green limes still hanging on the branches in various stages of development.
I’m utterly thrilled with how this multi-year experiment has progressed. It’s a complete success.
(Actually, as I type this article on Saturday night, I’m drinking a Mason jar of beer with half a Key lime squeezed into it. Amazing. My apologies to any Baptist readers… as a member of the conservative but still awesome Orthodox Presbyterian Church, I’m totally allowed to drink beer and smoke cigars without endangering my soul. Neener neener.)
And, of course, what’s the very best thing to do with Key limes?
KEY LIME PIE!!!
If you live further north, say up in Georgia or even way up in New Hampshire, you can still grow Key Limes in big pots and probably get enough fruit for your own pie-making.
I’m giddy to have pulled this off year after year without ever throwing a sheet on the tree or pulling out the Christmas lights to keep it warm.
Microclimates are amazing. And so is Key lime pie.
Your garden always amazes me. Before hurricane Francis a friend had 3 Key Lime trees. His Mom used to make great Key Lime pies. She would freeze the amount of lime juice needed for each pie in separate containers. She could whip up a “fresh” Key lime pie any time of year.
Freezing by amount needed per pie is a great idea.
Of course, eating Key lime pie year round may be somewhat detrimental to waistlines and/or one’s pancreas. Heh.
Man am I jealous. Up here in Alabama I have been been nursing along a small Key Lime purchased from a big box store 3 years ago. I finally have small fruit but don’t know if they will get bigger.
How far up into Alabama are you? Zone 7?
Whatever the zone is for Bham. My wife says I am always in a zone! The challenge has been dealing with the rainy summers. Early on the plant almost got root rot. I have seen the most growth when I had the plant inside between October and Spring.