Monday, November 24, 2014

Earth Born Market

When we were in the Rio Grande Valley last winter we discovered a local citrus
Local honey
farm that had the BEST grapefruit & oranges. The last time we went we discovered it had been sold to a big wholesaler & I was really bummed out.

To my great surprise when we got back this fall I called over there & discovered that it had been sold to a local citrus grower who grows all organic & the new grove that they bought from the previous owners would eventually (in 3 years) would be organic as well. 

We went over & tried some of their organic
Oranges & Grapefruit in
the orchard
grapefruit & oranges & it was wonderful. So, this is now my new favorite place. They also have local jams & preserves, sauces, nuts & lots of other goodies. 

They have samples of the grapefruit, oranges, jams & jellies to try. They also have local honey that is dispensed in jars at the check out counter.

Their fresh squeezed juice is the best I've ever had & a couple of ladies who had never been there before tried it & couldn't believe how much better it is than store bought....can't imagine why!!!
Organic Oranges & Grapefruit

If you look behind the refrigerator case where the juice is stored you can watch them as they are squeezing the juice & putting it in containers. It's very cool to watch the process & it's squeezed fresh throughout the day.

You can either pick the fruit from the store or you can go out to the orchard & pick your own. 

The owners are wonderful & it's definitely a family business, mom & dad, grandma & the kids are all involved.

They grow a lot more than what I have here so you might want to check them out.

If you are in the area check them out. They are on the corner of Taylor & 3 mile Rd in McAllen. It's worth the drive!

Earth Born Market
4508 N Taylor Rd.

McAllen, Texas 78504
Earth Born Market

Sunday, November 2, 2014

National Butterfly Festival

This weekend is the National Butterfly Festival & today was community day so
Al & his new friend
admission was free between 9 am-1 pm. 
We got to the festival bright & early to avoid crowds but it turned out not to have a big crowd in the morning. It was starting to get busy by 11 am but by then we were about ready to leave anyway.

It was a chilly morning (58 degrees) so the butterflies were slow to come out & play but it didn't take long before they were flying all over the place. 

We discovered 4 species of butterflies while we were there & the only one I can remember the name of is
Butterfly unknown species
the "Queen". The Queen looks a lot like the Monarch but it has black around the edge of the wings. We have a bunch of those in our yard but Al & I thought they were much for our knowledge of butterflies.

Al got really lucky when a little butterfly (unknown species) landed on his finger. The little critter had no desire to leave either & stayed put as I was snapping photos. It was a tiny little critter but so
Another unknown

I took lots of photos & even bought myself a new hummingbird feeder from one of the vendors. I then had to go buy another shepherd's hook to hang it because I was running out of room on the other ones.

I joined the Butterfly Center so I can get in free anytime I want. I plan on going back & checking out
Green Jay
the butterflies when it's not busy & perhaps I can actually learn more about the ones visiting our area. 

I was told that the Rio Grande Valley is the largest butterfly & bird habitat in the world. They all stop here during their migration but seeing what we had in Retama last winter it appears that many don't migrate any farther than this area because we still had plenty of them here in December - the end of February but they don't fly around quite as much. The average temperature here in the winter is the mid 70's so they can survive
Green Jays relaxing
but they aren't as prolific.

Besides butterflies they also have a bird feeding area & it was swarming with green jay's. I never even knew there was such a thing but they were beautiful.

Next weekend is the annual Birding festival in Harlingen. It is celebrating it's 21st year & I am dragging Al there to check it out.

The Rio Grande Valley Birding Festival is recognized by the American Birding Association, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Texas Parks & Wildlife, and birding experts throughout the nation as a leader in the field of ecotourism. The Festival has served as a model for events around the world. It has been touted in national, international, and specialty publications—The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Audubon, Southern Living, Bird Watcher’s Digest, WildBird, Australian Birds, Birdwatch UK—and more.