FoodWe started eating plantains from farmer Clive, cooking one green (starchy and bland like a potato) but mostly eating them yellow and ripe (delicious dessert, especially cooked). I ate a mango from a grafted tree at Clive's; the fruit had an orange rather than yellow or green skin, and very low stringiness to the flesh. We foraged with Dale in a couple of places he knows well, finding pili nuts (Canarium ovatum; we haven't eaten them yet), a large patch of water spinach (Ipomoea aquatica) growing adjacent to a pond, edible hibiscus, mountain apples (crisp and refreshingly juicy, but only mild sweetness and flavor), avocados, guavas, papayas, one starfruit, yellow lilikoi, and chayote (Sechium edule, a squash-like fruit.)
Dale brought home a huge cassava root from another site, which Jasmine and I both enjoyed a lot; it has a nice flavor and texture and we can readily envision growing this as a staple. (I'd especially like to experiment with it as a cyanide-laced, pig-proof crop to plant out in forest areas.) He also gathered some different greens from another site, including sissoo spinach, vietnamese coriander, basil, katuk, and curry tree leaf. We ate all the greens mixed together so didn't really taste the individual species, but it all turned out nicely. We helped Dale harvest coconuts from two trees; he climbed up using special equipment, cut off fronds as needed to access the racks of coconuts, and tied each rack to a rope run up and over a remaining frond, with me and Jasmine on the ground holding the rope and slowly allowing each rack to drop down to the ground. We got dozens of drinking coconuts, with nice sweet water and "spoon meat" - jelly-like coconut meat.
LearningI got a big stack of exciting books from the library, all on tropical plants. I finished reading Introduction to Permaculture, read a short book on growing fruits, nuts, herbs, and spices in Hawaii, and started reading Traditional Trees of Pacific Islands: Their Culture, Environment, and Uses, a lovely book edited by Craig Elevitch with detailed chapters on 80+ multipurpose trees.