The porch wraps ALL the way around the house, and it is seriously wide enough to throw one heck of a party. With the cool breezes blowing and the lovely view, why would the Edisons ever want to leave?
I know I don’t want to go, but it’s now the height of the heat of the day (that’s 3PM here in Southwest Florida) and I need to hydrate and feed myself. It’s been swell – thanks for hanging out with me today 🙂
It’s September already but these Keitt mangoes (yes, there is an "e" in "mangoes", I’ve discovered) are still ripening. Some of the are so ripe, they split while still in the trees. Others have fallen SPLAT to the walkway, where they feed the bugs and perfume the air.
I see tadpoles wiggling around down there, and I ws not fast enough to capture a snake that swam by. That’s a pond apple tree. It has a cousin nearby (behind me) which has littered the ground with ripened fruits whose seeds look remarkably like those of a pumpkin. this pond is right behind Edison’s pool complex.
This is an orchid labeled "cattleya", found growling on a strangler fig (ficos aurea, S. florida and West Indies).
While I was standing her taking the photo, a giant, spent palm frond liberated itself from a nearby tree and plunged (some things just don’t waft!) SPLOOSH into the river. As it bobbed around, a huge beetle crawled frantically all over it, trying to figure out what to do. I hope he escaped, but I wasn’t about to risk a dunk in the river to assist. No, let’s let Darwin have his way with the beetles!
Both the Edison House "Seminole Lodge" and the Ford house "The Mangos" enjoy wide porches that catch wonderful breezes as they travel to and from the Caloosahatchee River. Resting in the shade of the porch outside Ford’s house, the breeze lets you know what the wide-open home smells like – wood and furniture polish and a bit of musty mildew, that hallmark of all old wooden houses everywhere. It must be a real chore keeping the mildew at bay in this particular climate, especially in the summer. I reckon the breezes help with that!
(why does "mangos" look wrong – is there supposed to be a e in there before the s? I’m moile ad can’t look it up easily!)
I ambled down to the Caloosahatchee River from Ford’s caretaker’s-cottage-turned-gift-shop and sat on a bench. Immediately, the wind coaxed a song from the giant stands of bamboo that paint a lacy pattern on the sky.
Feeling for all the world like Forest Gump waitin’ on the bus, I watched with held breath as a feather wafted down from somewhere above and gently deposited itself in the river.
Safe journey, little wafter.
An egret glided in and claimed a spot on one of the pilings of Ford’s old dock. Without his black-beaked profile, he blended with the clouds behind him.
I raised the camera and whispered, "Turn sideways, please".
He turned and I took the shot. He turned again and looked right at me. I grinned at him and whispered again. "Thanks, dude."
Give me one good reason why I should ever rise from this bench!
Many years ago, I visited my grandparents in their home in Maspeth, Queens (New York City) and my grandmother gave me her cookie jar. I didn’t know it at the time, but it was part of the Watts Appleware collection. All I knew was that I had fond memories of the treats it had contained over the years and the pleasant sights and smells of my grandmother and her kitchen were somehow infused within the pottery.
Here, we see that the Henry Fords had similar taste to that of my Italian, sainted grandmother, so far away in New York – a far, FAR cry from Fort Myers!
I’m touring the Edison-Ford Winter Estates in Fort Myers, FL today. I bought a Groupon a few months back, which I’d clean forgot about. I decided to use it today, before it expires.
This is the place where Edison continued his research during the winter months. He was looking for a cheap, locally-produced source for making rubber. The estates are therefore populated with all sorts of exotic botanical candidates for rubber production. the sub-tropical climate of Southwest Florida proved ideal for growing many of the plants Edison needed to study.
My Mobile Adventures *~*~* mobile blogged a visit to the Edison & Ford Winter Estates earlier this month. At $24 for the garden tour, I thought it was a BIT pricey, but $12 is a GREAT bargain! So if you’re interested, jump on this deal – I think it will only be good for two more days (Until Monday May 30th 2011).
Here are some more photos from our great ramble around the Edison-Ford Winter Estates here in Fort Myers, Southwest Florida. The place was lively with school tour groups, flowering trees and shrubs bursting into bloom, bees bumbling, water fowl foraging – and mangoes dropping out of the trees.
I like that you’re encouraged to walk on the lawns, and that it’s not that perfectly manicured golf course stuff. Loved the story of the Edison Botanic Research Co., which was formed because both Henry Ford and Harvey Firestone needed a domestic source of rubber. The location just can’t be beat – with the beautiful Caloosahatchee River spread before them, why would they want to spend their winters anywhere else? All in all, a splendid morning.
We grabbed a turkey wrap from the concession and now we are headed our separate ways – Christene to go shopping and me to go excavate my home from the wreckage known as "finals week" 😉 What a wonderful morning this was – definitely want to come here again!
ADDED FOR PHOTO FRIDAY: Great timing – I just finished touring the Edison-Ford Winter Estates here in Fort Myers, Florida. Henry Ford is generally acknowledged as the father of modern manufacturing, having pioneered use of the assembly line for the making of his automobiles. This statue lives on the Ford winter estate in Fort Myers, Florida, where he lived next door to other luminaries of his time (no pun intended… well maybe just a little) such as Thomas Edison and Harvey Firestone.
For more pictures from this week’s tour of the Edison-Ford Estates here in Fort Myers, Florida, CLICK HERE
I see South American anoles everywhere in Florida. But the native Florida anole (entirely green) is a rare sight. There’s one living in my garage at the moment; he’s endangered and doesn’t try to come in, so he can stay, I guess 😉
Friendship can be a motivator, a mover and a shaker. I am fortunate to be blessed with some really cool friends who’ve made adventurous plans for the month of May and they want me to tag along – w00t! Well you know my motto –Have Signal, Will Blog! Here’s what you can expect to see here at My Mobile Adventures *~*~* during the month of May:
The Edison-Ford Winter Estates
Fort Myers, Florida
My friend Christene is an avid Florida gardener who blogs at The Great Wall Of Lutz. She’ll be driving down to spend some much-needed vacation time on Sanibel Island. While she’s down this way, she’ll be indulging in her passion a bit by visiting some local gardens. Among her selections is the Edison-Ford Winter Estates, situated on the bank of the Caloosahatchee River in Fort Myers. There, we’ll tour the beautiful gardens and check out a festive bromeliad event that’s about to begin starting May 1st. We’ll go during the week, though, to avoid crowds.
Naples Botanical Garden
About a half hour or so down the interstate (or down the Tamimami Trail/Route 41, take your pick) is the city of Naples, Florida. Naples can boast of several nature-related attractions, including the Corkscrew Swamp (on my “bucket list”) and Rookery Bay (been there, done that – check it out!). For this particular outing, Christene has selected the Naples Botanical Garden. I’ve checked out the map, and the place looks SWEET! Not only that, but our mutual friend Snowbird recently spent some time there and returned singing the praises of the place. I’m hoping this is a good time of year to visit and that there are lots of photo opportunities.
Walt Disney World – EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival
Yep, I was just there, in February and in March. Yep, we’re going to do it again 🙂 This is one of my favorite events at Walt Disney World. For years, I dreamed of going to EPCOT during the Flower and Garden Festival. When I finally got my chance, it became an annual habit that was broken only in the year I moved to Florida (the move stepped all over the Festival in a big way, timing-wise). I’m especially looking forward to all the amazing scents – gardenia, jasmine, magnolia and many more. But more importantly, I’m looking forward to some quality time with my “sistas”, an amazing collection of women, all of whom I am privileged to call “friend”. AND, all of whom have a penchant for the Grey Goose/Grand Marnier Slushie kiosk in EPCOT’s France, not to mention the tequila bar in Mexico. Happy times, straight ahead!
The Wizarding World of Harry Potter
Universal Orlando Resort
Yes, we were just here as well – ides of March, picked up Niece No. 1 at MCO and away we went for several days. This time, a couple of the “sistas” want to do only one day here, primarily to see The Wizarding World of Harry Potter. I imagine there’s butterbeer in our future, and I know I’m kinda looking forward to the ribs at the Three Broomsticks again 😉 What can I say, I’m a creature of habit and when I find a habit that I like a lot, I stick with it! I’m happy to go for one day and hit the highlights – Spiderman, Jurassic Park, maybe The Hulk if they are feeling adventurous, and of course, the entire Hogsmeade/Hogwarts compound, complete with a turn on Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey as well as at least a walk through the queue for The Dragon Challenge. Should be a fun day!
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So, it looks like May will be packed with mobile adventures. I need to get over the school hurdle first – it’s the end of the semester and I have papers to write. Guess I’d better get to it – SEE YA REAL SOON!