Imagine a lush garden bursting with over 100 varieties of happy organic vegetables, herbs, and fruit growing on a hillside with views of warm turquoise waters and swaying coconut palms.

This cook’s paradise really exists, I swear. If you are an intrepid, gardening chef, who might want to partake in this Eden, read on....

Just up the hill from the bungalow we called home for the past 20 days is Joe’s vegetable garden. Remember Joe, my roasted coconut guru? Joe is full of knowledge, energy, and ideas. He has contemplated creating a perfect village on his gorgeous stretch of beachfront land; lucky for us, his visions of utopia have taken a more entrepreneurial route that resulted in a mellow island resort. Joe leaves the running of the business to his son and daughter-in-law while he tends to his baby - the garden.

I had to share images of the edible beauty that abounds in Joe’s remote island garden and the pristine reef nearby. The colors are otherworldly.... Have you ever seen a Rainbow Lobster? This was my idea of heaven.

P and I grow our own veggies in a 700 square foot patch in Berkeley, so I was blown away by Joe’s vast growing space, covering at least an acre of land.  Joe’s green thumb, the hot tropical sun, rich volcanic soil, and crisp, clear water from the nearby spring make for an extraordinary garden. Tomatoes, bok choy, shallots, parsley, arugula, mustard greens, eggplant, peppers, and various lettuce greens reminded me of home. Joe also cultivates more exotic species that I envied - pineapple, hibiscus, taro, banana, papaya, kava, mango, and of course coconut.

spring water irrigation

Joe dreams of hosting visitors who want to work in the garden and have fun cooking its bounty. He has entertained the idea of a WWOOF listing - a brilliant organization for green thumbs worldwide. If a stint in this cook’s paradise appeals to you, go! Imagine the endless culinary possibilities....


  1. It is truly a paradise!
    so beautiful, and you captured it so well with your photography...what a pleasure to read this post and admire such an amazing place... :)

    i'm crazy about first two photos!!! can I hang them in my kitchen???

  2. M, you would LOVE it. Joe's garden is simply amazing! If you know anyone who would want to go and work, cook, enjoy paradise, pass the info along. It is such an incredible opportunity. I hope I don't kick myself for not staying and writing a cookbook!

  3. you continue to take my breath away with how you're capturing your travels. thank you. dash and i say hi to you everyday as we pass your house.

  4. Thanks Phyllis!! I miss you guys and wish you could have enjoyed the Fiji garden with us. I can imagine Dash would have gone around tasting everything and "mmmmming" with delight.
    Sending much love,

  5. Your posts never disappoint. Simply gorgeous photography and written in such a way that I feel relaxed and at ease with every post I read. I get the sense that this is truly who you are as a person. Well done!

  6. Lemons and Lavender,
    Thanks for the extremely kind comment - you made my day:)

  7. We can't believe the rainbow lobster. Wow!!!!!!!! Rainy here now, but our garden won't ever look like that one.

  8. Caitlin, Isn't that rainbow lobster insane?

    We miss you guys! It's Halloween day here in Australia and we are all longing for the old neighborhood.

    Have fun and say hi to your guys for us!

  9. wow, nature's bounty! your photos are amazing! just discovered your blog, and love it! I will be in Fiji next month!


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