Cayman Growers have a tree farm in the East End of Grand Cayman and are having to expand to keep up with demand. Taking up about half of the 30 acres in existence the commercial tree farm, Cayman Growers is part of an old quarry.
The farm has 10,000 trees grown from seed. Coconuts trees are incredibly popular as are Royal and Christmas palms.
Depending on the tree it takes around 2-3 years to grow from seed. In that time a coconut tree can get up to 25ft tall.
The tree farm also grows fruit trees, mango, avocado, lychee and Barbados cherry.
The farms sod, suitable for tropical conditions is also popular. Last year, Cayman Growers was growing two acres of sod with a crop being harvested every five months. This year the output has increased to four acres and it has sold out as fast as the farm can harvest it.
Cayman Growers is the brainchild of partners Travis Houston and Trent Riggins. The started the tree farm together after Hurricane Ivan destroyed much of the vegetation and landscaping on the island five years ago to provide wholesale trees and sod to developers, landscapers and nurseries. Considering the amount of rebuilding and new developments after the storm, demand for locally grown trees and sod has steadily grown.
The demand has increased for numerous reasons, the quality of locally grown trees and sod is higher than product shipped from Florida. There is less time needed for developers and landscapers and the local trees are already acclimated to local conditions.
A huge advantage is financial savings of up to 25% than on trees shipped from Florida.
Cayman Growers has seven employees. Two employees look after the tree farm full time. The other employees work in landscaping and irrigation services that Cayman Growers also offers.
Cayman Growers offers wholesale and access to the public. There are plans to expand it's tree and sod output to accommodate the increased demand.
To find the farm you just need to go past East End Primary School make a couple of turns until you get to Farm Road and then drive a way. Travis and Trent have a saying "When you think you have gone too far, keep going..if you still can't find us ..call us!"