The word “oasis” is one of those descriptors that, applied to everything from urban hotels to department stores, has lost much of its meaning through overuse. That is, until you travel a steep, dusty road into the foothills of the Sierra de la Laguna mountains—just outside of San José del Cabo, Mexico—and the glorious green of Flora Farm’s sprawling garden is revealed.
It took owners Patrick and Gloria Greene, both California transplants, more than a decade to work the dirt here into fertile soil.
While Cabo is located in the Gulf Coast desert, which gets more rain than other sections of the Sonoran, the Greenes’ land was low in organic matter, meaning it didn’t provide plants with nutrients for growing. But, thanks to the couple’s painstaking efforts, including extensive composting and the strategic planting of sunflowers to attract “good” bugs, the 10-acre grounds now teem with produce. Lemongrass, kale, mangoes—the Greenes grow more than 95 types of heirloom vegetables and fruits, all pesticide-free.
This fresh bounty makes Flora Farm a tasty draw for visitors, who come to shop at its on-site grocery store and dine at its very popular restaurant (George Clooney is a repeat guest). A farm bar serves up unique concoctions such as the “Farmarita”—a spin on the traditional margarita using the juice of Flora-grown heirloom carrots—and Farm Juleps, which get their bright pink hue from fresh watermelon. Finally, twice-weekly cooking classes teach visitors how to make traditional Mexican fare with the freshest ingredients. No more using store-bought salsa—after a visit to Flora Farm, you’ll be a pro at making your own.