You can take the GRITS out of Florida, but you can't take Florida out of the GRITS!

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Pinecrest Gardens (aka the Old Parrot Jungle)

Last weekend, we went to Pinecrest Gardens...

Years ago, it was a privately owned and run tourist attraction called the Parrot Jungle.

They sold out to the community of Pinecrest. I was really upset when it happened and afraid of what they would do with this beautiful piece of history.

But Pinecrest has kept it pretty much the same as it was, minus the parrots (which were moved to their new home on Watson island called The Jungle). The trees used to be tagged so you knew what you were looking at, but he tags are all gone now :(

They added this really nice splash park for the kids. It used to be free, but now they are charging $3. Not bad since it's for all day.

Aidan really had fun and made lots of new friends.

Anybody have any idea what that fruit is???

It truly is like a jungle there. Very lush and tropical.

Not too many animals roaming around anymore. Just this Ibis...

and alot if iguanas.

They also have a petting zoo with goats and a couple pot-bellied pigs. I get mad watching the kids in there, though...they can be so rough and mean and no one says anything to them. Aidan didn't go in this time, but he's been before and was happy to pet them from the fence.
Isn't it amazing? Look at how the roots have formed an archway.
I am happy to say this is still a nice place to visit. Very peaceful and relaxing. The old, original buildings still exist. It doesn't not look of feel like a neighborhood park at all. And it's free!

Check out my other blog for more on the Parrot Jungle and other things in Miami's past...
"Remembering Old Miami"


marcandeliana said...

Definitely a great place to visit. I'm glad they preserved the landscaping for the most part, and kept it free! Think they might have lifted out some of the sausage trees and transplanted them to Watson Island. Can you imagine moving a full grown tree? It's cool to spot the iguanas and observe all the water turtles in the ponds. Most of time, you can catch a glimpse of macaws flying overhead or feeding in the tip-tops of the palm trees too. There are still a few caches in the park I think, although a few have gone missing. I neutered all the rabbits in the petting zoo! -Marc

Sandcastle Momma said...

We visited the Parrot Jungle several times when we lived there in the 80s. I was amazed by the trees and vegetation they have there. I thought Andrew messed the place up really bad but I see that it's recovered nicely.
Do they still have the Monkey Junlge down there? We went once but the monkeys seemed mean and acted a little rabid - which was scary and we never went back LOL

SwampAngel65 said...

Oh yeah. Monkey Jungle is still there. I haven't been there in a few years, though. I think the monkeys are crankier when it's so dang hot out. I was thinking of going back and taking my littlest one this winter.

Anonymous said...

Oh my god. The Parrot Jungle!! I grew up right down the road from there, off Red Road. Used to ride my bike past it on the bike trails around there.

Some of the parrots used to break free and would end up in my parents back yard for awhile. You could see them at Fascell park and in other neighborhoods around the area.

I was so upset when they sold it, but it's great to see they've preserved it!

I absolutely love that part of Miami. It's so far removed from the strip malls and traffic BS across the rest of town!

Weeble Girl said...

That looks like a beautiful place to visit and find some innner peace.

Thanks for stopping by my blog and adding me to yours!

Love the woman in black search. Interesting stockings on her, though.

I'll be back,

ChrisB said...

It looks a really lovely place to visit. I love the pot bellied pig. No Idea what the fruit is!

Unknown said...

Wow, that last shot is amazing!!

Looks like they have made it a great place still! Have no idea of what the fruit is, do tell!

Anonymous said...

Wow, love the roots in the last picture.

What is it about pot bellied pigs? I think they are so freaking cute.

Pinecrest Plant Guy said...

Thanks for the great comments about Pinecrest Gardens ! The Village and the Gardens staff have worked diligently on restoring and maintaining this old garden. One of the blog questions is what the green shiny fruits were called: they are the fruits of the Mexican Calabash Tree, Crescentia cujete. Neither edible nor eatable, just decorative.

Please continue to enjoy the Gardens ! We love to hear the feedback !

Craig Morell
Pinecrest Gardens

Unknown said...

I Love Your Blog I Can Tell You Worked Really Hard On It But I Hope You Dont Mind But A Fact Is Incorrect: But Pinecrest has kept it pretty much the same as it was, minus the parrots (which were moved to their new home on Watson island called The Jungle). The trees used to be tagged so you knew what you were looking at, but he tags are all gone now :(

It Is On Watson Island Called Jungle Island (Was Parrot Jungle But They Changed The Name Because They Did Not Want Everyone Thinking It Is JUST Parrots) Believe It Or Not I Was Just There Yesterday And I Was A Bit Upset Because If You Have Been To It's Newer Location They Have A Show Called Tale Of The Tiger And They Changed Some Of The Animals And Also They Changed A Main Person Who Tells You Facts And Stuff... And Also They Have A Gift Shop Above The Cafe And It Was Abandoned... Which
Shocked Me!! And They Moved The Photo Place. But It Is Great Fun!!! But I Am So Sad That It Is A Third Of The Size Now But Before It Was So Much Bigger In It's
Pine Crest Garden Location And I Hear That Now It Is
More About The Buildings Not The Nature (I Dont Think Your This Old And Neither Am I But If You Were In It's Old Location You May Remember This:

Sir Winston Churchill holds Pinky, the Moluccan Cockatoo, at Miami's Parrot Jungle in 1946.

Sorry But I Tried To Put A Picture But It Did Not Let Me... And Yes She Is Still Alive And She Is There!!
Check Out Jungle Island Again Some Day!!