The 11-acre farm at Timbers Kauai at Hokuala isn’t just for luxury owners and vacationers. It’s an amenity for island residents, too.
Walking paths crisscross the 450-acre Hokuala resort’s world-class golf course and areas where Timbers is restoring native wetlands. They also pass through overgrown jungle areas and more than 50 different types of fruit trees, herbs and veggies in the Timbers Farm.
Residents walk those paths in the early mornings and evenings to get some exercise and to socialize — people walk their dogs or go jogging, and kids ride their bikes over to check on trees they planted with farmer Cody Meyer.
That’s the vision of the Timbers Farm — not only to provide a local, fresh source for the onsite restaurant, Hualani’s, but to also help make value-added products to use as amenities. Its purpose is to provide a place where people can learn about farming on a first-hand basis.
“This is a public-access trail (that goes through the farm), and if we have coconuts and we’re around, we’ll cut one for you,” Meyer said on Thursday as he prepared to harvest ingredients for Hualani’s. “Come refresh with us.”
The farm provides a place for Timbers’ owners to put their hands in the dirt as well. Anyone who invests in real estate at Timbers gets to plant a dwarf Samoan coconut tree. The coconut garden is growing now, with each tree sporting a sign that names its ohana.
Selling those luxury residences has been going well for the development, too, according to Timbers General Manager Kevin Geanides.
“We’re nearly 50% sold out in our first year,” Geanides said.
It’s a picturesque development situated behind the Kauai Marriott Resort &Beach Club in Lihue with infinity pools, a near-constant and delicious breeze, and a sweeping view of the Pacific Ocean.
The farm is just a year old as well, planted on a fairway in January, so much of the produce — lilikoi and guava, ice cream bean and mangos, ohia trees and ulu, coffee and cacao, noni and kale — are still growing toward maturity.
But much of the farm is producing. They’re growing carrots and greens, herbs and bananas, papayas and coconuts, too. In fact, Timbers Farm produced about 20,000 pounds of produce from January through June this year.
Meyer and coworker Samual Selindh spend their days tending to the farm and providing education to school groups that are starting to circulate through. They also provide tours for visitors, property owners and whatever residents happen to take an interest as they walk by.
“We’ll crack coconuts, talk about canoe plants,” Meyer said. “We envision a botanical garden, and we need to teach people how to grow food.”
Meyer and Selindh started the project with a shovel and a bucket, and planted from seed. They also got some plants from Kauai Nursery &Landscaping and a little help from some heavy equipment that was being used to build the residences at Timbers.
“They dug a trench, and that made things go much faster,” Meyer said.
Already, Meyer said he’s getting enough produce to give about 300 pounds to Malama Kauai’s Village Harvest program, which helps distribute produce around the island, and says he can’t wait for that to grow.
“I love to see that,” Meyer said. “It’s all about teaching. All about the kids, and promoting local food production. This is real.”
The public is welcome to wander through Timbers Farm and check out the work they’re doing. If you time it right, you might even get a fresh-cracked coconut from Meyer or Selindh along the way.
Jessica Else, environment reporter, can be reached at 245-0452 or firstname.lastname@example.org.