The first orange groves, planted in St. Augustine in the 1500s by Ponce de León, were the precursor to what would become an integral part of Florida’s identity. Orange groves slowly spread across the state, inspiring horticultural and manufacturing ingenuity. Discover the story behind Deland’s eccentric “citrus wizard” Lue Gim Gong, the rise and fall of smuggler Jesse Fish and the silver-tongued politician William J. Howey, who made his fortune selling plots of groveland through the 1920s. Celebrate the heyday of orange tourism and the farmers who weathered freezes, floods and citrus greening. Join author Erin Thursby as she explores the history of the Sunshine State’s most famous crop.
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