SECRET GARDENS WINERY celebrated its one-year anniversary in early November — an anniversary that had been nearly 11 years in the making.
Tucked away about 15 miles off Highway 27 in Sebring, the idea for Secret Gardens Winery was planted when the Murray family — parents Rick and Val, along with daughter Lexi — bought a 20acre farmhouse fixer-upper in 2009.
In 2012, they purchased an additional 10 acres and decided to start a winery from the ground up. While Rick and Val started the steps to make the winery a reality, Lexi went off to college at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville.
After graduation, Lexi began working with Norweigan Cruise Lines, working in food and beverage, before moving to Hyatt and working in their hospitality area. Her work with the two companies took her to Hawaii, Colorado and California.
“My parents came out to California in 2016 and asked if I would be interested in doing the farm with them full time,” says Lexi. “It sounded like a fun venture and it would be something new for our area in Central Florida.”
In 2018, they started construction on the big blue barn that serves as the central hub for Secret Gardens Winery. The structure serves as a tasting room, storefront, and meeting hall. Rick used his background as a commercial contractor to bring the barn to life.
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Youth Conservation Group Hosting Contests, Giveaways
The Florida Youth Conservation Centers Network (FYCCN) will celebrate its 10th birthday this December and January with a social media campaign featuring contests and giveaways, a new partner rewards program, donor recognition, and a virtual crowd-sourced fundraising event.
SIGNS of the SEASON
Bell Peppers, Cucumbers and Eggplants Thrive During Florida Winters
White Strawberry One of Two New Varieties From UF/IFAS
A WHITE STRAWBERRY? Not red? Yes, you read that right. And it smells a little like a pineapple. It’s also novel in that it’s the first white strawberry to go to market in the United States.
The Power of Aquaponics
Traders Hill Farm Takes Sustainable Farming to Another Level
U.S. Sugar Is Home to the Largest Contiguous, Privately Owned Wi-Fi Network in America
Overcoming the Mental Health Toll
UF/IFAS Joins Effort to Battle Farmers’ Stress
Harvesting the Holiday
Dade City’s Ergle Christmas Tree Farm Helps Holiday Spirit Grow
There’s More to This Plant Than Movies and Lore Will Tell You
Globally Positioned Success
Production Is Blooming at Highlands County Caladium Farm With the Use of Global Positioned System
A NATURAL GIFT
27,000 Acres Gifted to UF for Conservation, Outdoor Classroom and Laboratory
ASK OLD HOUSE JOURNAL
ASK OLD HOUSE JOURNAL
BETWEEN Stimulus & Response
In this excerpt from an interview done in August 2016, DR. JAMES DOTY is interviewed by JOHN MALKIN about the science of meditation, the evolutionary advantage of compassion, aspects of human behavior that relate to compassion and collective social issues, and his cherished memories of the remarkable woman who gave him a helping hand up when he was a boy.
The road to successful change is lined with trade-offs
Rather than trying to convince people your change initiative is the right one, invite them to talk openly about what it might take to implement it: the good, the bad, and the frustrating.
This Tiger Musky Is My King
Many muskies over my lifetime have made for some great memories, but one catch that stands above the rest started with a successful release that happened back in 2003. As it turned out, this special tiger musky visited my boat several times from 2003-2006.
SHOWCASING WHAT YOU BUILD & FLY
Close to My Heart
Let this beloved star of Hallmark holiday movies help you find the spirit of the season
BACKYARD BARN FIND 1966 SHELBY G.T.350-H HERTZ RENTAL CAR PARKED SINCE 1981
GROW YOUR OWN FOOD ON BOARD, BY ERIN CAREY
THE PILATES CLASS
Whether you want to feel healthier, stronger, happier, or sexier, The Pilates Class Method is for you!
James Hetfield's Frontman, Metallica
Guitar-shredding James Hetfield, the lead singer of Metallica, is known around the world for his music, but he’s also a passionate car customizer who recently donated most of his collection to the Petersen Automotive Museum. You can also see them in his new book, Reclaimed Rust: The Four- Wheeled Creations of James Hetfield.