Located on the western bank of the Indian River Lagoon at Marker #222, River Palm Cottages & Fish Camp is a vacationer’s and fisherman’s paradise. Twenty-three Key West style guest quarters are scattered among 7.2 acres of lush tropical plants and over eighty varieties of edible plants , fruits and medicinal herbs. A favorite place on the property is an authentic Seminole chickee hut (36 by 24 feet), built by the Seminole Indians in 1998. It is a popular place for weddings and wedding receptions, family reunions, birthday parties and special events, accommodating up to 250 guests. The privacy of the cottages also makes this an ideal place for quiet local getaways. It’s a pet friendly place (with lots of squirrels to chase).

Melynda’s passion is developing and nurturing the vast array of tropical vegetation on the property and selling medicinal herbs through the Amazon Herb Co. Capt. Rufus’ passion is fishing. He regularly conducts tours to the Amazon for peacock bass fishing. He is a charter captain who offers guided trips on the river and offshore charter fishing. Even though this is a fish camp (about 10 to 15% of their clients are fishermen), guests range from all walks of life, coming here to enjoy this tropical paradise.

Capt. Rufus and Melynda purchased this property over five years ago, at the time a condemned property. They have turned it into what it is today

through their passion for fishing, tropical plants, and their love of this area. Their enthusiasm for making this a great place is evident when meeting them. Together with seven dedicated employees they make up a “small family”, working to provide a place for fun and relaxation, and a real asset to the area. There are seven boat slips, a nature walk, pool, sandy beach, hammocks and a children’s play area.


As a pet friendly property, we understand your relationship with your animals. The few rules that apply are meant to assure that you and other visitors have an enjoyable outdoor experience:

1. Keep your pet leashed at ALL times!

2. NO pets are permitted in the pool or pool area.

3. All pet owners are required to pick up after their pet(s). Bags are provided.

4. Pet dishes are located under the kitchen or bathroom sinks.

5. No aggressive behavior from pets will be tolerated!

6. Clean up after your pet is mandatory for health reasons.

Per Pet Charge
Per Day
Per Week
Per Month

6% sales tax will apply.


Local Pet Outlets

Treasure Coast Pet Grooming (334-2284)
Pet Resorts of American (334-7387)
Ocean Breeze Animal Hospital & Clinic (334-7387)
Petsmart (692-0373)
The Grooming Room (334-4232)

24-Hour Emergency Services

God’s Creatures Small Animal Clinic (219-8022)
Savanna Animal Hospital (334-4454)


"Calypso & Tango"



Praying Hands Banana Tree

Adonidia Palm
African Aspargus
Aloe Vera
Bald Cypress
Bananas (20 Varieties)
Barbados Cherry
Black Pepper
Black Sapote (Chocolate Pudding)
Blue Latan Palm
Blue Plumbago
Cabbage Palm
Cainto (Star Apple)
Candle Stick Tree
Canistel (Eggfruit)
Cardboard Palm
Carpenteria Palm
Cherry of the Rio Grande
Coconut Palm-Green Malayan
Coconut Palm-Maypan
Custard Apple
Eucalyptus (Silver Dollar)
Everbearing Mulberry
Fishtail Palm
Florida Royal Palm
Foxtail Palm
Garcinia Latifolia
Giant Grandadilla

Gumbo Limbo
Heliconia (Christmas)
Honeybell Orange
Hong Kong Orchid
Kapok Tree
Key Lime
King Sago
Kwai Muk
Lady Palm
Lemon Tree
Live Oak
Majesty Palm
Malay Palm
Malay Apple
Mamey Magona
Mamey Sapote
Miracle fruit
Monsteria Deliciosa
Norfolk Island Pine
Orange Bird of Paradise
Passion Fruit
Ponderosa Lemon
Purple Glory
Queen Palm
Queen Sago
Red Bay
Red Mulberry
Red Sealing Wax Palm
Screw Pine
Staghorn Fern
Strawberry Guava
Strawberry Tree
Sugar Apple
Surinam Cherry-Black
Surinam Cherry-Red
Traveler’s Palm
Triangle Palm
Tropical Apricot
Variegated Ginger
Washingtonia Palm
Wax Jambu-Green
Wax Jambu-Red
White Bird of Paradise
White Sugar Apple
Yellow Guava
Ylang Ylang Tree



Bush with short green leaf tips. Used in salads & stir-fries. Tastes like fresh green pea pods.
Evergreen vine, leaves are poisonous when eaten.
Pimiento-Evergreen 9' to 40’, the fruit is picked green & dried to produce the combined flavors of nutmeg, cloves and cinnamon. Allspice is the dried unripe fruit.
Withstands salts spray. Flat almond shape edible fruits.
Cleansing properties, excellent on burns.
(Golden apple) rapid growing up to 40’. Deciduous long stalk fruits, dangle in bunches of a dozen or more, 2 ½-3 ½”. With thin tough skin. Flesh is crisp with a pineapple like fragrance & flavor. Fruits fall to midwinter. * The wood is light and buoyant and has been used for canoes.
known as vegetable butter. Evergreen 30-60 feet in height, pollinated by bees. Many isolated trees fail to fruit from lack of pollination. Will not ripen while still attached to the tree, mature fruits will ripen in 1-2 weeks @room temperature. The fruit skin is antibiotic, because the high tannin content of the seeds they were used for ink to write many documents in the days of the Spanish conquest.
Member of the grass family, some varieties are used for building furniture, fish poles and scuffling.
20 varieties, herbaceous, 5-25 inches height, very succulent flower when 12-18 months old, it takes 3 months for the flower to fruit. Bananas are staple foods for most tropical countries and constitute the 4th. Largest fruit crop of the world. Fully-grown fruits in each cluster are called a hand; they usually produce one leaf per month in winter and 4 per month in summer.
Up to 15’ evergreen bushy growth. Red to scarlet fruit approx. 1” with apple flavored flesh, very rich in vitamin C, Dried preparation are sold commercially as Acerola. Favorite of the children. Season May-Nov. Sparsely most of the year.
(chocolate pudding) closely related to persimmon, slow growing up to 80’, fruit is olive green to muddy when ripe. Flesh is glossy brown to almost black jelly like, soft, sweet and mild in flavor. Often seedless close to stewed prunes, in Florida most ripen Dec through Jan. Mixed with cool whip resembles chocolate mousse. Season Nov-April.
Shrub fruit early summer, Florida varieties are available.
Core used for hearts of palm in salads: It is the Florida State tree!
(Star Apple) Nearly evergreen 25 to 100’ tall, golden leaf tree, short trunk with a large crown. Leaves are green on top and rusty underneath. Fruit is 2-4” diameter, either purple or green & pulp is soft and milky white and sweet, Star apples must not be bitten into the skin and rind are inedible & extremely bitter. These are picked by clipping the stem. “Cuban residents in Miami are known to seek the leaves in order to administer the decoction as a cancer remedy. Season is from Feb- to May.
6 ½-25’ prized more for its ornamental value than fruits. Evergreen and cold hardly, makes excellent marmalade and it is great in ice tea & cocktails. Other uses include as a deodorant and when rubbing the juice on insect bites relieves itching and irritation, it also bleaches freckles and helps clear acne.
from Panama. With branches close to the ground and has a 1-3 foot long candle like fruit, they have a waxen texture and resemble hand dipped candles. These trees also have a pungent apple-like fragrance.
Evergreen up to 25’. Oval fruit from 3-5” & 2-3 wide, when ripe the skin turns yellow, smooth & glossy. Flesh is firm, mealy, softer & pastier in the middle (likened in texture to yolk of hard boiled eggs); flavor is sweet, musky somewhat like a baked sweet potato. Very rich in carotene + niacin. Season is Sept.-March, Fruits in Dec - March.
Slow growing, many branches with a rounded crown reaching 20-30’. Slices cut in cross section have the form of a star, not particular to soil but needs moisture for best performance. Mature trees can tolerate freezing for short periods. In Florida scattered fruits are found through the year with main crop late summer to early winter. Excellent in salads, garnish, puddings and pies, substitute Carambola for apple pie, MMM!! DELICIOUS, the juice will also bleach rust stains from white cloth.
Small Evergreen, native to Brazil up to 15’ tall. Fruit is dark red up to 1”, season from April to June.
Up to 100’, one of the world’s chief sources of vegetable fat. The coconut will germinate ever after floating in the ocean 4 months!
Shrub, fruit is up to 1” has dark to purple skin, white spongy flesh, rather bland, kids like them.
An evergreen shrub grown in the tropics for coffee beans and house plants elsewhere, up to 15’ tall, ½” berries that turn red when ripe, fleshy pulp is removed, the beans dried, shelled & graded, stared to season, then roasted.
A Perennial grown commercially in the tropics, in Hawaii and the Pacific the root is eaten in the form of “poi”.
Fruits throughout the year, ½” black when ripe. Kids love them! Great in jams & cobblers.
Deciduous 10-30’ with numerous spreading branches. Needs no pollination, fruit is juicy & sweet. Fresh & dried have laxative action. Season early summer to fall.
(clustered) Up to 40’. Outer coat is poisonous causing irritation to the skin. When each trunk finishes flowering and fruiting it will die.
Low chilling requirements, tree is dwarf and deciduous, flesh is mainly white. Season late April-June.
An essence prepared from the flowers has been made to overcome insomnia.
Highly ornamental, fruit is ½ -3/4”, dark purple when ripe, red or white pulp tastes very much like a tree cherry. Better suited for subtropical climate. Quick period from flower to fruit, usually one month. Season April-June.
Shrub or small tree, Fla. Height 20’ by 20’ wide, bark reddish- brown flakes off. Fruit is roundish yellow to bright red with many seeds. Eaten out of hand but preferred seeded as dessert or in salads. Lots of medicinal uses. Season July-Sept.
Up to 60’, deciduous, light reddish brown flaking bark. Excellent salt tolerance. * A limb of any size stuck in the ground will grow.
Up to 10’, small tree of unusual form. Fruit dull orange to yellow. 1 ½-2” across. Have thin skin, one seed, and thin watery pulp. Eaten fresh. Season July-Aug.
Member of the myrtle family. Native to Brazil. Slow growing Evergreen up to 20’. Flowers form on the trunk and fruit, smooth with a tough dark purple skin and a gelatinous pulp grapelike flavor. Will not bear fruit for 8-15 years. Trees in South Florida usually bear 2 times per year. Mostly eaten out of hand. Excellent jelly, (one of Melynda’s favorites). Season 5-6 crops a year. 1 month from flower to fruit.
Fern tree, cool blue blossoms. Up to 60’, usually deciduous for a short time before bloom, in northern Argentina it is commonly used for lumber.
Handsome 30-70’ tall, Evergreen. Largest of all tree born fruits. May be 8” to 3’/6-20” wide and weigh 10-60 and up to 110lbs! The rind or yellow when ripe, inside consists of large bulbs of yellow banana flavor flesh, when fully ripe the unopened fruit emits a strong odor resembling decayed onions, but the pulp smells of pineapple-banana. In Florida fruit ripen in late summer and fall. The seeds may be boiled or roasted & eaten. “Roasted are regarded as an aphrodisiac”. The heated latex is used as household cement for mending china and to caulk boats. Termite proof wood superior to teak for furniture.
also called Ceiba tree & God tree. A large tropical tree often exceeding a 100’. Leaf shaped like human hands and has 5-9 fingers, this shed in winter, greenish white flowers are borne while the tree is bare of leaves; seed pods are shaped like a sweet potato and filled with small hard pea shaped cotton covered seeds. The floss called kapok used to stuff mattresses, pillows, life preserves & upholstery. One of the largest trees in tropical America. Trunk can reach 6-10’. Thrives in South & Central Florida.
Small thorny tree up to 15’. Usually used while skin is still green to slightly yellow. Famous in pies, fairly salt tolerant. Season late fall-spring.
Little gems of citrus. Slow growing shrubby up to 15’. MEIWA- large round, often seedless to few seeds. Sweet, frequently thornless. NAGAMI- The most often cultivated in Florida, oval. In season Oct.-Jan.
Evergreen, slow growing, erects ornamental 20-50’, dark bark. Fruits are 1-2” with velvety, brownish, thin, tender skin. The pulp is orange-red soft with a sub-acid flavor.
Leading acid citrus fruit up to 20’. Flowers are larger & showier than the orange most vigorous of the citrus family, respond well to pruning & should be cut back to keep compact & fruit in reach.
Close relative of the lychee, handsome Evergreen. Reaching 30-40ft. With a rounded crown. Fruits in drooping cluster ½ to 1” in diameter with thin brownish pebbled skin. Flesh is whitish, translucent, usually eaten fresh out of hand. Endures more frost than lychee. In China they are canned in syrup or dried. Season July-Aug.
Also known as Japanese or Asian plum, 25’. Fruit 1-3” long. Yellow to orange velvety skin. Fruits Jan-April. Delicious in a pie. It tastes just like cherry pie.
Litchi nut, native of China, slow growing Evergreen 30-100’. Fruits in clusters of 2-30, usually strawberry red, leathery warty skin which is easily peeled. Flesh is translucent-white and very grape like. The flesh of dried lychees is eaten like raisins, fruits mid June to July.
Evergreen up to 40’& almost as wide, bears fruit in 4-6 years. Rapidly growing bears very hard-shelled nuts, grown commercially in Florida & Hawaii. Season Nov-March, 6-7 months from flower to fruit.
Fast growing, Evergreen up to 40’, fruit is oblong or bell shaped, has thin, smooth waxy skin, red to pink in color, juicy flesh of mild sweet flavor, (very tropical).
Evergreen, handsome, some say resembles the Southern Magnolia. Reaches 60-70’, fruit nearly round ranges from 4-8”. Hard until fully ripe. Skin is light brown & scurfy. Flesh is light to golden yellow, non-fibrous and varies from crisp to tender & juicy. Resembles the apricot or red raspberry in flavor. Dr. Talmadge Wilson of Stuart had one that reached 30’, but was killed by lightning. Protection from cold 1st. few winters, then adapts well. Should be clipped leaving portion of stem on tree.
The apple of the tropics. Long lived. Some specimens have been known to be 300 years old and still fruiting, 30’ to 100’. Flesh ranges from pale-yellow to deep orange, extremely juicy, ranging from very sweet to sub-acid to tart. Not particular to soil type as long as it has good drainage. They normally reach maturity 4-5 months from flowering. HADEN- 90% of all commercial production *CARRIE- Somewhat dwarf. Most young trees less than 10 years old, may fruit every year. Thereafter most tend to bear every other year. Mangos should be washed before handling the sap is a potent skin irritant and capable of blistering the skin, swelling of eyelids, face etc… does make excellent puree poured over angel food cake, served with fresh raspberry mint. (Melynda’s favorite light dessert). Season May-Oct.
Small cranberry shapes. One fruit eaten will halt the bitter taste buds up to 1 hour; a lime if bitten into will taste sweet.
Hug Plum, deciduous fruits are somewhat plum like and vary 1-2” in length. Skin is glossy and firm, the flesh is yellow fibrous and juicy. Cold sensitive can propagate by setting large cuttings in ground used to create living fences. Ripe fruits commonly eaten out of hand. The tree is known to exude a gum that has served in Central America as glue.
(ceriman) fast growing herbaceous vine climbs trees up to 30’. Calla lily like, develops into a green compound fruit 8-12” in length, scales cover segments of ivory colored fruit much like diced pineapple. 12-14 months to mature. * The aerial roots have been used as ropes in Peru. *In Martinique a preparation of the root is used as a remedy for snakebite.
Slow growing to 33’, young branches are densely coated with russet hairs, usually leaves are glossy on top and hairy underside. Fruit is peculiarly odorous, orange-yellow thin skin white juicy pulp. Varying from sweet to acid. Highly drought tolerant. Soda pop fruit, Island children add them to a bottle of water for beverage. It is perishable when ripe but can be stored for several months by merely keeping semerged in water.
Herb & stout trunk up to 15’, male flower are fragrant and on long stalks, female are directly on trunk. Pollination is done by sphinx moths. Trees may bear fruit for 20 years usually 2-3. It weighs from ½ lb. To 20 lbs. Melon like, yellow orange flesh. Proposate & seeds.
Vine climbing by means of tendrils. Flower is very showy, especially that of the yellow, round fruit is ½-3” wide, pulpy juice with as many as 250 seeds, flavor is guava like. Australians eat seeds and all but elsewhere it is usually squeezed through cheesecloth or pressed through a strainer. Medicinal uses currently a revival of interest in the pharmaceutical industry in Europe as a sedative or tranquilizer. Season summer to mid-winter.
deciduous compact trees up to 25’, fruit up to 3” with orangish-red skin. Fuyu is non-astringent medium sweet flavor. Fruits Sept-Oct. bears in 4-5 years. When the leaves drop, the fruit dangles on bare branches. Season summer- early fall.
A terrestrial herb, Caribbean islands placed pineapples & crowns outside entrances to their homes as symbols of friendship & hospitality. It has become one of the leading commercial fruit crops. *When the industry was flourishing Florida, shipped one million crates per year from the sandy ridge along the Indian River in the early 1900’s. Season May-Sept. usually after 15-312 months.
Dense slow growing evergreen, fruit 1-11/4 long, bright orange-yellow. Apricot-like in texture. Season May-July.
Small bush with many stems. Rarely over 15’. Fruit may be up to 5”; seeds are covered with a sweet gelatinous reddish pulp. Fruits all year in South Florida. Beautiful red flower.
The largest citrus fruit, Fruit ranges from 4-12” wide. Usually grown from curiosity, flowers are large and highly aromatic also used for making perfume.
Highly ornamental, Evergreen, very strong, wind resistant and can stand salt spray, slow growing up to 60’, sub-tropical can stand a short freeze. Fruit is round to oval from 2-4 inches in width. Brown smooth skin with sweet yellow to brown flesh pear-like in consistency. Fruits from may- Sept. with peak in June/July. Chicle. - The gummy latex contains 15% rubber and 38% resin and for many years has been the chief ingredient in chewing gum. The latex is also used in the tropics as crude filling for tooth cavities. The trees can be tapped every two years yielding about 50 quarts of latex chicle the original base for chewing gum. Season May-Aug. Some all year.
Evergreen or deciduous, erect frequently 60’ but can reach 130’, fruit round to ovoid, rough dark-brown, firm, leathery skin to fleshy which is salmon pink to deep red, soft, sweet and pumpkin like in flavor, eat out of hand, yummy in sherbet. Fruit season May-July.
Up to 20’ leaves up to 6’ long, used by natives for weaving baskets & mats. The fruit is round about 6” across, green & yellowing as it ripens with a small amount of edible pulp. Salt tolerant.
Salt tolerant, yummy in jelly. Flowering season May, green fruit turning purple Sept. Oct.
Jamaican cherry, Evergreen, fast growing, nicknamed strawberry tree because it blooms resemble “blossoms” small fruits eaten whole. Fruits nearly year round. Wood is valued for fuel in Jamaica; it ignites quickly, burns with intense heat and gives off very little smoke. Season all year on mature trees.
“white”, deciduous 10-20’, mostly widely grown species of annona. Nearly round fruit with knobby segments and a creamy sweet white flesh. Best as a fresh fruit. Season Aug-winter.
Brazilian cherry, shrub or tree up to 25’. In Florida is the most common hedge plant throughout central and southern pants of the state. Bright red to almost black when mature, there are 2 distinct types: The black crimson tends to be much sweeter & less resinous. Spring & fall crops in Fla. In Brazil the leaves have been spread over the floors of homes, when walked on them, they release pungent oil, which repels flies. Season May-June and sporadic all year.
Slow growing long lived up to 80’ and spread up to 40’! Leaves fold at night. Fruits are flat; bean like curved with bulged pod. Used as a paste, beverage candy and preserves. Withstands salt sprays. Florida fruits Dec-Jan. and ripens April-June.
Up to 30’, fan shaped. Banana shaped leaves. The large hollow leaf stalks form receptacles, which store a quart of water.
Large spreading shrub, fruit has velvety brownish thin skin and a soft flesh resembling apricot. Fruit season Dec. Apr.
It’s an orchid – bean life fruit used in flavoring.
(Java-apple) Short trunk widespreading crown. 16-50’, pinkish-gray flaking bark. Fruit has a waxy skin, usually light red sometimes greenish-white, pear shaped. Thin skinned, flesh is white, spongy dry to juicy and bland in flavor. The leaves are very aromatic when crushed, very fragrant flower.
Flower used to scent Chanel perfume.



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