Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Zephyrhills officials pave the way for community gardening

ZEPHYRHILLS — The city's sustainability plan touts community gardens as one avenue leading to a greener community.

Now the City Council is making it happen. On Monday evening, the council unanimously passed the first reading of an ordinance that amends the city's zoning laws, allowing for the creation and maintenance of community gardens anywhere in the city — except the airport.

"I think this is great," said council member Lance Smith. "Growing up, everyone had one, but it was out of necessity."

City planner Todd Van de Berg and Tammy Vrana, the consultant who produced the sustainability plan, pointed out several benefits to community gardens. They attract folks of all ages and backgrounds, working together to produce crops of fresh food.

The educational benefits to young people who think grocery stores are responsible for much of the food they eat are incalculable, said Vrana.

Plus, it's fun.

"It's for everybody," said Vrana. "You can look at all parts of a community and find people that are interested in playing in the dirt."

The ordinance lays out a few ground rules: No gardening before sunup or after sundown, put away all tools and supplies each day, and do your best to stay organic by avoiding pesticides and other chemicals.

"Tonight, we're taking a baby step," said Van de Berg. "We'll start with the ordinance, then we'll start looking for locations."

The ordinance has no impact on individual private gardens, Van de Berg added.

When the time comes, the city will seek guidance on promoting the gardening endeavors of those who have gone before, like the cities of Temple Terrace and Safety Harbor, he said.

The measure will come back to City Council for a final vote April 8.

>>In other business

Library contract approved

The Zephyrhills City Council okayed a contract with A.D. Morgan Corp. for the $1.5 million new library project. The council chose the Tampa firm in January to be the general contractor and construction manager for the project, which will involve building a new facility adjacent to the current library on Eighth Street just north of Fifth Avenue. The new library is expected to be ready for business by summer 2014.

Zephyrhills officials pave the way for community gardening 03/26/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, March 26, 2013 8:25pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Shakeup on Adam Putnam campaign


    In a sign of unsteadiness for what  had  looked like a strong-out-of-the-gate Adam Putnam campaign, the Republican frontrunner suddenly fired his campaign manager and political director. Hard-charging Campaign manager Kristin Davis and political director Jared Small were two of the three outsiders to join …

    Putnam campaigning in Destin the other day as part of his 22-city bus tour
  2. Rays let early lead get away again in loss to Angels (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — As pleased as the Rays were to win consecutive series against the contending Red Sox, Indians and Yankees and to get briefly back over .500, there was a lot of talk in the clubhouse before Monday's game against the Angels that it was time to do better.

    Tampa Bay Rays third base coach Charlie Montoyo (25) high fives designated hitter Corey Dickerson (10) as he rounds third on his lead off home run in the first inning of the game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Los Angeles Angels at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Monday, May 22, 2017.
  3. Tampa man arrested for killing man in his USF-area home


    TAMPA — A Tampa man was arrested Monday in the death of man found killed at a home in the University of South Florida area last week, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office.

    Kadeem Dareem Archibald, 26, was arrested Monday on a  second degree murder charge in the University Area killing of Khando Kerr. [Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office]
  4. Report: Trump asked intel chiefs to push back against FBI collusion probe after Comey revealed its existence


    President Donald Trump asked two of the nation's top intelligence officials in March to help him push back against an FBI investigation into possible coordination between his campaign and the Russian government, the Washington Post reports, citing current and former officials.

    From  left, CIA Director Mike Pompeo; Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats; and National Security Agency Director Adm. Michael Rogers take their seats on Capitol Hill on May 11 before  testifying before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on major threats facing the U.S. [Associated Press]
  5. For Gov. Rick Scott, 'fighting' could mean vetoing entire state budget

    State Roundup

    Every day, Gov. Rick Scott is getting a lot of advice.

    The last time a Florida governor vetoed the education portion of the state budget was in 1983. Gov. Bob Graham blasted fellow Democrats for their “willing acceptance of mediocrity.”