March 1, 2024

Final Thought: How Does My Garden Grow?

1.7 min read| Published On: March 1st, 2024|

By Roxanne Brown

Final Thought: How Does My Garden Grow?

1.7 min read| Published On: March 1st, 2024|

The idea of growing my own vegetables intrigues me . . . and this year I’m doing it.

Last year, after writing a story that featured Clermont’s Community Garden, I was inspired by the prospect of cultivating my own vegetables, herbs and flowers.

As I listened to the woman in charge talk about the benefits of a community garden and as she showed me around, I fell in love with its serene atmosphere and the idea behind it. The garden boxes were mostly empty at that time, but in my head, I pictured myself watering the plants and then standing there with buckets filled with the fruits of my labor as butterflies and birds flew all around me.

Despite knowing deep down inside that my thumbs have never been green, I was taken by the thought, and for just $31 per year to plant in the community garden, I figured, “What the heck?”

I invested in gardening soil and got about 10 huge bags for just under $100. Then, on Mother’s Day 2023, when my kids asked me what I wanted to do, I asked for help getting the (very heavy) soil into my bed and ready for planting. Though horrified, they came through. 

After a couple of weeks of watering dirt, I planted a sweet pepper plant a friend gave me between a cholesterol spinach plant and a few grape tomato (vining) plants. I also added some decorative stones, a gnome and two tiny fairy statuettes next to a mini mailbox for good luck and thought, “Easy peasy; I got this!”


The pepper plant simply vanished into the soil following a heavy rain. And even though I harvested beautiful tiny tomatoes that I proudly posted pictures of on Facebook, watering the garden in Florida’s summer heat and humidity got the best of me. 

Then I met Linda, a Clermont community gardener who invited me to join a text group she and a handful of others started to help one another tend to their beds. When it came time to renew my garden rental for 2024, however, I decided to let it go… that is, until Linda encouraged me not to give up. 

I have since paid another $31 and dropped seeds for green beans, peas, peppers, summer squash, lettuce, wildflowers and colorful zinnias. I hope to become the envy of gardeners everywhere. Aside from that fantasy, I at least hope to make my community garden text buddies proud by helping keep their plantings alive, like they’ve so graciously done for me.  

I can only hope that good gardening vibes find me and that my thumbs turn as green as the salad I am determined to make fresh from one of my harvests! 

Leave A Comment

About the Author: Roxanne Brown

Originally from Nogales, Arizona, Roxanne worked in the customer service industry while writing independently for years. After moving to Florida in 1999, Roxanne eventually switched her career path to focus more on writing and went on to become an award-winning reporter for The Daily Commercial/South Lake Press newspapers for 16 years prior to coming on board with Akers Media as a staff writer in July 2020 – her dream job come true.

Share This Story!

Never miss an issue,  Sign up for the Style Newletter!