If you own your own house and own your own property, isn’t it your right to be able to use that land to grow your own food? After all, what purpose does that land even serve if you can’t grow things on it? According to the city’s attorney in Miami Shores, Florida, if you live in the city, you have no right to grow a garden, at least not in your front yard.
According to Miami Shores attorney Richard Sarafan, you can plant fruit trees in your front yard and litter them with the tackiest gnomes and pink flamingos you can find, but you definitely cannot grow vegetables. You simply do not have a fundamental right to do so, Sarafan stated to a judge in the city’s major personal property right infringement case. He would go on to state that, “Aesthetics and uniformity are legitimate government purposes. Not every property can lawfully be used for every purpose.”
For those who have never had the displeasure of living in a suburb, this is a true reality. The Homeowner’s Associations that typically rule small suburb communities often have the right to tell homeowners what they can and cannot do on their land. This includes restricting the height, placement, and material of fences, dictating appropriate house colors, and, of course, restricting private gardens. If those laws are broken, they even have the right to levy fines against the owners. However, this is the first case of a city looking to remove the right to have a garden in the front yard.
For the owners of this notorious front yard garden, married couple Hermine Ricketts and Tom Carroll, they and their attorney are simply arguing that they can indeed grow vegetables in their front yard on their property, and that it is a right protected by the Constitution.
In fact, the couple has been doing it for 17 years right up until they were ordered to tear up their garden last year. Unfortunately for this couple, who have managed to free themselves from reliance on the grocery store, at least for fresh produce, the Miami Shores village government passed an ordinance that banned front yard vegetable gardens. Now if Ricketts and Carroll lose their court case against the city and continue to grow their garden, they face a nasty $50 per day fine.
The city’s attorney, in an attempt to not look like a complete villain, made a statement that the city was not against growing vegetables on private property, as long as they keep it to their backyard. However, it doesn’t seem to matter that Ricketts and Carroll don’t get adequate sun in their backyard to grow vegetables. If they did, this likely would not even be a case.
However, this does remain a significant case as the winning party will set the legal precedent on whether or not property owners have the right to grow vegetables wherever they please on their property.
This is just one of several cases around the country which has tried to ban front yard vegetable gardens, the most outrageous of which was a case in 2011 where a Michigan city they threatened to jail the garden owner over her garden. However, no court cases have yet to come to a conclusion. Like the other case that fight for a property owner’s right to grow their own food, a conclusion to this case might be years away, but the garden owners state that when they win, the eggplant is on them.
Not only does the Survival Life Association stock everything survivalist, preppers, and those living off the grid need for their homes, but we support your right to grow food, collect water, and build structures on your own property.
Protect yourself from property infringement and prepare for any disaster, threat or civil unrest. You need to ask yourself if you are READY for when the inevitable strikes? Do you have enough food stores for your family? Is your water supply safe? Do you have a habitable safe haven when the tides turn? Any Disaster can outfit you with every bit of off the grid material and products you could ever need.