Lovely, fresh, homegrown fruits and vegetables are not easy to come by on this island. You would think that the balmy weather would encourage all kinds of crops in home gardens. This isn’t so, however. The soil is hard and rocky, bedding plants are scarce or non-existent, and seeds are not available in great variety. So, why are we knocking ourselves out to help people start gardens?
Because they are needed, that’s why. Many families simply can’t afford to buy the fruits and vegetables that are shipped to the island and sold in stores. A watermelon is an extravagant luxury that simply isn’t realistic on a modest food budget.
Friends of Cozumel volunteers are working on three small plots and several balcony or patio sites. Our resourceful leaders found a source for good dirt, someone to teach composting, and secured concrete blocks for garden boundaries. Others of us visited the recycling center and scored a few containers (mostly buckets) that can be used on balconies or walls. We found chives and yerba buena seedlings (a plant in the mint family) and might be able to squeeze some seeds out of cherry tomatoes. No kidding, that’s one of the ways that it’s done here. Now, if we can just get all the above mentioned things together, there is a chance that some families may have a better diet. ~ Shirley from California