We hear it all the time, "The only way to solve our food problems is to start gardening at home."
That's great and all, but we live in Florida: our soil sucks, it's hotter than hell, and we have pests that could eat a small dog.
That being said, there are local gardening experts who are willing to help novices and those of us who possess black thumbs.
Starting next month, Karin Fields (a.k.a. the Edible Gardening Gal) will be bringing her classes and free advice to Marando Farms.
Starting on September 7, Fields, who most recently taught classes at Hollywood's Yellow Green Market, will be bringing her Edible Gardening in the Tropics class to downtown Fort Lauderdale's Marando Farms.
The class will teach Floridians how to deal with the eccentric farming environment that is South Florida, including garden location, soil, where to get seeds, which plants to pick, and more.
A veteran of Florida growing, Fields has been harvesting crops down here for more than fifteen years. In addition to growing her own, installing home gardens, and teaching, she has been involved in numerous outreach programs, working with local schools such as Dillard High School, Miami Northwestern Senior High School, Cypress Run Elementary School, Boulevard Heights Elementary School, Nova Elementary, and Paideia Classical Academy.
While she is a proponent of organics overall, Fields believes the best way to take care of yourself and the environment is to focus on feeding yourself.
"The only way people are going to accomplish getting the nutrients for the food they eat is to grow it themselves, " she said. "Keep it small; do it for your family."
The classes will take place at 10 a.m. on the first Saturday of every month. Fans and ice water will be provided.
Marando Farms is located at 1401 SW First Ave. in Fort Lauderdale. Call 954-294-2331, or visit marandofarms.com. For more information about Karin Fields and Edible Gardening visit ediblegardening.biz.
Follow Sara Ventiera on Twitter, @saraventiera.