Getting help planting your edible garden


Fairchild Tropical Gardens
Fairchild Tropical Gardens



Trying to garden in South Florida can be frustrating. I’ve had lots of challenges over the years trying to grow my own vegetables and herbs in South Florida.


  • The seedlings I buy to plant locally are not suited for South Florida weather.
  • The soil dries out too quickly.
  • The sun scorches my plants.
  • The plants get attacked by pests & insects, which I’m afraid to treat for fear I’ll contaminate the plants with pesticides.
  • I go on vacation and all my plants die from lack of watering.
  • They never grow, or grow for only a short time.
  • Since Florida soil is so sandy, I don’t know exactly what I should add to it to help the plants grow better.

I’ve been a frustrated, if not persistent, micro-gardener for years. 


I knew most problems could be eliminated by growing in a raised bed; but I got overwhelmed trying to decide which type to order online. Then there was the bigger problem of putting it all together so it’s ready to grow. Hope came last year when I was visiting Fairchild Tropical Gardens in Coral Gables for their annual Edible Garden Festival. I met Dylan Terry; owner of Ready-To-Grow Gardens. They build raised beds made of reclaimed Greenwood hardwood from Florida docks. They use organic soil, organic fertilizer, and help you select plants for your location, tastes, and South Florida’s season and growing climate. They set everything up for you; so you’re ready to grow — for many years. I’ve kept the business card for a long time; saved my pennies; and finally had two grow boxes installed last week.

Would you like to see how they turned out? 

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Installation took just a few hours. The entire crew was professional and personable. Both beds are hooked up to a watering system so I don’t have to worry about everything dying when I travel later this month. And although I think I’ll be happy to replant myself when the hot season begins in June; Ready-to-Grow also offers bed maintenance and replanting.

I cannot wait to be eating my own salad greens and tomatoes. I’ve found myself just standing out there staring at my raised beds; they make me so happy. If you’re frustrated with your attempts at growing edibles yourself, I highly recommend Ready-To-Grow Gardens. You can reach owner Dylan Terry at (786) 436-7703 or by email at or visit the website at

P.S. I wrote this review because I’m passionate about gardening and small local businesses that are doing awesome stuff; not because someone paid me to.

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