As of July 1, Senate Bill 82 was approved regarding residential vegetable gardens. It prohibits county, municipality or other political subdivisions from regulating vegetable gardens on residential properties. As per terms used in Florida Statutes 201.24, political subdivision is defined to include counties, cities, towns, villages, special tax school districts, special road and bridge districts, bridge districts and all other districts in this state.
See Florida Statutes 88.6011 at www.flsenate.gov/Laws/Statutes/2011/88.6011.
This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer or Senate Office and was prepared by: Community Affairs Committee (CA).
CS/SB 82 prohibits a county, municipality or other political subdivision of the state from regulating vegetable gardens on residential properties. Any local ordinance or regulation regarding vegetable gardens on residential properties is void and unenforceable.
It provides an exception for local ordinances or regulations of a general nature that do not specifically regulate vegetable gardens, including, but not limited to, regulations and ordinances relating to water use during drought conditions, fertilizer use or control of invasive species. The bill defines ‘vegetable garden’ as a plot of ground where herbs, fruits, flowers or vegetables are cultivated for human consumption.
Based on interpretation and a legal review, this legislation only speaks to local city and county ordinances that may address vegetable gardens. It does not address or affect homeowner association (HOA) or potential Community Development District (CDD) restrictions that may be present. HOA/CDD restrictions would still be enforceable. CDDs are not specifically designated as political subdivisions in that statute.
If you live in a deed restricted community, please check your deed restrictions before planting a vegetable garden or when making other changes to your landscape. It may be easier and more economical to ask permission than to remove, replace or attempt to defend the changes you made.
Follow the procedures in your HOA by completing the forms required, schedule to meet with your Homeowner Association or Architectural Review Board and present your case.
UF/IFAS Extension is located at 5339 CR 579 in Seffner. Call 744-5519. The Bette S. Walker Discovery Garden in the courtyard is open during business hours and can provide you with ideas for your home landscape. Visit http://sfyl.ifas.ufl.edu/hillsborough/upcoming-events/.