Fort Myers makes plans for urban garden’s redevelopment

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FORT MYERS, Fla.- A government-run garden has turned into a plot of weeds.

The city rented a piece of land to a group, in hopes of having a beautiful urban garden. Instead, the garden is an overgrown mess.

Now, the city is turning to a new tenant.

“When crops are growing, the community comes in and learning takes place. That is what we want,” said Mike Love with the Southwest Florida Enterprise Center.

Healthy Harvest Community Gardens is set to take over the two-acre site.

The nonprofit group grows vegetables and fruits, and donates them to food banks. It also gives them to people, who are asked to pay what they can.

Healthy Harvest hopes to turn the land back into the flourishing urban garden WINK News saw about three years ago. Back then, some men with farm experience were tending the plots.

“They left, and once they left, everything went downhill.”

The city is terminating the contract with the people who had been running the garden.

“It’s extremely difficult to see the way it went downhill,” said Love.

The contract with Healthy Harvest is expected to be approved on Wednesday. The group already has surveyed the ground and is ready to turn the soil, and plant a first crop.

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