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Couple sue over front-yard vegetable garden ban

Nov. 20, 2013 at 4:00 PM

MIAMI SHORES, Fla., Nov. 20 (UPI) -- A Florida couple are suing their village for ordering them to rip out the vegetable garden that has adorned their front yard for the past 17 years.

Hermine Ricketts -- who has been planting okra, kale, lettuce, onions, cabbage and other vegetables in front of the home she shares with husband Tom Carroll -- said the village of Miami Shores ordered her to dig up the garden or face $50-per-day fines under a zoning ordinance banning front-yard veggie gardens, The Miami Herald reported Wednesday.

Ricketts and Carroll filed a lawsuit Tuesday alleging the order was a violation of their rights under the Florida Constitution.

"The right to grow and harvest your own food on your very own property is certainly part of that right to acquire, possess and protect property," said Ari Bargil, the couple's lawyer.

Ricketts said nixing the garden has put the couple under a new financial strain.

"We are already feeling the impact of shopping for overpriced organic food," she said.

The lawsuit seeks $1 in compensation and permission to restore the garden.

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