Master Gardener volunteer
Hi there, I’m Rebecca! I grew up loving plants, but they didn’t always love me back. My grandparents and great-grandmother always let me help out in their gardens when I was young, but I couldn’t quite figure the gardening thing out on my own.
One year, I decided to do some research to figure out how I could grow peppers on my apartment balcony, and it worked! I realized gardening is a skill you learn, not an innate talent you are born with.
I’m a Master Gardener Volunteer in Florida, and I’m currently in Year 2 of flipping my all grass yard (front and back) to a mix of natives, pollinator and wildlife friendly patches, a food forest, and raised beds. I raise Coturnix quail, and I would love to add chickens to my flock one day.
I absolutely love sharing my gardening knowledge with others, and I’m always happy to help!
Q: What’s your favorite plant?
A: My favorite plant is a tree– specifically the Key Lime tree. I have one in my backyard, but unfortunately the majority of citrus trees in Florida have fatal citrus greening. I’m looking forward to the day when researchers can develop resistant varieties or find a cure for greening disease so we can grow citrus in Florida again.
Q: What is your “spirit vegetable”?
A: I think I would be a pole bean. They can grow tall (like me!) and have lots of tendrils for support. Beans can serve a lot of different functions, like being a cover crop or a food crop. Sometimes I feel like I have a lot of different directions and purposes in life, just like beans. I also like that they grow together in pods. I’m an introvert, but I love the idea of the little beans hanging out together in their pods.
Q: What’s the most unusual plant you’ve grown?
A: I think the weirdest thing I have ever grown is an Ice Cream Bean. It’s a huge 80-100 foot tall tree native to South America. It’s used by the Indigenous Amazonians for many different purposes, including making a drink called cachiri. I’m most excited to taste the fruit pods, which are full of a fluff that tastes like vanilla ice cream, but has the texture of cotton candy!