Community gardens offer places to grow

Even the most distracted motorist couldn't help but notice Cape Girardeau's beautiful flower beds. For decades, volunteers have claimed fertile pieces of ground all over the city, working to make it a more pleasant place to live and do business. It is a proud history.

But lately, some groups have been cultivating gardens that are less visible but more edible. The latest community garden was planted in Ranney Park through coordination from the East Missouri Action Agency. Eight families are cultivating broccoli, cabbage, tomatoes and a grocery list of other vegetables there. All the supplies were donated, and the families will be taught to can what they harvest.

Red Star Baptist Church has sponsored such a garden for three years, allowing families to come and pick the produce. And the Downtown Merchants Association sells produce from its Scholarship Garden to raise money for students at Southeast Missouri State University.

Garden hats off to those who accepted the challenge of tending these plots of land.

May there be just the right amount of rain this summer, may the rabbits stay away and may your tomatoes be the biggest and most tasty in the whole county.