Letter: Palm Beach Town Council's plant mandate will 'harm' town

·1 min read
Coontie, a drought tolerant native cycad, was planted in October along South Lake Drive near the Town Marina.
Coontie, a drought tolerant native cycad, was planted in October along South Lake Drive near the Town Marina.

[ The] Town Council has quietly, with COVID and summer, passed a law that will greatly harm the Palm Beach we all cherish.

Palm Beach is well known for its great gardens and vegetation. No doubt, wealth and the freedom to express it has been the impetuous. Contrary to most municipalities, the town historically has had very few laws restricting one's power of expression in one’s garden. That makes us completely different from all other communities.

That is quickly changing. I was a big proponent of the town outlawing Ficus benjamina. I’m glad it passed, but Pandora’s Box was opened. Tacked on to it was a 25% native plant requirement, of which all of the well-known landscape architectural firms in town were against.

>> RELATED: Town Council increases native vegetation requirements

Now, a short time after forcing this law through, Town Council, poorly advised by native plant radicals, have increased the native plant requirement to 35%, which is in many cases deadly to the way we know Palm Beach.

Most front-line seaside plants we use are now forbidden. The town went so far as to include the coconut palms we are named after as illegal. When I facetiously asked one of the members of [the] Town Council if they were also changing the name of the town, coconuts were quietly excluded from the list.

This article originally appeared on Palm Beach Daily News: Letter to the editor: Council's plant mandate will 'harm' town

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