St John vacation rentals owners’ and guests’ favorite gardener. Meet the irrepressible Josephine Roller and hear her vision about composting post storm organic materials instead of throwing them in the dump. We’ve had so much organic wood-based waste to dispose of after the Hurricane IRMA and she is very outspoken about what should be done. She has met with USVI Governor Mapp about this concept but has not received a green light.
Josephine’s vision is both philanthropic and environmentally correct. The Ball Field by the Moravian Church in Coral Bay has been the staging area for stuff that needed to be disposed. An ongoing movement, Josephine said she is willing to compost it all and give it out to neighbors.
I met Josephine 20 years ago when I was beginning to landscape at Mooncottage. She knows everything when it comes to plants. I call her “Doctor” … as she has a PHD in Agriculture and once ran the Dept of Agriculture facility here in Coral Bay. And, she’s enigmatic and energetic the proprietor of the only Organic Farm on St John. I asked her why vines started to grow right after the hurricanes. She said, “Nature doesn’t like to be naked, so they filled in temporarily.” (BIG laugh from her after). Classic Josephine.
Also seen on this video is her son Hugo Jr. He works on the farm. Their daughter Mimi was on the USVI Olympic sailing team. Both Hugo Jr. and Mimi are the most physically beautiful young athletes and nicest people you’ll ever want to meet.
Josephine’s Greens are famous here on St John and St Thomas and are carried by most all of the grocery stores, but you can always stop by their working farm to pick up eatables like amazingly spicy arugula, micro mix, spinach, tomatoes when in season, herbs, papaya, etc. … and beautiful plants and orchids for the garden.
We villa owners know Josephine very well, with her BIG laugh and BIG smile. She and husband Hugo have managed the Coral Bay Garden Center as long as I’ve been here and that was 1998. Her store in the valley in Coral Bay was pretty badly beat up in Hurricane Irma … but they are gradually rebuilding and are doing a great job. Stop in and see her.