Archive for November, 2010

November 15, 2010

City Farm Talks Chicken

Saturday’s Raising Urban Chickens workshop was definitely something to crow about—we estimate that about 80 people attended, demonstrating the tremendous interest in backyard birds out there. You can read about the workshop in this piece written by Joanna Detz for EcoRI, an online source for environmental news in the state. Thanks to everyone who took advantage of the beautiful weather to come out to City Farm and learn more about raising hens!

At right: Camille Pfeiffer, who organized People Encouraging Chicken Keeping (PECK) in Greater Rhode Island, holds her hen while leading a session during the workshop. (photo by Joanna Detz)

November 11, 2010

Meet Your Farmers

The faces of the Little City Growers Cooperative.

Check out this photo of the members of the Little City Growers Cooperative on opening day of the Providence Wintertime Farmer’s Market at AS220, and just look at the abundant supply of fresh produce they have to offer! All four independent urban farms in the cooperative are represented here: from left to right, Johanna Bloch of Scratch Farm, Rich Pederson of Southside Community Land Trust’s City Farm, Katie Miller from Red Planet Vegetables, Than Wood of Front Step Farm, and Catherine Mardoza, also from Red Planet Vegetables. Be sure to say hi to them at the market on Saturday!

November 10, 2010

Raising Urban Chickens Workshop This Weekend

Several of the "girls" that will be on display at the workshop on Saturday.

Come to City Farm this Saturday from 1 to 2 p.m. for a free workshop on how to raise your own egg-laying hens in the city! This is the final workshop in the 2010 Plant Providence series. We’ll have experienced chicken-keepers on hand at four different stations to 1) explain the terms of the new ordinance passed by the City Council this fall; 2) walk you through constructing a coop, composting chicken manure, and preventing rats; 3) go over chick-rearing and hardy breeds for the New England climate; and 4) instruct you on daily chicken maintenance and care. Also on hand to serve as demonstration models will be City Farm’s own flock of hens! You’ll get to take home a resource guide to local sources for both birds and supplies as well as a suggested reading list to learn more. To download directions to City Farm, click here.

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November 5, 2010

Little City Growers Cooperative at Wintertime Market

The Little City Growers Cooperative tent at the Armory Farmer's Market.

Starting tomorrow, November 6, the Little City Growers Cooperative will be part of a select group of farmers selling at the new downtown outpost of the Providence Wintertime Farmer’s Market at AS220! The market is a partnership between AS220 and Farm Fresh RI and runs every Saturday from 11:00 until 2:00 for the next seven weeks. (The main Wintertime Farmer’s Market in Pawtucket at Hope Artiste Village will go all the way from November to May and feature over 60 vendors.) Little City Growers is a group of independent, local urban farmers from City Farm, Red Planet Vegetables, Scratch Farm, and Front Step Farm, which is run by the 2009 City Farm apprentice, Than Wood. They’ll be selling chemical-free winter greens, root vegetables, herbs, salad mixes, and maybe even some ever-bearing raspberries, so be sure to stop by and pick up some fresh, colorful produce to cheer you up during these blustery fall days!

November 2, 2010

Prized Pumpkins

The results are in, and the winner of this year’s Biggest Squash Contest is Pang Yang and family, who grew a 24.2 pound pumpkin! Second place went to Phoua Xiong, with a 19.5 pounder. They each received Stop and Shop gift cards as a reward for their diligence in tending these fruits throughout the season. Congratulations to all of the entrants who grew their own squash this year! To see photos of the winning entries, view the slideshow below.

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November 1, 2010

Free Soil Testing Demo

Knowing the level of lead in your soil is essential for gardeners in urban areas like Providence. This Wednesday, Southside Community Land Trust—in collaboration with the Urban Agriculture Task Force and the Plant Providence initiative—is offering a free, hands-on demonstration of how to determine your potential lead exposure by conducting a soil test in your backyard or community garden. Leo Pollock, Southside’s director of education, will show you how to take representative samples of dirt and send them to be analyzed by the UMass Soil Lab for heavy metal, mineral, and nutrient content. You’ll be able to see what actual test results look like and find out about methods for avoiding contamination in your homegrown fruits and vegetables, allowing you and your family and friends to enjoy produce that is safe and healthy to eat. The workshop will be held at 3:00 p.m. at 4 Theresa Ct. at Willow Street near Armory Park on the west side of Providence. Hope you can join us.

P.S. If you can’t attend the workshop, be sure to check out the soil testing how-to on our website at

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