Archive for January, 2012

January 30, 2012

Beekeeping Basics

Wednesday’s Urban Beekeeping workshop went swimmingly! We had a full room of folks ranging from beginner beekeepers to those just wanted to learn more about the subject. Kelly Smith, Davis Park garden leader and beekeeper of 5 hives, went over a comprehensive list of the basics: from its benefits and importance of bees, to necessary equipment and things to look out for. She explained that with the right amount of commitment and compassion, keeping them at home and in the city is very doable

This workshop was just a primer. To learn more information about beekeeping and to meet other beekeepers, visit the Rhode Island Beekeepers Association (RIBA). They offer a 5-week course (1 class per week for 5 weeks) in beginners beekeeping as well as bee package orders.

Cool fact we learned: bees fly an average of 45,000 miles in order to collect enough pollen to make a pound of honey. Next time you buy a jar of honey, you can appreciate all the hard work that went into making it!

Our next workshop is Wednesday, February 1st on Seed Starting 5:30-6:30pm at Hope Artiste Village (1005 Main Street Pawtucket, 02860). Register for this free workshop here.

January 25, 2012

NOFA RI and SCLT host Advanced Growers Series Workshop

Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA) of Rhode Island and Southside Community Land Trust invites farmers and growers to its Advanced Grower Workshop series on Sunday, February 5th at Smith-Buonanno Hall (Room 106) at Brown University. Eliot Coleman, owner of Four Seasons Farm in, long-time organic advocate, and author of The New Organic Grower, will be teaching a workshop on high tunnel production.

• 12:00 – 4:00 PM:  Advanced Growers Workshop on High Tunnel Production. Taught by Eliot Coleman, the workshop will teach RI Farmers to maximize high tunnel vegetable production throughout the year.

• 4:30 – 6:00:  NOFA/RI Annual Meeting & Potluck (Bring a dish and your own utensils).

• 6:00 PM:  Keynote talk by Eliot Coleman and discussion “Organic Farming: The Next Steps.” This is open to the public and costs $10.

The cost for the workshop and keynote is $35. The keynote is open to the public and costs $10 (or free for NOFA members). For info, contact NOFA/RI at, 401-835-2346, or 401-523-2653.

Coleman is known for producing year-long farming on his farm in Maine. Under harsh winter conditions, he uses unheated and minimally heated greenhouse structures to grow vegetables year-round. He is an advocate of small-scale organic farming and fostering strong relationships with customers.

This workshop and keynote event is brought to you by NOFA RI, the University of Rhode Island, the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management, Brown University, and Southside Community Land Trust. NOFA RI is an organization of farmers, consumers, gardeners, and environmentalists working to promote organic farming and organic land care practices. NOFA RI aims to foster a healthy relationship to the natural world through advocacy and education. Their goal is to increase the acreage of certified organic land in RI while also increasing the access of local organic food to all Rhode Islanders. NOFA RI is affiliated with the other NOFA chapters through the NOFA Interstate Council.

January 25, 2012

SCLT Executive Director Job Application Posted

Following up last week’s exciting news about Southside Community Land Trust’s upcoming Executive Director Transition, we are pleased to announce the full job description and instructions for application can be found here on our website. A competitive nationwide search is underway for an Executive Director for the Southside Community Land Trust in Providence, RI. Date of employment is expected to be July 15, 2012 with full assumption of duties on August 1, 2012.

Deadline for application is February 24, 2012 at midnight.

January 23, 2012

Big News from Southside Community Land Trust!

A special announcement from Southside Community Land Trust’s Executive Director Katherine Brown:

Today is the day I get to share with you and other very special supporters exciting news of a long-anticipated opportunity—for me and for Southside Community Land Trust. August 1st will be my last day as SCLT’s Executive Director, and on that day another very fortunate person will become your new partner in realizing our shared vision: Grow food everywhere!

This news may not come as a surprise to you. Over the past nine years I’ve been open about my plan to stay only long enough to strengthen SCLT’s 30-year foundation in Providence’s Southside neighborhood so that we might provide equal support for more people who also wanted to grow food throughout Greater Providence. And we’ve reached this goal! Our work has directly supported the ability of thousands of people to grow their own food, and we are well-positioned to enable many more in the future.

I have full confidence that SCLT is ready for this intentional leadership transition. Our past two years’ preparations for the new director have been exciting and
transformational. SCLT’s Board and Staff members serving on the Transition Team have crafted a series of clear steps to guide our transition process. And last year we approved a 3-year strategic plan to scale up and meet the ever-increasing demand from the community for more land, training and technical assistance, facilitation of new and existing gardens and farms, and coordination of policy initiatives that support urban agriculture. We have been steadfast in achieving our program objectives and have strengthened our financial and operational capacity to meet this growth. Please visit our website for more details about our strategic plan.

Next week we will officially post the Executive Director position. I hope you will spread the job posting widely.

It has been a great privilege to work with you, and to be inspired by the contributions of the brilliant, creative, funny, hardworking, and inspiring crew of visionaries on SCLT’s staff and Board. My heartfelt gratitude for everyone’s many gifts to me and for the ongoing support of our work with the community is boundless. I know you will continue to share your trust in, and your many gifts with everyone at SCLT– including our lucky new Executive Director.

With love, and heaps of xoxo!
–Katherine Brown

January 18, 2012

Let’s talk food!

Have your voice be heard about Rhode Island’s Food System. There are 3 events coming up to learn and discuss the exciting things taking shape for the RI Food Policy Council, compost in RI and the Farm Bill. :

1) The first open meeting of the newly formed Rhode Island Food Policy Council – shaping Working Groups for 2012!

WHEN: Monday, January 30th, 2012, 4 pm – 6 pm.

WHERE: RI Department of Environmental Management, Foundry Building, Room 300. The Foundry building is located at 235 Promenade Street, near the Providence Place Mall.  Enter through the rear door off of Holden Street, and take elevator/stairs to the 3rd floor.  Signs will be posted directing you to Room 300.  Limited visitor parking is available on Promenade Street, or parking at the mall is $1 for up to three hours.

WHO: Anyone interested in RI Food Policy Council Working Groups or learning more about the RI Food Policy Council!

Coffee/tea and light snacks will be provided.  For more information about the RIFPC’s work, or to download a copy of the Rhode Island Food Assessment, visit the Rhode Island Food Policy Council’s website:

2) The 3rd RI Compost Conference and Trade Show is coming up on February 27, 9 am – 3 pm at Hope Artiste Village for those interested in food waste and resource recovery.  More info and registration at: (Registration is $25).

3) Farm Fresh RI is also hosting its annual Local Food Forum on February 7, 8:30 am – 2:30 pm at Andrews Dining Hall on the Brown University campus.  This year’s theme is Food Fight: How the 2012 Farm Bill Will Affect Rhode Island.  More info and registration at: (Registration is free).

Please feel free to forward this to those interested.  If you or someone you know would like to be added to the RIFPC email list, please email Leo at  We look forward to seeing you on the 30th!

January 10, 2012

Save the dates! 2012 preview of SCLT events

2012 events preview

January 9, 2012

Wintertime Food-growing Workshops!

It might be cold outside (well, not THAT cold, it’s actually pretty nice for January!), but it is the perfect time to start planning for the growing season! Southside Community Land Trust and Farm Fresh RI invites the public to attend two free workshops on urban beekeeping (a primer that focuses on what it takes to raise bees food in the city) and seed starting. These workshops will be held at the Wintertime Farmers Market greenhouse space on Wednesday January 25th 6-7pm and Wednesday February 1st 5:30-6:30pm, respectively.

Want to learn what it takes to raise bees in the city? Learn more about it at the urban beekeeping primer workshop, which will be taught by Kelly Smith, Davis Park Community Garden coordinator. Kelly owns 5 beehives and has taken bee school classes and a week-long intensive advanced course by the Eastern Apicultural Society. Kelly will give a basic overview about what it means to keep bees in the city, going over topics such as materials required for urban beekeeping, resources and available education options for bee school.

Seed starting will be taught by Sidewalk Ends Farm’s Laura Brown-Lavoie, Tess Brown-Lavoie and Fay Strongin. This workshop will help people get a head start on preparing their favorite vegetables and herbs as well as accommodate for those who have limited growing space in their homes or apartments. The lesson will also provide information on growing sprouts and building your own indoor grow box to start seeds inside. Southside Community Land Trust will be offering free seed packets (lettuce, summer squash, etc.) at this workshop.

Register by emailing SCLT at or online at

These workshops are an extension of the Plant Providence educational workshop series. First introduced in 2010, the Plant Providence calendar is a full-color poster printed annually that lists programs and events taking place throughout the year related to urban agriculture. In addition to the upcoming workshops on urban beekeeping and seed starting, the 2012 Plant Providence calendar will debut at Southside Community Land Trust’s Urban Agriculture Kick-off on March 3rd at the Roger Williams Park Botanical Center from 1-4pm.

The Plant Providence calendar is a project of Southside Community Land Trust and is sponsored by the Albin Family Foundation, the Urban Agriculture Task Force of Providence, Brown University’s Center for Environmental Studies, Casa Buena Builders Inc., the John T. Howard Agency Farm Family Insurance, The University of Rhode Island Outreach Center, What Grows On in Rhode Island, and Whole Foods Market.

More information about Southside Community Land Trust is available at

January 5, 2012

It’s 2012!

Happy New Year! We hope everyone had a restful, joyful, and fantastic holiday! Here at Southside Community Land Trust, we’ve already jumped into the new year in full gear. We have BIG plans for 2012. SCLT is excitedly planning for a bright new year of events, workshops, celebrations and more! We’re looking forward to…

• Building more community gardens and spaces to grow food

• The 2012 Plant Providence Calendar

• SCLT’s Annual Plant Sale

• Providence Community Growers Network going into full swing

• Growing even more food all over the city

… and so much more!

Stay tuned for updates on all of these AND for a couple workshops we’ll be having at the Pawtucket Wintertime Market on Wednesday January 25th and Wednesday February 1st. Cheers!

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