Welcome Bees Back Home!

Urbanization and industrialization have changed the way we think about pollinators

By MICHELLE and RAY WRIGHT/ecoRI News contributors

“Telling the bees” is a beautiful, old English country tradition. In the 1800s, honeybees were an integral part of family and community landscapes. Informing the family hive of changes such as a birth, death or marriage was customary — and if the owner of the hive died, the bees had to be told of the death or they would leave the hive. Not only did backyard hives invigorate garden productivity and provide a bounty of honey, but the family apiary was considered a quiet sanctuary in which to meditate, read and unwind.

Like so many customs, interest in “talking to the bees” waned over time, and the close relationship we once had with bees has changed. Urbanization and industrialization have, to a great extent, eliminated the need and interest to grow produce at home and shifted the way we think about pollinators. Bees in general have become something to be wary of and even to eradicate from our manicured lawns and gardens. Read more at ecoRI.


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Spicy Tomato Basil Soup

Spicy Tomato Basil Soup

Tomatoes! We’re getting close to the end of the growing season and the final harvest is coming up quick. Our last couple trips to the garden yielded quite a bit of tomato and peppers and with the cooler weather it was time for some soup!

Spicy Tomato Basil Soup


  • 3 pounds ripe tomato, blanched
  • 2 Anaheim peppers, diced
  • 1 Jalepeno pepper, diced
  • 1/2 cup basil
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 large onion, diced
  • salt and herbs
  • olive oil
  • 1 cup water


  1. Blanch the tomatoes. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Fill a large bowl with cold iced water.
  2. Crosscut and remove the stem core from each tomato.
  3. Add tomatoes to boiling water and let them boil for 30 seconds. Remove each and place in ice water bath.
  4. Skins will loosen immediately. Peel each and put tomatoes in food processor. Blend with basil.
  5. In a skillet, saute the onion and peppers in olive oil until onion is translucent. Add garlic and saute for another minute or two. Don’t burn the garlic.
  6. Add everything to the food processor and blend well.
  7. Transfer to a soup pot and bring to boil then reduce heat. Simmer for 20 minutes.
  8. Add salt and other herbs to taste.



Mark Yer Calendars!


Hey Gardeners new & old!

It’s time again for our annual Harvest Party & FUNdaiser. The event will be at the Portuguese American Social Club, 32 Sheldon St., in lovely Fox Point. The PASC has generously provided the space for us to hold our event and will be ready to serve you responsible people a drink!
>>> Thurs, Oct 2, 6pm, 32 Sheldon St. (PASC) <<<
The event is potluck dinner, but otherwise free & open to the public. We have our favorite jug  band booked for the event.. If you haven’t seen them before, our resident gardeners can attest to their awesomeness. The often bring homemade instruments and play a variety of funky old-time goodness.
We also hold a raffle that is supported by the gardeners & local businesses. Items that gardeners have donated in the past include things like perennial plants, handmade items like blown glass, ceramics, and services like bike repair or learning to ride a unicycle.

The idea behind the raffle is twofold: it offers the gardeners a chance to share some of their talents while providing the garden with enough money to cover the costs of running & repairing the garden. With this money, we are able to keep the registration of the plots very low.

If you have something you’d like to donate to the raffle, please send me an email. I’m keeping a running list.
I’m including a.pdf version of the flyer for you to print for your fridge.

Thanks for a great season so far!  Let’s keep it moving into the fall! See you soon.


Use Extra Caution

Please use extra caution in the garden, especially on these hot days… there is a wasp’s nest near the greenhouse compost, and it wouldn’t surprise me if there were more nests in the garden.  Wasps can be beneficial insects, but they are also quite touchy.

Yesterday, there were many wasps about; it was hot, and all the flying critters were on the frantic side.
Norma sent  a warning this morning, ” My experience of severe swelling following a sting tells me that it would be best to avoid the wood bins completely and to use our plastic trash barrels which are stacked in that area for all cut up debris.”
So for now, use brown bags or the plastic barrels leaving the compost area undisturbed. Either option is okay. Be careful in the garden always, but especially on hot days.