On July 29th, 2016 incoming freshman with SUNY’s Equal Opportunity Program toured the Radix Center, hung out with the animals, learned about insect pest life cycles and helped organically control Mexican bean beetles, and spread mulch. It was a beautiful summer day!


Henry Spliethoff from the New York State Department of Health visited the summer youth team to talk about the dangers of lead contamination in soil, implications for urban gardeners, and to demonstrate how an X-Ray Florescence instrument works.

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This late summer a group of volunteers began milking the goats.  The job was complicated by the remaining kids competing for milk, the newness of the act for the goats, and transforming an alpine goat stand to fit dwarf goats.  We are looking forward to continuing next year- and hopefully producing enough milk to sell!  If you are interested in being a milker (and taking home milk) or buying milk, let us know and we’ll contact you in the future.  In the meantime, here are pictures of some goaty fun, with participation from Rose, one of our lovely milking volunteers, and our youth team and interns.


This past April, in conjunction with AVillage and the New York State Department of Health, Radix hosted the second SoilSHOP South End Earth Day event in Albany.  The day began with volunteer work parties cleaning up neighborhood gardens.  At SoilSHOP, community members brought in soil samples from their backyards or community garden plots and have them screened for lead at no cost.  DOH and ATSDR technicians and volunteers used portable X-Ray fluorescence instruments to screen soil for lead. Post-screening followup counseling was provided to advise participants about safer gardening activities.  The entire event was run from a very pro-gardening standpoint, and had free food, fun activities for kids, Zumba dance, and a public health fair.  And our tulips, grown from bulbs provided by the Albany Visitor’s Center – bloomed in perfect time!!


It was a lovely fall day to celebrate the apple with our neighbors! We pulled out our refurbished cider press and made delicious cider for all.  We also had a rope swing into a leaf and hay pile, a corn pit, and many animals to pet. The region’s apple harvest was greatly diminished this year because the trees woke up early from the warm winter and were then hit by a frost.  Fortunately, neighbors brought apples and we were able to get apples from our food waste reduction partnership with the Capital City Rescue Mission down the street.






This Fall we began an exciting partnership with Giffen Elementary School.  Giffen is the public elementary school in the South End of Albany and is located literally around the corner from Radix.  Because of its closeness, students are able to walk over to Radix for regular visits, eliminating the need for expensive bus trips.  We have been working with a number of second grade students and teachers, conducting sustainability/environmental education programs both at Radix and at Gifffen itself.  Activities this Fall included tours of Radix and tulip planting at Giffen, which served as a great introductory way to teach about soil biology and gardening.  This Spring, we are gearing up to have sustainability education students from RPI join our partnership, creating living educational systems in the classroom that can then be studied on a larger scale at Radix.

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What do we do with recently harvested GREEN TOMATOES from the Radix farm beds?

We broil them with Radix GARLIC and Radix PEPPERS to make a spectacular salsa.



Students from Albany High, Green Tech Charter, Sienna College, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and UAlbany have especially enjoyed this semester’s harvest in part because of our emphasis on eating.

Eating together inspires personal sharing, risk-taking, and creativity.  The recipe below combines the farm labor of our youth team with the culinary savvy of our college interns.

Green Tomato Salsa

Put 1 pound green tomatoes, 6-8 peeled garlic cloves, 1-2 hot peppers, and 1 green or red sweet pepper under high-heat broiler.

Turn fruits and roots over several times until ingredients are nicely charred.

Allow to cool slightly.

Place broiled ingredients in a quart size jar with 1 chopped sweet onion and 1 cup cilantro.

Use hand-held immersion blender to chop to desired texture.

Add salt to taste.


(Enjoy Radix tomatillos as substitute for green tomatoes to create sweetly spectacular salsa.)

Posted by Laurie Kirchman November 2016