South Bend has been know for many things The Studebaker, Oliver Plow, Its River, and Notre Dame. Now Unity Gardens is proud of our city for something a little bit different. 2 years ago Unity Gardens teamed up with Peace Bees in an effort to put a few hives in the garden. The goal was to increase pollination, and do a little Honey Bee education. With all the bad news in the world about the loss of the Honey Bee it was a perfect time to take some small steps to help the gardens best friend " the Honey Bee"
Its was somewhat of a perfect storm. Peace Bees a group with a mission of educating the public on the benefits of the Honey Bee, Tim Ives a beekeeper that looks a beekeeping in a different way going against the grain of traditional beekeeping, and showing extraordinary results. A city on the move to become a leader in the green movement. All this was a perfect storm for South Bend to become a Bee Friendly City. The city ordinance on Bees stated that they were not allowed in the city limits unless you had 5 acres ( a rare thing in South Bend) A a Unity Gardens class on Urban Chickens Councilman Tim Scott, and Vince Barletto were in attendance and the subject of making beekeeping legal in South Bend was brought up. Soon after Vince, Tim and Steve( Peace Bees) were in discussions of how to change the code and make Beekeeping legal in the city. A short time later the law was changed and beekeeping in the city limits is now legal. Moving forward the city has embraced bees and local Honey. The Unity Gardens and Tim Ives have located hives in 3 locations in the city, and plans to install several more in several neighborhoods providing " Honey from the Hood" in everyones "hood". The City and Mayor Pete have been so supportive of our Honey projects we felt it fitting to give Mayor Pete our first " Bee Friendly City Award" In the future we hope to honor area residents for doing their part to make our city a Bee friendly one. So lets all congratulate Mayor Pete.
Hi, my name is Mitch. I am the Unity Gardens Manager. I am a Purdue Master Gardener and teach many of the gardening classes. I also manage the LaSalle Square Garden, and maintain the website, blog and newsletter.