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We are here to fill a market niche, offering an amazing array of beneficial Northeast Native Plants, dramatic & unusual designer flowering annuals sure to have hummingbirds & butterflies flocking, certified organic herb & veggie plants, complimentary products & sage advice designed to bring life back to area gardens.
“The only authority I respect is the one that causes butterflies to fly south in fall and north in springtime.” - Tom Robbins in Another Roadside Attraction
Our house and constantly changing, often expanding gardens are right next door to the Roadside Stand. For three decades we have been digging in on the trials and tribulations of gardening in the East Bay and were very early adopters of the growing trends of forgoing pesticides and chemical interventions and garden with pollinators, songbirds and other area wildlife in mind. Our yard has been a Certified Wildlife Habitat for more than 12 years. We have learned a lot of lessons, some of them the hard way, and are excited to share them with you!
In addition to our own hands-on experience, we've participated in dozens of hours of workshops, seminars, and sessions focused on pollinator, wildlife and organic gardening, including attending the Ecology Based Practice Intensive Course with Larry Weaner and Ian Canton and digging in to each and every one of the courses available through Monarch Gardens. We combine our own eclectic backgrounds in environmental science, education, sales, purchasing, management, design, communications, community organizing and advocacy to bring an equally eclectic twist to our business. Along with writing a monthly garden column for our local newspaper we offer programs for local organizations and engage with schools and community groups working to bring life back to their spaces.
Where did the name Prickly Ed's Cactus Patch come from you ask? One day, many years ago we learned that cactus (specifically Opuntia humifusa- Eastern Prickly Pear) belonged in our Barrington, RI yard much more than the grass that was growing there. And so began Ed's foray into winter hardy cactus gardening and Cindy’s journey down the rabbit hole of learning all about Native Plants and their many benefits. As more and more lawn was transformed into garden beds teeming with life 🐝🦋🐦🐿🦊🐸🦉🐛 we were hooked!
Our own quest for straight species, neonicotinoid free native plants left us frustrated here in the East Bay Rhode Island/SE Mass area. And so, we decided to grow them ourselves. But it was quickly too many plants even for us & so the Roadside Stand was born!
But back to the name…it’s a fun play on our still favorite plant, the Prickly Pear 🙄and on Ed’s always charming personality 😉🙄😁! Cindy dreamed it up one afternoon, and it quickly caught on with family & friends! Thankfully despite his prickly name, Ed is actually a great sport & played along. Hey, in the end, it doesn't matter if you are laughing at us or laughing with us. So long as you are laughing...And so a Cactus Patch Roadside Stand was born…
Ed traded his Harley for a tractor & BMW for an eco-diesel pickup truck & left his workaholic salesman days behind. His URI Environmental Science Degree & decades of sales and supply chain experience definitely come in handy these days! When he is not working to find the very best plants for our beloved customers you can find him tending his ever expanding prickly pear cactus garden, converting lawn to wildlife gardens, creating ingenious things in the workshop, rocking out to the blues, learning to play guitar (sort of) & training chipmunks on the patio - tequila punch in hand. Ed is a lifelong resident of Barrington and has deep roots in the community.
When not busy with her day job - brokering resources & forging partnerships to help kids & communities across America, you are likely to find Cindy herding cats, fussing in the gardens, obsessing over hummingbirds, crafting cocktails, mixing potions, creating vegan delights, extolling the benefits of native plants in an effort to un-lawn the suburbs, and most of all dreaming up the next wild idea for Prickly Ed's! She is especially passionate about getting kids back into nature and bringing nature back to kids. A life long animal rescuer and advocate you may also know Cindy from her years of volunteering for a variety of causes near and dear to her heart.
Copyright © 2020 Prickly Ed’s Cactus Patch, Roadside Stand & Native Plant Soirée - All Rights Reserved.
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