Category Archives: Home and Garden

HAPPY MEMORIAL DAY FROM MARSHALL’S FARM STAND (AND HAPPY 50TH ANNIVERSARY, TOO)!

Happy Memorial Day from Marshall’s Farm Stand

Marshall’s Farm Stand is chock-a-block full of a tremendous assortment of annuals and perennials just waiting to be planted.

Owners Melissa and Karen created the colorful red, white, and blue Memorial Day themed display and all the pots are ready to set out in the garden, no fuss, no muss.

While there, wish the Marshalls a happy fiftieth year in business! Check out the 2017 Farmer Bob cards, with daily deals on just about everything at the farm stand. The photo on the flip side of the card is a wonderful family portrait. What a beautiful family! I wonder what year and am guessing, based on the outfits, the 1970s. I forgot to ask and hope a family member writes and lets us know. Marshall’s Farm Stand is located at 144 Concord Street in Gloucester, and they are open seven days a week, from 9am to 6pm.

Ann and Dolly loading up their truck to plant red and white flowers at her relative’s grave sites.

One more of adorable Dolly.

 

CEDAR ROCK GARDENS IS ROCKIN THE FLOWERS FOR MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND!

Come see the ever expanding selection of gorgeous flower and veggie seedlings at Cedar Rock Gardens. Not only are they offering annual flowers, herbs, and vegetable this year, but they are also growing native perennial wildflowers such as New England Aster and milkweed.

It was so cloudy and overcast when I was there picking up an order; these photos don’t do the garden justice. Come on down and see for yourself, Cedar Rock Gardens is bursting with beauty and fully stocked for the Memorial Day weekend.

Open seven days a week, from 8am til 5pm, Cedar Rock Gardens is located at 299 Concord Street in Gloucester.

Marigold Mania!

Sweet William

Loads and loads of peppers, in every degree of heat imagineable.

I love stopping by just to say hello, Elise and Tucker are so friendly and helpful. Tucker built the new office shed.

Coming later this spring are pick your own peonies!! And after that, sunflowers, zinnias, and straw flowers 🙂

CEDAR ROCK GARDENS IS OFFERING A VERITABLE BONANZA OF BLOSSOMS, VEGGIES, AND HERBS FOR MOTHER’S DAY!

Elise and Sunshine

Cedar Rock Gardens is bursting with a fabulous selection of blossoms and veggies and all would be much loved by Mom. Load up now on milkweed, petunias, pansies, snapdragons, dianthus, violas, osteosperum, alyssum, thyme, cilantro, parsley, dill, and much, much, much more.

Check out Cedar Rocks Gardens updated and complete plant list here.

NEXT WEEKEND CEDAR ROCK GARDENS IS RELEASING THE TOMATOES!

 

Tucker is building dozens of new tray tables to hold all the fantastic seedlings coming along.

Jeffrey Thomas, Tucker Smith, and Irv Falk

Join Betsy Williams at the Stevens Coolidge Place

Join Betsy Williams Sunday, May 21 at the beautiful Stevens Coolidge Place in North Andover to create a Fragrant Flowering Garden in a 14” pot.
We’ll plant a combination of 6 sweetly scented annual and perennial plants, such as nicotiana, stock, heliotrope, nepeta, lavender, sweet alyssum, violas and miniature roses, accented with climbing, twining vines and fragrant variegated greens. 
 
With proper care, your pot will bloom happily all summer long on a patio, porch, sunny balcony or doorstep.
Please bring an apron and floral scissors to class.
 
Sunday, May 21, 2017.  1-3pm
 
To register contact Kevin Block <kblock@thetrustees.org

VIDEO: AERIAL FILM OF THE TULIPS!

A  very huge thanks going out to all of the hard-working folks at GenerousGardeners.org for helping add some amazing beauty to our little island. Keep up the great work!

BUTTERFLY BLUE

One of the teeniest butterflies you’ll see at this time of year is the Spring Azure, with a wing to wing span of less than one inch. Found in meadows, fields, gardens, and along the forest edge, the celestial blue flakes pause to drink nectar from clover, Quaker Ladies, crabapples, dandelions, and whatever tiny floret strikes her fancy.

You can find the Azures flitting about Crabapple blossoms.

Native wildflowers Quaker Ladies, also called Bluets, are an early season source of nectar for Azures.

If you’d like to attract these spring beauties to your garden, plant native flowering dogwood * (Cornus florida), blueberries, and viburnums; all three are caterpillar food plants of the beautiful Spring Azure Butterfly.

The female butterfly curls her abdomen around in a C-shape and deposits eggs amongst the yellow florets of the flowering dogwood. Pink or white, both are equally attractive to the Spring Azure.

Cornus florida ‘rubra’

*Only our native flowering dogwood, Cornus florida, is a caterpillar food plant for Azure butterflies. Don’t bother substituting the non-native Korean Dogwood, it won’t help the pollinators.

Native Flowering Dogwood (Cornus florida) at Willowdale Estate Butterfly Garden

HOW TO MAKE A SUPER FUN AND CUDDLY BABY BANDANA QUILT

While looking for bandanas to make Charlotte, our baby granddaughter-on-the-way, a bandana baby quilt, I came across wonderfully whimsical animal inspired navy and white bandanas at J.Crew. The elephant bandana has little elephant heads in the corners and the whale bandana has an overall pattern that includes fishes, anchors, and a compass rose. The bandanas are printed on an ultra soft, almost batiste-like quality cotton fabric. Recalling that newborns can mostly only see black and white for the first three months, and that the J.Crew designs are so charming, I abandoned the pink idea and went for blue and white. And, a portion of the sale from the bandanas goes to support wildlife foundations.

Directions

1) Prewash bandanas, cotton batting, and backing fabric. Press.

2) Stitch together the four bandanas. Bandanas are not a woven design and oftentimes are not printed on the square perfectly. You have to fudge it a little and not be too fussy at this stage.

3) Press the bandana quilt top seams flat. Place the quilt top over cotton quilt batting. Pin or baste the batting in place. Trim batting close to quilt top edge.

4) Place quilt top and batting unit on top of cotton backing. Pin or baste through all three layers to keep in place. Trim to neaten edges.

5) Cut 4 bias strips, in desired width, in backing fabric, the length of each edge, plus two inches. I like to cut my bias strips 2 and 7/8 wide inches for binding a quilt. Fold bias strips in half and press.

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Gloucester foreclosures include one of the 100+ Gloucester MA houses that Edward Hopper painted

Hopper by lees

Edward Hopper, Gloucester Houses, 1923, Whitney Museum of American Art, Josephine N Hopper bequest. You can match the boulders in Hopper’s drawing that the domiciles were built upon; Lee’s Breakfast Restaurant at the far right;  and the stacked granite blocks to the left of #7.

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IMG_20170409_063124 Read more

74 Long Beach front row cottages in less than a minute

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The view from the boardwalk on a spring day – can you spot the two new homes?

 

Long Beach cottages from the boardwalk 1 of 3

animation 1 of 3 (first 24 homes, just past the old hotel)

 

Long Beach cottages from the boardwalk 2 of 3

animation 2 of 3 ( Laughing Water and next 25 homes )

 

Long Beach cottages from the boardwalk animation 3 of 3

animation 3 of 3 (next 24 homes)

coastal living: a Long Beach walk combines ocean view, front row cottages, and beach

Long Beach panoramic (click picture to enlarge) view at low tide, April 2017. The barrier rip rap is mightily exposed. At other times the large boulders are buried beneath deep sand.

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This spring awakening is calm. Most of the homes remain prepped for winter.

Do you know how many front row cottages line Long Beach?

The view from the beach at low tide (ocean at my back) in two parts.

 

Long Beach animation front row cottages beach appeal 1 of 2

 

Long Beach animation front row cottages beach appeal 2 of 2

KIM SMITH POLLINATOR GARDEN PROGRAM IN OSTERVILLE

Tomorrow, Monday, I’ll be giving my Pollinator Garden program in Osterville. Cape Cod friends please let me know if you would like to attend (kimsmithdesigns@hotmail.com). Tuesday I’ll be at the Nahant Country Club but I am most excited about giving the program at the Sawyer Free Library on Thursday evening. I hope to see you there!

KIM SMITH POLLINATOR GARDEN TALK AT THE SAWYER FREE LIBRARY

Dear Friends,

Please join me April 6th at 7pm, at the Sawyer Free Library where I will be giving my Pollinator Garden talk and screening several short films. The event is free and open to the public. I am looking forward to presenting this program at our wonderful Sawyer Free and hope to see you there!!

Thank you to Diana Cummings at the Sawyer Free Library for making the lovely poster!

 

Echinacea and Bee

SAVE THE DATE FOR MY UPCOMING POLLINATOR GARDEN TALK AT THE SAWYER FREE LIBRARY!

Dear Friends,

Please join me April 6th at 7pm at the Sawyer Free Library where I will be giving my Pollinator Garden program and screening several short films. This event is free and open to the public. I am looking forward to presenting this program at our wonderful Sawyer Free and hope to see you there!!

Female Ruby-throated Hummingbird and zinnia – ornithophily is the pollination of flowering plants by birds. They carry off pollen on their heads and neck to the next flower they visit.

The newly eclosed Monarch is clinging to its chrysalis case. Within moments of emerging, the two-part Monarch proboscis must zip together to form a siphoning tube. If the two parts do not join, the butterfly will not be able to drink nectar. In this photo, you can see the proboscis is not yet fully zipped.

“Following the rhythm of the seasons, celebrated landscape designer Kim Smith presents a stunning slide show and lecture demonstrating how to create a welcoming haven for bees, birds, butterflies, and other wildlife. Native plants and examples of organic and architectural features will be discussed based on their value to particular vertebrates and invertebrates.”

FREE PINK HOUSE OF NEWBURY!

Take Me I’m Yours! A FREE HOUSE! You Only Need To…pink-house-newbury-plum-island-2-copyright-kim-smith

Many admire the Pink House that you see on the way to Plum Island and the Parker River National Wildlife Refuge, so much so that when it came time to demolish there was public outcry. The US Fish and Wildlife Service has agreed to preserve the house by either of these two conditions. Option number one: a person can take ownership if they are willing to move the house off the land, or option number two is that if you own several acres of comparable land near the refuge, you can exchange the land for the house. Option two allows the house to stay in its current location.

Perhaps the Pink House could become a community or art center. The building has been deemed structurally sound, although there is quite a bit of asbestos that needs removing.

The Pink House is the last house remaining on the refuge. All other homes and farms were either sold or taken by eminent domain; the very last on Stage Island was demolished just this past year.pink-house-newbury-plum-island-copyright-kim-smith

pink-house-newbury-plum-island-red-tailed-hawk-copyright-kim-smithpink-house-newbury-plum-island-red-tailed-hawk-2-copyright-kim-smithSnowy Owls, Red-tailed Hawks, and other raptors like to perch on the cupola of the Pink House.

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