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September Dreamscapes

As the fog was dissipating in the setting sun, whichever direction the camera was pointed, we were treated to a breathtaking view. 

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September dreamscape – wildly beautiful foggy sunset

A photo posted by Kim Smith (@kimsmithdesigns) on

Lend Me Your Ear

Sometimes they just don't want to leave home🌻#monarchbutterfly

A photo posted by Kim Smith (@kimsmithdesigns) on

Thank you Nicole Duckworth for the photo caption🙂

Planting Milkweed with Camilla MacFadyen and the Sarroufs

img_4946Thank you to Dawn and John Sarrouf for sharing their milkweed planting photos. They are visiting their friend Camilla at her family home in Small Point Maine, which sounds like, from Dawn’s description, a gorgeously beautiful location, and ideal Monarch habitat. There are fields of wildflowers, and Seaside Goldenrod grows just as easily in the rocky outcroppings there as it does on Eastern Point. After looking at maps, it appears as if you could draw a virtual straight line from Small Point to Eastern Point. Dawn and friends spotted about ten butterflies yesterday. Perhaps we’ll be the next stop (after the predicted rainfall).

Camilla collected milkweed seed pods and enlisted the Sarroufs to help plant.

img_4921Small Point, Maine

DAWN SARROUF PHOTOS

Buzz Off!

Buzz Off! #monarchbutterfly

A video posted by Kim Smith (@kimsmithdesigns) on

Please Share Your Monarch Butterfly Sightings ~ Thank You!

There have been few Monarch sightings this summer but I have been hoping for a strong fall migration. The migration is peaking in Kansas and we are always a little bit behind. Please let me know if you see a Monarch, and where. Thank you very kindly!

Monarch stretching wide its wings in the morning sun #monarchbutterfly

A video posted by Kim Smith (@kimsmithdesigns) on

Monarchs are emerging daily in our garden, from eggs collected at my friend’s field in Salem. This too would be an indication that we may be seeing them soon.

newly-emerged-monarch-butterfly-copyright-kim-smith-jpgThis 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. Note its wet, crumpled wings.

Happy First Day of Autumn

Look for Seaside Goldenrod blooming across marsh and meadow–it also makes a wonderful addition to the garden, and is one of the top ten plants for migrating Monarchs.

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The Three Muskrateers

three-muskrat-family-massachusetts-copyright-kim-smithMore muskrat love! Did you know Muskrats eat phragmites?!! They gnaw off the emerging and exposed shoots at the base and then eat the green stems. Very cool. Other fun facts: Muskrats can hold their breath underwater for up to fifteen minutes. They can also chew underwater. Unlike beavers, whose tails are flattened horizontally, a muskrats tail is laterally flattened (in other words vertically). The tail functions like a rudder to help the Muskrat maneuver through water. Muskrats can swim forward and backward.three-muskrat-family-massachusetts-2-copyright-kim-smith