Category Archives: Home and Garden

Stick Season

Aided by wind and cooler temperatures, without doubt, what Vermonters call “stick season” is fast approaching, that stretch between when the trees have lost their leaves and the first snow.autumn-foliage-sugar-maples-copyright-kim-smith

Garden of Dissipating Beauty

sunflowers-1-cedar-rock-gardens-copyright-kim-smithSunflowers at Cedar Rock Gardens

Thank you to Elise and Tucker at Cedar Rock Gardens for a super year in the garden. This was the couple’s first season opening the garden to the public and they did an outstanding job. Cedar Rock Gardens are a welcome addition to a fantastic and growing group of local farms. Their organic nursery and farm are brimming with a wonderful array of fresh flowers, produce, and seedlings. Every one of the plants from their nursery grew beautifully for me. Cedar Rock Gardens is closed for the year but I am so excited to be working again with them next year and will definitely be enrolling in their CSA 2017. See you in the spring!

marigolds-cedar-rock-gardens-copyright-kim-smithDid you ever wonder why marigolds play such a prominent role in Day of the Dead celebrations? They are referred to as “flowers of the dead” and with their vivid hues and citrusy fresh scent, marigolds are thought to guide spirits to the altars. And, too, flowers in general represent the ephemerality of life.

yellow-marigolds-cedar-rock-gardens-copyright-kim-smithYellow Marigoldssunflower-seed-head-cedar-rock-gardens-copyright-kim-smithmarigolds-1-cedar-rock-gardens-copyright-kim-smith

Beware!

poison-ivy-vine-in-fall-toxicodendron-radicans-copyright-kim-smithPoison Ivy Run Amok

Oh how pretty! Doesn’t this bucolic scene look interesting? I had to stop and take a photo. And then began to walk toward, wanting a closer look, before catching myself. If poison ivy even looks at me, or I look at it, that most unpleasant of itchy rashes finds a home on my person.

Poison ivy is in full glorious color right now, dissipating in shades of golden yellow, tangerine, and crimson scarlet. The oils found in the foliage and stems are just as potent at this time of year as they are during the summer months.

poison-ivy-in-autumn-toxicodendron-radicans-copyright-kim-smithLeaves of three, let it be, 

Berries white, run in fright,

Red hairy vine, no friend of mine!

Cape Ann shores and meadows are rife with poison ivy and the best defense is to recognize the leaves and wear protective clothing. Not a plant one desires for the home garden, it is an important bee and bird food. The flowers provide nectar for pollinators in the spring and the small white berries are a winter staple for our some of our most beloved songbirds, including American Robins, Northern Cardinals, and Mockingbirds.

Magically Wonderful Harvest Party at Cedar Rock Gardens

pam-samantha-franny-woody-elise-jilson-copyright-kim-smith

Elise, Samantha, Pam, Woody, and Franny

Snapshots from Elise and Tucker’s fabulous and fun harvest party, just getting underway. Where earlier the produce had been planted, long tables with tantalizing pot luck offerings were arranged. Bales of hay with planks laid across made for practical seating. An assortment of lights and lanterns illuminated the grounds and the big oak tree was ready for moonlight dancing to begin beneath its boughs. 

cedar-rock-garden-harvest-fest-copyright-kim-smithpam-samantha-franny-woody-copyright-kim-smithFavorite photo from the party, Big Sister Franny giving Woody the “pesky little brother look,” with Mom Samantha Goddess, and Samantha’s Mom, Pam Wood.cedar-rock-garden-harvest-fest-4-copyright-kim-smith

I had to leave Cedar Rock Gardens early to attend the Cape Ann Plein Air gala, which Catherine covered on Good Morning Gloucester. The Rockport Art Association was overflowing with art enthusiasts, friends, and family and it was so exciting to see beautiful scenes from all around Cape Ann rendered by these master painters. Congratulations to Karen Ristuben, the project manager, and to all who helped make Cape Ann Plein Air a fabulously successful event. I do have to say though that Cape Ann’s own JEFF WEAVER rocked the house with his stunning paintings of the waterfront and downtown. 

Lend Me Your Ear

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

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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

Hello Sunshine!

I spent the afternoon in New Hampshire today at my publisher’s warehouse picking up a batch of books. Although there was evidence of the drought all along the route, the lack of rain didn’t seem to effect these roadside beauties (or the intoxicated bee, see Instagram video below).sunflower-helianthus-annuus-copyright-kim-smith sunflower-helianthus-annuus-2-copyright-kim-smith

Weighted down with nectar🌻

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