SPRING AT THE MARY PRENTISS INN GARDENS!

Poppies Mary Prentiss inn Cambridge MA copyright Kim SmithPoppies popping, tulips resplendent, and flower pots poised to bedazzle, The Mary Prentiss Inn, conveniently located near Harvard University, is an utterly charming bed and breakfast, outfitted with all modern amenities (and a secret garden around back). Homemade breakfast is served daily, along with freshly baked treats for afternoon tea. Jennifer, the proprietor, and Lisa, who runs the front desk, could not be more welcoming. For graduation, business, or simply a romantic get away in the heart of Cambridge, The Mary Prentiss Inn is tops!!

Tulips Mary Prentiss inn Cambridge MA copyright Kim SmithThe Mary Prentiss Inn front dooryard gardenTulips Garden Mary Prentiss inn Cambridge MA copyright Kim Smith

Tulips in the city were hard hit by a cycle of freezing and thawing, after they had started to emerge. Nonetheless the tulips at the Inn are still blooming great guns!Planters Mary Prentiss inn Cambridge MA copyright Kim Smith

Spring Ps – poppies, pansies, petunias – at the Mary Prentiss Inn!

A photo posted by Kim Smith (@kimsmithdesigns) on

SHADBLOW, SHADBUSH, CHUCKLEBERRY TREE, SERVICEBERRY, JUNEBERRY…

Yellow Warbler Shadblow Amelanchier copyright Kim SmithYellow Warbler hopping through the Shadblow branches eating small insects

Shadblow Red-winged Blackbird Atlantic Coastal Plain copyright  Kim SmithShadblow blooming with Red-winged Blackbird coming in for a landing

Shadbow, Shadbush, Chuckleberry Tree, Serviceberry, and Juneberry are just a few of the descriptive names given the beautiful Shadblow tree lighting up our marsh and woodland edges. With lacey white flowers, Shadblow (Amelanchier canadenisis) is one of the first of the natives to bloom in spring, growing all along the Atlantic coastal plains.

A fantastic tree for the wild garden, over 26 species of songbirds and mammals, large and small, are documented dining on the fruits of Shadblow (including bears). The small blue fruits are delicious, though rarely consumed by humans because wildlife are usually first at the table. The foliage of Shadblow is a caterpillar food plant for the Red Admiral Butterfly. Look for her eggs on the upper surface at the tip of the leaf. Dew drops and Shadblow -2 c Kim SmithShadblow in bud  at the water’s edge with dewdrop necklace

Fruiting in June at the same time of year as the annual spawning migration of shad, is how the names Shadblow and Juneberry came about. The common name Serviceberry is derived from the flower clusters gathered for use in church services. Shadblow reeds Atlantic coastal plain copyright Kim SmithShadblow in bloom Loblolly Cove

The Shadblow and reeds create a beautiful symbiotic habitat for the blackbirds, Grackles and Red-wings, especially. Reeds of cattails and phragmites make ideal nesting material and sites, and come June, above the nesting area, a songbird feast of Shadblow berries ripens.

Common Grackle males copyright Kim SmithCommon Grackle nesting copyright Kim SmithMale Common Grackles nest building in reeds

Female Red-winged Blackbird copyright Kim SmitrhFemale Red-winged Blackbird perched on cattail while collecting fluff for her nest and calling to her mate.

Shadblow moonlight copyright Kim SmithAmelanchier in the moonlight

Blackbird in the moonlight

Blackbird moonlight Grackle c Kim Smith

Blackbird fly Blackbird fly
Into the light of the dark black night.

Lyrics by Paul McCartney “Blackbird”

RED SHED FILM FESTIVAL AT THE SHALIN LIU MONDAY NIGHT!!

Please join us at the Shalin Liu Performance Center for the Red Shed Film Festival Monday evening at
7pm. I hope to see you there!13217105_10154628533013797_7852232875493798091_o
The 4th annual Red Shed Film Fest is a celebration of local and global filmmaking via a selected series of
short films. Mixing genres, this year’s entries span narrative, documentary, and short episodic pilots and
established series. As in years past, there is also a science-fiction entry and a music video. All in
attendance will have the opportunity to vote for the Audience Choice Award to be given to one of the
entries screened. The winner will be announced at the post-screening reception on the third floor of the
Shalin Liu Performance Center.

Prettiest Robin’s Nest (and Crabapple, too)!

Robin's Nest copyright Kim SmithThis beautiful Robin’s nest is located at the lovely home of the Del Vecchio family. Daughter Clara noticed that a sprig of lavender was used in nest building so they left out some colorful bits of yarn. The Robins built the nest atop a rolled up rug that was left standing beside their well-trafficked front door. Mama Robin doesn’t seem to mind a bit the constant comings and goings of the household. I’ve seen robins build nests in some crazy places, but this has to take the cake!

Thank you to Michele for allowing me to come and film what has to be the world’s most charming Robin’s nest!

Update on the Robin’s nest: Sadly, Michele reports that the nest was knocked over and the eggs have been scavenged. In our region, Robins typically have several broods and often use the same nest, so perhaps the nest can become reestablished.

pink flowering crabapple tree copyright Kim SmithDel Vecchio’s crabapple in full glorious bloom! 

Crabapple blossoms

Gosling Sass

canada geese goslings sass c Kim SmithGosling Sass ~ This little straggler did not care much for Mom’s not-too-gentle nudging, which entailed a sort of nip and shove technique.

canada geese goslings crossing road c Kim Smithcanada geese goslings  c Kim SmithSafely in the woods and back to the pond!

Rock On Moms!

I stopped this morning to take a snapshot of the lifting fog when the beach combing mom and her little boy came on the scene. For all the moms making wonderful memories for their children, Happiest of Mother’s Days to You!

Gloucester Harbor Beach Combers c Kim Smith