Sunday, May 31, 2009

Parcel 7 — Sunset

Friday, May 29, 2009

Nature Guide: Poison Ivy

Following the Landscape Committee's recent move to reduce the use of chemical weed controls in Princeton Landing, residents are reporting more weeds growing on the property, including poison ivy. We asked our Nature Guide Jon Latimer for some information about this noxious plant.

"The leaves of poison ivy contain a colorless, odorless oil called urushiol which will cause an allergic reaction in most people. Brushing or breaking a leaf releases this oil, but it can also be transferred by touching the fur of a dog or cat that has come in contact with it. Even leaves that have been dead for a while may still contain urushiol.

"Urushiol binds to the skin on contact and may cause severe itching which can develop into a reddish inflammation or bumps, then blistering. Left untreated, a rash can last up to four weeks. The best way to deal with poison ivy is to avoid touching it.

"In Princeton Landing plants are being found on berms, in beds and under trees. It is also creeping into the edges of some lawns. Plants can be recognized by their clusters of three almond-shaped leaflets (1 to 4 inches long). It may help if you remember this useful little rhyme about poison ivy: 'Leaves of three, let them be!'

"Leaf color ranges from light green on younger leaves to dark green on mature ones. The leaves have a smooth surface and when they are mature they are somewhat shiny. In fall they turn red. Poison ivy is usually seen as a low ground cover, 4 to 10 inches high, but it can grow into a shrub as much as 4 feet tall.

"Unfortunately, poison ivy often blends in with other plants, so it's possible for you or your pet to come into contact with a patch of poison ivy and not even notice until the itching begins."

For information about treating a rash caused by poison ivy, click here.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Tell Us What You Think: Tennis Court Repairs

Last week repairs were made to one of the tennis courts. Now that they're completed, how do you like the results? Use the Comments link below to tell us what you think. You can click the photo in this post to see a larger image.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Nature Guide: Early Spring Butterflies

By this time in spring most of the migratory birds have passed through our area, leaving behind the population that we see throughout the summer. Our Nature Guide Jon Latimer begins a three-part report on another population of colorful species in our area now: butterflies.

"One of the earliest butterflies to appear in spring is a medium-sized white butterfly seen wandering lazily across open fields or patrolling along the edges of wooded areas. These are usually members of the Cabbage White species (about 1.5 in.) which was introduced from Europe in the 1860s. It has adapted well and become the most common butterfly in North America. Its caterpillars are considered pests in fields of leafy vegetables such as cabbage, giving it its name. Adult butterflies can be seen in our area from early spring to late summer.

"A larger species that also appears early in spring is the Mourning Cloak (3 in.). It is brown with a distinctive yellow-white border and a row of shimmering blue spots on it wings. It is unusual because it hibernates through winter as an adult, hiding in a woodpile or behind loose bark. Most other butterflies spend winter as an egg, caterpillar or chrysalis. When temperatures reach around 60 degrees, Mourning Cloaks take flight, but they are most likely to be seen in shady areas where it 's cooler.

"Another early spring species is the tiny Spring Azure (1 in.), which is a pale blue. They are most active in the afternoon, flying about 3 feet above the ground. They often drink nectar from the flowers of viburnum or dogwood trees and sometimes gather around wet soil on roads or near streams. Their caterpillars produce a sweet liquid known as honeydew. Ants feed on the honeydew and protect the caterpillars from predators, a kind of natural system of bribery.

"We'll talk about more spring butterflies in our next report."

NPS Photo by Sally King

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day

Facing It

My black face fades,
hiding inside the black granite.
I said I wouldn't,
dammit: No tears.
I'm stone. I'm flesh.
My clouded reflection eyes me
like a bird of prey, the profile of night
slanted against morning. I turn
this way--the stone lets me go.
I turn that way--I'm inside
the Vietnam Veterans Memorial
again, depending on the light
to make a difference.
I go down the 58,022 names,
half-expecting to find
my own in letters like smoke.
I touch the name Andrew Johnson;
I see the booby trap's white flash.
Names shimmer on a woman's blouse
but when she walks away
the names stay on the wall.
Brushstrokes flash, a red bird's
wings cutting across my stare.
The sky. A plane in the sky.
A white vet's image floats
closer to me, then his pale eyes
look through mine. I'm a window.
He's lost his right arm
inside the stone. In the black mirror
a woman's trying to erase names:
No, she's brushing a boy's hair.

Yusef Komunyakaa

Sunday, May 24, 2009


Saturday, May 23, 2009

Pool Opens Today

The Smith House pool opens for the season today at 10 am. Property manager Matt Lubas stayed after hours last night to assist residents who were stopping by to pick up their pool badges.

The Smith House pool will be open through Monday for the Memorial Day weekend. It will be open weekends until June 14 and then remain open on a daily basis. Pool hours are from 10 am until 8 pm on weekdays and on weekends.

Recreation badges can be picked up at The Smith House during office hours or when a monitor is on duty. A 2009 FVCSA census form must be submitted to the office prior to picking up badges.

The Smith House pool is one of Princeton Landing's most beautiful amenities -- enjoy it this summer!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Tennis Courts — 4:40 pm

Photo by Karen Stray Nolting

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Parcel 10 — 5:22 pm

Photo by Karen Stray Nolting

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


We're pleased to say that we received a message from Lauri Cahn and Michael Wilburn. Michael is past President of the FVCSA Board of Directors. He devoted a tremendous amount of time and energy to Princeton Landing. Michael has had some serious health problems, but Lauri tells us he has made incredible progress. Michael and Lauri remain very much interested in what's going on in the community. We're glad to hear from them and wish them well.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Parcel Projects: Parcel 6

Due to requests from residents in Parcel 6 to the management office, Artistic Painting was asked to redo work on 14 of the 47 decks that they painted or stained a year ago. Property manager Sal Pirrera reports that Artistic is standing by its work, so if anyone else in Parcel 6 has noticed a problem with the paint or stain on their decks, please contact the management office.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Tennis Court Repairs

Property manager Matt Lubas reports that the tennis courts will be closed for repairs on Tuesday, May 19, and Wednesday, May 20. The management staff is sorry for any inconvenience. If you have questions, please feel free to contact the office.

This Week at Princeton Landing

Property manager Matt Lubas reports that over the next few days Brickman will be spot treating broadleaf weeds in the turf areas and applying a granular fertilizer and granular pre-emergent. Following the recommendation of the Landscape Committee, these applications will take place within the Parcels, but not in the common areas, including around The Smith House and the pools. Please keep children and pets off the treated areas.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Tell Us What You Think: Parcel 1 Paving

Over the last few weeks all of the parking areas in Parcel 1 have been repaved. This is part of the last major stage of the remediation project that was left unfinished by the previous management. Now that this long-anticipated paving work is wrapping up, how do you like the results? Use the Comments link below to tell us what you think. You can click the photo to see a larger image.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


Photo by Karen Stray Nolting

Meet Greg and James, two new neighbors from Tasmania, Australia, who recently moved to Princeton Landing. Welcome!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Census Form Reminder

Management would like to remind everyone to complete a 2009 FVCSA Census Form. A copy of the form is in the April/May newsletter, or click here for a PDF version you can print. Your census form must be submitted in order for you to obtain your recreation badges for this year. Recreation badges can be picked up at The Smith House during office hours or when a monitor is on duty.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Parcel Projects: Parcel 1

Photos by Karen Stray Nolting

Friday, May 8, 2009

Parcel 4 — 10:52 am

Photo by Karen Stray Nolting

Mowing Update

After nine straight days of rain, the grounds at Princeton Landing are saturated. Property manager Matt Lubas reports that landscape contractor Brickman is unable to mow the grass. "Mowing it now would cause a lot of damage to the turf. We are going to let it dry out for a few days and start mowing early next week. Management and Brickman thank you for your understanding."

Nature Guide: Height of Spring

Despite all the recent rain, Princeton Landing is now reaching the high point of the spring season. Our Nature Guide Jon Latimer checks in with an update of what we can see in our surrounding area.

"Plants are leafing out and bulbs are blooming. Most of our summer birds, such as jays, robins, catbirds and orioles, have returned and are establishing nests. In fact, the first broods of Canada Geese have already hatched. You can find parent birds herding up to 10 goslings near the canal or Lake Carnegie.

"This is also peak season for bird species that are passing through, headed for breeding grounds farther north. Numerous species of warblers can be seen, although they are hard to tell apart. Most common are Yellow-rumped Warblers, small black and white birds with yellow patches on the sides of their chest and at the base of their tail. I've also seen Yellow Warblers, which are an orangish yellow with rusty streaks on their chest, and Palm Warblers, which are yellow with a chestnut cap on their head. They are easy to recognize because they bob their tail as they move through the trees looking for insects. The best place to see warblers is in the Institute Woods at the south end of Princeton. The traditional high point for seeing warblers is the weekend closest to May 15, which this year is the 16th and 17th. Good luck if you go — you will find many people on the trails eager to share their knowledge and their sightings."

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Cinco de Mayo

Photo by Patricia Zur

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Annual Brunch

Plainsboro Township Police Chief Richard Furda speaking to residents at Princeton Landing's annual brunch on Sunday, May 3, at The Smith House.

Pam Hersh, community affairs Vice President for Princeton HealthCare System, answers questions from residents about the new medical center under construction across Route 1, just south of our community.

Representatives of Verizon, John Lyons and John Szeliga, explain the upcoming installation of FiOS fiber optic TV and Internet service in the community.

FVCSA Director Mari Molenaar presents Bernie Siebers, past President of the Board of Directors, with a plaque recognizing his long service to the community.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Tell Us What You Think: The New Walkway

Last fall the Landscape Committee had a new path installed near the entrance to the community, connecting the Loop Road to the emergency road that leads to The Smith House. The committee selected Forever In Bloom to do the landscaping work. Now that you've had some time to use it, let us know what you think. Click the Comments link below. You can click the photo in this post to see a larger image.

FVCSA Board of Directors Meeting

The FVCSA Board of Directors held its monthly meeting at 7:30 pm on Tuesday, April 28, at The Smith House. Discussion included the following:
  • Elliott Eisenberg has resigned from the Board because he and his family are relocating and his home is for sale. Under the Association's By-Laws, the remaining 6 Directors will choose a replacement to serve until the next election in the fall of 2009. Elliott also served as Treasurer, so the Board will be selecting a Director to succeed him in that role.
  • Before the meeting, the Board met in executive session with Wilkin & Guttenplan, the Association's auditors, to review the audit of financial statements for the 2008 fiscal year. With Elliott's resignation, the Association's Vice President Av Magram reported on the meeting. He said that in their discussion with the Board, the auditors commented that the Association should update its policy on long term capital reserves and increase reserve funding. Av noted that there will be a meeting at The Smith House on May 5 at 7:30 pm to discuss the Association's reserves policy with all of the parcel chairs and parcel finance chairs.
  • There was a very lively discussion about the Landscape Committee's recommendation that Brickman not apply pre-emergent weed killer or fertilizers in the Common Area. The Board adopted the Committee's recommendation by a vote of 4 in favor to 1 opposed, with 1 abstention.
  • By unanimous vote, the Board approved a proposal made by Director Mari Molenaar for development by AtHomeNet of a new community website, at a first year cost not to exceed $960, and $840 per year for subsequent years, to be paid from the General Fund Operating account.
  • By unanimous vote, the Board tabled a proposal by the Landscape Committee to approve plantings at both detention basins by landscaper Forever In Bloom, at a cost not to exceed $3,990. The Board will consider this proposal further after our primary landscape contractor Brickman completes work on a proposed master landscape plan for Princeton Landing.
  • By unanimous vote, the Board rejected a proposal by the Landscape Committee to approve the collection and transfer of pine needles to areas along the Loop Road by landscaper Forever In Bloom at a cost not to exceed $1200 to be paid from the General Fund Landscape Other account.
  • By unanimous vote, the Board approved the appointment of the Felsen Insurance Agency as the Association's insurance broker, effective on the execution by FVCSA of a "broker of record" letter. The Board noted that the Association has terminated its risk consulting agreement with ICA Risk Consulting, at a cost savings of $1500 per month.
  • By unanimous vote, the Board approved for the 2009 season a "pool exchange program" allowing residents of Parcel 1 to use the pool at The Smith House and allowing residents of all other parcels to use the pool in Parcel 1, on the same basis as in past years (i.e., with no change in cost allocations to any of the parcels.)
The next meeting of the Board of Directors will take place at 7:30 pm on May 26, 2009, at The Smith House. All members of the Association are welcome to attend.