“Stop playing it safe and become a bit more daring.”
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Home and Garden
“Your home should tell the story of who you are and be a collection of what you love.” — Nate Berkus (1971- ), American interior designer and television personality
Q: When do you cut back summer tomato plants to get a second crop in the early fall? I need to know this and any special treatment needed, such as fertilizing, to promote new growth.
Let’s face it, we live in a throwaway society; take, make and waste. We buy, consume and throw things away all day long, every day. Recycling can be a popular green activity we can all practice in our homes.
Concrete is gaining ground in the design industry. Its diverse uses and specialty finishes make it a simple, eye-catching way to create a comfortable, natural atmosphere with unique personality in the home.
Q: We have an 8-year-old honeysuckle plant that will not produce blossoms. They get one or two blossoms each year but do not produce massive amounts. We tried various fertilizers to no avail. What can we do to stimulate blossoms?
Q: I am starting a bathroom remodel and would like to install a pedestal sink. It looks pretty easy to do, but I would like some guidance.
If your summer plans include spending time outdoors, then finding shade is essential — especially during the day when the sun beats down and temperatures rise.
Only last week I was accompanying a client on a walk-through of her new custom home that was in the final stages of being dry-walled. That’s always an exciting time for both homeowner and designer because many of the fundamental elements in the building and design process finally seem to materialize for the first time and suddenly the home is “there.” It’s real, three-dimensional and the room proportions are what they are — for better or for worse.
Q: I have a new Early Grande peach which produced more than 80 blossoms. I removed 50 of the fruit when they were small and harvested the rest when the fruit ripened. Now the leaves are turning yellow and dropping off. I am watering the tree for 40 minutes, three times a week so the tree is getting 16 gallons a week.
Unless you are an electrician, understanding the electrical grid can feel like a topic better left to the experts. However, our dependence on reliable electricity at the touch of a switch, especially in triple-digit weather, is undeniable.
Hot weather favors lawn diseases common here. Now is an optimum time for controlling lawn diseases before they in get into full swing. If your lawn had disease in the past, now is a good time to apply a fungicide. Fungicides are primarily preventive and work best when they are applied before the disease rears its ugly head.
The home office often becomes that in-between space, where the detritus of daily life mingles with the essential needs for financial well-being. An organized home office can be a gateway to productivity, both in your personal and professional life.
Q: I need to organize my garage. Yesterday, I went to throw the garbage out and I could hardly squeeze by the shovels and rakes that had fallen over. What is the best way to clean up this area?
“Summertime, and the living is easy …” — George Gershwin (1898-1937), “Porgy and Bess” American composer and pianist
Chalk it up to an easy furniture makeover. The chalk-based paint craze has officially painted the town red, and country gray, and English yellow, and Greek blue.
This week, temperatures are projected to reach 117 degrees. Most landscape plants can handle these temperatures, so don’t panic.
Staying clean is a necessity and a luxury in our modern life. As new cleaning products flood the market and capture our attention with clever marketing and earthy packaging, it is difficult to know what to choose. What is best for us and our home, planet Earth?
Dear Gail: I just started back to work and it has become overwhelming for me to keep things picked up, especially in our family room. Do you have any tips on ways to reduce or at least control everyday clutter? — Ann Marie
We’re above the ho-hum spin of the typical, builder-grade utilitarian ceiling fan, and it’s time to switch to the modern beauty and flair of an art piece that can keep you cool.
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