Home and garden
Native plants have become a big part of our gardening in the last decade and for good reason. Native plants provide habitat for insects, birds and other wildlife as well as reduce the amount of work and water needed to keep a garden looking good. However, information on how to identify them and then grow them well can be a little hard to find.
Reuse those paper goods like last year’s calendar, brown paper bags, old maps and retired books to give character and a handmade touch to do-it-yourself envelopes. Are you writing a thank you note or looking for a fun way to dress up a pledge for an experiential gift?
Now that the frozen ground and a light dusting of snow has shut down the outdoor gardening season, it’s time for the reading and study season we all wait for. Preferably in a comfy chair with your lap warmed by a dog or cat. With that in mind, I want to spend several columns over the next few months on topics that will help you understand some more technical garden topics.
Tim, it’s a very long story, and don’t think I’m crazy. I’m building a new home and wondering if I can install all the electrical wiring myself. It’s not a big home, but it’s got all the things going on you’d normally have in a home, including quite a few three- and four-way switches.
Like many of you, I allow my houseplants to spend the warm summer on our deck. My collection includes a large jade plant, three equally large Christmas cacti and a real Southwestern desert cactus; all with family histories. While they were outside, they got plenty of light, water and air. Now that they are back inside, it’s a different story.
The Obamas’ purple-and-chartreuse English garden-themed state dinner for the British prime minister at the time, David Cameron. A lavish wedding in a sultan’s palace in Istanbul under arches of hanging wisteria. A magical Winnie the Pooh storybook ball featuring a giant beehive and hundreds of bottles of honey.
The numbers were stunning. Nearly 2.9 million songbirds have disappeared from North America’s forests and grasslands since 1970. About 90% of those losses are coming from just 12 families of birds we all know well including sparrows, blackbirds, warblers and finches. The study was done by a consortium of bird researchers including the Cornell University Lab of Ornithology and was published online in Science Magazine this past September.
Is it just me or was this the fastest gardening season ever? The late burst of wintry conditions we experienced from February to April prevented us from getting an early start. But the fact is fall is here, and it’s time to wrap things up.
I want to build a deluxe shed. I’ve just retired and have plenty of time on my hands. I want to stop paying the outrageous offsite storage fees. First and foremost, what do you think of my shed matching my house? Is this a good idea or a waste of time?
When fall arrives, gardeners transition from outdoor gardening to indoor activities. Yet they miss the connection they had with living plants. Tending houseplants is the perfect cure to this problem and can be just as enjoyable.
I’ve noticed that even when people feel motivated to purge, they still have a tough time parting with clothes.
This will not be a usual column. I’m sitting in my man cave writing it several hours before I talk to a reader named Amanda on the phone. She lives in Oklahoma in a new home covered with artificial stone made from colored and textured concrete.
This summer, my husband, Bill, and I have been treated to some delightful interactions with the birds in our garden. We’ve enticed hummingbirds to sit on our fingers while they sipped from tiny feeders and watched baby quail blissfully napping in the shade of the daylily patch.
A benefit (and hazard) of my job as a design writer is spending chunks of time with decorating experts in beautiful homes. I always learn something from pros who have a refined eye for detail.
I’ve got a mess at my home that’s driving me crazy. My 3-foot tall concrete block foundation was coated years ago with a thin coat of cement stucco. There are countless cracks in the stucco coating that outline many of the blocks.
We all know her as the Tomato Lady who sells tomato starts at Garden Expo each spring. She is also a master at growing peppers.