Category Archives: Home and Garden

Column: What to do in preparation for autumn

Storing apples and pears Apples and pears may be kept for weeks, even months, if stored in cool, dark conditions. Wrap in tissue paper, taking care not to bruise the fruit. Good Compost Layering materials makes good compost; never use very much of any one ingredient at once. Try to intersperse moist, leafy material with… Continue Reading

Column: Is your garden overflowing with tomatoes? Preserve them

Enjoy the flavor of garden-fresh tomatoes long after summer is over by freezing.  Start by coring a just-picked batch with a paring knife, then blanch and peel. Store in the freezer in tightly sealed jars (leaving 3/4-inch room) or airtight bags. Fresh tomato sauce makes canned sauce pale in comparison. Slow cooker tomato sauce 8 pounds… Continue Reading

Entre-view: Create a breathtaking first impression

Entre-view: Create a breathtaking first impression

The foyer of a home is a first impression and a nonverbal welcome to houseguests. After walking through a home’s front door, the entryway space should make a statement about what lies inside, says Mary Carol Garrity, author, designer and owner of Nell Hill’s, a home furnishings store located in the Kansas City area. “The… Continue Reading

Column: Pesto palette

Classic basil pesto is my go-to ingredient that is always in my pantry. Making a variety of pesto from the last of the herbs growing in your garden can open up your eyes to the delights of this great range of flavors. Not only does pesto work magic with pasta but it can act as… Continue Reading

Fall, early winter tips for your yard and home

Prevent insects such as Boxelder bugs, millipedes (one-inch small, dark worm looking insects) and spiders from invading your home this winter. Caulk around windows and doors and place screens over attic and exhaust vents. Insects will usually move on when they cannot find an easy entry point. If insects do get inside your home, place… Continue Reading

The garden in fall: Late bloomers and rebloomers

The garden in fall: Late bloomers and rebloomers

The changing season comes with a promise of splashy colors — not just in the tree foliage, but in the garden, too. In a well-diversified garden, annuals, perennials and shrubs keep working long into fall and make this the garden’s most refreshing season. Garden shops traditionally stock up with chrysanthemums and pansies in the fall.… Continue Reading

Column: Where crops grew first

In an interesting article I recently read, the sources of a lot of the world’s favorite food crops were discussed. Food origins and their evolution are interesting. I think, sometimes, what we thought we knew is absolutely not so. Take apples for instance. They are originally from central Asia, and it is thought they first… Continue Reading

Column: You could help save the monarchs

There is an interesting page in this month’s National Geographic magazine that makes the case for using our backyards and surrounding properties to help save the monarch butterfly. It seems a little strategic gardening can make a big difference. In studying the data, the monarch population peaked in the mid-1990s with an estimated 1 billion… Continue Reading

Woof: Decor goes to the dogs

Woof: Decor goes to the dogs

By Elaine Markoutsas Universal Uclick “Putting on the dog” has taken on a whole new meaning when it comes to designing with pets in mind. Whether it’s fashioning an area or three for your pup or kitty to lounge, sleep or dine, you no longer have to fret about whether their stuff will clash with… Continue Reading

Column: Step into fall – What to do for September

Inside: Dust ceilings, walls, baseboards and woodwork. This is especially important now, because dust that collects during summer is often laden with allergy-inducing pollen. A vacuum cleaner’s brush attachment or a Swiffer broom are good tools to use for this job. Clean ceilings first then work your way down. Rearrange furniture with the fireplace as… Continue Reading

Column: Raptors can be found across Wyoming

There are officially 22 raptor species recorded in Wyoming. Some live here year-round while others visit only during the summer or winter. They can be found in all corners of the state from forested mountains to open prairies. Raptors are important components of the natural landscape. A healthy raptor population is a good indicator of… Continue Reading

Column: High summer temperatures

Many of us know that cold weather including frost can affect plants. Many people also know that hot temperatures can also affect plants, especially in the garden. I would like to take some time and discuss the effects of temperature on plants. For example, peas convert sugar to starch twice as fast at 58 degrees… Continue Reading

Column: Prune a tomato?

Q. There is a family dispute: Must you prune suckers from tomato plants, or does it make          any real difference? A. It makes a big difference. Although they sound vaguely sinister, suckers are simply late-flowering branches formed in the leaf axils of larger stems. Removing them makes plants narrow and open,… Continue Reading

Column: Grasshopper control in gardens, landscapes

This summer, I have seen reports of grasshoppers hatching out with numbers quite high, at least in this area.  Wyoming has over 100 species of grasshoppers. Fortunately, only four or five of them ever become pest problems. The redlegged, migratory, differential and two-striped grasshoppers are major pest species, with the differential and two-striped being the… Continue Reading

Fight cabin fever with creative design

Fight cabin fever with creative design

You don’t need a mountaintop experience or woodland dwelling to treat your cabin fever. The warm, rustic design details of a cabin getaway can be brought into your home no matter where you live, says Jeff Balmer, a fourth-generation builder, cabin designer and an owner of Lands End Development in Crosslake, Minnesota. “Most everyone has… Continue Reading

Column: Gifts from the garden

With fall looming on the horizon, now is a great time to look around the yard and think about holiday gifts. Once your garden is frozen and snow is falling, you and your gardening pals can enjoy the outdoors when opening gifts made or gathered now. Here are a few ideas to get you thinking… Continue Reading

Design trends coming with international flair

Design trends coming with international flair

It’s a small world — especially when it comes to home design. Those retailers, designers and architects seeking cutting edge, forward thinking in form, materials and color, sometimes artisanal or bespoke, are more frequently heading to international destinations. The number of Americans attending these furnishings, lighting, accessories, kitchen and bath shows has ratcheted up in… Continue Reading

Column: What to do for August

Inside: Make pesto with all of your fragrant basil. Put out some new colorful placemats for the table. Wash windows inside and out; inspect windows for damage, recaulk and repaint if necessary. Don’t let all the fresh corn go to waste. Slice kernels from the cobs, and store in freezer-safe resealable plastic bags. The frozen… Continue Reading

Column: Cure a leaky basement from inside: Part 3

In the last two parts, we have discussed several ways of dealing with basement leakage from the inside. In this final chapter, we will examine the best option for removing water in the basement. SUMPS AND SUMP PUMPS As to sumps, there are ready-made plastic ones. Some contractors have used drywall mud buckets into which they… Continue Reading

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