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Gifts for Use in the Garden

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

It’s that time of year again: time to find the perfect present for Aunt Edna, Uncle Bob and everyone else we love. Gardeners on my list are pretty easy to buy for because there are so many wonderful gifts to choose from, including selections under $10 (Atlas nitrile gardening gloves, packets of your favorite seeds) to expensive coffee table books and wheelbarrows that cost $300 or more. Let me offer …

Wise to Winterize Outside the Home

Sunday, November 23, 2014

It’s wise, before the snow flies (or as soon as possible if flakes have already flown), to take the time to prep your home and property for winter. We hear often about emergency service calls that could have been avoided if homeowners had taken time to winterize or to hire help to get it done. Some advice is pretty much perennial. Each year, …

Notes From the Garden: Now Is the Time to Prepare Bulbs for Blooms in March

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

I love to ski and snowshoe. I don’t mind shoveling snow and lugging in firewood for the woodstove that chugs along day and night these days. But there are limits to my patience, and by March I’ll ready for green growing things and some fresh flowers. So I start lots of veggies and flowers by seed, starting in March and April. I also …

When Contractors Give an Estimate, Do They Charge?

Sunday, September 14, 2014

How much should you expect to pay, if anything, for an estimate, inspection or other kind of contractor consultation? The answer depends on the nature of your project and the policies of the companies from which you solicit bids. But a few rules of thumb apply: If you …

Fall Is Coming, And So Are Its Many Chores

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The fall equinox arrives on Sept. 23 this year. On that date, day and night are of equal length, but with each subsequent day the dark time gets a little bit longer and we begin our descent into winter. For many gardeners, the shortening days are not welcome. …

Hangout House: Why Some Homes Are ‘Teen Central’

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Start with amenities like a monster TV or fire pit, add a never-ending supply of munchies and a relaxed attitude toward your kids bringing home a friend — or five — and you may just find that your …

Fall Brings an Array of Cool Weather Plants to the Front Porch

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

We New Englanders have a long tradition of doing something to brighten the approach to our front door. In winter it’s a nice green wreath; my grandmother liked red geraniums in a pot by the door all summer; in fall, pumpkins and chrysanthemums are traditional decorations. At farm …

Stop Inviting Insect Invaders Into Home

Sunday, August 31, 2014

The waning days of summer are a good time to make sure your home isn’t putting out a welcome mat for insect invaders. If you’re like me, you’d rather not share your space with wasps, spiders, stink bugs and other pests that often become more visible in the …

Prepare for Storms Before They Arrive

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Three years ago, my family and I drove overnight from Maine to New Jersey, trying to get home ahead of Hurricane Irene. That memory from late August 2011 prompts hurricane-preparation thoughts today. Here are some tips from Ready.gov — some things to do well in advance of landfall: …

Before Winter, Get Vegetables Into the Freezer

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Summer is nearly over. Those big yellow school buses are beginning their morning ambles and cool nights call for blankets on the bed. It’s time for me to get serious about putting up veggies for the winter. With the exception of lettuce, most vegetables can be saved for …

Notes From The Garden: Daylilies Are an Excellent Choice for the Garden and Plate

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

What one kind of flower would you bring with you if you were being sentenced to life on a deserted island? Would you pick peonies for their big, bold blossoms and tantalizing smell? Or perhaps primroses for their …

Bedroom Desk? It’s Under All That Junk

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Alyssa Kimble, a soon-to-be fourth-grader in White Plains, N.Y., said she uses the desk in her bedroom for “everything” — creating lesson plans for her make-believe school, writing stories and storing stuff. Everything, that is, except homework. “Usually, …

So Much More Than a Garden

Sunday, August 17, 2014

White River Junction — Considering the cost of water, fertilizer and his own labor, it would probably be cheaper to buy vegetables than grow them himself, but to Nalin Patel, the garden on the grounds of the Pine …