Rss Feed
Tweeter button
Facebook button

Archives for October 15, 2013

Michigan Radio: A peek inside a Detroit makerspace for kids

Metalworking, arts and crafts, robotics.

All of these activities are part of the emerging makers movement sprouting up all over the world. With its do-it-your-self ethos, hobbyists, craftspeople and everyday tinkerers are getting together in old warehouses at kitchen tables and online to prototype new ideas and re-invent old ones.

The Mt. Elliott
Makerspace sits in the basement of Church of the Messiah. A big, old, stone church on Detroit’s eastside. When I walked in, six-kids were playing chess.

The fact that elementary and middle schoolers are playing chess on a rainy Sunday afternoon is cool in itself, but there’s more.

The game is life size.

With young people acting as the pieces. Charles is the bishop. Sakoo’s the knight. Raven’s the queen, and she’s wearing a handmade, blue paper crown to prove it. The kids also made the chess board, out of black and white, plastic shower curtains.

■Listen to the report:


Mobile users, click here to listen

I asked Raven, the queen, how she’d be spending her time if she didn’t know about the Makerspace.

“Bored. Watching TV. Probably on the computer of something. I wouldn’t be doing that much.”

In a room next door to the chess game, 6th-grader Chris Price puts the finishing touches on a silver dirt bike. He learned how to put together what was once a just a bunch of parts and components, so he gets to take this bike home for free.

“And I’m lucky cause I don’t have to spend no 20, or 30, or 40 dollars to fix a bike.

It’s just free if you help on it,” Price explains.

Of course there is some money involved. Local foundations, primarily Kresge, have been supporting the project since 2010. They’ve helped pay for things like the woodshop, silkscreening studio, 3d printer, and computer lab.

“We have a lot of children in this neighborhood, and there are not a lot of recreation centers. The library is not very close to here. So we needed a Makerspace, someplace they could come and get involved and they would be in a safe environment at the same time”, says Oyin Zuri, a volunteer at the Makerspace.

There are a handful of similar Makerspaces in Detroit. Spaces where residents can fix old lawnmowers to start landscaping businesses. Or experiment with wind turbines and solar panels to explore possible alternatives to expensive utility bills. Or simply, these are spaces to go on a rainy day when there isn’t anything else to do. These are the community centers of the future.

More from Michigan Radio:


How immigration changes will impact migrant workers


Flint begins knocking down hundreds of abandoned homes


Michigan Amtrak is getting faster and better

Article source: http://www.freep.com/article/20131015/OPINION05/310150117/Detroit-Maker-Space

Ask Andrew: Repairs Before Putting A Home On The Market

Ask Andrew

This sponsored, biweekly QA column is written by Andrew Goodman, Associate Broker and top producing agent with Gallagher Co. Real Estate, Inc. Based in Bethesda, Andrew serves clients in Maryland, D.C., and Northern Virginia. Please submit comments, questions, and opinions in the comments section or via email.

Question: I am looking at putting my home on the market in the next few months. What do you recommend repairing or renovating in a home to get the best return on my investment?

There are several different philosophies on this topic. However, I approach it with the questions of what items will improve the marketability of the home and then what items will improve the value of the home?

Kitchens and Bathrooms: Most agents will recommend renovating kitchens and bathrooms because kitchens and bathrooms typically “sell” a home. But who says the future buyer will like your style of renovation? You may be spending mega bucks to renovate these parts of the home and the buyer may end up tearing them apart anyway. This could help the marketability and improve value but I do not think you should spend the money on these items, especially in the Bethesda market where bathrooms and kitchens can be larger, more extravagant, and more expensive than some entire homes.

Mechanical Systems: I do recommend making sure that your mechanical (heating, air conditioning, water heater, etc.) systems are new or fairly new when selling your home. No buyer wants to deal with repairing or replacing these items after they move in. If replacing, try to replace them with the most efficient systems as possible. If your home will save the buyer on their utility bills, the buyer may be willing to put those now saved bucks toward a higher monthly mortgage payment. This investment will improve your marketability and value when selling your home.

Unfinished Rooms: If you have an unfinished basement or another part of the home, it may be worth finishing. As long as it isn’t too costly to renovate, this will add value and certainly add marketability. But make sure not to go overboard as this could easily reduce your return on investment. The season has passed, but installing a deck or patio would be great for the spring and summer markets.

Flooring: Replacing old carpet and refinishing old floors will also improve your marketability and value. Buyers want to see hardwood floors in top shape and the carpets spotless. Make sure to keep the carpets neutral in color, if you are replacing them.

Landscaping: Re-mulching, planting flowers, and other outdoor improvements will help the home’s curb appeal. However, with the seasons changing you may be wasting your time and money. I would make sure to trim all bushes so no branches, leaves, or shrubs are blocking the windows. You want to make sure that as much sunlight as possible is entering the home. During the fall season, make sure to rake up all of the fallen leaves before an open house or a weekend of showings.

Paint: I truly believe that giving a buyer a clean canvass to work with is the BEST repair or renovation you can make to get the best marketability and value in your home. If you have unique colors in the home, buy a couple of gallons of off-white paint and paint the rooms neutral so the buyers can put their own personal touches on it. Just this year alone, several of my clients have sold their homes in less than one week with this approach.

Clean: This is the most important thing you can do to your home. Clean! Clean! Clean! If you think you can clean more, do it! Try to de-clutter your home as much as possible. Re-caulk the tubs, toilets and more so everything looks pristine. Most buyers can not see past the clutter, nor can they get past the filth of a home. So do them a favor and clean so you aren’t depending upon their imagination to sell your home.

Every home may have special characteristics that you want to highlight or advertise when listing. Consult with your realtor as he or she may have other helpful ideas for your specific home. However, these recommendations are a good start and good “listing kit” for every home that is to be placed on the market.

Article source: http://www.bethesdanow.com/2013/10/15/ask-andrew-repairs-before-putting-a-home-on-the-market/

Atlanta Home Improvement Magazine Launches New Web Site Introducing …





<!– imageTag: –>
<!– imageTagafter: and imageUrl: http://aidaia.com/wp-content/plugins/rss-poster/cache/94ff2_NY97252LOGO –>



Download image


ATLANTA, Oct. 15, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Atlanta Home Improvement magazine, the premier authority in Atlanta on home remodeling, interior design and landscaping, has launched its newly re-designed site, AtlantaHomeImprovment.com, to enhance the user experience for both local businesses and homeowners. With a streamlined design, improved search functionality and rich multi-media content, the new AtlantaHomeImprovement.com makes it easier for consumers to find home remodeling and landscaping ideas, resources and professionals.

(Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20131015/NY97252LOGO)

“We are excited to launch the next-generation Atlanta Home Improvement site to connect engaged homeowners and shoppers with our clients, faster and more easily,” said Jennifer Prins, publisher of Atlanta Home Improvement magazine. “More than ever, we’re empowering local home remodeling, design and landscape professionals to strengthen their online brand presence in the marketplace to attract shoppers, drive increased business, and generate more ways to interact with qualified consumers.”

“When a consumer comes to the new AtlantaHomeImprovment.com for home renovation ideas, they will find even more relevant content for inspiration and easy connections to the resources and professionals who can make their dream home happen,” adds Prins. For advertisers, the new site offers a stronger web presence, more lead capture methods, enhanced traffic from organic and referral search, and increased opportunities to reach prospective customers.

Key site features include:

  • Premium Partner Listing, a 400-word story highlighting a local business’s work. Limited to 24 total profiles with prime placement on the home page and all subsequent landing pages in rotations of six, each Premium Partner listing features unlimited photos, a company description or story, logo, contact information, website link, “Ask A Question/Get A Quote” functionality, social media connections to Facebook and Twitter accounts, and video upload capability.
  • Find A Resource, an online go-to source for visitors searching for products, services and professionals in remodeling, design and landscaping. Featured prominently on the home page and subsequent landing pages, searchable by category or alphabetical listings, each trusted resource features a custom page that includes 20 photos, a 250-word description, logo, contact information, website link, and “Ask A Question/Get A Quote” functionality.
  • Run-of-Site Digital Display Ads offering exclusivity as one of only 16 Leaderboard advertisers and 16 Rectangular advertisers rotating through 4 positions on the site, every landing page, every blog page, every day for one year.
  • Videos custom-produced by Atlanta Home Improvement that are prominently hosted on the site and YouTube for one year. Also included with this feature are social media announcements, a two-week promotion on the home page, and an archived version of the video at www.AtlantaHomeImprovement.com.   

For 12 years, Atlanta Home Improvement has been the premier source in Atlanta for inspiration and education about remodeling, landscaping, and interior design, as well as the latest home products, events and expert advice from industry professionals. Through its monthly full-color glossy magazine, website, blog and social media channels, Atlanta Home Improvement connects a monthly audience of over 220,000 homeowners who are actively searching for home remodeling and landscaping services to advertisers representing the region’s most respected businesses.

About Atlanta Home Improvement magazine
Atlanta Home Improvement magazine is a part of Network Communications, Inc., a leading local media company providing lead generation, advertising and Internet marketing services to the luxury and multi-family segments of the housing industry. The Company’s leading brands are Apartment Finder, DigitalSherpa, Unique Homes, New England Home and Mountain Living. The Company’s strategy focuses on providing high-quality and measurable marketing solutions to local clients by leveraging its proprietary prospect-focused distribution, social media and online franchises, and content management infrastructure.

SOURCE Network Communications, Inc.

RELATED LINKS
http://www.AtlantaHomeImprovement.com

Article source: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/atlanta-home-improvement-magazine-launches-new-web-site-introducing-enhanced-features-for-local-businesses-and-homeowners-227810781.html

Auckland Garden DesignFest bursts into bloom

First-time gardeners, the green-thumbed and landscaping professionals alike are invited to take part in the second biennial Auckland Garden DesignFest 2013, on 16-17 November across the Auckland region.

Twenty-five of the city’s most spectacular residential gardens will be open to the public – nearly all of them for the first time – in a celebration of the incredible landscaping, design and artistic talent Auckland has to offer. Visitors have the opportunity to explore the grounds over two days, speak with each garden’s designer onsite, and gain inspiration for their own gardens coming into summer.

The Festival’s Joint Chairperson, Rose Thodey says, “We’re proud to have so many experienced designers taking part in this year’s Festival. Thanks to them, and the generosity of the gardens’ owners, we’re able to show the enormous difference good garden design can make to a property.”

“All the Festival gardens are incredible, but they follow simple principles that anyone can use in their own backyard, if they know how to apply them. So it’s about showing people how easy and worthwhile it can be to use effective garden design techniques to make their outdoor environments more enjoyable spaces to live in.”

Some of the Festival’s highlights include: a Lake Pupuke garden by up-and-coming designers Matt McIsaac and Mat Ransom which featured in the 2009 film Under the Mountain; one of New Zealand’s most beloved designers, the internationally-recognised Xanthe White presents two gardens-one a Herne Bay property incorporating brick salvaged from the 2011 Christchurch earthquake, with a range of edible and medicinal plantings, the other in Mt Eden, with flowery natives and gorgeous lagoon effects; Damian Wendelborn collaborates with artist Desna Whaanga-Schollum on a large outdoor installation to reinvigorate a tired Herne Bay property; Trudy Crerar’s California-inspired garden next door responds to the deco period of its landmark 1920s apartment building; Robin Shafer’s whimsical Balmoral garden is perfect for anyone with a romantic sensibility, and her Sunnyhills property is a relaxing, tropical-inspired oasis, and finally, for anyone seeking ideas on creating small urban sanctuaries, don’t miss Pascal Tibbits’ Parnell designs.

Unique to the Festival is the chance to explore gardens where the professionals have combined forces. Stroll through two properties in Freemans Bay where Trish Bartleet has worked with old friends: fellow designer Sally Gordon who describes her new garden as being “all I dreamt of”, before wandering across to her neighbour, award-winning architect Pip Cheshire’s utterly desirably retreat.

Remuera is home to seven of the Festival’s gardens, with sweeping, Italian-style properties such as Ron Dkyman’s two gardens, extensive, multi-purpose outdoor areas by Gary de Beer, and Fiona Kelly and Barbara Garrett, and an awe-inspiring, historic garden by Sue and Colin McLean, with water features, sculptures, a potager garden and beehive. For poolside living, see Gudrun Fischer’s sleek creation and Jan Hart’s family garden which won Silver Awards in last year’s Landscaping New Zealand Awards.

The Festival was inspired by Melbourne’s renowned Rotary Garden DesignFest and is held in alternate years with its Auckland counterpart so gardening and design enthusiasts have the opportunity to go to festivals in both cities. It is the brainchild of the Garden Design Society of NZ and the Rotary Club of Newmarket.

Tickets for the festival are now on sale online, or available to pick up in person from Palmers Gardenworld and Palmers Planet Stores throughout Auckland. Pre-purchased tickets cost $50 for an all-garden, all-weekend pass, or $60 if bought on the day at any of the gardens. Single garden tickets are also available for $5 each. Proceeds from all tickets go towards children’s charities Ronald McDonald House, KidsCan and Garden to Table.

For those looking to see all the highlight gardens with the guidance of expert guides, bus tours are offered and cater to a range of interests, beginning and ending at historic Highwic in Newmarket.

For more information, visit gardendesignfest.co.nz.

Article source: http://www.voxy.co.nz/lifestyle/auckland-garden-designfest-bursts-bloom/5/170960

Biz Buzz: Test drives for American Cancer Society


Kathy McEnaney was named top listing agent for September at Coldwell Banker Premier Properties. Courtesy photo.


Shellie Keever was named top sales associate for September at Coldwell Banker Premier Properties. Courtesy photo.


Landscape architect Steve Glaze, a University of Florida grad with seven years of experience at an Ormond Beach landscape architectural firm, has been hired by Hammock Gardens Nursery  Landscaping, in Palm Coast. Courtesy photo.

(Click “Like” to become a fan of the Palm Coast Observer.)

 

Chevy customers can help make strides against breast cancer just by taking a drive. Chevrolet is holding national test drive days to benefit the American Cancer Society, and Tom Gibbs Chevrolet, at 5850 State Road 100, is participating.

The dealership will donate $10 to the society for each test drive on a new vehicle on Oct. 19, Nov. 2 and Nov. 16.

The fundraising effort is part of the Chevy Making Strides Against Cancer initiative. For more information, contact Tom Gibbs Chevrolet at 888-450-1509.

SunTrust Bank brings in new personal banker

The SunTrust Bank at 5399 N. Oceanshore Boulevard has brought in a new personal banker.

Lori Gottlieb worked at the Hancock Bank in Palm Coast for 12 years before moving to SunTrust Bank, according to a press release from the bank, and welcomes new and former clients to visit her new location at the SunTrust Bank in the Publix shopping plaza.

For more information, call 386-246-3038.

Coldwell Banker recognizes top listing agent, sales associate

Coldwell Banker Premier Properties in Palm Coast is recognizing its top listing agent and sales associate for the month of September.

Kathy McEnaney was named top listing agent, and Shellie Keever was named top sales associate, according to a news release from the bank.

Coldwell Banker has served Flagler County for 27 years, according to the news release. Coldwell Banker Premier Properties, managed by broker Tom Heiser, is located at 33 Olds Kings Road, Suite One. To learn more, call 445-5880. 

Palm Coast landscaping company hires new landscape architect

Hammock Gardens Nursery Landscaping has hired a new landscape architect.

Landscape architect Steve Glaze earned a bachelor’s in landscape architecture from the University of Florida and worked for an engineering, planning and landscape architectural firm in Ormond Beach for seven years, according to a press release.

“We had future plans to hire a landscape architect, but moved up those plans when Steve called us last month,” owner Mike Fonseca said. “We realized he was just what we were looking for to help us fill the needs of our customers looking for landscape design services.”

Glaze enjoys the creative work of landscape architecture and the ability to work both inside and outside, according to the press release.

Hammock Gardens Nursery Landscaping, at 5208 N. Oceanshore Blvd., is owned by Janine Regina Fonseca and Mike Fonseca and opened in 2006.

The company holds workshops and classes on gardening and works with subcontractors to create outdoor living spaces within a customer’s budget, according to the press release.

For more information, call 446-9154 or visit https://www.facebook.com/HammockGardens.
 

 

 

Article source: http://www.palmcoastobserver.com/news/palm-coast/Business/101520138020/Biz-Buzz-Test-drives-for-American-Cancer-Society

In New Hope garden contest, prize winner is a surprise winner



Quantcast




‘);
}
document.write(‘

  • ‘);
    document.write(‘

  • ‘);
    jQuery(‘.navTab’ + ad_AdvertiserArray.data[adt].advertiserID).click(ad_AdvertiserArray.data[adt], function(eventObj){
    window.location.href = “http://” + hostEnv + “www.startribune.com/weekly-ads/?dppAID=” + eventObj.data.advertiserID;
    });
    jQuery(‘.navTabWa’ + ad_AdvertiserArray.data[adt].advertiserID).click(ad_AdvertiserArray.data[adt], function(eventObj){
    window.location.href = “http://” + hostEnv + “www.startribune.com/weekly-ads/?dppAID=” + eventObj.data.advertiserID;
    });
    }

    ‘);
    }
    dppNavTab.start();



    hide

    Catherine Navalta’s Japanese-inspired garden won top honors in New Hope’s suburban home awards.

    Photo: Joel Koyama, Star Tribune

    CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

    Cameraview larger

    “);
    }
    check=false;
    }
    else
    {
    jQuery(“#senderName2”).removeClass(“fc-field-error”);
    jQuery(“#errorName2”).remove();
    check=true;
    }
    if(!yourEmail.match(“[a-zA-Z0-9!#$%’*+/=?^_`{|}~-]+(?:.[a-zA-Z0-9!#$%’*+/=?^_`{|}~-]+)*@(?:[a-zA-Z0-9](?:[a-zA-Z0-9-]*[a-zA-Z0-9])?.)+[a-zA-Z0-9](?:[a-zA-Z0-9-]*[a-zA-Z0-9])”))
    {
    jQuery(“#senderMail2”).addClass(“fc-field-error”);
    if(jQuery(“#errorMail2”).length

    Please enter your valid email address.

    “);
    }
    check=false;
    }
    else
    {
    jQuery(“#senderMail2”).removeClass(“fc-field-error”);
    jQuery(“#errorMail2”).remove();
    check=true;
    }
    if(!recipientsEmail.match(“[a-zA-Z0-9!#$%’*+/=?^_`{|}~-]+(?:.[a-zA-Z0-9!#$%’*+/=?^_`{|}~-]+)*@(?:[a-zA-Z0-9](?:[a-zA-Z0-9-]*[a-zA-Z0-9])?.)+[a-zA-Z0-9](?:[a-zA-Z0-9-]*[a-zA-Z0-9])”))
    {
    jQuery(“#recipientsEmail2”).addClass(“fc-field-error”);
    if(jQuery(“#errorRMail2”).length

    Please enter recipient valid email address.

    “);
    }
    check=false;
    }
    else
    {
    jQuery(“#recipientsEmail2”).removeClass(“fc-field-error”);
    jQuery(“#errorRMail2”).remove();
    check=true;
    }

    if(check==true)
    {
    jQuery(“.shareLayer”).append(“”);
    jQuery.post(“/mail/”, { “sender_name”: yourName, “sender_email”: yourEmail,”recipient_email”:recipientsEmail,”comment”:comment,”domain”:domain,”path”:path,”contentId”:contentId } ,function(data)
    {
    jQuery(“.shareLayer”).hide(“slow”);
    alert(“your mail has been sent”);

    });
    }
    }

    Tammy Nelson didn’t really know her neighbor, but she knew her garden. And so she nominated it for a New Hope community award.

    “The beauty and the smells from this yard make me happy every time I walk by. They have a koi pond too,” Nelson hastily jotted in ink on the entry form. She listed the address, but under “name,” she wrote: “We spoke once but I forget.”

    The neighbor is Catherine Navalta, who discovered that she’d been nominated only when judges came to take a look. Now, she is the winner of one of New Hope’s RAVE awards for her lush garden of mostly perennials, meticulously planned so something is blooming all season long.

    Winners are honored with a plaque or engraved garden rock at a City Council meeting, but that’s not the main point.

    “The idea behind it is to build community spirit and let people have a way of recognizing their fellow New Hopians who may be doing something a little extra or special in the city,” said Curtis Jacobsen, the city’s director of community development. New Hope bestows five RAVE awards each year: for outstanding property maintenance; gardens; landscaping; remodel or renovation; and environmentally sensitive improvements.

    Natural nurturer

    On a recent afternoon, Navalta shared some of her garden’s secrets.

    She acknowledges that she’s a born nurturer. She nurtured four children, now all grown. As a registered nurse, she nurtured patients rehabilitating from brain trauma and strokes at Hennepin County Medical Center. And she nurtured her gardens — flowers in the front yard, vegetables in back.

    “For me it’s therapy. When I am in my garden, I cannot even feel the time,” she said.

    Navalta, 64, recently retired but she used to work the 3-to-11 p.m. shift. She’d come home at night and sit in her quiet, dark garden.

    “It’s only at night that I can smell the flowers,” she said.

    Growing up in the Philippines, she learned to garden from her mother, who also grew flowers in the front, vegetables in the back.

    “We had gardenias. When I smell gardenias, I think of my mother,” she said.

    Navalta and her husband came to the United States in 1990 and bought their New Hope home in 1991. She spent time at the library researching what flowers would thrive in Minnesota’s climate. She started planting two years later — moving the existing hostas to make room for more showy blossoms. She planted mostly perennials that bloom in waves from early spring through the fall.

    The hellebores bloom first, followed by tulips, daffodils, magnolias, azalea, clematis, cornflowers, dahlias, roses, lilies, hibiscus and phlox — to name a few. She dabbles in some annuals — impatiens, cosmos, marigolds and petunias. She harvests those seeds to replant the next year.

    “I want it to be carefree,” she said.

    Shared duties

    • get related content delivered to your inbox

    ‘);
    }
    if(jQuery.inArray(‘2611’, userSubsArray ) == -1) {
    document.write(‘

  • ‘);
    }
    if(jQuery.inArray(‘2751’, userSubsArray ) == -1) {
    document.write(‘

  • ‘);
    }

  • manage my email subscriptions
  • ‘);
    }

    “);
    }
    check=false;
    }
    else
    {
    jQuery(“#senderName3”).removeClass(“fc-field-error”);
    jQuery(“#errorName3”).remove();
    check=true;
    }
    if(!yourEmail.match(“[a-zA-Z0-9!#$%’*+/=?^_`{|}~-]+(?:.[a-zA-Z0-9!#$%’*+/=?^_`{|}~-]+)*@(?:[a-zA-Z0-9](?:[a-zA-Z0-9-]*[a-zA-Z0-9])?.)+[a-zA-Z0-9](?:[a-zA-Z0-9-]*[a-zA-Z0-9])”))
    {
    jQuery(“#senderMail3”).addClass(“fc-field-error”);
    if(jQuery(“#errorMail3”).length

    Please enter your valid email address.

    “);
    }
    check=false;
    }
    else
    {
    jQuery(“#senderMail3”).removeClass(“fc-field-error”);
    jQuery(“#errorMail3”).remove();
    check=true;
    }
    if(!recipientsEmail.match(“[a-zA-Z0-9!#$%’*+/=?^_`{|}~-]+(?:.[a-zA-Z0-9!#$%’*+/=?^_`{|}~-]+)*@(?:[a-zA-Z0-9](?:[a-zA-Z0-9-]*[a-zA-Z0-9])?.)+[a-zA-Z0-9](?:[a-zA-Z0-9-]*[a-zA-Z0-9])”))
    {
    jQuery(“#recipientsEmail3”).addClass(“fc-field-error”);
    if(jQuery(“#errorRMail3”).length

    Please enter recipient valid email address.

    “);
    }
    check=false;
    }
    else
    {
    jQuery(“#recipientsEmail3”).removeClass(“fc-field-error”);
    jQuery(“#errorRMail3”).remove();
    check=true;
    }

    if(check==true)
    {
    jQuery(“.shareLayer”).append(“”);
    jQuery.post(“/mail/”, { “sender_name”: yourName, “sender_email”: yourEmail,”recipient_email”:recipientsEmail,”comment”:comment,”domain”:domain,”path”:path,”contentId”:contentId } ,function(data)
    {
    jQuery(“.shareLayer”).hide(“slow”);
    alert(“your mail has been sent”);

    });
    }
    }

    ADVERTISEMENT

    • Most read
    • Most Emailed
    • Most Watched

    <![CDATA[

    ]]>

    Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

    ADVERTISEMENT

    ADVERTISEMENT

    ADVERTISEMENT

    ADVERTISEMENT

    ADVERTISEMENT



    inside the StarTribune


    vita.mn

    Annual Vita.mn Restaurant Guide


    lifestyle

    Kid’s’ Health: Latest news and advice


    home

    How ranked choice voting works


    lifestyle

    Best of MN 2013: Guide to state’s finest


    news graphics

    Interactive map: Finding best gas prices in metro


    local

    Follow Star Tribune on social media


    • 425 Portland Av. S.

      Minneapolis, MN 55488

      (612) 673-4000

    StarTribune.com is powered by Limelight Networks





    Close


    Article source: http://www.startribune.com/local/north/227850341.html

    Get It Growing Calendar offers tips for gardeners: Around the Home Grounds

    The LSU AgCenter now has available the latest of its helpful resources for River Parishes gardening enthusiasts – the 2014 Get It Growing Lawn and Garden Calendar. The Get It Growing calendar is packed with photos, gardening hints and monthly tips from LSU AgCenter horticulturist Dan Gill that are specifically written for Louisiana’s growing conditions and climate.

    It is part of an overall educational effort from the LSU AgCenter that is designed to help Louisiana residents learn more about caring for their lawns, landscapes and gardens.

    Each year, the Get It Growing calendar highlights Louisiana flowers, vegetables, plants and gardens with easy-to-understand gardening tips, useful information and beautiful photos from Louisiana photographers. Anyone who enjoys gardening will find the calendar to be a great resource for expanding his or her gardening knowledge. This year’s special feature offers a wealth of information on roses and includes a section on how to compost properly, definitions and explanations for a variety of gardening terms and a list of new Louisiana Super Plants for spring and fall.

    The 9-by-13.25-inch calendar, which is designed as part of the LSU AgCenter’s popular Get It Growing educational campaign on home lawns and gardens, sells for $12 and is available by calling or visiting the St. Charles Parish Extension office at 985.785.4473,  at 1313 Paul Maillard Road in Luling; or the St. John Parish Extension office at  985.497.3261, at 151 E. Third St. in Edgard.

    The 2014 Get It Growing calendar will also be available at the German Coast Farmers’ Markets “Master Gardener Booth” conducted the first Saturday of each month at Ormond Plantation on River Road in Destrehan. Proceeds from calendar sales will help to support horticultural research and educational efforts of the LSU AgCenter.

    Rene’ Schmit is the LSU AgCenter County Agent for St. Charles Parish and can be reached at 985-785-4473.

    Article source: http://blog.nola.com/river/2013/10/get_it_growing_calendar_offers.html

    October Gardening Tips

    <!–Saxotech Paragraph Count: 8
    –>

    October is a busy month in the garden says Jason Reeves, research horticulturist and garden curator at the University of Tennessee Gardens in Jackson.

    Reeves tips for October include:

    • Now is a good time to plant trees and shrubs since dormant plants will be under less stress. Newly installed deciduous plants require almost no watering during the winter months, but don’t forget a thorough initial watering, which is paramount. Monitor newly planted evergreens such as junipers, hollies and arborvitae for watering needs if rain is sparse. Even in winter, a plant with leaves on it will transpire. Winter wind drying can hurt an evergreen tree that lacks sufficient moisture.

    • October is a good time for you “yardeners” to control broadleaf weeds such as white clover and wild garlic. Check with your county’s UT Extension office for specific recommendations.

    • To make leaf removal less of a chore, rake them before they accumulate deeply. If you have a fescue lawn or moss garden, it is even more important to keep the leaves off of it. Compost or use them as mulch in your beds. You can also till them into your soil, and by spring they will be composted. Leaves on the lawn can be chopped with the lawnmower and left in place if not too deep.

    • Remember that seasonal mums are more valuable as compost than as “keep around plants” after they’ve faded. Don’t be tempted to plant them because even if they establish themselves, they rarely live up to your expectations the following year. Chrysanthemum “Clara Curtis,” “Ryan’s Yellow” and “Sheffield Pink” are good, reliable perennial cultivars that perform well and make good additions to the landscape.

    • October is the preferred time to plant ornamental kale, Swiss chard, and pansies. These are lovely additions to the fall and winter landscape, as well as being edible. Look for the winterbor and Russian kales as they are more reliable in cold weather than the kales known commonly as “flowering cabbage.”

    • Don’t forget to bring in your tropical plants and houseplants before frost. Many plants don’t like it when the temps drop into the 40s.

    Article source: http://www.theleafchronicle.com/viewart/20131015/STEWART03/310150001/October-Gardening-Tips

    Midday Fix: Fall garden maintenance tips from Chalet’s Tony Fulmer

    Tony Fulmer

    Event:
    Winterizing the Garden
    October 25 and 26
    10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m.
    Chalet Landscape, Nursery and Garden Center
    3132 Lake Avenue
    Wilmette
    www.ChaletNursery.com

    Tony’s Tips:

    Fall is the best time to control weeds like Creeping Charlie.

    Scrape Creeping Charlie leaves with herbicides like Weed Beater Ultra to more effectively treat weeds.

    Fall is a great time to transplant peonies. Carefully cut stems to the ground and plant in the hole with the “eyes” of the plant two inches below the soil.

    Protect tulip and crocus bulbs with chicken wire or granular forms of repellents.

    Bring in houseplants before the first frost and be sure to inspect them first for pests like mites.

    Article source: http://wgntv.com/2013/10/14/midday-fix-fall-garden-maintenance-tips-from-chalets-tony-fulmer/

    Tips And Ideas For Greener Gardens

    Green isn’t necessarily always better for the environment when it involves invasive, non-native plants and the classic American lawn. However, gardeners can enhance their personal havens by focusing on gardening techniques that align with sustainability practices.

    Vegetation serves a very important role in environmental processes, acting as storage tanks for carbon sequestration, as nitrogen fixation converters, as storm water capturers and greenhouse gas absorbers. An understanding of habitat, climate and soil type is necessary when choosing plants and designing gardens. Vegetation optimally grows under certain conditions, and when gardeners become in tune with these characteristics, the more their gardens will flourish.

    Using native plants will increase natural habitat in the specified area and will provide native fauna with more options to communicate, mate, reproduce and live. Also, native plants are adapted to the region’s climate and will require fewer resources, such as water and fertilizers, to mature.

    Eliminating and reducing dependence on synthetic fertilizers and herbicides, such as RoundUp and Miracle-Gro, will improve the environmental health of the garden. While these chemicals contributed to the green revolution in the 1950s, mass production of agriculture and the transition into the popular practice of monoculture farming, the constant application of these chemicals has many repercussions, especially for watershed health. After sprayed, excess chemicals filter through the soil and ultimately make their way into neighboring waterways, altering water chemistry as fertilizers and herbicides contain high levels of nutrients, such as phosphates and nitrates. High levels of nutrients can lead to algal blooms, which can lead to hypoxic or dead zones. Furthermore, sensitive aquatic life can determinately be affected. Thus, gardeners should consider the external costs of fertilizers and herbicides not just for their own garden but also for the specific habitat, communal ecosystem and regional biome connected to their garden. 

    For centuries, even before the manufacturing of chemical-based fertilizers and pesticides, farmers and gardeners have been using natural fertilizers, such as manure and composted biomass, to increase productivity and growth for their gardens and farms. Often local animal farms sell excess manure to the public at discounted rates. Also, for a very minimal amount and effort, backyard compost systems can be installed and maintained.

    In addition to compost systems, installing rain gardens and cisterns as well as gray water systems can help increase environmental benefits of a garden. Before conducting any projects, check with county rules and regulations to understand the potential permitting process needed for storm water infrastructure. Often referred to as Low Impact Developments (LIDs), gardeners can easily purchase a cistern to capture rainwater and with some effort, plant a rain garden that uses drought- and flood-tolerant native plants. Depending on the region, different rain gardens can be designed to accommodate the climate and average annual rainfall. There are many books, various online sources and local nurseries that can help gardeners achieve a functioning rain garden. Even more ambitious, environmentally conscious gardeners can have a gray water system installed. Essentially, a gray water system captures wastewater from the dishwasher, cooking, laundry and shower and distributes excess for irrigation purposes. While this process decreases water demand, precautions should be taken for potential hazardous chemicals and toxins.

    Planting legumes helps facilitate and even expedite the nitrogen cycle. Within the roots of the legumes, Rhizobia bacteria breaks down atmospheric nitrogen (N2) into usable nitrates, essential for cell growth and development. In addition to sustaining the nitrogen cycle, vegetation also helps absorb greenhouse gases, particularly carbon dioxide.

    Observing current garden practices alongside shifting towards more sustainable land management practices provides gardeners with the ability to further reduce their ecological footprint and increase their garden’s benefits for the planet.

    Isabel Sepkowitz is a freelance writer. She is an environmentalist who values sustainability, education, and innovation for the emerging green economy. Her work can be found on Examiner.com.

    %name Tips And Ideas For Greener Gardens

    Article source: http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2013/10/15/tips-and-ideas-for-greener-gardens/