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Archives for March 6, 2017

Beyond Blooms: Creative Design with Color, Structure and Seasonal Senescence

At this month’s Somerville Garden Club, Warren Leach, talented garden designer and owner of Tranquil Lake Nursery in Rehoboth, MA, will recommend a diverse selection of superlative plants in his talk. He will discuss plant combinations that you can translate into your own garden, echoing leaf colors and texture to brighten the garden through the seasons.

Warren Leach is a passionate plant collector and landscape horticulturist with a depth of knowledge of all garden plants. He is also a distinguished and award-winning garden designer who enjoys sharing his horticultural and garden design knowledge with others through garden lectures, mentoring and through the gardens that he designs.

This meeting will be held on Wednesday, March 8, 7-9 pm at the Tufts Administration Building, 167 Holland Street, Somerville. Meetings are on the second floor, wheelchair accessible. Parking is available on site and the building is a short walk from the Davis Square T station and is on the #87 bus route. All Somerville Garden Club meetings are free and the public is invited to attend. For additional information please visit

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Design Recipes: Making space in a studio

Cathy Hobbs, based in New York City, is an Emmy Award-winning television host and a nationally known interior design and home staging expert with offices in New York City, Boston and Washington, D.C. Contact her at or visit her website at

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Professional Landscape And Garden Design Consultations – March …


  • WHEN
    Multiple dates from Mar 3 – Mar 5, 2017[days times]

    • Fri, Mar 3, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.
    • Sat, Mar 4, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
    • Sun, Mar 5, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
    Del Mar Fairgrounds, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., Del Mar, CA
    Map | Website

  • AGES All ages
  • COST $30

The Association of Professional Landscape Designers (APLD) will be at the Spring Home and Garden Show to help you with your landscape. For just $30 you’ll get 30 minutes with a professional residential landscape designer to talk about your hopes, dreams and desires for your new landscape.

Designers can advise you on how to transform your yard into a fabulous outdoor living space, a retreat for wildlife, a low maintenance / low water garden and much more! Bring pictures, questions and any other pertinent information to get the most out of your consultation. Free admission to the show is included!

Dates and times of events are subject to change without notice. Always check the event organizer’s website for the most updated schedule before attending.

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Home & Garden Show offers range of exhibits | Home And Garden …

From hot tubs and wooden bowls to greenhouses and yard ornaments, the Roseburg Home and Garden Show has a variety of exhibits this weekend at the Douglas County Fairgrounds.

Kids wearing plastic construction hats from Knife River operated radio-controlled cars and flew first-person-view drones through the air at the Next Level RC Pro exhibit.

Meanwhile, Chef George de Cossio demonstrated how to cook chicken and cut vegetables with his water-less and grease-less Kitchen Craft kitchenware.

Mike Lampkins of Roseburg said the Kitchen Craft exhibit stood out to him.

“It’s been very nice, it’s a good show of a lot of different home improvement wares and services,” Lampkins said. “We’re moving into a new home and we were talking about new kitchenware.”

Ken Brownfield of Roseburg came to the show with his 7-year-old daughter, Jenesis, and his grandparents, Louella and John Young.

Brownfield said he was hoping to see plants for sale while Louella Young said she came to get landscaping ideas.

“It’s a family gathering at the fairgrounds and it’s something interesting to do that’s not too expensive,” Louella Young said.

“It seems like a good show, there’s a lot of people out,” John Young added.

Jenesis said she liked the Wildlife Safari exhibit, and especially enjoyed petting the bunnies and seeing different kinds of bugs.

The Sutherlin High School Career and Technical Education team displayed a large metal trailer and wooden benches to showcase the students’ technical skills.

“We’re here today to have a show-and-tell with all the products we can make to spark interest and showcase all the stuff we’re doing with Career and Technical Education,” said Tristan Vincent, a Sutherlin student.

Jeff Dozhier of Dixonville, owner of Sculptures of Steel, presented his metal-craft artwork, including a sculpture of a woman in eyeglasses, a lamp that looked like a tree and a steel target for gun enthusiasts.

“I love it,” Dozhier said of the Home and Garden Show. “There’s a lot more response than I expected.” He said many people came by to see his work.

The show started Friday and is scheduled to run until 4 p.m. today.

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Tri-State Home, Garden show continues today | News, Sports, Jobs … – The Steubenville Herald

“My husband Mick was talking to the folks at the DeNoon Lumber exhibit about wood for new basement steps and we are planning on replacing a retaining wall so we were talking to people about that. And today was a nice day to spend here just window shopping,” Linda Helt of Smithfield said Saturday afternoon.

“My son-in-law has purchased wood from DeNoon’s in the past and he has always been pleased with their product,” said Mick Helt.

The Helts had stopped at the Woodlands Trail Greenhouse booth where owner Sam Gill of Richmond showed them several bonsai plants and added a free packet of seeds to Linda’s sample sack.

“Make sure you plant these because I think you will enjoy them,” Gill instructed Linda Helt.

Tom and Debbie Fahey of Steubenville were in agreement as they left the show held this year at St. Florian Hall in Wintersville.

The Tri-State Home and Garden Show will continue today from 11 a.m. till 3 p.m.

“We came out here to look at landscaping ideas and we got a lot of ideas from the displays and business representatives. And we got a free tomato plant from Ianetti’s Garden and Nursery of Burgettstown,” remarked Debby Fahey.

The Tri-State Home and Garden Show will continue today from 11 a.m. till 3 p.m.

The annual event was traditionally held at the now closed Serbian-American Cultural Center in Weirton.

“The attendance Friday evening and Saturday was really good. We weren’t sure what to expect since this is our first time at St. Florian Hall and we were very pleased to see how many people from the tri-state area who came here for the show,” Weirton Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Brenda Mull said Saturday afternoon.

“The weather has been good and people are coming in here at a steady rate to check out the different vendors. This has already been a successful Home and Garden Show and we anticipate another large crowd Sunday,” Mull stated.

“I am very excited to be working with the Weirton Chamber of Commerce to promote local spending as well as our local vendors and their products. I knew St. Florian Hall would be a great place for the Tri-State Home and Garden Show and the weather has been perfect this year,” said Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Tricia Maple-Damewood.

“We had an excellent turnout Friday evening, an even larger crowd on Saturday and we will be open from 11 a.m. until 3 p.m. Sunday so everyone has a chance to visit the exhibits. This is a great way to see a variety of vendors with different services and a chance to talk to a representative from the businesses,” added Maple-Damewood.

Dan Greathouse of the Top of West Virginia Convention and Visitors Bureau sat at a table near the entrance to the hall and said the show’ has been packed all day Saturday.”

“I am collecting slips with names and addresses for a drawing and I am seeing people from both sides of the Ohio River and Pennsylvania. I have to commend the people who organized this for doing a very good job,” Greathouse said.

This is the sixth straight Home and Garden Show for Ben Bowers of Bowers Landscape and Design Outdoor Solutions of Wintersville.

“It has been a busy Saturday and I have already lined up several potential customers. This show unofficially kicks off the landscape season so I like being here to let people know we are ready and available and to explain what we can do for their lawns and landscapes,” explained Bowers.

The Weirton Medical Center display had a number of brochures and informational items along with a free blood pressure screening for the hundreds of visitors to the Home and Garden Show.

“It has been pretty busy and that is good because we are fully staffed at our booth and are ready to answer any and all questions,” said Lisa Phillips, a home care liaison at the hospital.

A few feet away Stephanie Rivers of the Steubenville UPS store greeted Bill Baker of Mingo Junction.

“Bill is a regular customer at our store since he moved here from Florida,” she said.

“They do a great job at the UPS store. They coordinate everything and ship all of my packages in a very professional manner. I am very pleased with the staff at the store,” noted Baker.

Inside the fire station part of the building on Luray Drive, John Griffith of DeNoon Lumber was catching up with his friend and customer Jamie Taylor.

“I bought some lumber from DeNoon Lumber to build a bar in my house and it turned out great. I like their workmanship and quality wood,” Taylor declared.

“We have a very nice display here at the Home and Garden Show with a good sampling of what we can do and what we have available at our store. I have seen a lot of people here this weekend and a number of them have said they plan to visit our store,” commented Griffith.

St. Florian Hall owner Todd Pergallini said visitors to the show can also sit down and have a snack or a meal.

“We have a buffet bar area with several tables and have seen a number of visitors walk through the display booths then come over for something to eat and drink. The vendors who are here all day also have an opportunity to take a break at our tables. I have really enjoyed hosting the Home and Garden Show here this year and was pleased when the organizers pre-booked the hall for next year,” Piergallini said.

The Tri-State Home and Garden Show was organized by Wheelhouse Creative of Wheeling and is co-sponsored by DeNoon Lumber of Bergholz and the Weirton Medical Center.

(Gossett can be contacted at

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Flower Show gives visitors a taste of spring





More than 8,000 people attended the Vermont Flower Show, a three-day event held every other year. The theme for this year’s show was “Neverland.”

ESSEX JUNCTION – During some of the colder days Vermont has seen in several weeks, the Vermont Flower Show this weekend offered a welcome, spring-like sight for visitors. 

More than 8,000 people attended the event, which was held Friday through Sunday at the Champlain Valley Exposition in Essex Junction. The event is held every other year, said Ashley Robinson, a member of the board of directors with Green Works, which organizes the event. More than 100 vendors and about 10 nonprofit organizations were also in attendance.

Each year, the event features a “grand garden display” and a number of vendors. This year’s theme was “Neverland,” drawing inspiration from the magical place described in the famous children’s story “Peter Pan,” Robinson said. At the end of the show, many of the plants from the display are sold.

The display spanned most of one room, and visitors walked by Wendy’s house, a clock tower, a waterfall and lagoon with a skull-shaped rock, and more. Colorful and fragrant flowers and trees adorned the giant display.

“We try to accommodate all ages and genres and make it fun and special and magical for everybody,” Robinson said. “It’s fun to take a fairy tale story setting and do that.”

Lucy Wilcox of Jericho said she’s been attending the garden show over the last 10 years to take pictures and draw inspiration for her own garden.

“I’m an avid gardener,” Wilcox said. “I enjoy the creativity. … The garden display is always the best.”

Bruce Bevins of South Burlington said he has attended the flower show too many times to count.

Bevins said he attended the show “to look at the flowers and get a little feeling of spring, especially since the weather has turned so cold again.”

“It’s beautiful to get landscaping ideas,” he said. “They do such a beautiful job here.”

Robinson said she’s hoping attendees will take away inspiration for their own gardens and a “sense of whimsy and wonder.” She also hopes to encourage others to take up the gardening hobby.

“Whether it’s gardening or just even playing in nature, I think that is a big thing,” Robinson said. “With kids, you see their eyes pop open when they see something in bloom. It’s magic. There’s nothing like nature to teach you how to really enjoy and be carefree.”

Contact Elizabeth Murray at 651-4835 or Follow her on Twitter at @LizMurraySMC.

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Spring Home/Garden Show – March 4, 2017 | KPBS


  • WHEN
    Multiple dates from Mar 3 – Mar 5, 2017[days times]

    • Fri, Mar 3, 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.
    • Sat, Mar 4, 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.
    • Sun, Mar 5, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
    Del Mar Fairgrounds, 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd., Del Mar, CA
    Map | Website

  • AGES All ages
  • COST Free – $9

Now in its 32nd year, the San Diego Spring Home/Garden Show returns to Del Mar Fairgrounds for a three-day extravaganza of inspiring real “Garden Masters” landscapes (created exclusively for the Show), hands-on demonstrations, hundreds of home-improvement products and services exhibitors, educational seminars, plant sales, and face-to-face consultations with top experts — all with the convenience of one-stop shopping for everything pertaining to home and garden, inside and outside.

The Show focuses on San Diego-area experts, services, products, and businesses. Visitors find everything they need to save time and money improving, refreshing, or remodeling their home and outdoor surroundings — from the latest in appliances to garden lighting from BBQ’s to security systems, from baths to sunrooms.

In addition to a huge main hall where hundreds of exhibitors showcase the newest products and hottest trends, all at special low show prices, the show offers several unique home and garden features (included in admission) that provide extraordinary added value.

Show hours: Friday, March 3, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; Saturday, March 4, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; and Sunday, March 5, 10 a.m.-5p.m.

“The Garden Masters” — Great landscapes (using local plants and products) designed by San Diegans for San Diegans — A JURIED COMPETITION. Tour the largest and best collection of display gardens created expressly for any weekend expo. Enjoy 14 theatrically lit full-scale gardens installed for this year’s Show by professional landscape architects, designers, and contractors. These gardens are judged by a distinguished panel and honored in several categories. The competition is fierce! Meet the Designers throughout the show and discover San Diego County’s wealth of local talent and landscaping resources.

Don’t miss seeing an amazing ancient tree…alive! Featuring the knarled trunk and carefully sculpted, bonsai-like tuffs of a Sevillano olive tree salvaged years ago from a historic European orchard, one of the world’s most picturesque and unusual home landscapes will be on display this year in “The Garden Masters” exhibit.

“Ask The Experts” features organizations such as the Association of Professional Landscape Designers (A.P.L.D.), as well as representatives from city building departments, Master Gardeners, San Diego Horticultural Society, and many more. Each organization’s experts will be staffing consultation lounges and other areas at the show.

Consultations are complimentary. “30 for 30” Landscape Designers from APLD offer 30-minute Personalized Design Consultations for a special show price of $30 per consultation. This is your opportunity to kick start your garden remodel, or polish a space that’s almost there! Design consultations are available in the Designers’ Lounge located on Designer Lane, just inside the show’s main entrance.

“All About Gardens” and “The Garden Marketplace” — Shop at a grand nursery of the freshest plants for sale direct from San Diego-area garden and non-profit plant societies, specialty growers and wholesalers–at low show prices.

Enjoy free seminars and face-toface meetings with some of San Diego’s top garden experts; gain priceless hands-on knowledge for your home projects, from landscaping to vegetable gardening and fruit trees.

Bargains! The Spring Home/Garden Show is a home and garden shopper’s paradise. Special pricing is a big attraction for any homeowner looking for deep one-time-only savings. The Marketplace is also an ideal opportunity to easily arrange for multiple bids on any home project, be it shutters, doors, windows, skylights, or hundreds of other essentials.

Other professional, amateur and civic organizations participating in the Show include: City of San Diego Building Department; San Diego Horticultural Society (SDHS); Association of Professional Landscape Designers (APLD): National Kitchen Bath Association/San Diego.

Contact: 858-350-3738

Dates and times of events are subject to change without notice. Always check the event organizer’s website for the most updated schedule before attending.

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Why You Should Let Artificial Intelligence Creep Into Your Business

Signpost is a service that lets brick-and-mortar store owners publish incentives and promotions on its website. Last summer, the New York City-based company’s founder and CEO, Stuart Wall, created a new app: the A.I.-centric Mia. Through its natural language generation capability, Mia crafts messages and sends them to prospects at opportune times. It tracks and analyzes a store’s calls, emails, and credit card swipes, and then makes what it decides is the right pitch. “New customers often tell me they show up because of our five-star reviews, which I hear about through Mia,” says Randy Jewart, owner of Resolution Gardens, a landscaping company in Austin, and a Mia subscriber. People contact small businesses to learn about products and services, Wall notes, “so why waste this valuable data that A.I. can use to market to them?”

How A.I. works: problem solving

Unlike traditional computing, which delivers precise solutions within defined parameters, A.I.–sometimes referred to as cognitive computing–teaches itself how to solve problems. “Instead of delivering only specificity, A.I.-centric programming generates millions of solutions, evaluating each for efficacy and then choosing the most viable and optimal ones,” says Amir Husain, CEO and founder of Austin-based Spark­Cognition, which serves financial, aerospace, energy, and utility enter­prises. If A.I. applications seem to be doing the thinking for you, they are.

What it does better: data driving

Manually finding your target customer–by searching and poring through income-level, interest-based, and geographical data–is labor-intensive and time-consuming. A.I. cuts to the chase. “For example, using a feed of three key pieces of information that the entrepreneur provides–a brief product-description text, images, and a price range–an A.I. system can zip through social media and other online outlets, looking for correlations between product and digital conversations,” says Husain, author of The Sentient Machine, to be published this year. A.I. also finds the targets’ contact information.

If you give it the green light, A.I.’s natural language processing technology then writes and sends a sales pitch, notes transmission time, and analyzes feedback. “You can almost hear an A.I. system going, ‘Aha! I’ve cracked the code,’ ” says Husain, adding that A.I. constantly optimizes itself by making slight changes to the message.

Where it works: practical apps

One key reason for A.I.’s upsurge is entrepreneurs’ free or inexpensive access to libraries such as IBM Watson, Google TensorFlow, and Microsoft Azure. These application programming interfaces (APIs) allow coders to build A.I. apps without starting from scratch. Enterprise-focused A.I. companies are catering to all aspects of entrepreneurship. Last year Koru, in Seattle, launched Koru Hire, predictive hiring software that uses A.I. to match job applicants’ skills and experience with profiles of a company’s best current and past employees. It generates a “fit score” that indicates whether a candidate might replicate those successes. And in San Francisco, the Grid launched A.I.-centric website-design software. It analyzes the intended content–text and images–which it separates into components, creating an array of options so the user can “build” the site in minutes. The program then interacts with the user to modify layout, color, and typography. Husain expects to see a proliferation of A.I.-centric marketing, sales, and other service startups focused on small and medium-size businesses. On tap for this summer: Cinch, from Cinch Financial, in Boston, which uses A.I. to analyze personal money data and recommends financial strategies, along with behavioral changes and new products that coincide with those behaviors.

Where A.I can help you, but not replace you

Call centers

The biggest misconception about A.I. is that it’s robots with human faces sitting at remote desks. “A.I. is nothing more than an add-on technology–spice and flair–to an otherwise conventional system, such as a traditional travel-reservation site that, because of A.I., can now converse with a human,” says Bruce W. Porter, an A.I. researcher and computer science professor at the University of Texas, Austin. Porter emphasizes that future breakthroughs will not be 100 percent A.I. “A.I. will likely provide a 10 percent product- or service-performance boost,” he says. That is, in fact, huge. Firms that fail to make the A.I. leap, he says, may fail to have customers.

Information retrieval

Not all searches are as simple as typing a few keywords and having Google take over. Entrepreneurs often need more in-depth and complicated excavations–for patent and trademark data, for example–and that, in turn, involves an often hefty legal budget to pay a highly trained human to do. Porter foresees within five years many companies offering services to consumers who have no expertise in A.I. or specific knowledge fields. They’ll be able to conduct their own A.I.-based data retrieval. Count on industry disruption, he says, as this type of A.I. application will leapfrog current data-retrieval-service providers.

Contract generation

Because it’s able to generate natural language, A.I. is an exceptional tool for helping entrepreneurs assemble contracts, as opposed to buying them off the shelf at, say, LegalZoom. A.I. applications will converse with–by text and, ultimately, voice–and tease information out of humans that will become components of formal agreements, such as details about fee payments and product returns. Porter anticipates users will pay to access cloud-based A.I. computer systems to produce such documents: “A.I.-centric startups, because they don’t require a human in the loop and won’t need to hire staffers, can offer their services at a very low cost, especially given an anticipated large volume of customers and business competition.”

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Pennsylvania Garden Show of York kicks off

YORK, Pa. (WHTM) – If you’ve never been to the Pennsylvania Garden Show of York, you might think all they have are flowers.

But that’s not the case.

“It’s fun and there’s really neat stuff you’re not going to find anywhere else in the garden market, so everybody wants to get in on that and see what’s new,” said Cher Kondor, a show organizer.

Half of the show focuses on gardens and landscapes; the other half on flowers. And tucked away are a few other gems.

“I create all sorts of things from the beautiful things my bees create,” said Lori Stahl, owner of Bee Bee’s All Naturals.

At Stahl’s stand, there’s a display of wax candles, soaps, candy, and specialty honey. She’s a beekeeper who had 65 hives last year. But it’s gotten harder for keepers to keep bees alive across the board.

“It’s heartbreaking to open a hive in the spring and see that the bees didn’t make it, even though they’re sitting on tons of honey and there’s no reason they shouldn’t have,” Stahl said.

She said it’s a culmination of things; changes in agriculture, climate, and increased use of chemicals.

“I think typically in the past, beekeepers would’ve expected to maybe lose a third of their bees. Now I think they tend to lose half or more; not all beekeepers, but many beekeepers,” Stahl said.

And while the quick changes in weather may have put some stress on the plants and this beekeeper, not everyone is complaining.

“Now normally, we get rolling late February, first of March consistently almost every year because of the warmer weather. It helps us. It extends our season,” said Shawn Haring, president of Shawn’s Landscaping and Hardscaping.

Tickets are $10 a person. $9 for seniors. The show closes Sunday at 5 p.m.

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FILE - In this Feb. 16, 2016, file photo, Rumor, a German shepherd, and Kent Boyles take a lap around the ring during the best in show competition at the 140th Westminster Kennel Club dog show at Madison Square Garden in New York. CJ, a German shorthaired pointer, won best in show. Rumor, who just missed winning at the Westminster Kennel Club in 2016, came back to score a big victory Monday, Feb. 13, 2017, beating out favored Preston the puli in the herding group. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)

This March 2, 2016 photo shows an Echo Dot in San Francisco. is introducing two devices, the Amazon Tap and Echo Dot, that are designed to amplify the role that its voice-controlled assistant Alexa plays in peoples homes and lives. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)

Kent Boyles


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