Home and Garden

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Buckwheat is good to the soil and your taste buds

Nature clothes bare soil to protect it and improve it so why don't you? If you let nature choose the wardrobe in unused areas of the garden, you get weeds. Plant buckwheat instead two or three handfuls every 100 square feet.You're sowing buckwheat as a cover crop, a plant grown to improve the ...

Add interest by combining painting techniques

You know the old saying, "If one is good, two must be great!" Well, that's certainly not true with everything in life, but it can be true if you're talking about painting techniques.Matt Fox, my partner, and I have used all sorts of painting techniques in combination, and we really like the ...

New practical gadgets help furnish dorm rooms

Outfitting a dorm room presents its challenges.You've got to squeeze everything into very limited space, and furnishings must not just accommodate study, sleep and socializing, but also reflect the student's style and personality. And they have to be "affordable."So would these items appeal to ...

Leaves of green

Move over, Popeye. The word is out about spinach.The true "muscle" of spinach is in the nourishment it provides, so much so that it is being touted by some as one of the top 10 foods. This green leafy vegetable is packed with plenty of nutrition to keep the body healthy.Besides iron, spinach ...

Vegetables can be seeded soon

We normally associate cabbage, carrots and broccoli with the spring garden. However, these and other vegetables can grow quite well in the fall. If the hot weather and high humidity of summer has not deterred your gardening enthusiasm, try planting a fall vegetable garden this month.For the ...

Historic jam recipe needs little effort

I spent some time over the weekend hunkered down with a stack of old cookbooks, tracking down a recipe for a reader. As it happens, I struck pay dirt, and I also kicked up quite a bit of dust in the process. Some of the sources I consulted, old fund-raising church and charity cookbooks that my ...

The great divide

These dog days of summer are no excuse to let the garden fend for itself. Despite August heat, our flowers, vegetables, trees, shrubs and lawn require our attention.Dedicated gardeners know that planning, planting and fertilizing are needed. Fortunately, we can pace ourselves and take it ...

Brown grass does not mean it’s dead

As the county fair comes to a close today, summer vacation is nearing the end as well. Unfortunately, the heat and drought are far from over.By now, many plants in the landscape are showing signs of the oppressive heat. Brown grass, scorched leaves and seemingly dead branches could mean big ...

Golf memorabilia takes over collector’s home

Join "Home and Away" host Cathy Hamilton, right, for an encore presentation from the "Collectors and Their Collections" series. Hamilton will introduce you to a man whose golf memorabilia has taken over his house, with the blessing of his understanding family. He has vintage golf accessories, ...

‘Hoppers make meal out of garden

Lack of rainfall has been the vegetable gardener's main challenge this summer, followed closely by insects. Whether it's true or not, drought seems to invigorate certain kinds of bugs particularly the grasshopper, who appears to develop more spring in its jump the hotter and drier it gets.While ...

Accessories can add warmth to dining room

When it comes time to put your dining room together, placing the furniture is usually a breeze. The dining table goes under the chandelier, "duh," the china cabinet is usually on the largest wall facing the entrance so your pretty china can be displayed, and the buffet is on whatever wall is ...

Setting the stage

Like actors on a stage, the plants are directed into position with thoughtfulness and care.You need more sun, move over here. You need more shade, move over there. Too dry, too wet, move, move. A few final touches are added a colorful potted plant, an attractive trellis or a whimsical piece of ...

‘Hoppers cause havoc

The summer heat is nothing short of oppressive. What little water we are able to apply only evaporates as the sun bakes the soil.Although many of our plants are barely hanging on, one insect pest is thriving grasshoppers. Grasshoppers can be a thorn in any flower garden.Here are some helpful ...

‘Home and Away’ visits bed-and-breakfast

"Home and Away" host Cathy Hamilton, right, visits the Barn Bed and Breakfast in Valley Falls for her next show.A new show airs at 6:30 p.m. each Monday on Sunflower Broadband Channel 6 and repeats at 9 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. The show is also broadcast at 9 p.m. Tuesday-Friday and 9 a.m. Sunday.

Can, do!

Every so often I have one of those humbling experiences that feels sort of like hitting my head on a low ceiling.I once lived in an old house whose dimly lit basement was five feet deep at the bottom of the stairs. The distance between the floor and ceiling gradually expanded to eight feet by ...

Indoor window shutters create rustic feel

My pal Shari Hiller and I were working on a family room in which the homeowner wanted a cabin-in-the-woods feel. Shari selected a log-cabin wallpaper that worked great, but the windows seemed too stark. That's when we came up with the idea for a pair of exterior window shutters on each side of ...

Invincible vinca

The simple vinca plant is being celebrated this year. The National Garden Bureau has designated 2002 as the "Year of the Vinca" because the plant provides so much garden color with so little care.Clear flower colors and glossy green leaves make vinca indispensable for season-long interest in ...

Soap, water can combat spider mites

The summer sun is hot, and the heavy clay soil is cracking two signs that the July heat is here for a while.Also there are spider mites.Able to live on most landscape trees and shrubs, spider mites are hard to see but their damage is not hard to find. If you have leaves on trees and shrubs ...

Holiday home features patriotic, Indian motifs

This week, "Home and Away" host Cathy Hamilton, right, will continue her "Christmas in July" encore series with a look at a holiday home that features patriotic, American Indian and musical motifs.A new show airs at 6:30 p.m. each Monday on Sunflower Broadband Channel 6 and repeats at 9 p.m. ...

Readers make inquiries, offer suggestions

One of the great pleasures associated with writing this column is the reader response it generates. Every once in awhile, someone writes me an actual letter, but more often my readers e-mail, telephone or stop me on the street. These contacts let me know what's on my readers' minds while ...