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Articles filed under Home & Garden

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  • Tips for saving your plants from common garden ailments Jul 6, 2014 6:00 AM
    Looking for ways to keep your plants healthy this year? Try these tips from Tim Johnson, director of horticulture at the Chicago Botanic Garden.

  • Icelandic design branches out Jul 5, 2014 12:01 AM
    Being a small, sparsely populated island nudged up against the edge of the Arctic Circle hasn’t stopped Iceland from nurturing a rich and varied design industry.

  • Better chemistry takes us back to nature Jul 5, 2014 6:00 AM
    Q. We have a small, underused patio outside our bedroom. This is the first time I’ve ever lived in a house, because I grew up in apartments, and I need advice on how to “furnish” this space.

  • Easy-to-grow herbs are beautiful and delicious Jul 5, 2014 9:39 AM
    For beginning gardeners, herbs are a perfect introduction to gardening. They are easy to grow, whether you begin with small plants or seeds. They need little special care and are generally resistant to the pests and diseases that target more temperamental plants.

  • Six great backyard plants for garden-to-table use Jul 4, 2014 6:00 AM
    Back in the day, an ambitious homeowner might set out a sturdy row of marigolds, add a mound of petunias, toss in a few gaudy gladiola bulbs and call it a garden. Today’s weekend warriors have grander plans. They start gardens in order to grow food and eat the harvest, sharing with friends and family.

  • Think of luxury as a trial run for affordable goods Jul 4, 2014 6:00 AM
    People all over the world — those who can afford it — want the best of the best for their home. But just what is it that they consider luxury? Every day there is something newer and better in technology, and in some cities, there is always a taller, nicer building to call home. Defining luxury is hard to do.

  • Show your USA spirit with these delightful displays Jul 3, 2014 6:00 AM
    Easy to find and inexpensive, red, white and blue bandannas provide plenty of decorative bang for your buck. For example, use colorful hankies to fashion boy-howdy bases for topiaries.

  • Three alphas for the dog days of summer Jul 3, 2014 5:53 AM
    Years ago, I discovered that the July garden can be elevated from its drab lassitude to something dreamy and fun by getting three high-performing perennials to play together, namely the perovskia, the coneflower and the liatris. By mixing them together, rather than planting in discrete blocks, one can convey a summery cottage garden atmosphere to sunny beds.

  • Friends remember Arlington Hts. environmental activist Jul 2, 2014 7:06 PM
    David Templer was one of the original homeowners in the Northgate subdivision when it was built in Arlington Heights more than 40 years ago and an active environmentalist. Friends are remembering Templer, who died Saturday at age 73, as a thoughtful and dedicated community member.

  • Tips for a high-impact, budget-friendly remodel Jun 29, 2014 6:00 AM
    The kitchen was eye-popping for all the wrong reasons, remodeler Dan Kradzinski recalls. Dark brown oak cabinets with medieval-style handles. Birch-colored counter. White appliances. The backsplash was rust-colored brick, the walls the color of an overripe nectarine.

  • New nostalgia: Home decor with a retro vibe Jun 28, 2014 6:00 AM
    American Retro is a hot design trend. This imagery and decor draws baby boomers back to simpler, more innocent days. Think vintage-style advertising and artwork, lunch-counter dishware, camping motifs, midcentury surf culture. Old bakeries, drive-ins, roadhouses, garages, beach shacks.

  • How to get more privacy in your backyard Jun 28, 2014 6:00 AM
    Being able to move outdoors after a long winter is like a vacation in itself. However, backyard bliss can be squashed by a nosy neighbor, subdivision rules, traffic and noise, or an encroaching view. Transitional living spaces and outdoor rooms are hot decorating trends, with people spending big to add kitchens, fireplaces, and complete open-air rooms with weatherproof furnishings. Being in the outdoors also means dealing with bugs, heat, sun, rain and, of course, neighbors.

  • Open and shut case: Choosing and hanging shutters Jun 27, 2014 5:45 AM
    Although glass and screens have eliminated the practical need for shutters, they’re still popular for decoration. “They add another layer of thoughtful detailing to a house,” says Ted Cleary, a landscape architect in Charlotte, N.C. But to get the right look, you still have to consider function when choosing and hanging shutters, experts say. “Beauty in architecture, as with many objects, often stems from seeing a detail that illustrates its purpose,” Cleary says.

  • What’s behind different floral scents Jun 27, 2014 5:30 AM
    Wave after wave of scent has filled the air since my garden awakened in spring. Most prominent have been the aromas from daffodil blossoms, plum, flowering currant, and now dame’s rocket, pinks and roses. Of course, it’s not for us that flowers waft those sometimes delectable aromas. Flowers release their aromas to attract pollinators. As such, floral aromas might mimic countless other kinds of aromas, depending on just what creature a particular flower is trying to attract.

  • Bookcases that combine top-shelf design and utility Jun 26, 2014 12:31 PM
    Take four piles of treasured books, add one bookcase, and you have the formula for turning a mess of a personal library into an artful display. It sounds easy but there are an overwhelming number of bookcase designs out there from which to choose.

  • Free local garden walk: Jun 26, 2014 5:51 PM
    A free garden walk hosted by the Gardeners of Central Lake County is set for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, June 28.

  • Ash tree removal program in Libertyville expected to last a few more years Jun 26, 2014 12:54 PM
    Libertyville's fight against the tree-killing emerald ash borer continues this year with outside help. Village officials have contracted with a Wauconda company for $245,500 to remove 264 ash trees.

  • Six Elgin gardens featured in Fox Valley Garden Walk Jun 25, 2014 6:01 AM
    The gardens have been chosen and the plans are set for the sixth Fox Valley Garden Walk. From 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, June 28, visitors can admire the beauty of various gardens found at homes on the “Gold Coast” and the east side of Elgin.

  • Keep your perennials blooming all season long Jul 2, 2014 1:34 PM
    When we are walking down the aisles of our favorite garden center, it’s hard to resist the flowering perennials. Here are a few maintenance tips you can easily use to keep your perennials looking good the whole season.

  • Hellstrips: Challenge lies beyond the sidewalk Jun 24, 2014 5:30 AM
    Making a yard and a community more beautiful begins at the curb. But that narrow space between sidewalk and street — sometimes called a boulevard, median, hellstrip, parkway, verge or tree belt — is a gardening challenge. For starters, it’s probably owned by the municipality but falls to the homeowner to maintain. So the first step in caring for it is to sort out what local rules allow.

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