Home & Garden HEADLINES
When most people put on their deodorant in the morning, it smells like citrus. Or lavender, or Old Spice. But Eric Zvonchenko’s deodorant smells like a Northwest forest — piney Douglas fir, sweet western red cedar — because that's exactly what it's made from. Like a cross between a medieval alchemist and a Victorian apothecary, Olympia-based Zvonchenko, along with his wife, Jeanne, and business partner Sean Croke, harvests and distills native plants to turn into perfumes, salves, hydrosols, tinctures and deodorants to sell at local markets. Called Cascadia Botanical Apothecary, the products offer health benefits as well as deliciously woodsy scents.
Question: My husband and I are selling our home, and the buyer is requesting the removal of the oil tank in our basement. We switched to gas a few years ago. Do you have any advice for how we should go about having the tank removed? The oil was siphoned out when we switched to gas, but I don’t know if it is 100 percent clean and dry. In other words, I don’t know if it would be a big mess if we call a scrap metal guy to come cut it up.
If there’s somewhere in your home that needs livening up but it’s not practical to use real plants, consider using faux flowers and greenery.
Got raspberry plants? This is a good week to prune the canes of your raspberries so they’ll avoid disease and produce more berries next summer.
I had a question awhile back from a reader who had a smart meter installed and checks online for electricity usage.
Gary and Doris Eberhardt live in a 10-acre nature park, cut through with ponds, streams and one impressive water feature: an 80-foot-high waterfall.
Q: My patio enclosure has vinyl windows instead of glass, and I’ve been told not to use harsh cleaners like ammonia or Windex on them or it could cause them to become yellow or brittle. I’m wondering if you could recommend a vinyl cleaner. I tried a brand that is recommended for boat vinyl, but it caused smearing.
Through the heat of the summer, you’ve taken refuge with your family in a cool, air-conditioned or fan-filled home. Take a moment to stop and think about where you spend many of your waking hours. You might call it a living room, or it could be what your gang has dubbed the family room, den or even home theater. Whatever its title, lofty or lowly, it’s where the action is.
When Ross Mickel became interested in wine, he was surrounded by plenty of people willing to help.
There’s an apple resurgence in Washington, but it’s happening in bottles, not on fruit stands.
Don’t be moving trees this week. August is not a good month to transplant trees and large shrubs, start a new lawn or forget to water your potted plants. August is a usually a dry month so take note of what plants are looking good and resistant to drought in your landscape. Use a sprinkler instead of hand watering shrubs or lawns that need water with the goal of getting at least one inch of water each week down to the roots. You can also decide to let your lawn “go golden” or dormant this month. Be secure with the knowledge that the autumn rains will soon return to green up a summer dormant lawn soon.
Dear Angie: I am about to re-pipe my 23-year-old home, which has pin leaks in the copper piping. The installer is recommending replacing my copper pipes with PEX. What are the pluses and minuses of PEX? I intend to sell the house in a few years, so I am concerned about it hurting resale value. — Mark H., Mission Viejo, Calif.
Victorian or Colonial revival? Modern or contemporary?
Culinary herbs are among the hottest trends in gardening. They also are popular among families that preserve fresh foods for later use.
For many of us, summer is the ideal time to take extended trips. It also is the perfect time for burglars to go on the prowl for easy break-in opportunities where their activities won’t quickly be detected or reported.
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