July 5, 2020
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Sweeping up solutions August 10

By: Irene Hilsendager
August 10, 2018

Did you know you could make your white flowers blue? Add a cup of bluing to the water in the vase. The color will come up through the stems and into the petals. Experiment to see if you want it dark or light.

Did you know that you could sharpen your scissors by folding over a piece of aluminum foil with about four layers and cut it into strips with your scissors? Cutting into the strip about eight times should put the cutting edge back onto the blades.

Did you know you could make a hanging garden by poking a few holes for drainage in the bottoms of heavy duty plastic bags and then tack them onto a board or the side of a shed? Fill each bag with some potting soil, add a few favorite seeds or transplant a small veggie or flower, water well and before long you will have a garden or floral

piece growing up the wall.

Did you know you could store pears safely by poking a few holes in a resealable plastic bag, put in the fruit and store it in your refrigerator’s produce drawers? But check often as pears can over-ripen very quickly. Don’t ever store pears in a sealed plastic bag because with no oxygen the fruit will turn brown to the core.

Did you know you could squelch the mosquito population by filling large containers with water, add a few squirts of dishwashing liquid and set them outside? When the female biter sits down to lay eggs, they won’t get up again.

Did you know you could keep onions fresher and longer by putting them into a brown paper bag and store them on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator?

Did you know you could use an old lampshade for a planter? Turn the shade upside down, line it with a heavy trash bag, staple it in place and trim off the excess. Cut a few holes in the bottom for drainage and add potting soil.

Put in the choice of plants and you have an inexpensive and decorative planter.

Did you know you could put your plants into heavy duty dark colored trash bags? Fill with potting soil, compost and good garden soil. Leave enough space so you can lay the filled bags on their sides and flatten a little. Tie the tops closed, position the bags where you want them and cut slashes in the bottom for drainage. Now make slits on the top and fill with annual flowers or veggies. In the fall just toss the dirt into the compost pile and discard the plastic.

This makes cheap planters and no heavy lugging around.

Did you know you could sweeten your tomatoes while growing? About two times during the growing season, sprinkle baking soda on the soil around the plant.

Did you know you could kill those pesky weeds in the driveway without harmful pesticides? Pour baking soda on to the concrete and sweep it into the cracks. The jolt of sodium makes the weeds say “uncle.”

Did you know you could clean glass by adding a pinch or two of cornstarch with a little ammonia and water and it will clean the grime away? Rinse with clear water.

Did you know that you can clean your rusty old garden trowel by soaking the blade overnight in full-strength white vinegar?


Remember, these are just tips. Use at your own discretion.