When I was growing up one of my favorite part of the newspaper was a section titled, Helpful Heloise (here is a current version). She shared fun household tips. I still love little tidbits of knowledge. Below are a few that I wanted to share that came from Heloise and a whole variety of sources.
Harvest vegetables in a collander or small laundry hamper. Washing the dirt off with a hose outdoors is faster, easier and better for your indoor plumbing.
Use coffee filters to keep dirt from escaping out the drainage hole at the bottom of terra cotta pots.
There are plants that prefer to NOT be transplanted. Spray the inside of a paper bag – any size from lunch bags to wine bottle and full sized grocery bags – with Pam spray oil. Fill with dirt, start your seeds, and when they are all well underway plant the bag and seedlings in their new location. The bag will naturally deteriorate and the baby plants don’t suffer relocation shock. This works really well for gourds.
When you clean your pond, throw the algae and scummy water on nearby garden beds as it is full of nutrients.
A sponge at the bottom of the window box will help it retain water longer. I heard baby diapers do the same thing, but sponges seem nicer.
Scrape your fingernails on a bar of soap before you put on your gardening gloves. This helps keep the dirt out from under your nails and reduces the risk of them breaking.
Pour pepper down chipmunk holes before you fill in the rodent doorway. This will keep them from re-digging the hole and not put any dangerous chemicals in your veggie bed. I use whatever is the cheapest black pepper I can find at the grocery.
When taking photos of flowers and plants do it right after it rains or water mist the plants before the shot. They look super perky and healthy, plus the moisture makes the colors really pop.
Lots of animals don’t like the smell of oranges. So chop up any leftover rinds and sprinkle in spots where you would prefer the neighbor’s cat or the local bunny family not visit. I’ve heard that Irish Spring soap gratings work much the same way but haven’t tried it yet.