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2014 Home and Garden

2014 Home and Garden

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Published by: addisonindependent on Apr 30, 2014
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Home & Garden


Big Timber resident makes ‘yard art’ with thrift store finds - Page 3 Extracting seeds from veggies - Page 5 Deer-proof plants - Page 7
Shown is a close-up of cheap dish ware that Big Timber resident Nancy Bruce has turned into “yard art.” Find out how you can do it, too, on Page 3.
Yellowstone Newspapers photo by Laura Nelson

A publication of The Livingston Enterprise & The Big Timber Pioneer

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Spring Home & Garden


‘Yard art’ can spruce up any outdoor decor year-round
Yellowstone Newspapers

By Laura Nelson

BIG TIMBER — She’s certainly not setting for a dinner party. A garden party, perhaps, but the mismatched, eclectic gathering of plates will not be on the serving table. Rather, Nancy Bruce is creating “yard art” with the thrift store and garage sale finds of kitchens past. “It’s just a nice way to get your garden looking really nice without having to even dig into the soil,” she said. That’s especially handy when winter’s grip holds on longer than expected into the gardening season, of course. The format is pretty simple — gather up whatever dish ware is cheap, available and in need of a new purpose, assemble varying sizes and hues into the flower-like layering, and then attach them to a sturdy pole to anchor them into the ground. She discovered the idea at a craft show in California this winter, Bruce said, and had the thought so many gifted crafters do: ‘Well, I could do that.’ It took some trial and error, and tests of stamina over the Sweet Grass County winter. She displayed six of her first creations in the garden beds of the Community Thrift Shoppe — three survived the snow, wind and rain. “So I learned a few lessons, and have since figured out what I needed to do to make them all stick together,” she said, adding that the seemingly fragile dishes were much hardier than most would expect. So she set to work, gathering up plates, serving trays, candle holders, candy dishes, decorative mirrors and more — “whatever catches my eye,” she said — and began the work of fitting the right pieces together. The creative combination of color and pattern meld together like quilt work, creating a style of its own as the unique pieces find semblance. “Anything colorful is the best,” Bruce said. In one, a traditional white-and-blue-ware anchors a tea saucer lined with blueberries and vine leaves, topped with a navy gingham check-lined bowl filled with an octagon-shaped candy jar. Another has two clear, sparkling crystal platters separated with a splash of red china and centered around the base of a former candlestick. Another lineup uses dishes of varying shades of orange, punctuated with sunflower tones and cream and a bright floral paperweight as the centerpiece. As she starts to gauge which items might work

Nancy Bruce, of Big Timber, talks about one of her “yard art” creations recently. Bruce uses thrift store and garage sale finds from kitchens past to create her unique artwork.
together visually, she also fits them together for sizing — the bottom of one layer must have an even surface that will sit snuggling with the top of its base layer. Watch out for dishes that have a “lip” or raised center on the bottom, as it’s likely they won’t adhere as well as you’d like. After finding the right pieces and making sure they make a snug fit, carefully wash the dishes with soap and water and let them dry completely — Bruce said that makes a big difference in the glue’s ability to adhere in the long run. Then it’s time for glue — E6000 industrial strength craft adhesive is the ticket, she said. She doused the contact points with the heavy goo, quickly securing the layers according to the fitted plan. The weight of the plates is usually enough to press and hold the stacks while the glue dries overnight, Bruce noted, but sometimes she added a weight to the stack for good measure. After allowing the settings to dry for 24 hours, she’s ready to secure the Bell Hanger clasps to the back to create the plate flower’s “stem.” The clasps come in different sizes, so it’s important to select the size according to the pole that will be used. The first ones she used were hollow, 3/4-inch metal poles. Those worked OK, she said, but to withstand the Big Timber wind, she later found solid poles for added stability and weight. Bruce attached the bell hanger clasp to the back of the anchor plate and again allowed the E6000 glue to dry at least overnight. With that, the decorative head is ready to be attached to the stem. Bruce said she found it was much easier to plant the stem before attaching the top, and noted that it is important to anchor the stem deep enough to counterbalance the weight of the plates used. Of course, these creative collections then led to more — “there are many other things you can create

Yellowstone Newspapers photos by Laura Nelson

Nancy Bruce’s yard art creations are for sale at Big Timber’s Community Thrift Shoppe, 708 E. 4th Ave., Big Timber. What you’ll need to make it yourself: • Variety of plate/dish sizes and shapes • E6000 industrial craft adhesive • Bell Hanger clasps matching the metal pipe size of choice -• 1/2- to 1-inch solid metal pipe, cut to height of your choice

Some of Nancy Bruce’s yard art creations are pictured in Big Timber recently. Bruce looks for colorful patterns while creating her artwork.
for ‘yard art,’” Bruce said. An old vase, filled with decorative glass balls or with a small light, can be topped with an inverted serving bowl to create “glass mushrooms.” Those make great step or path illuminations, she said, and can add fun height diversity among the dish flowers for visual interest in the yard, too. “Really, the possibilities are endless,” Bruce said.

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Many gardeners are extracting and saving seeds
By Natalie Storey
Enterprise Staff Writer

Spring Home & Garden



his year, Jody Davis started her tomato seedlings from seed she saved five years ago. The experienced Livingston gardener said she’s been saving seeds for quite some time and has good success with her own seeds compared with seeds from packets. “I just think it’s smart to save seeds,” Davis said. Saving the seeds from one crop of beets or carrots can yield enough seed for 20 years, Davis said. Although people have been saving seeds for generations, Davis is part of a blooming movement of gardeners who save their own seeds. Some organize “seed swaps,” while others collect rare, heirloom seeds. Some seed savers are history loving gardeners who can recite the history of their seeds, like Mr. Mostoller’s goose bean, the seeds of which were originally found undigested in the gullet of a goose during the Civil War, the Chicago Tribune reported. The popular company Seed Savers Exchange, which started in 1975, is even on Twitter. They have more than 18,000 varieties of heirloom seeds. The company’s website features tips on how to save your own seeds.

Cheryl Moore-Gough shows a glass containing bean sprouts while speaking recently at Chico Hot Springs and Resort about seed extraction.
Seed saving has also become popular in Montana. Cheryl Moore-Gough, a horticulturist, spoke at a series of seminars put on by Zone Four, a Bozemanbased gardening magazine, at Chico recently about saving seeds. She shared tips about when to harvest seeds from different vegetables — for cucumbers, for example, you should wait until they get very ripe, yellow and mushy, she said. Some seeds like those from cabbage, broccoli, corn and beans require further drying after they are harvested, she said. Once seeds are dry, you should store them in a clean, dry, dark environ-

Enterprise photo by Justin Post

ment, she said, at temperatures of 38 to 40 degrees. Benefits of saving seeds include saving money — some seed packets can cost $3 or more for 20 or fewer seeds — and insuring you are planting seeds that are regionally adapted from plants that grew well in your garden the year before, according to the Mother Earth News Magazine website. Big corporations continue to consolidate the seed industry and some popular cultivars can be discontinued or become so popular that the companies run out of stock. Seeds you save yourself also can have more consistent quality. Mother Earth News reports that large seed suppliers regularly include seed in their packets from inferior or off-type plants. When you save your own seeds, you can also influence crop traits, like vegetable shape, flavor, ripening time and yield. When saving seed, chose open-pollinated varieties. Hybrids will not be true to type if saved and replanted. Moore-Gough said you can tell if a seed is a hybrid by reading the label on the seed packet. If it says F1 or Hybrid, you might want to choose a different seed to save. Self-pollinating crops like peas, beans, tomatoes and peppers are the easiest garden plants from which to save seeds.

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A look at plants that deer don’t like
By Lee Reich
homping down on a rosette of freshly emerging tulip leaves is just the thing to drive away winter doldrums — for deer. Crocuses probably taste almost as good to them. There’s no need, though, for us humans to forsake the blossoms of spring bulbs; there are plenty that don’t appeal to deer. Daffodils, for example. Deer won’t eat them. So plant daffodils to your heart’s content without any worry that their tops will be chomped off before the flowers even unfold. Hyacinths also don’t particularly appeal to deer. Although hyacinths were among the most fashionable flowers in the 18th century, they’re not among the most popular bulbs now. Perhaps it’s because they’re a little stiff and formal, so don’t blend well with currently popular naturalistic landscapes. Still, if you’ve got a place for them, go ahead and plant them and don’t worry about deer upsetting your design. Equally deer proof and, in this case, easily integrated into naturalistic plantings, are grape hyacinths, or muscari. These tiny bulbs are impervious to cold, and spread to eventually blanket the ground with popsicle sticks packed with pure white, violet, or deep blue flowers.


Associated Press

known as puschkinia, could share the stage with muscari, both blooming fairly early. The loose, pale blue clusters of striped squill won’t do for the garden what Darwin tulips do — or would do if the deer wouldn’t eat them — but they are welcome nonetheless. Crown imperial is a deer-proof bulb that could provide the elegance of tulips. The stalks shoot skyward 2 to 3 feet and then are capped by a tuft of leaves encircled below by a “crown” of downward-pointing red or yellow flowers. Crown imperial’s relatives, Persian lily and guinea hen flower, are also passed over by deer and are beautiful in a more relaxed rather than regal manner. English bluebells and wood hyacinth, both botanically squills, share midseason bloom with crown imperial. These two squills are perfect for naturalizing and brightening the dappled shade of a mid-spring woodland.

Deer also don’t enjoy onions
This undated photo shows the Star of Persia (Allium christophii) in New Paltz, N.Y. Plant this ornamental onion for beauty and not for eating by deer or humans.
deer. Some are also the first harbingers of spring: Snowdrop and glory of the snow often bloom right through the snow, the former with white blossoms, the latter in white, pink or blue. Each of winter aconite’s yellow blossoms, also appearing in very early spring, is cradled in hand-shaped leaves, decorative in their own right well after the blossoms dry up. After this early show subsides, striped squill, also
AP photo

Many small bulbs are deer proof

Actually, once you segue over into the world of small bulbs, you open the door to a slew of flowers that both naturalize and are passed over by hungry

Even as spring rolls into summer, there are colorful bulbs that can make deer look elsewhere for a meal. Flowering onions — alliums — fill this time slot, mostly appearing as pastel pompoms atop slender stalks. If you’re unfamiliar with the ornamental, flowering onions, take a look at chives when they come into bloom. Now imagine those blossoms in deep blue, or in pink, even yellow. And rather than golf-ball size clusters of flowers, imagine flower heads the size of volleyballs, or baseball-size clusters sending out thin streamers of male flowers like fireworks. These are some of the variations on the basic allium flower theme.

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Right at Home: Victorian garden style lives on
By Kim Cook
Associated Press

Spring Home & Garden



hose drawn to 19th century style may be pleased to learn that vintage garden decor is a trend this spring and summer. The look involves florals, weathered wood, wire, period typography, bird motifs and accessories, and other elements with a Victorian vibe, says Tom Mirabile, a trend watcher for Lifetime Brands. The appeal lies largely in the era’s garden-as-haven aesthetic, he says. “We look at the Victorian age as an era when there was just a lot of time,” he said at an industry trends seminar earlier this year at the NY Now trade show. Conservatories, greenhouses and aviaries were popular in stately Victorian-era homes, but even modest residences might have a little birdcage. Fashionable too were ferns, palms and terrariums. Pottery Barn’s got miniature greenhouses this season made of white-painted distressed pine and glass, perfect terrariums for small plants. A replica of a vintage birdcage is made of wire painted hunter green; it’s tall enough to house an elegant orchid, but would also work as a tabletop accent. On a grander scale is the retailer’s Conservatory bird cage, a nearly 5-foot-long mahogany and wire piece that would fit on a console table or atop a long shelf. While it’s dramatic in and of itself, a collection of objects would look amazing inside it. (www.potterybarn.com ) Floral motifs — and roses in particular — were all the rage during the Victorian era. Art and textiles featured illustrated flora and fauna from home and exotic parts of the world.

In this photo provided by Pottery Barn, this tall wire birdcage in a distressed green painted wire, can be filled with a tall plant or just used as a decorative tabletop accessory.
Bradbury & Bradbury now offers a couple of art wallpapers derived from illustrations by period artists William Morris and Walter Crane. Fenway has an Art Nouveau-style pattern with irises at its heart, while Woodland showcases the artistry of both Morris and Crane — winsome rabbits and long-legged deer cavort

AP photo

across a leafy landscape. (www.bradbury.com ) Designer Voytek Brylowski offers prints of works by Victorian illustrators Mary and Elizabeth Kirby. Parrots, toucans, lilies and hummingbirds are handcolored, vibrant examples that can be mounted in simple frames and placed near a patio door — or anywhere the gentility and charm of the period might be appreciated. “By digitally enhancing old images, I feel that I give them new life, and preserve historically significant illustrations and drawings by these famous naturalists,” says Brylowski, who is based in Wroclaw, Poland. (www.etsy.com/shop/VictorianWallArt ) Jennifer Stuart, an artist in Tulsa, Oklahoma, has designed a collection of plates depicting damask and floral prints of the 19th century on patio-friendly melamine. (www.zazzle.com ) And Pier 1’s Floria collection has a vintage damask pattern in garnet, soft blue and grass-green in a collection of indoor/outdoor rugs and throw pillows. (www. pier1.com ) Cast-iron and wicker furniture and containers were used both indoors and out in the late 19th century, just as today we use rattan chairs in the family room and the garden, or iron plant stands in the kitchen as well as the patio. Restoration Hardware’s Hampshire and Bar Harbor all-weather wicker collections include chairs and sofas in restful shades of cream, gray and mocha. (www.restorationhardware.com ) Early visitors to resorts in New York’s Adirondack Mountains discovered the eponymous big wooden chair that’s withstood hundreds of years of style changes. A good selection in both real wood and Polywood, a recycled plastic resembling wood, is at www. hayneedle.com .

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Ask a designer: tips for flea-market shoppers
By Melissa Rayworth
Associated Press

Spring Home & Garden

THURSDAY, APRIL 24, 2014 • PAGE 11

he arrival of spring means that flea markets are reopening for business around the country. Shoppers will hunt for treasures amid acres of used goods. A few will come home with just the right vintage art or quirky piece of furniture to make their home more beautiful. Jaime Rummerfield, co-founder of Woodson & Rummerfield’s House of Design in Los Angeles, sometimes mixes flea-market finds with high-end new furnishings to decorate the homes of her celebrity clients. “The beauty of flea markets,” she says, “is you never know what you will find. There’s nothing like being outdoors or in a place off the beaten path rummaging through old treasures.” Los Angeles-based interior designer Brian Patrick Flynn, creator of the FlynnsideOut design blog, also hunts for vintage pieces: “I shop second-hand regardless of my project’s budget or client’s level of taste,” he says. “Vintage and thrift is the best way to add one-of-a-kind flair to a space without insanely high cost.” There is luck involved, of course. But skill also plays a role. As you browse crowded tables of used things this spring, how can you find the treasures


In this photo provided by Brian Patrick Flynn/Flynnside Out Blog, the designer Flynn furnished this Atlanta loft strictly using vintage seating found at flea markets.
that will give your home an infusion of style while avoiding decorating disasters? Here, Flynn, Rummerfield and another interior designer who shops for vintage decor — Lee Kleinhelter of the Atlanta-based design firm and retail store Pieces — tell how they do it. Winter and early spring are perfect for flea-market shopping, says Flynn. “Since ‘thrifting’ and ‘antiquing’ are often associated with gorgeous weather and weekend shenanigans, many people shy away from hunting for their vintage finds when it’s cold or gloomy,” he notes, so go now and go early. “I usually show up just as the flea market opens to ensure I see every new item as it’s put out on display,” he says. “When you wait until the end of a flea market’s run to check out its stuff, you’re likely to find mostly leftovers, things priced too highly which others

AP photo

passed over, or things that are just way too taste-specific for most people to make offers on.” Rummerfield occasionally finds signed artwork and ceramics by noteworthy artists at flea markets and antique malls. “It is amazing to see what people cast away,” she says. “I personally hunt for Sasha Brastoff ceramics because of his unique California heritage as a set decorator and artist.” She has also found vintage Billy Haines chairs and Gio Ponti lighting at flea markets. So read up on the designers and artists from your favorite periods, and then hunt for their work or impressive knockoffs. A single flea market might offer goods from every decade of the 20th century. Can you put a lamp from the 1970s on a table from 1950? Yes, if the shapes and colors work well together, Kleinhelter says. If your home has contemporary decor, Rummerfield says it can be powerful to add one statement piece — a side table, say, or a light fixture — from a previous era. But “a little bit goes a long way. Use vintage in moderation with contemporary spaces,” Rummerfield says. “It will highlight the uniqueness of the vintage item. You don’t necessarily want to live in a time capsule.”

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