2 - Spring Home & Garden – April 2013
How to care for a freshly sodded lawn
Sod, sometimes called turf, can quickly turn a barren
landscape into a rich, thick carpet of green. Homeowners
hoping to revive their lawns commonly turn to sod as the
quickest means to do just that. However, once the sod has
been laid down, few homeowners may know how to keep
it looking its best.
Sod is real grass that is grown on special farms. It is
generally grown locally to avoid long transport times that
could dry out the product. Sod is typically sold in squares
or rolls of grass that come with the roots and soil already
attached. There may be some sort of thin backing material
on the sod to keep the grass blades together.
Many homeowners turn to sod when growing lawn
from seed becomes problematic or too time-consuming.
Seeds can be blown around in the wind or be eaten by
birds and other animals before they have a chance to ger-
Sodding a lawn is a major investment, costing as much
as $1 per two-foot square. Depending on the size of your
lawn, this can be a costly job even before adding the cost
of additional supplies, such as soil, fertilizer and tilling
equipment. Many homeowners who install sod want to
ensure their investment lasts. Here are the main ways to
care for and protect sod until it is fully established.
• Once the sod has been laid down, the lawn should be
thoroughly soaked with water. Most experts recom-
mend soaking it to a depth of 6 inches.
• It is important to establish a watering schedule to keep
the sod moist. Water the sod to a depth of one inch
every other day for the first three weeks to enable the
roots to securely establish themselves in the soil.
• Water the sod every other day unless the weather has
been very warm. After four weeks you can generally
go up to five days without watering as long as you
transition slowly. The sod will change colors if it is
not getting enough water. Never let the lawn turn yel-
low, otherwise you may have to cut out dead spots
• Wait two to four weeks before mowing the sod. Keep
the lawn height to around two inches to ensure that it
won’t scald in the sun.
• After two months of established sod growth, aerate
the sod to keep the soil from being too compact and to
enable oxygen and nutrients to get into the soil.
• Keep children and pets off of the sod while it is estab-
• Fertilize the lawn every 50 to 60 days, beginning in
March and ending in October.
• Inspect the sod for pests, which may include insects
or problems like fungi or weeds. Treat accordingly
with products designed to remove pests.
Using sod to establish a lush lawn is a fast, albeit more
expensive option to sowing seeds. After a few weeks the
lawn will be thick and secure. Metro News Service
Eco-conscious ways to tend to your lawn
Many homeowners are constantly on
the lookout for ways to make their homes
more environmentally friendly. Such a
pursuit is both noble because it helps the
environment and practical because it often
While there are many eco-friendly
improvements homeowners make inside
their homes, it’s important to note that
there are several ways for men and wom-
en to be more environmentally conscious
outside of their homes as well. Lawn care
can be done in a way that’s conscious
of the environment, and the results can
be just as appealing as if the lawn were
tended to without regard for the planet.
The following are just a few of the many
ways homeowner s
can adopt more eco-
f r i endl y pr act i ces
when tending to their
• Be conscientious
lawn is pretty
ci al l y dur i ng
the dog days of
homeowners try to overcompensate for
hot days with excessive watering. The
growth of moss on sidewalks or the
driveway is a telltale sign that you’re
watering too much, as is a standing
pool of water on the grass. Homeown-
ers who find it difficult to determine
when their lawns have gotten enough
water can purchase an intelligent irri-
gation control system that adapts your
watering to a lawn’s needs as well as
• Turn back the clock on your tools.
Before gas mowers became the stan-
dard, man-powered push mowers were
used to cut the grass. Such mowers still
exist, and they require no fuel, making
them a more eco-friendly option than
their gas-powered counterparts.
Along those same lines, leaf blow-
ers are a far less friendly way to rake
leaves in the fall or clean the yard after
a long winter. While there’s no deny-
ing their effectiveness, leaf blowers
need gas to operate, while a rake just
requires some elbow grease and a little
extra time out in the yard.
• Stay local. If you need to plant new
grass or you’re beginning a garden,
then stick with local plants, flowers
and grasses rather than more exotic
options that are not native to your area.
Plants, flowers and grasses that aren’t
native to your region will require more
maintenance and often more watering.
That added maintenance might prove
to be a headache, and that excessive
watering will not be beneficial to the
environment. Native plants, flowers
and grasses have already adapted to
your climate, and they can be provide
just as much aesthetic appeal as more
• Avoid pesticides whenever possible.
Many homeowners treat their lawns
with pesticides, which can make a
lawn look beautiful. But that beau-
ty typically comes at a steep price,
impacting local wildlife and perhaps
even the local water supply. When
pesticides are applied to a lawn, the
chemicals within may run off into your
local water supply. If you can’t avoid
pesticides entirely, then do your best
to minimize how often you use them.
• Don’t let rain water go to waste.
Rain barrels are a great way to make
good use of rain. Rain barrels can be
placed beneath a gutter’s downspout,
where they will collect water that can
be reused throughout your property to
water the lawn
Ra i n ba r -
rels can be
r e l a t i v e l y
expens i ve,
but over time
they will pay
f o r t h e m-
selves as you
on your water
Lawn care can
be conducted in a
way that benefits the environment as well
as your bottom line. Metro News Service
Belleville Small engineS
Open House - March 27, 9am-3pm
Lawn & Garden Equipment
Layaway Plans Available on All New Equipment
Spring Tuneup Specials
Pickup and Delivery Available
608-424-6255 or 608-558-8757
Tankless Water Heaters
Water Saving Fixtures
Outdoor Faucets (Repair & Replacement)
Phone 608.845.9389 • VeRonA, WI
Award Winning Kitchen and Bath Design
107 S. Main • Verona • 497-1177 • driftmierdesign.com
• Paver Patios
• Retaining Walls
• Tree/Bush Planting
415 E. Verona Ave., Verona
DON’T WAIT, CALL TODAY FOR A FREE ESTIMATE
Sod can create an instant lawn, but it still requires certain mainte-
nance measures to get it firmly established.
April, 2013 – Spring Home & Garden - 3
Save money on energy bills
(MS) -- Home is where the heart is,
where families grow, and generally where
the most of our leisure time is spent.
Working with green technology for the
best insulation will keep your house warm,
welcoming, comfortable and cozy -- and
will save you money, all at the same time.
Insulation advancements are on the hori-
zon at all times, experts say. Take a look at
innovation by Icynene, for example. Their
soft, expanding spray foam insulation and
air barrier material protects homeowners
from the harmful outdoor environment and
from energy-robbing air leakage. Icynene
pioneered the spray foam technology and
now leads in industry training.
Why are homeowners turning to spray
foam insulation? Experts tell us that older
insulation types, such as fibreglass, will
settle, compact and sag over time, decreas-
ing their insulation properties. Spray
foam insulation is energy efficient, says
Icynene, and it has a high R-value due to
its ability to seal and insulate at the same
The spray foam solutions are created
with water blowing agents and renewable
and recycled content, which help reduce
greenhouse gas emissions to support a
healthier environment. Spray foam insula-
tion can be used in new home construction
or additions and insulation upgrades to
existing homes (attics, crawlspaces) dur-
ing remodeling projects. With spray foam
insulation you can maintain healthy indoor
air while reducing your HVAC equipment
needs and saving on energy bills. In addi-
tion, homeowners can conserve construc-
tion materials without the need for excess
sealing and still achieve optimal airtight-
ness. Spray foam insulation doesn’t pass
off gas over time, performs at peak levels
for the lifetime of your home, and, because
airborne moisture is controlled, the dura-
bility of the building remains unthreatened
by the growth of mold and mildew.
More information on this topic is avail-
able online at www.icynene.com. Metro
Tackle flying pests in the yard
The warmer mont hs
provide ample opportuni-
ties for outdoor entertain-
ing or simply enjoying
time spent in the yard as
a family. But moments in
the fresh air and sunshine
can be negatively affected
by the presence of flying,
buzzing or biting bugs.
When the weather warms,
insects that may have been
dormant during the winter
begin to exit their dens and
reproduce in earnest. Many
insects overwinter as eggs
and larvae, and multitudes
break their dormancy at the
same time as host plants. Beetles, flies, gnats, bees, mos-
quitoes, termites, butterflies, moths, and many other bugs
can be seen in abundance in the spring. While there are
people who enjoy bugs’ presence as true harbingers of
the new season, others who are less enamored with flying
insects, especially when they make time outdoors into an
exercise in discomfort. Homeowners concerned about the
presence of flying insects in their yard can take various
steps to manage sharing outdoor spaces with insect life.
Different varieties of insects begin their lives as eggs
that may hatch into nymphs or worm-like creatures
known as larvae. Oftentimes, these eggs are deposited
in water or in damp areas. Mosquito larvae, for example,
thrive in stagnant water before they turn into winged, bit-
ing insects. Keeping outdoor areas free of standing water
and ensuring proper drainage are two ways to reduce the
population of certain bugs in the yard. Welcoming ani-
mals, such as birds and bats that feed on a trove of insects,
to the yard can naturally keep insect numbers down.
Flies lay about 50 to 100 eggs at one time. The eggs
will hatch into maggots in as little as 12 hours after being
deposited. Keeping yards free from decaying matter,
especially around entertaining areas, can limit the number
of flies in the yard.
There are a variety of different traps on the market
geared toward different insect life. Most use some sort of
attractant, whether a scent or light to lure the insects to
the trap. Then the bugs fall inside and cannot get out.
Although there are some chemical-based traps or bug
“zappers,” there are other more natural traps and more
humane options, too. Setting traps away from patios and
living spaces will lure the insects to the traps and keep
them away from you. Once the trapped insects expire,
you can bury them in the ground to naturally decompose.
Setting traps out very early in the season will help to
trap as many emerging insects as possible. You also may
be able to trap the queens of certain insects, like bees or
wasps, further reducing the number of bugs you will see
throughout the year.
Repellents are natural or chemically derived formulas
that are worn or placed in proximity to people. These
repellents want insects to find them. Once found, the
repellents’ smell or taste is deemed questionable by the
insects, who will then seek out other areas to reside.
Repellents will vary in efficacy and some may need
to be reapplied frequently to remain effective. However,
they are a useful tool when you will not be staying in one
spot in the yard.
If you spend ample time outdoors, especially at dusk,
then investing in a screened-in room may be the way to
go. This way you can enjoy the weather while the insects
stay on the other side of the screen. In climates where
three-season swimming is possible, some homeowners
actually create screened-in rooms that encompass their
Insects like butterflies and bees are the unsung heroes
of the landscape, as they are responsible for pollinating
many flowers and plants. Honeybees and bumblebees
will generally keep to themselves if their nests are not
disturbed and can
actually be enjoy-
able to watch as they
buzz from flower to
flower. Wasps, like
be attracted to sweet
smel l s, so keep-
ing sugary drinks
and foods covered
can keep them at
bay. Or you may
want to lure them to
another area of the
yard with a bit of
raw meat or a can of
living spaces with
flying insects can
be aggravating. But
there are many options at a homeowner’s disposal to con-
trol such unwanted guests. Metro News Service
• Unbeatable Energy Savings • Assurance Plus Lifetime Warranty
• Custom Fit - No Installation Mess • Fully Welded Solid Vinyl Construction
• Virtually Eliminates Condensation • NFRC Rated & Energy Star Approved
• Never Requires Painting • Lead Safe Quality Materials
• Sashes Tilt-In For Easy Cleaning • FREE Low E with Argon Gas
An Alliance you can trust!
Windows • Doors • Rooﬁng • Siding
ESP Exteriors & Remodeling
Eric Poole - Local Owner
References • State Licensed • Insured
15 Years Experience
Shredded Topsoil (Garden Mix),
Shredded Bark, Decorative Stone.
Limerock Delivery. Ag Lime Spreading.
Pick-up or Delivered.
5995 Cty. D, Oregon, WI
(608) 835-7255 • www.obrientrucking.com
• Complete Lawn Maintenance
• Landscape Construction
• Water Features
• Land Clearing
• Landscape Material Delivery
• Snow Plowing and Removal
• Slit Seeding
PO Box 514, Stoughton, WI 53589 • email@example.com
rickslawnandgarden.com • 873-3510
This Past Winter Has Taken
a Toll on Everyone’s Lawn!
Rick’s Lawn & Garden
is ready to ﬁght back!
New, state-of-the-art lawn renovation equipment and an
abundance of high quality seed and fertilizers on hand to
prepare for the essential over-seeding due to the drought
We are ready to
renovate with our
NEW Stand-on Aerator
which will assist in
quantity of production
as well as deeper plugs.
Did you know?
ri cs are used to
p r e v e n t we e d
growth while still
allowing air, oxy-
gen and water to
flow to and from
t he s oi l . Land-
scape fabrics are a
t o prevent weed
them to eco-friendly
homeowners. Landscape fabrics, once laid, also are a far less labor-
intensive method to prevent weed growth, as they can be effective for
several years, during which homeowners can expect to perform little
or no maintenance. In addition, many homeowners prefer landscape
fabrics because they can help the soil effectively maintain moisture
during dry periods, when gardens might otherwise be highly suscep-
tible to drought. Once put down, landscape fabric can be covered
with mulch to add aesthetic appeal. Metro News Service
4 - Spring Home & Garden – April 2013
Cost-effective fencing options
Fencing serves many purposes. Some homeowners erect a fence for privacy, while
others do so to contain pets and children. Because fencing can be expensive, some
homeowners look for ways to cut costs, which can be relatively easy, especially for
those homeowners willing to consider various materials when erecting their fence.
Traditional fences are available in materials ranging from wood to vinyl to metal.
Homeowners have other options at their disposal if they prefer a more natural fence.
trees or grasses
can be planted to
create a barrier
ties or within the
a fencing mate-
r i a l , c ons i de r
that even a less
ri al may prove
in the long run
if it needs sig-
nance or has to be
replaced in just a
few years. Therefore, the most cost-effective fencing material may not necessarily be
the least expensive one at the store. Here are some materials homeowners can consider.
• Found material: Repurposed wood or metal can be crafted into a rustic, one-of-
a-kind fence. Materials can be found that are no cost, requiring only the cost of labor.
Should you build it yourself, this can be next to nothing. Sometimes existing fences on
another property can be disassembled and re-built on your own property for little to no
cost as well.
• Chainlink/chainwire: Chainlink fencing is one of the most economical types of
boundary fencing. The fencing comes in a variety of diamond sizes and is fixed to gal-
vanized pipes spaced across the perimeter of the property. Although it is some of the
least expensive fencing, it does not offer much privacy on its own. But if you are look-
ing at fencing simply as a barrier, chainlink could be the way to go.
• Picket fencing: A wooden picket fence is another inexpensive fencing material.
The pickets can be purchased in various heights, and this fence may be used as garden
border fencing or to mark a property line between homes. Spacing the pickets widely
apart may cut down on the number that need to be purchased, further keeping the cost
• Bamboo: Bamboo is a rapidly growing grass that produces a hard wood-like mate-
rial that is used in many building applications. Bamboo wood can be used to build a
fence, but the natural plant also can be planted to form a living fence for privacy.
• Stockade fencing: A stockade fence is one of the more basic wood fencing options.
Wooden slats are placed alongside one another to form an effective and affordable
privacy fence. Stockade fencing can be stained or painted to preserve it. Many home
improvement retailers sell panels of stockade fencing so that you can make fence
installation a do-it-yourself project.
• Vinyl fencing: Although vinyl fencing is one of the more expensive fencing mate-
rials at the outset (it costs about twice the price of a wood fence), it does pay for itself
rather quickly thanks to minimal maintenance. Unlike some other materials, vinyl will
not rot or discolor. You also won’t have to purchase stain, paint and expensive cleaners
for a vinyl fence. That means once you make the investment, you will have years upon
years of maintenance-free enjoyment.
There are many different fencing materials that can coordinate with a variety of bud-
gets. Metro News Service
Prepare a deck or patio for entertaining
Few things are better than having a
functional and beautiful outdoor space to
entertain guests. Having a great outdoor
space enables a person to host parties or
intimate gatherings all year long. Estab-
lishing an entertaining space and main-
taining that space are essential when
planning another year of fun in the sun.
There are many things homeowners
can do to ensure their entertaining space
is safe and functional. As the season
approaches, include some landscaping
and decorating components to your pre-
paratory plans to make the space as com-
fortable and aesthetically appealing as possible.
Here are a few key tips for readying your yard for entertaining possibilities. Expand
on these basics to customize an area for your unique needs.
• Check the area for any needed repairs. Prior to your first entertaining session,
look over the deck or patio to take note of any flaws that may present safety haz-
ards. Are there any loose railings? Are all screws and nails flush so they do not
cause tripping? Are there any cracks in concrete or loose patio blocks? Be sure to
remedy all of the repairs needed to ensure guests will be safe. If you are unsure of
any structural deficits, consult with a contractor.
• Hire a reputable contractor. If you are just laying the groundwork for a new patio
or deck, it is important to get the necessary permits and then hire a person who has
been properly vetted. Check qualifications and licensing before hiring a contractor
and ask to view a portfolio of his or her previous work. Word-of-mouth recom-
mendations from trusted friends and family members are good, and you can also
double-check qualifications by contacting the Better Business Bureau to see if any
complaints have been lodged or use a service such as Angie’s List to read reviews
of his or her work.
• Think about closing in a portion of a deck or patio. The use of a canopy, netting
or even greenery to protect an entertaining space can help minimize weather-related
damage to outdoor furniture. Netting will keep a good number of biting insects at
bay when the weather is warm and humid. Having a bit of concealment also means
you can create a private space that isn’t easily viewed by neighbors or passersby.
• Plan well-defined areas. Just as rooms serve different purposes inside of the home,
outdoor areas can be separated according to usage. Establish a sitting nook where
guests can gather and talk. Have a bar or serving area where refreshments are made
and served. Make sure there is a shaded area for when the sun is too uncomfortable
to make sitting outside enjoyable. Similarly, have a sunny area where people can
soak up a few rays or dry off after a dip in the spa or pool. Don’t forget to establish
a spot for the kids to converge with scaled-down amenities.
• Consider a fireplace or fire pit. For centuries man (and woman) has gathered
around fire for socialization and a means to warming up. Having a backyard fire-
place, pit or chiminea is a conversation-starter, a decorative focal point, and a func-
tional tool to extend the number of seasons in which outdoor entertaining can take
place. Place the fire wisely and with concern for safety. It should be out of the way
of foot traffic, but central enough so that it can be a gathering point.
• Invest in quality outdoor furniture. Today’s yards are extensions of a home’s
interior. Guests no longer want to sit on uncomfortable metal or plastic furniture.
There are many different outdoor sofas and chairs that are as stylish as they are
comfortable. These pieces can be matched to the decor inside your home for a cohe-
• Accessorize. Consider the creature comforts of indoors and mimic that outdoors.
Don’t shy away from hanging artwork on an exterior wall or using urns or pottery
to decorate the space. Weather-resistant materials ensure everything from clocks to
televisions can be used outdoors. Think about having an entire set of serving dishes
and other entertaining items for the outdoors.
When refurbishing outdoor entertaining areas, emphasize comfort, safety and func-
tionality. Metro News Service
blinds • shades • draperies
shutters & Great Ideas!
(608) 839-7470 • excitingwindows.com/andreahedquist
Buying, selling or remodeling?
Transform your home with beautiful new window coverings!
Dress your naked windows in style and
give your home a fresh new look this Spring!
50 towards your ﬁrst purchase with this ad.
Free in-home consultation. We Design, Measure & Install!
• Full-service design and installation
• Patios, walkways and retaining walls
• Renovation of existing landscapes
• Drainage correction and grading
• Year-round maintenance and snow removal
• Low-voltage landscape lighting
Want an outdoor living area that can be enjoyed by all members of the family? Ganshert can create
that perfect outdoor space with a play area for kids, as well as for entertaining family and guests.
5284 E. Lacy Rd., Fitchburg, WI 53711 • (608) 274-2443 • ganshert.com
Furniture Sale! Don’t Miss It!
3800 University Avenue, Madison, WI 53705
China & Glass Furniture
Cut Glass Tankard & Wine Carafe Cherry Dresser, Slant Front Desk
Cranberry Art Glass Decanter Walnut Set of 8 Chairs, Hall Stand
Rosenthal Lily Punch Bowl, Meissen Tea Set Mahogany Round Table w/leaves
Colorful Mason Ironstone Set of Dishes Chinese Rosewood Chair w/arms
Efﬁcient equipment operation ensures
lower heating & cooling costs all year long.
Call today to schedule maintenance service.
*For limited time on qualifying equipment.
Stay Cool this Summer!
• Sales & Service
• Furnaces • Boilers
• In-Floor Radiant Systems
• Air Conditioners • Air Exchangers
• Humidiﬁers • Air Cleaners
• Geothermal Energy
• Maintenance Contracts
• Free Replacement Estimates
“Focus on Energy”
161 Horizon Dr., Suite 105, Verona
Financing Available to Qualiﬁed Buyers
April, 2013 – Spring Home & Garden - 5
210 S. Main St.
Verona, WI • (608) 845-6478
Monday - Saturday 6:30am - 9:00pm, Sunday 6:30am - 7:00pm
Green Garden Supplies
from our Greenhouse!
• Many varieties of Bedding Plants and Shrubs
• Roses • Bagged Potting Soils
• Vegetable & Flower Seeds
Miller & Sons
Your Home & Garden
Deer-proofing a garden
C r e a t i n g a
b e a u t i f u l a n d
is a popular pas-
time for people all
across the coun-
try. It is important
to keep in mind
may be appetizing
to area wildlife,
i ncl udi ng deer.
Those who do not
want t hei r gar-
dens to turn into
al l - you- can- eat
buffets for deer,
rabbits and other
wild animals can
take a more pro-
active approach to
Deer are oppor-
tunists who will no doubt see your garden as a salad bar
ripe with all of their favorite foods. As housing develop-
ments continue to encroach on the natural habitats of deer
and other animals, these animals are becoming more visi-
ble. Deer may not be able to forage for food effectively in
their smaller, natural surroundings, or they may become
accustomed to the “easy pickings” they find in neighbor-
hood yards. Either way, you may encounter a deer in or
around your area.
Keeping deer at bay involves some work and mainte-
nance on the part of a homeowner. There are safe and
humane methods to repelling deer, or at least blocking
access to the plants worth protecting. Here are the main
ways to deer-proof a garden.
Fences are one way to deter deer from entering a yard
and dining on your garden. Keep in mind that deer can
jump fences that are quite tall, but they have to be espe-
cially motivated to jump an eight-foot-tall fence. Still,
they tend to be weary about scaling a fence when they
cannot see what is on the other side. Therefore, if you are
fencing out deer, choose a fence that camouflages the gar-
den well and completely encloses the area to be protected.
If you do not want the fence to be solid, consider putting
stakes or thorny plants within the garden so that the deer
will hesitate to jump into the garden.
Deer are naturally skittish around people, but over time
they can become quite complacent around human beings.
Once a deer decides that something will not present a
threat, the deer can adapt to its presence.
Motion-activated devices may not work, nor the pres-
ence of pets. Predator urine is typically an effective way
at keeping deer at bay. Bottled coyote urine can be quite
effective, although human urine may work as well. Reap-
plying the product weekly around the plants is a good
Repel the Deer
There are many organic or chemically-based products
on the market that deer may find offensive to the taste or
Hot pepper, sulfur and eggs or even the use of soapy
water have been successful in certain instances. The use
of blood meal or even human hair around the garden may
repel the deer and keep them on a different foraging path.
However, remember that any deer that is very hungry
may ignore unpleasant tastes or smells for a quick bite.
If other food sources are available, there are some spe-
cies of plants and trees that deer will avoid. Filling your
garden with these plants can help you maintain a beauti-
ful, albeit untasty, environment for deer.
When planting annuals, select among:
In terms of perennials, plant
these items once, and deer
could stay away:
• Bearded iris
• Rock rose
Plant these herbs alongside flowers for even more protec-
Gardeners who use a combination of methods to keep
deer out of their yards and gardens may have a higher
success rate at deterring these animals. Metro News Ser-
6 - Spring Home & Garden – April 2013
Spring is a perfect time to remodel your home, give us a call to setup an appointment.
What: Educational Building Seminars
April 19th: Designing Your New Home
May 14th: Building with Shaw Building & Design, Inc.
Place: Shaw Building & Design, Inc.
Location: 3185 Deer Point Drive, Stoughton
RSVP: firstname.lastname@example.org or 608-877-1131
Visit our website www.shawbuilders.com
The dos and don’ts of basement finishing
Remodeling a basement is a popular
home improvement project. A finished
basement makes the space more func-
tional and, when done correctly, can add
a considerable amount of living space to
Finishing a basement pays dividends in
additional space in a home that doesn’t
require the same level of investment as
putting an addition on the house. Also, the
groundwork for a finished room is already
there, as most basements are already set
up with a poured concrete floor and some
walls, usually cinder blocks. Some electri-
cal components, plumbing and the creature
comforts of drywall and a more inviting
floor might be all that’s necessary to fin-
ish a basement. The process can be labor-
intensive, and many people prefer to leave
it to a professional contractor. Whatever
finishing method is chosen, homeowners
should follow the proper procedures when
doing the work.
DO start with a detailed plan. Measure
out the basement and mark any items that
cannot be moved, such as a furnace, water
heater or pipes. Create a design board that
showcases the materials you plan to use
on the project. Think about ways you plan
to arrange furniture and consider all of
the possible uses for the room. Will it be
a home theater? Will someone be sleeping
down there? Each scenario will require
certain amenities and safety requirements.
DON’T plan to finish the entire base-
ment. Doing so will leave you without a
storage or utility area where you house
holiday decorations, tools, luggage and
DO get the scoop on building codes.
Knowing what the municipality allows in
basement remodeling will help you to cus-
tomize a plan that is functional, safe and
legal. No one wants to be slapped with
fines for failing to follow the rules. Plus,
failure to meet building codes could mean
the work that has been done must be torn
out and redone. It pays to follow the chain
of command and secure permits while
having all work inspected.
DON’T overlook adequate lighting in
your refinishing plan. A basement is like-
ly one area of the house that has limited
natural light pouring in. With tradition-
ally small windows, or no windows at all,
a basement needs ample lighting in its
design scheme. This may include a com-
bination of overhead and task lighting.
Ample lighting will help the room feel
like part of the house and not just a forgot-
ten storage area.
DO take into consideration moisture
issues in the basement. Many basements
are plagued by moisture issues rang-
ing from water seepage to condensation
forming on walls. These situations may
vary depending on the weather through-
out the year. Certain materials may need
to be used to mitigate water issues before
finishing can take place. The installation
of water-barrier systems, drainage, sump
pumps, or encapsulation products could
drive up the cost of a basement renova-
tion. It is essential to have a professional
assess the basement water issues prior to
starting any finishing work.
DON’T simply cover up potential haz-
ards, such as mold or mildew. Have them
treated instead. Otherwise, you could
have a breeding ground behind drywall
that could lead to unsafe conditions in the
DO have a radon test. Radon is a hid-
den killer that can cause lung cancer.
Because it occurs naturally in the soil and
water surrounding a home and is impos-
sible to detect without a specialized test,
many people are unaware of the presence
of radon until it is too late. Radon may be
more concentrated in the basement, where
the foundation is touching the soil. There-
fore, rule out radon before considering
renovation of a basement area.
DON’T limit furniture choices to one
type. You may need to be flexible in your
furniture choices, even selecting modular
pieces, like sectionals, because entryways
to basements may have small doorways or
obstructions that make adding furniture
DO keep the possibility of flooding in
the back of your head. Homes that are near
waterways or at low elevation may be at
risk of flooding. Basements are especially
susceptible to flood damage. Therefore,
think about the practicality of finishing
a basement if you are prone to flooding.
If you decide to move ahead, take certain
precautionary measures, such as keep-
ing electrical wiring up higher and using
a more water-resistant flooring material,
like tile or vinyl. House important elec-
tronics and items on shelves so they are
not at ground-level.
Finishing a basement is a job that can
add a lot of usable space to a home. Go
about the project in the right way to keep
within budget and have a room that is safe
and functional. Metro News Service
April, 2013 – Spring Home & Garden - 7
How to avoid injuries
while spring cleaning
Cleaning your home from top to bottom this
spring? Do so with care. From falls off ladders
to muscle pain, heavy-duty chores can be haz-
ardous to your health and wellness if you’re
So before you roll up your sleeves and get
into the thick of it, take a moment to review
some essential safety precautions:
Avoid outdoor mishaps
When mowing the lawn, wear sturdy, closed-toe shoes. Clear your lawn of stones,
toys and other potentially hazardous debris before you begin, to prevent flying objects.
Keep children away from your yard while you’re mowing.
Reduce the risk of a ladder fall by always using a stable ladder. Be sure to use the
correct height ladder for the job and follow all weight restrictions. Only set ladders on
level surfaces. Pay close attention to what you’re doing and climb up and down the
ladder slowly and deliberately.
Treat muscles right
From lawn work to scrubbing floors, unusual repetitious motions can really take a
toll, resulting in muscle pain or bruising. Treat your spring clean like a workout and
stretch your major muscle groups before you get started.
When lifting those boxes in your basement and any other objects with heft, bend at
the knees to avoid throwing your back out. If a chore is causing you pain, stop what
“Start out slowly to avoid placing a sudden demand on your muscles that are not use
to this activity,” says Dr. Anne Meyer, who focuses on sports rehabilitation medicine.
If you feel stiff or sore after a long day of reaching, bending and lifting, Dr. Meyer
recommends minimizing physical activity, elevating an injured arm or leg, and treat-
ing the first sign of muscle pain by applying a quick absorbing topical muscle pain
reliever. Pain management tips can be found at www.arnicare.com.
Remember to take frequent breaks. And end your long day with a relaxing bath.
Cleaning products can be extremely stringent, causing irritation to your eyes, nose
and throat. If opting for natural alternatives, such as vinegar or lemons is not an option,
use the harsher stuff with care.
Open all windows when using harsh cleaning products, especially ammonia. Wear
gloves and consider protecting your nose and mouth with a surgical mask. Place prod-
ucts out of reach when you’re not using them if you have pets or small children.
By following a few safety measures, you can make your spring clean a rejuvenating
1828 Sandhill Road • Oregon, WI 53575
Support local agriculture -
buy direct from the grower!
OPENING SOON WATCH FOR ADS
Wisconsin’s Premier Grower of
Quality Annual & Perennial Bedding
Plants and Hanging Baskets
Get your air conditioning
ready for warm weather
When the weather heats up, your heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC)
system quickly becomes a most valuable player in your home life and stays that way
for several months.
However, the U.S. Census Bureau estimates that more than 3 million HVAC sys-
tems fail each year. Do you know if it’s time to maintain, repair or replace your air
“Air conditioning is a big investment in your home. Learning what maintenance
steps you can take on your own and what questions to ask your air conditioning con-
tractor, can save you time, money and keep you comfortable this season,” says Frank
Landwehr, Vice President of Emerson Climate Technologies, a major provider of
equipment used in heating, ventilation, air conditioning and refrigeration systems.
Remember, not all maintenance needs to be outsourced. Here are some preventive
tasks to take that can extend the life of air conditioning equipment:
• Change air filters: A general rule is to change indoor ductwork filters every three
months or at the beginning of every heating and cooling season. Ensure the filter is
sized correctly, fitting snuggly.
• Keep the outdoor unit clean: Keep coils free of debris by hosing off with light
pressure. Any bushes or shrubs should be trimmed back away from the unit.
• Let air flow: Maintain a reliable airflow to reduce moisture buildup which can
lead to mold. Keep vents open. Similarly, keep internal doors open inside your
home to maintain air flow.
• Clean duct grills: Annually, clean the vents and grills at the opening of each duct
in every room by lifting the grill out of the floor, wiping with a rag or vacuuming
to remove dust and debris.
• Keep condensate drain open: A stopped up condensate line can lead to expensive
water damage. Keep the drain line clean and the drain tube open and clear to pre-
Good maintenance will only get you so far. Eventually, your equipment will need to
be replaced. Landwehr offers these tips for when that time comes:
• Hire wisely: Even the best equipment won’t provide comfort if it’s not sized and
installed properly. Hire only a certified A/C technician you trust. Also, remember
that not all contractors will carry the brand you want. Determine what features and
comfort level you want so you can identify a contractor that can fill your need.
• Educate yourself: You can make smarter investment decisions if you’re speaking
the same language as your contractor and they understand what you want. You can
hone your A/C knowledge online at fact-based, objective resources like www.AC-
• Save money: A few features can go a long way toward maximizing energy efficien-
cy, saving you money in the long run. Use a programmable thermostat to avoid wast-
ing money on cooling costs when no one is home. Also, consider a high efficiency
air conditioner with a Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio (SEER) rating of above 16.
This season, keep your cool. Take the time to maintain, repair and replace your A/C
equipment when necessary.
8 - Spring Home & Garden – April 2013
Cultivate an herb garden
Many people cultivate gardens both inside and outside
of their homes with a focus on adding aesthetic appeal
to their property. But a garden that boasts plants that are
edible and pleasing to the eye is a possibility as well.
Planting an herb garden is a creative way to enjoy the
sights, smells and tastes of a wide variety of plants. Using
fresh-harvested herbs in culinary endeavors imparts a
taste that dried spices cannot match. What’s more, fresh
herbs are often easy to cultivate.
Herbs are versatile, capable of lending great flavor to
foods while also playing different roles in personal health
and beauty. Herbs can be grown to perfume homes and
bodies. There are herbs that are also purported to help
with ailments, from upset stomachs to anxiety.
When planting an herb garden, you may want to pay
particular attention to the types of flavors and smells you
like in your home and cooking. This will help you to nar-
row down the types of herbs you will plant. Many would-
be herb gardeners tend to start small to see what luck they
have when cultivating herbs. Fortunately, herbs can grow
well in containers indoors, provided the soil is amenable
and there is plenty of sunlight.
Herbs will grow best in well-prepared soil. Make sure
that it is rich in organic matter and drains well. Also, for
plants like parsley, be sure to have deep pots or dig deep-
ly in the garden to establish long taproots.
Until the weather warms up, you may want to begin
herb cultivation indoors and then transfer plants outside
during the summer. Basil, for instance, is a tropical plant
that does well in warm conditions. Therefore, it will need
to be kept away from drafts and get several hours of direct
sunshine a day. Place most herb planters in a south-facing
window of a home to ensure they get ample sunlight and
to allow the soil to dry adequately between waterings.
With many herbs, leaf production will diminish on any
stems that flower. It is essential to pinch off flowers that
form to encourage the herb plant to continue producing
leaves, which are the parts of the plant most associated
with seasoning and aroma. Metro News Service
Fire pits can make a yard more inviting
Sitting around an open fire outdoors is
a centuries-old tradition. Not only does
fire provide warmth and light, but also it
offers a relaxing setting for conversation
The outdoor fire pit has transformed the
concept of backyard entertaining. Home-
owners understand how a fire pit can add
value to a home and make their yard an
inviting place to be on a summer evening
or a chilly autumn night.
Outdoor fire pits are a relatively new
creation that continue to grow in populari-
ty. Once available strictly through special-
ty retailers, fire pits can now be found on
the shelves of many home improvement
and big box stores as well as online.
Fire pits can add a lot to a home’s exte-
rior entertaining area. Some fire pit styles
and materials will last longer than others.
Homeowners should assess their needs
and the space available before choosing a
fire pit for their home.
First, homeowners must decide if they
want a permanent or portable fire pit. If
you are ready to make an enduring change
to your yard and landscape, then a perma-
nent fire pit is the way to go. These can be
made of stone or brick and are often very
durable. Permanent fire pits can be incor-
porated into landscape designs to create a
professional patio look. They’re also some
of the safer types of fire pits because they
cannot be knocked over and the bricks or
retaining wall construction provide a bar-
rier around the fire.
Portable fire pits are freestanding units
that can be moved around the yard on a
whim. They also can be loaded into the car
and taken to a neighbor’s house or even
to the beach. Portable fire pits are less
expensive than permanent models, and
some homeowners prefer a trial run with
a portable pit before deciding to install a
Portable fire pits are made of metal and
usually coated with a fireproof paint. Over
time, exposure to the elements can cause
the metal to rust or weaken, something
homeowners should consider prior to pur-
Homeowners also must consider a fuel
source. Wood is a common fuel source
for fire pits. Wood can be inexpensive,
especially when gathered from around
the yard. However, a wood-burning fire
will constantly have to be fed with new
branches. If you want to have a roaring
fire but don’t want to maintain it, then a
gas-fueled fire pit is better. Natural gas
fire pits can run off of a portable propane
tank (think barbecue tank) or be directly
connected to a home’s natural gas supply.
Now you can decide on the style. Gas
fire pits will give you a greater number of
design options, but there are still plenty of
choices with wood fire pits. From bowl-
shaped pits to rectangular-shaped pits to
barrel-style pits to chimineas, there are
designs to fit most preferences and size
Once you have chosen a fire pit, safety
should prevail. Here are some tips to con-
• Keep the fire pit away from the home
and objects that can burn. Maintain
a safe distance from the fire pit at all
• The best place to have the fire pit is
on hard stone, cement or tile. Portable
fire pits can be placed on patio stones
in the lawn.
• Use a screen to keep embers and
sparks from escaping during use.
• Keep children a good distance away
from the fire pit and always supervise
when the pit is in use.
• Make sure the fire is completely extin-
guished before going in for the night.
• Do not use any accelerants to make the
fire bigger or light faster.
• Buy a vinyl cover to protect the fire pit
from the elements when not in use.
Metro News Service
Plumbing & glass service, inc.
Need A New Outdoor Faucet or Plumbing for Spring?
• New Residential Installation • Commercial Plumbing Installation
• Contract & Repair • Plumbing Fixtures
• Garbage Disposals • Water Heaters
• Water Softeners • Well Pump Installation & Repair
• Power Sewer & Drain Cleaning • Window & Screen Repairs
• Mirrors & Glass Cut To Size
Quality Service Since 1968
Ken and Joyce Buczak
221 S. Main Street, Verona • www.plumbingandglass.com
STRUcK & iRWin fence
A TRUSTED NAME FOR OVER 75 YEARS
• CHAIN LINK • CEDAR • VINYL
• ORNAMENTAL IRON & ALUMINUM
• all styles • many colors
• any size job, anywhere
• fence repairs
• Quality Materials
• Professional Installation
• Competitive Prices
Smoke & Carbon Monoxide Detector Installation • Service Upgrades
Remodels & Additions • Electrical Repairs • Custom Home Construction
118 North Main Street, Verona, WI 53593
Your Hometown Electricians!
to the Pros!
Spring is the second best time to replace
the dead grass in your yard!
For All Your Landscaping Needs
Call Steve (608) 835-6794
Many people like to plant basil when starting herb gardens.
April, 2013 – Spring Home & Garden - 9
Ten lucky home decor trends for 2013
(BPT) - Despite its negative reputation, the number
13 doesn’t always have to be unlucky. Take these top 10
decor trends for 2013 from design experts, manufacturers
and trend forecasters across the country. They’re fresh,
fun and sure to bring good fortune to any home.
A splash of color
Industry leader Pantone’s annual fashion color report
sets the tone for home decor as well as clothing, and the
spring 2013 report is no exception. Its softer-hued palette
of Dusk Blue, Lemon Zest, African Violet, Grayed Jade,
Linen and Tender Shoots is emboldened by Monaco Blue,
Poppy Red, Emerald and Nectarine. Marc Thee, founder
of the No. 1 residential interior design firm in the coun-
try, also sees a move toward pure color palettes such as
cream and sea glass, khaki and white, or neutral with a
pop of yellow.
Not your mama’s wallpaper
Repositionable wallpaper is a decorating mainstay,
says Todd Imholte, president of Murals Your Way, whose
website, www.muralsyourway.com, is the top online des-
tination for wall murals worldwide. The company’s 10
collections of peel-and-stick wallpaper are available in
such themes as Vintage, Dots, Flower Prints and Most-
ly Modern, and can be removed and reused hundreds of
times without losing their adhering qualities. Because
the company offers color matching, customers can match
their repositionable wallpaper to an existing paint color,
updated decor or the new Pantone color palette.
Cooking up smart ideas
Next year’s contemporary kitchen will include Euro-
pean frameless laminate cabinetry, multi-tasking appli-
ances, hands-free faucets, and increased smartphone and
tablet functionality, according to Jamie Gold, a certified
independent kitchen and bath designer in San Diego,
Calif. Value-oriented remodels will remain popular, she
predicts, with homeowners incorporating existing floor-
ing, fixtures, cabinets and/or appliances into their design
plans to save money and retain favorite design elements.
Let it shine
Jeff Dross, senior product manager of Kichler Light-
ing, says energy-efficient LED products will continue to
dominate lighting, and will be prevalent in coves, tray
ceilings, toekicks, and under and above cabinets. Chrome
and polished nickel will appeal to the emerging “Y” gen-
eration and baby boomers modernizing their retirement
homes. Tall, slender outdoor lanterns in contemporary,
cottage and transitional styles will work well for those in
smaller urban spaces.
Susan Goldstick of Susan Goldstick, Inc. predicts home
furnishings will also shine in 2013. New metals such as
rose gold and gun metal will be mixed, and pierced, ham-
mered and oxidized textural metals will be especially
popular. Vendors will add metal to their wood pieces, and
faux animal print metalics will provide texture and reflec-
tive light in the textiles arena.
There’s no place like home
Even as the economy shows signs of improving, home-
owners still find comfort in “cocooning” in the warmth
and safety of their homes, says Graeme Smith, conceptual
designer at Second Nature kitchens.- Adding an on-trend
color such as cranberry or velvety chocolate to a soothing
palette of muted tones and delicate detailing creates time-
less interiors, and incorporating vintage pieces fosters a
sense of nostalgia, heritage and solidity.
Woodn’t it be nice?
Next year’s trendy furniture will boast reclaimed wood
or reclaimed-looking synthetic wood, according to Lenny
Kharitonov, president of Unlimited Furniture Group, Inc.
Combinations of wood and metal will be popular, such as
a desk with a wood top and an iron base. Thee also sees
a new freedom to mix metals, linen or stone into wood,
with the juxtaposition of materials and finishes creating a
Watch your step
Lori Kirk-Rolley, senior marketing director at Daltile,
notes that one of the biggest style trends of the year will
be porcelain tile that emulates the look of hardwood in
high-traffic areas, offering the natural beauty of wood
with the long-lasting durability and ease of maintenance
of tile. Rectangular-sized tiles - particularly those in long,
linear plank styles - will remain popular in floor and wall
Back to nature
Consumers’ eco-friendly focus on using organic, sus-
tainable materials will continue into 2013. Orange, Calif.-
based Budget Blinds recommends woven wood shades
made from bamboo, grasses, jute, reeds, rattan and other
natural renewable resources for honest, simple beauty.
Smith suggests using timber and wicker furniture, ribbed
and woven finishes on accessories, and layered wool
throws in the living area of the kitchen to bring a sense of
the outdoor into the home.
You can judge a
book by its cover
Exterior design and landscaping say just as much about
a home as its interior architectural counterparts. Artist and
designer Pablo Solomon touts stone, concrete and brick
that blend into the environment, requires little upkeep,
and is superior weather susceptible wood decks, rust-
prone metals and dulling plastics. He also sees increased
use of eco-friendly native plants to save water and reduce
10 - Spring Home & Garden – April 2013
Using bold paint colors can spice up your home
Paint is one of the least expensive and
most versatile means to changing the look
of a room. According to the experts from
“This Old House,” 60 percent of the col-
ors of a home that visitors perceive come
from the paint on the walls. Choosing a
color scheme can be challenging, which
is why so many people stick with neutrals
like beige and white. For those who are
ready to add a spark of color, there are a
few guidelines to consider.
Color theory is a science and there are
rules of using color that are taught as early
as a child’s first foray into art class. We
know there are primary, secondary and
complementary colors on the color wheel.
Even novice home decorators can do well
with color if they use the color wheel as
According to HGTV, color should flow
throughout a house. Every room need not
be painted the same color. However, col-
ors should be complementary enough that
they flow into one another. Don’t paint
one room in child’s basic primary colors,
while painting other rooms in jewel tones
and pastels. Stick with one theme and car-
ry it through the house.
Once you have decided to use a bold
color, first find your color inspiration.
Color combinations that appear in nature
are more readily accepted by people, so
look for an item in nature, such as a sea-
shell or a flowering plant that you can
base your color choices on. Others pull
inspiration from a particular design item.
For instance, maybe an area rug strikes
your fancy. Use colors that appear in the
rug in the room.
Keep in mind that using bold color
doesn’t mean you have to paint every wall
from ceiling to floor in that color. Rather,
if you’re just starting out with bold colors,
select one wall to serve as an accent wall.
Use that wall as your bold canvas and
paint it with your chosen hue.
Some people like to experiment with
a more flashy color in a smaller space.
If you’re nervous about beginning in the
living room or kitchen, how about trying
out bold color in a smaller space, such as
a powder room? A more intimate space
might seem less overwhelming when
painted in a bold color. Go for a deep pur-
ple or another jeweled tone. However, try
to avoid greens in the bathroom, as they
may reflect off of the mirror and cast a
hue onto your face that makes you look
unwell. Pinks and peaches will shed a rosy
If you will be incorporating comple-
mentary colors into the room, use the
paint color swatch as your guide. Most
paint manufacturers use three or four dif-
ferent shades on one sample card. When
selecting a complementary shade, be sure
to pick from the same tone on the card.
That means if you’re choosing the dark-
est of color #1 from a card, you’ll want to
choose the darkest from color #2.
Another idea is to leave walls neutral
and use bold color on design accents. For
example, designers at marthastewart.com
recommend painting the inside of niches,
shelves or cabinets with glass doors in
bright tones and the outside white to cre-
ate an eye-catching space without going
overboard. Put a bold color on moulding
or use an appliance or a fixture in a bright
color as your splash of boldness.
Remember to have balance. If you will
be painting an entire room in a bold color,
think about having the other decor items
in neutral colors. Sofas and rugs should be
neutral colors, or consider toning down a
vibrant color with the use of white mold-
ing or baseboards.
All it may take is a little inspiration to
get started on fun, inviting color schemes
in the home. Furniture store Raymour &
Flanigan offers a handy design tool for
incorporating different colors into a space.
Find ideas at www.raymourflanigan.com/
Larsen Landscape, Inc
We are a premier landscape company renowned in the industry
for continuously providing great service and results.
• Spring Clean Up • Hardscapes Installation & Repair • Seeding & Sod Installation
• Decorative Stone & Bark Installation • Yard Renovation • Landscape Design & Construction
Our backyards and outdoor rooms are extensions of the home. Let us help beautify them for you!
(608) 424-3306 • www.larsenlandscaping.com
Tim Andrews Horticulturist, LLC
Plant Health Care
Insect & Disease Control
Unique Landscape Design & Installation
Gardening & Maintenance
Personalized Lawn Care
Invasive Species Control
Herbicide & Pesticide Application
2804 Waubesa Ave.
Madison, WI 53711
Caring for our Green World since 1978
Did you know?
More and more homeowners
embracing a relatively new way
to shower. Walk-in, or walk-
behind, showers are doorless
structures that are designed to
give the shower a more open
look. Walk-in showers are often
appear larger than more tradi-
tional showers, and those that
do take up more space do so to
prevent water from spraying
around the room. Though walk-
in showers do not have doors,
they do employ a glass parti-
tion to keep water in. Walk-in
showers often give a bathroom a
more modern look, but their role
is more than aesthetic. In fact,
many seniors find it is easier to
get in and out of a walk-in show-
er, something that could reduce
their risk of falling and suffering an injury. Metro News Service
April, 2013 – Spring Home & Garden - 11
Pros and cons of open floor plans
Open floor plans have evolved to be
the floor plan of choice in new homes and
current home renovations. Turn on a home
renovation show, and you’re likely to see
eager homeowners knocking down walls
to open the kitchen to the family room.
Walls have become anathema to home-
There are many supporters of the open
floor plan, particularly those who entertain
frequently or like to keep an eye on chil-
dren throughout the house. Although open
floor plans are touted, there are plenty of
people who have never been enamored
with having all of their rooms flowing into
one. There also are some people who pre-
fer a different style.
For those who are not fans of the open
floor plan, blame the excess of the 1980s
for their inception. In homes built in the
1960s and 1970s, rooms were compart-
mentalized and isolated for specific activi-
ties. During the 1980s, an era of “bigger
is better,” when entertaining was widely
popular among homeowners, designers
noticed that many homeowners preferred
an open floor plan in which rooms merged
into one another, creating the illusion of
more space. These floor plans also enable
people to be in separate rooms and still
interact with one another across the space.
A home’s floor plan largely depends
on the preference of the homeowner.
There are many advantages to having an
open floor plan versus one that is more
compartmentalized. Here is a look at some
of the pros and cons.
Pro: Open floor plans can be safer for
parents of young children. If the home
opens up with the living spaces branching
off from the kitchen, parents can keep an
eye on children while the parents prepare
dinner. It also eliminates the number of
places that kids can hide and get into mis-
Con: Privacy is reduced in a home with
few walls. Much in the way that an open
floor plan enables children to be seen
from every angle, it also enables you to be
seen – and all of your belongings as well.
There’s also no place to retreat to if you
need a minute to collect yourself when
entertaining. You’re on display unless you
retreat to the bathroom.
Pro: Entertaining can be easier in a
home with an open floor plan because
hosts and hostesses are not separated from
their guests or holed up in the kitchen the
entire time. An open space enables every-
one to mingle and conversations to flow.
Con: Those who like to host events
without showing guests all of their dirty
dishes or secrets of the kitchen may dis-
like an open floor plan.
Pro: Light can flow effectively through
an open space, minimizing dark rooms
and reducing the need to install more
windows. Light in and of itself can help a
home feel more spacious.
Con: While light can flow easily, so
can sound. Noises through the house may
be amplified. A student doing homework
in the dining room may be disturbed by
the television blaring in the family room.
Talking on the phone or even finding a
quiet nook to read a book may be chal-
Pro: Open floor plans allow for more
family time together in one space than a
home with a more compartmentalized lay-
Con: People who are collectors or who
have a lot of furniture or accent items may
find that open floor plans do not work well
with this type of design mantra.
Pro: Because several rooms run into
one another, color choices for walls and
furnishings in a home with an open floor
plan can be limited and cohesive, making
Con: On the flip side, those who want
to incorporate different color schemes and
eclectic styles may have difficulty decid-
ing on where to “end” rooms or how to co-
mingle furniture. Metro News Service
Various materials can be used to pave a driveway
When renovating a home, many homeowners look to
increase the home’s curb appeal. “Curb appeal” is a term
used to describe how the home’s exterior appears to buy-
ers the moment they pull up to the curb. A home that
impresses prospective buyers before they even go inside
is said to have a strong curb appeal, and that curb appeal
can add significant value to a home.
Homeowners looking to improve the curb appeal of
their home can do so in a variety of ways. One often over-
looked yet effective way to make a home’s exterior more
appealing is to revamp the driveway. Driveways may not
be high on a homeowner’s renovation totem pole, but a
cracked or unsightly driveway can give prospective buy-
ers the impression that a home has not been properly
taken care of. When addressing a driveway, homeowners
have a host of paving materials at their disposal.
Asphalt is an affordable paving material, which likely
plays a role in its popularity among homeowners. Asphalt
is also easy to install and requires little maintenance, two
additional benefits to homeowners who don’t have much
time to install or look after their driveway. Asphalt is
made from a combination of concrete, gravel and tar, and
though it’s easy and affordable to install, asphalt, as any
kid can tell you, can get awfully hot under the summer
sun. Asphalt can also crack rather easily, so homeowners
must weigh its immediate affordability against the likeli-
hood that perhaps it will need to be replaced sooner than
Brick is among the more expensive paving materials,
as brick is a labor-intensive material to install. But brick
allows homeowners to create distinctive patterns that can
add quite a bit to a home’s curb appeal. Once installed,
brick driveways don’t require much maintenance, though
cracked bricks will need to be replaced.
Cobblestone can be very pleasing to the eye, but
that aesthetic appeal won’t come cheap. Among the
more expensive paving materials, cobblestone can also
be a handful to maintain, as weeds can penetrate the
cobblestones rather easily. Loose or missing stones can
be unsightly and will need to be replaced.
Many homeowners who love the look of cobblestone
choose to use it along walkways or on their patios, as
these areas won’t require as much materials, saving both
money and the time it takes to maintain the cobblestones.
Concrete is perhaps the ideal paving material for the
homeowner who wants to express his or her individuality.
That’s because concrete driveways can be laid in a vari-
ety of colors and designs, adding a touch of personality in
a place many homeowners likely thought such expression
Though affordable, concrete can fall victim to the ele-
ments, as extremely cold temperatures can cause the con-
crete to shift and ultimately crack. Concrete pavers can
remedy this problem, though that will add to the overall
cost of the project.
A gravel driveway can give a home a historical look
that few of today’s homes can boast. Gravel is an afford-
able material that requires little maintenance, though
weeds can grow through gravel and must be removed to
maintain the driveway’s appeal. Washout is a concern for
some who want a gravel driveway, but edging the drive-
way with a material like timber or bluestone can prevent
the gravel from washing away should heavy rains fall.
Metro News Service
119 W. Verona Avenue
Family Owned for 40 Years
*Instant Savings amount available as mail-in savings for non-ACE Rewards members. Offer available through 4/30/13
Super Turf Builder
Weed & Feed
Covers 5,000 sq. ft. 7317191
Limit 4 at this price.
15,000 sq. ft. 7317217…$50.99,
$41.99 after $9 Instant Savings.*
Limit 4 at this price.
4-Step Annual Program
Covers 5,000 sq. ft. Crabgrass Preventer Plus
Fertilizer, Weed Control Plus Fertilizer, Lawn
Fertilizer and Winterizer. 7287154
Limit 2 at this price.
15,000 sq. ft., 7287162…
45 Instant Savings.*
Limit 2 at this price.
Super Turf Builder
Covers 5,000 sq. ft. 7316961
Limit 4 at this price.
15,000 sq. ft. 7317043…$61.99,
$52.99 after $9 Instant Savings.*
Limit 4 at this price.
A well-maintained driveway can add to a home’s curb appeal.
12 - Spring Home & Garden – April 2013
Service & Rental
Just west of Rimrock on Beltline
Skid Steer . . . . . . . . .3700 lb.
Back Spears . . . . . . . . . . . . .
BX Sub-Compact Hydrostatic Tractor
3-point PT. PTO Loader
April 4, 5 & 6, 2013
Everything On Sale!
Thurs. & Fri. 8am-5pm, Sat. 8am-2pm
4-wheel suspension mower
8 mph high speed
Zoom 42" . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Zoom 50" . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Zoom XL54 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Zoom HP60 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Speed & Comfort
Equipment Sales, Service & Rental
Just west of Rimrock on Beltline
Service & Rental
Just west of Rimrock on Beltline
Service & Rental
Just west of Rimrock on Beltline
Parts & Service
I27 54" . . . . . . . . . . . . .
I24 48" . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Hydro Gear 3100 Transmission
Briggs Commercial Turf Series
Service & Rental
Just west of Rimrock on Beltline
Service & Rental
Just west of Rimrock on Beltline
$0 down, 0% A.P.R. ﬁnancing for terms up to 48 months on purchases of select new Kubota models from available inventory at participating dealers through 5/31/2013. Dealer participation required. Example: A 48-month monthly installment repayment term at 0% A.P.R.
requires 48 payments of $20.83 per $1,000 borrowed. 0% A.P.R. interest is available to customers if no dealer documentation preparation fee is charged. Dealer charge for document preparation fee shall be in accordance with state laws. Only Kubota and select Kubota
performance-matched Landpride equipment is eligible. Inclusion of ineligible equipment may result in a higher blended A.P.R. Not available for Rental, National Accounts or Governmental customers. 0% A.P.R. and low rate ﬁnancing may not be available with customer instant
rebate (C.I.R.) offers. Financing is available through Kubota Credit Corporation, U.S.A., 3401 Del Amo Blvd., Torrance, CA 90503; subject to credit approval. Some exceptions apply. Offer expires 5/31/2013. See us for details on these and other low-rate options or go to www.
kubota.com for more information.
$0 down, 0% A.P.R. ﬁnancing for terms up to 60 months on purchases of select new Kubota equipment from available inventory at participating dealers through 5/31/2013. Example: A 60-month monthly installment repayment term at 0% A.P.R. requires 60 payments of $16.67 per $1,000 borrowed. 0% A.P.R. interest is available
to customers if no dealer documentation preparation fee is charged. Dealer charge for document preparation fee shall be in accordance with state laws. Only Kubota and select Kubota performance-matched Land Pride and equipment is eligible. Inclusion of ineligible equipment may result in a higher blended A.P.R. Not available
for Rental, National Accounts or Governmental customers. 0% A.P.R. and low rate ﬁnancing may not be available with customer instant rebate (C.I.R.) offers. Financing is available through Kubota Credit Corporation, U.S.A., 3401 Del Amo Blvd., Torrance, CA 90503; subject to credit approval. Some exceptions apply. Offer expires
5/31/2013. See us for details on these and other low-rate options or go to www.kubota.com for more information.