Home and Garden

  • Tree tunnels can take your breath away

    I have always loved the way old trees, especially Live Oaks, arch over roads and lawns.

    Every time I drive toward Edisto Island, the loveliness of moss-draped limbs hanging overhead gives me goosebumps.

    Years ago it was such a thrill to walk under the magnificent trees in front of Oak Alley Plantation near New Orleans, that iconic scene that I had looked at wistfully in magazines for years.

    Both of these places are examples of tree tunnels, roads or paths with trees on both sides forming a canopy overhead.

  • Springtime Lyme disease precautions

    by Judith A. Weeg/President Lyme Disease United Coalition
    Ticks, mosquitoes, biting flies, fleas and mites are capable of carrying Borrelia burgdorferi, or, as it’s more commonly known, Lyme disease.
    Dr. Paul Meade, of the Centers for Disease Control, called Lyme disease an “epidemic” at a 2010 Institute of Medicine meeting.

  • Managing preserves resources

    A few weeks ago as I was buying greeting cards, I noticed this statement on the backs of several: “This card is made with paper from sustainably managed forests.”

    What exactly does that mean?

    Sustainable forest management (SFM) is a complex concept, but essentially its goal is to make certain that the forest resources the world enjoys today will continue to be available in the future.

    SFM promotes practices that generate timber and non-timber forest products with respect for the highest ecological, ethical and social standards.

  • Schoolyard gardeners

    BY Barbara Westbrook
    Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

    “Helping hands and linking arms” describes the recent Day of Service project performed by 19 members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints Lancaster branch. The members assembled five Master-Gro Gold greenhouses.

  • Trees can bring comfort

    Trees can be source of comfort

    Recently my dear friend Lindsay Pettus of Lancaster sent me an article from americanforests.org’s magazine titled, “Finding Strength and Solace in a Tree.”

  • Community garden brings people together

    The onset of warmer weather causes many people to think about gardening, and the Lancaster Community Garden offers gardening opportunities to local residents free of charge.

    From beginner to master gardener, everyone is welcome to take advantage of the garden’s 10-by-20-foot plots, said Elaine McKinney, project manager and garden coordinator.

  • Royal empress tree at center of controversy

    While driving through a Chester County neighborhood recently I was surprised to see a tall tree, perhaps 30 feet high, covered in lavender bell-shaped blossoms.

    I stopped, backed up and sat for several minutes gazing at the unusual sight.

    The person with me offered to ask the property owner, his neighbor, what kind of tree it was.

  • Take a walk back in time

    Walking through the gardens of Terry and Genie Graham is like a stroll back in time. Their home and property located at 8603 Van Wyck Road date back to over 135 years ago.

    Though it has experienced changes over the decades, the yard is still filled with many of the original plants.  By blending  a little of yesterday and today, they have created a beautiful homeplace filled with blooms throughout the year.

    This year they also added a huge bulb garden filled with thousands of tulips, daffodils and hyacinths as well as their first crop of strawberries.

  • Firespotting equipment has evolved over the years

    One of my favorite childhood memories is of hiking a mountain trail in southwest Virginia with my father.

    We were walking along admiring the flowering Mountain Laurel when suddenly we were in a clearing staring up at a very tall fire lookout tower.

    I was fascinated by the idea of someone living so high above the trees scanning the horizon for puffs of smoke.

    For years afterward I secretly dreamed of being that person, the sentinel standing watch over the forest.

  • Plant saucer magnolias facing north

    For the third year in a row the saucer magnolia in our backyard lost hundreds of ready-to-open blooms to sudden below-freezing night temperatures.

    According to Steve Bender writing in “Southern Living,” this is a situation that regularly occurs about two springs in three. Still, it is very disheartening to see the lovely waxy buds that are pinkish-purple outside and white inside turn an unlovely brown. The poor tree will keep trying to replace the frozen blooms for months.