Home Help: Make your tulips last

Staff Writer
Mount Shasta Herald

How to encourage repeat performances in your tulips

Even if you select tulips with perennial tendencies, perennial behavior is not a sure thing. To increase your chances of having a multi-year display, try the following:

- Choose a sunny, well-drained location.

- Plant the bulbs deeply, 8 inches instead of the usual 5.

- Fertilize the bulbs when the foliage pushes through the soil in early spring. Don’t overdo it.

- Remove the spent flowers as soon as the bulbs finish blooming.

- Avoid summer irrigation. Tulips prefer to be dry during their summer dormancy. (ARA)

Decorating Tip: Redecorate bedroom with romance in mind

When imagining a romantic getaway, look no further than your bedroom. A less-expensive and longer-lasting way to spice up your love life and fuel the romantic fire is to focus on the five senses.

- Sight. Psychologists have found that visual stimulants may be the single most important factor when setting the mood. So when preparing your bedroom for a romantic rendezvous, liven it up with a splash of color. Variations of red, purple and orange work best to stimulate passion. 

- Touch. The texture of bed linens is also an important factor to consider. Avoid anything too rough or coarse on the skin, and stick to sheets with a higher thread count. Stay away from heavy fabrics like flannel that can generate unnecessary heat. Consider soft accent pillows or blankets in a material like chenille.

- Scent. Scented candles or fragrant oils are great for creating a memorable atmosphere. Sprinkle the bed with rose petals for a softer, floral scent or dress up the room with hints of lavender, citrus or jasmine - all known to arouse the senses. But don't go overboard.

- Sound. Music is another way to create atmosphere in the bedroom, but choose wisely. The songs or genres you pick can affect the type of mood you want to create. (ARA)

Did You Know …

To make a strong, chemical-free glass cleaner, mix one-fourth of a cup of vinegar, one quart of water and one tablespoon of corn starch. If that doesn’t do it, you can also try adding several drops of lemon juice.

Garden Guide

Did you plant a wildflower garden this year but aren’t sure what to do come autumn? Well all you have to do is watch. Don’t pull the wildflowers when they start to die – they will reseed themselves for next spring.

Home Improvements: Consider LED lights

Light Emitting Diode (LED) technology provides homes with beautiful illumination while reducing the negative environmental impact of traditional bulbs. Here's why it is fast becoming the leading eco-friendly choice:

- LED lights provide light that will last 20 times longer than a traditional incandescent bulb and five times longer than a compact fluorescent bulb. Each light is estimated to last 50,000 hours.

- Incandescent and fluorescent bulbs consume substantially more energy than LEDs. LED options generate almost no heat and consume a whopping 85 percent less energy than incandescents and 50 percent less than flourescents.

- Because the LED lights last so long, there is less waste going into landfills. And unlike compact fluorescent bulbs, these lights do not contain mercury. (ARA)

Backyard Buddies

Some tips from on providing a water source for birds:

Birds are attracted to the sound of dripping or running water. Adding this type of action to your water helps to attract more birds into your yard. Drippers can be placed in any pool of water that your birds drink or bathe in. Misters can be suspended above a birdbath or in a tree. Adding a dripper or mister to your water source will also keep your water fresher.

GateHouse News Service