Home & Garden


Simple tips for easy cleanup

With a few simple tools you’ll be able to keep your kitchen squeaky clean so it can continue to be the favorite hang-out for the entire family. (submitted photo)

From rushed morning breakfasts to hurried dinners, the kitchen is often the busiest room in the home.


Give yourself a gift—or two—before holiday hosting time

The warm cream and rich mocha tones of this backsplash could be at home in a teens, twenties or mid-century modern home. Go for a darker countertop and minimalist shelving for an uncluttered, yet cozy kitchen. (submitted photo)

Tired of worn paint or peeling wallpaper behind sinks and above stoves? Give yourself a new, carefree vista with wall tiles. These add gentle hues of sky-blue, pearl and green that reflect color accents without overwhelming the space. Add a new seamless countertop and a lick of paint on the cabinets and guests will ask “When did you redo this whole kitchen?” (submitted photo)

Ever envy those beautiful homes that seem to get redecorated with every new season? Thinking that the family and friend get-togethers at your home this year deserve an updated setting?


Cold Weather Rule starts Oct. 15

Xcel Energy reminds its Minnesota residential customers who may have trouble paying energy bills that beginning Wednesday, the Cold Weather Rule will be in place to help protect them from service disconnection during the winter — as long as they t


Fall cleaning tips to help rid your home of autumn allergens

New vacuums on the market have high-efficiency particulate air (HEPA) filters, which capture allergens, irritants and pollutants. (submitted photo)

Many people think of allergies as a spring problem, but most sniffle sufferers know that fall can pose its own issues.


What can you remodel in winter? Take a look

This Asian-inspired half-bath converts a tiny footprint into a warm retreat, with rich woods, gold accents and sleek detailing (submitted photo)

Many homeowners think they've "missed" remodeling season once the leaves fall. And, if you're opening holes in your home's exterior or building patios, that may be true.


What's blooming in September?

A range of colors and patternsœ and staying power have made sweet Willam a favorite for generations.

The Extension's recommended Joe Pye is a shorter, more civilized cultivar.

Make room in the bulb garden for some showstopping bulbs, like the lavender globe lily and the autumn lilies featured in the headline.

These are a blanket flower all right.

These are too.

"Wow" is the word for these hardy hibiscus, here in a pure white variety.

Extension video series gets you up close and botanical
Other than the everpresent rose of fall-blooming sedums, which come in shades from pink to rose to burgundy, maybe brick orange if you squint a little, are there any other shades and shapes of fall flowers?
Yes, say University of Minnesota extension educator Karl Foord and professor of horticulture Mary Meyer, Ph.D. How many do you want?
Spring and early summer bloomers get a lot of focus in Minnesota - they're proof we've all survived another winter, for one thing - and each tulip and hyacinth gets its own standing ovation.


Outdoor living spaces add value to a home year-round

A few amenities outdoors add value not only to life in your home but to its attraction to buyers. (submitted photo)

Summer may be ending, but it’s not too late to spruce up your outdoor space. In fact, there are several enhancements that can be made to extend your outdoor living time well in to the fall and even year round.


Revive the charm of mid-century modern design

Clean lines, no clutter and a streamlined silhouettte bring function into the realm of design. (submitted photo)

Mid-century modern inspiration draws from the 1940s through the 1960s, a 20-year span when design was minimal, sleek, elegant and functional.


Easy ways to stay cool, save energy

As we enter the hot days of summer with temperatures over 90 degrees, the Minnesota Department of Commerce, Division of Energy Resources reminds consumers of some simple no-cost or low-cost energy-saving tips to help keep cool, conserve energy, an


Backyard projects to turn the area into a treasured sanctuary

Not many backyards have a visual element, but when one is added, it completely changes the look of the space. (Submitted photo)

You love the days when you can go home from work, open the windows and enjoy dinner out on the deck. And it sure isn’t hard to rise early on those sunny weekend days to spend all day in the backyard.