January 24, 2015

DIY Upholstery: Easy or Impossible?

I have found that people often confuse something being time-consuming, with something being difficult. Upholstery, for example, really isn't that difficult, it's just very time-consuming. If you have a few basic skills, like hammering nails, measuring, and doing some moderate calculations (high school-level stuff), upholstery is really quite easy! Some sewing skills are definitely helpful, but really only necessary for making a cushion cover or throw pillows.

If you don't sew (or don't have a sewing machine) there are other options. You could always ask a friend or hire a professional to do the cushions. Piping and double-welting also require sewing, but are optional in many cases (depends on the look you are going for). You can also purchase pre-made piping and use gimp cording instead of double-welting.

Most of the supplies are available at your local craft store or hardware store. I did order a couple things online, but they were technically optional items. Overall, doing upholstery yourself is much cheaper than hiring someone to do it for you. From what I gather, it can actually cost more to get a piece of furniture reupholstered than it can cost to buy a new piece of furniture. If you're willing to put the time in, doing your own upholstery can save you tons of money and result in one of a kind furniture that you will really enjoy.

Wilder Things

Here are a few of the more unusual plants I'm growing this year for the display beds in the MSU Horticulture Gardens.

June 24, 2014

Garden Day Live Stream Today!

Please join me for the first ever live broadcast preview of the MSU Horticulture Garden's Garden Day! Get tips from Jessica Wright and Daedre Craig (that's me!) to Green up your garden and spice up your meals! Watch Live on the MSUAA LENS Livestream, June 24th at noon!


March 14, 2014

New Batch of Baby Chicks

I picked up a new batch of chicks a couple weeks ago and haven't gotten around to sharing the news yet.

I have 11 chicks at the moment, but only a portion of them will be staying with me (the rest will go to other chicken owners). In the mix are a Buff Orpington, a Silver Laced Wyandotte, and nine Easter Eggers. I decided to keep only Easter Eggers this time. I think it will be fun because they will all look different and it will be a surprise!

Here are some photos of the chicks when they were 2 weeks old.

Easter Egger

Easter Egger

Easter Egger

Buff Orpington

Silver Laced Wyandotte

March 4, 2014

Grow Your Own Pea Shoots (Part 2)

So here's what happened with the peas I soaked and sowed a couple weeks ago.

They started to send up shoots pretty quickly (day 2 or 3 after sowing the pre-sprouted seeds).

I went on vacation for 5 days and when I got back to work, this is how they looked!

The tendrils are very pretty.

I snipped off the shoots and washed them. The shoots were very tasty (they taste just like raw pea pods). I think they would be really elegant in a fancy salad.

I'm going to wait and see if the stubs will re-grow, for a second harvest.

February 28, 2014

Shots from the Greenhouse

It was something like -20F outside this morning (with the windchill), but it's a right around 70F in the greenhouse...a lovely place to work in the cold of winter!

These plants have been potted up by the MSU Horticulture Club, which will be having fundraiser plant sale on April 12 and 13 in the Plant and Soil Sciences Building on MSU's campus. 

Coleus, lots and lots of coleus!


Hypoestes (polka dot plant)

Oxalis and coleus


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