Holiday-Inspired Outdoor Decorating that Lasts

Dress up your front porch and yard with these holiday outdoor decorating ideas that last from the first days of fall through the New Year. They look great on a porch or just outside your door.

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Outdoor Christmas Decorating Ideas

Make the outside of your home as ready for the holiday season as the inside with these outdoor Christmas decorating ideas. Our holiday decorating ideas, including beautiful Christmas greenery, festive light displays, and more, are sure to get your yard Christmas-ready.

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Grow Beautiful Amaryllis

Amaryllis flowers are easy to grow from bulbs and great for adding color to your holiday decor.

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Deer-Resistant Shade Plants

Gardening in the shade where deer are plentiful can be a challenging situation. But there are plants that thrive in the shade that aren't tempting to hungry deer. Although no plant can be considered completely deer-resistant, here's a list of shade dwellers that most deer avoid. Plus, we've added some fun facts about deer that might help you understand them better.

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Shrubs with Winter Interest

A winter landscape has a beauty all its own. An unexpected plant feature -- winter blooms that perfume the air, bright berries, colorful or textured foliage or unusual bark -- add a welcome element to gardens. These winter shrubs will not disappoint.

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Tips for Moving Plants Indoors

Here's a handy guide for moving your favorite plants inside once the weather turns cold.

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Choosing a Lawn-Care Service

Even if you love cutting your own lawn, it helps to use a reputable service when you're away.

Taking care of your lawn can be a chore. Maintaining a good stand of turf requires mowing, trimming, fertilizing, and heading off or curing problems. If you'd rather leave the job up to someone else, consider hiring a lawn care service.

The tips below can ensure that the company you hire will do the job right.

Undecided between a lawn service and lawn mower? Here's how to find the right mower for you.

  • Decide what you want from a service. Most offer fertilizing, weed and lawn-damaging pest control, aerating, mowing, and small tree and shrub maintenance.
  • Inquire about the company's philosophy and methods. Do they use long-acting fertilizers? (That's good). Do they routinely spray for pests or problems that you haven't experienced? (That may be bad.) Do they check you soil before recommending a fertilization program? (Another good sign.)
  • Talk to neighbors who use lawn services. This is a good way to determine which services operate in your area and to get a homeowner's recommendations.
  • Request a lawn inspection and a free estimate of service costs from the company. Beware of companies that quote guaranteed annual prices without having seen your lawn.
  • Ask about prices and what services are included. Some companies require a yearly contact; others work on verbal agreements that can be discontinued by the customer at any time. Find out what happens if you have a problem between applications. Will there be a charge for these service calls?
  • Check to see if you can save money by paying an annual fee up front. This method is more convenient than paying after each treatment.
  • Understand what services the company is proposing to provide before work starts. Find out what treatments are included, approximately when they will be applied, and what results can be expected.
  • Find out what is guaranteed. Some will assure performance, and others will refund your money if the work is unsatisfactory.
  • Make sure the service is licensed to apply lawn-care products as required by your state.
  • Check with your local Better Business Bureau to find more information on a specific lawn-care company's service record.

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