Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Organic pest control

Someone left a comment on one of my posts asking the question . . .
"how do I keep bugs from eating my basil?"

I'm an organic gardener and don't use chemicals in my garden, especially on herbs and vegetables.

There are several recipes that I've used to control pests, but the one that is very simple . . . a squirt of dishwashing liquid in a gallon of water (do not use Dawn or any other grease cutting dishwashing liquid). You can also add a teaspoon of cooking oil to make it stick to the leaves of the plant.

Something else I have learned is spray the plant with plain water with the spray nozzle on the hose . . . the spray of water will knock the bugs off the plant.

The key is to keep the leaves clean and check your plants often.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Screening with container plants

Container gardens can add a green privacy screen to a balcony or an open area.

A trellis gives vines a structure to grow on and stakes added to the bottom of the trellis help support it on the outside of the planting box. Trellises and stakes should be attached to the containers with galvanized bolts.

Water-sealed redwood and cedar are good choices for planter boxes. To help them last longer, line boxes with landscape fabric which has the added benefit of preventing soil from washing out the drainage holes. After the fabric is in place, add a mixture of half potting soil and half compost. Fill the box to within 10" from the rim.

Select a fast-growing evergreen vine to cover the trellis. Once you've selected a vine, remove it carefully from the nursery container, and place the back of the stake supporting the vine against the trellis. Cut away the plant ties from the support stake, and disentangle the vine. Tie each stem to the trellis, fanning out the stems as you go.

If you like, add other plants to your container for additional color and interest. Make sure the additions have growing requirements similar to those of the vine.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Disney to close Pleasure Island nightclubs



SEPTEMBER 28, 2008

After nearly 20 years in operation, Disney's Pleasure Island is undergoing a major overhaul, including the closure of the Adventurer's Club, Comedy Warehouse, 8 Traxx, Motion, Mannequins and BET Sound Stage . . . The Rock 'n' Roll Beach Club closed as of February 3, 2008.

Pleasure Island is a section of the Walt Disney World Resort within the Downtown Disney shopping, dining and entertainment district. Pleasure Island officially opened May 1, 1989, and will officially close on September 27, 2008.

From 1990 through New Year's Eve 2005, Pleasure Island celebrated New Year's Eve with a fireworks show every night at midnight.

On June 27, 2008, the Walt Disney World Resort announced that over the next two years, Disney will replace all of Pleasure Island's nightclubs with new stores and restaurants.

Disney denied rumors that the changes are due to a drop in attendance at Pleasure Island, stating instead that the company is responding to guest feedback asking for more family friendly experiences.

Although it has been a very long time since I have visited Walt Disney World, there was a time when JR and I visited at least twice a month. As annual passholders of Walt Disney World, we wanted to get our money's worth . . . and we did!

Since JR passed away, I have not had the desire to visit and I had no idea that the concept of "every night is New Year's Eve" had been abandoned. Pleasure Island had to be the most festive party atmosphere I ever experienced.

Mannequins was my favorite dance club and many fond memories came back to me when I read that it still exists . . . at least until September of this year. Being the dance music freak that I am and a huge lover of dance clubs, Mannequins was the ultimate place to dance, enjoy music and be entertained.

The name "mannequins" set the scene for live mannequins staged throughout the club. One minute you would swear they were a mannequin and the next minute they would come to life, complete with a spotlight on them as they danced to the music. At least that was how it was back in the day when we partied there quite often.

Pleasure Island was also the home of one of my all time favorite restaurants on the Disney property . . . Fireworks Factory, which has been long gone. The comfort food served there was among the best that I have ever had . . . BBQ pork ribs that would fall off the bone, the best fresh cornbread ever and the most to die for brownie hot fudge sundae ever. Even if we were visiting on a budget and brought food from the grocery store to eat, we had to visit Fireworks Factory at least for dessert and coffee.

While most of my memories are on video and in my head, I know I have a ton of photos from Pleasure Island that I will scan and post. It brought tears to my eyes to think the place that holds such beautiful memories of awesome times JR and I shared will only be a memory after September.

I'm sure the new stores and restaurants will be as spectacular as everything else on the Disney property, but will not have the memories of those awesome days gone by . . .

If you can visit before it closes and you have never experienced Pleasure Island and the eccentric nightclubs, experience it before they are gone . . . even though every night is no longer New Year's Eve.

Disney's Grand Floridian Hotel turned 20

Walt Disney World's Grand Floridian Hotel turned 20 on July 1.

It is one of my favorite places in the world!

I'll post some photos of the Grand Floridian Hotel
from my vast photo collection from Walt Disney World.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Ready for hurricane season?

As a widow and still getting used to being alone and having the responsibility of everything on my shoulders, the hurricane season is a dreaded time.

Even the fierce afternoon storms are sometimes too much for me as the lightening cracks and winds whip around giving the illusion of all hell breaking loose out there.

Although anxiety sets in and I work myself into a panic . . . that is just me since I am a chronic worry wart . . . I am prepared and that is the most important thing to remember as we are well into the hurricane season.

I wrote an article on hurricane preparedness at Helium . . . click here to go to the article.

Let's pray for a mild season . . .