Home & Garden

Bug spray designed with safety in mind

Could this be the end of hard-core chemical warfare against creepie crawlers?

Terminix has introduced a natural pest-control spray called SafeShield made primarily from plant extracts. The spray is designed to target common household pests, including ants, roaches, flies and spiders.

When applied as directed, the product is safe for areas used by children and pets, the manufacturer says. It won’t stain countertops or upholstery and doesn’t have the chemical smell of typical insecticides.

Its active ingredients include thyme oil and geraniol, an alcohol derived from geraniums.

Terminix SafeShield can be ordered at www.safeshield.com for $9.99 plus shipping, handling and any applicable taxes.


Dust off the sewing machine and sharpen the shears. Heather Ross wants to get America sewing again.

Ross is a lifelong sewing enthusiast who designs fabric, fashion projects, sewing patterns and stationery goods. Her new book, “Weekend Sewing,” is intended to inspire people to carve out time for sewing as a creative outlet, as she does.

She filled the book with instructions and patterns for clothing, accessories and home items that can be completed in a few days at most. They’re also things that fit the relaxed feel of a weekend – items such as tote bags, sundresses and comfy pajama pants.

“Weekend Sewing” is published by Stewart, Tabori & Chang and sells for $27.50 in hardcover.


When is the best time to prune an azalea? – Geraldine Jenkins, Newport News, Va.

The Azalea Society of America says the best time is early spring, before the plant puts out new growth. However, you’ll sacrifice blooms for that year.

The next best time is either while the plant is in bloom or just afterward. Don’t prune later than midsummer, or you’ll cut off the buds that start to form shortly after blooming. What’s more, if you wait too long, any new growth that occurs as a result of pruning will be vulnerable to the winter cold.

Mary Beth Breckenridge, Akron (Ohio) Beacon Journal