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Home & Garden


January - February 2021

Grit Magazine has celebrated rural American lifestyles since 1882. Each bimonthly issue combines practical articles, product reviews, do-it-yourself building plans, beautiful photos, reader advice, humor and a healthy dose of fresh attitude to offer a complete guide to life beyond the city limits.

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United States
Ogden Publications, Inc.
6 Issues

in this issue

2 min.
flights of fancy

▪When I wrote this letter, it was still just warm enough in the lower Midwest to finish painting the shed we built last fall. It’s not a large shed by any means, at 5 feet wide and 8 feet long, but it’s plenty large enough to hold gardening tools and supplies, and the mower. As usual, there was lots of on-the-fly modification and running to the hardware store for “one last thing” during the build. Now, I have enough scrap siding pieces and leftover lumber to construct the lean-to chicken coop I’ve been eager to add to our tiny urban farm. With only two people to feed and a rapidly dwindling amount of space in the yard, I’m planning to keep a small flock, probably no more than six hens —…

3 min.
wit & wisdom

Waiting for Flowers Even avid flower gardeners have problems getting plants to bloom in their homes. Houseplants need just the right mix of light, temperature, and humidity for dependable flowering. Light is by far the hardest factor to control indoors. Choose the sunniest room, and place plants that need a lot of light — such as geraniums, crossandras, and kalanchoes — next to a window. Display plants that have lower light requirements, such as begonias and cyclamens, farther back in the room. Homes often lack the humidity that houseplants need, causing buds to dry up. An easy fix is to set potted plants on pebbles in a tray of water to create a moist minienvironment. Most houseplants will flower over a broad range of temperatures, but some have specific requirements. Gardenias, for example, are…

5 min.
hunt for giants

Did you know that trees have their own beauty pageant? Well, they do. In 1940, American Forests (called American Forestry Association at the time) spearheaded the National Register of Champion Trees to locate the largest living trees throughout the United States. The goal was to raise awareness of the importance of preserving mature trees, not only for their beauty, but also for their ability to protect watersheds, absorb greenhouse gases, and provide habitats for wildlife. More than 75 years later, this program is still running strong, with more than 700 Champion Trees registered to date. However, nearly 200 species are still not accounted for, and you can help fill that gap. All you’ll need is a measuring tape, a ruler, and a big tree. You don’t have to look far to…

2 min.
catching up with our social circle

JOIN THE CONVERSATION Sticker Shock for the Home Flock (www.Grit.com/Home-Flock) Kendra Rudd Shatswell: Like the author said, the quality can be more important than the savings. I would much rather put a little more money … in and know how the birds were raised. Travis DeWolfe: There are multiple ways to decrease the cost of this process. We were able to raise fully organic Cornish for significantly less. Pasture raise them, and it’ll cut your feed expense by about 20 percent. POPULAR ON GRIT.COM Raising Rabbits for Profit By Callene Rapp If you’ve been raising rabbits for a while as a hobby, the thought may have occurred to you that you could make a little money raising them. The thought may have even occurred to you that you can make a lot of money raising rabbits. After all,…

1 min.
winter recipes

4 min.
little wooden box

My wife, Elsie, and I have been reading GRIT for many, many moons — even back when it was in newspaper form. We both grew up in rural America on small farms in the late 1940s and ’50s. For 45 years now, we’ve had a birdhouse in our backyard. It’s about 5 feet off the ground, hanging on an old basketball goal post that’s been there more than 50 years. The birdhouse is just a little box that’s 6 inches wide, 5 inches deep, and 10 inches high. We had to replace the original birdhouse several years ago, because it had deteriorated through many years of weathering. This past spring, I peered in through the small entrance hole of the nesting box and saw five small blue eggs, the first clutch…