I hope that you can help.A loaf of bread was left in our bread cupboard and became very mouldy. I have not been able to get rid of the smell and cannot use the cupboard now because of this. Do you have any ideas that could help get rid of it? Thank-you in advance, Barb
Begin by washing the cupboard out with Murphy’s Oil Soap. Next make your very own "Coffee in a Sock" air freshener. Take a clean sock and place it inside of a cup. Fold the sock opening to the outside of the cup/glass to create a vessel. Pour fresh coffee grounds into the sock. Close the sock with a rubber band. Store the sock inside of the cupboard. Coffee is a wonderful odour absorber!
I am having a problem removing rust stains from a white T-shirt. They appeared after washing so I am assuming the stains came from the washer tub. Can anything be done? I appreciate your help, Donna
Before tackling your fabrics, find out what is causing rust on your clothing. Check the machine or your water pipes or your bleach dispenser to see if any rust is gathering. Are there any leaks in the washing machine? Read your troubleshooting guide in your manufacturer’s manual. If you determine where the rust is coming from and solve the problem, your laundry will be a lot more fun to handle. If you want to clean your machine and remove rust build-up, consider using a product called, "Iron Out" available at hardware stores. Use it according to directions and ventilate, this removes rust in washing machines, as well as dishwashers.
For fabrics: Your best bet is to pour either lemon juice or three per cent hydrogen peroxide onto the area. Sprinkle the stain with cream of tartar. Leave the white shirt in the sun for a day and wash. Sun is a wonderful mild bleaching agent and so is hydrogen peroxide however be sure to test on an inconspicuous area first. Repeat until the stain is gone. If the stain remains you can use Rit dye remover to zap rust stains, be sure to ventilate.
We have a 7x10 living room wool rug that is approximately five years old. Last summer we had the rug dry cleaned, but in the fall we noticed a few tiny moths on the rug. We have never had moths in our house. When we questioned the drycleaner, we were advised they never had any sort of problem with moths. We vacuumed the rug thoroughly, and a patch, approximately 2-3 inches in circumference, developed in the rug. We put the rug in the garage during winter to kill any moths etc. We thought we had them licked; however, a few tiny moths reappeared along with larva. As far as the rug goes, we feel it’s toast for the living room. Is there anything we can do to salvage it, and use it elsewhere in the house? Can we somehow treat the rug to get rid of these little critters? Any help you can provide would be greatly appreciated. Maureen
Begin by sprinkling the rug with borax or boric acid or crushed bay leaves. Do this only if you don’t have pets or small children as it is poisonous. Leave for a day and vacuum (often) with an industrial strength vacuum, being sure to change the vacuum bag. If moths continue to be a problem, call in a professional fumigator.
In which book is the solution you mentioned about getting rid of aphids with bananas?Ihave a huge linden tree in my backyard and it seems every summer everything is black because of them.Also, in which book would I find the solution for cleaning the interior of the shower? No matter which product I buy it doesn’t seem to really clean. Thank you for your assistance. Margaret
You can refer to "Household Solutions 2" for your aphid challenge. Bananas are great for small inside plants but for a big beautiful linden you will need a larger quantity. In a 1 gallon milk jug, combine 2 tbsp. dish soap, 1 tbsp. rubbing alcohol, dash of Tabasco sauce, 1 tbsp. canola oil and enough water to fill the jug. Pour mixture into spray bottle and apply as needed (double recipe as needed). Another option is to steep cigarette tobacco in water. Leave for two days and spray the tree.
"Household Solutions 3 with Green Alternatives" has an entire section devoted to cleaning shower interiors. One of my favourite options is to pour 1 tbsp. baking soda, 1 tsp. dish soap and enough water to fill an 18 oz. spray bottle. Spray, leave for 20 minutes and wipe.
What kind of flower is Dianthus, I have seen it listed as a perennial and as a hardy annual? Megan
The Dianthus commonly called ‘Sweet William’ is an annual as are some others that are called ‘Dianthus’. However, many varieties of Dianthus are perennials. So you need to identify exactly which Dianthus you are wanting to plant.
Fabulous Tips of the Week
• Spread peat moss over newly planted grass seed as opposed to covering the seed with straw. Peat moss absorbs and holds water similar to straw, but has the benefit of disappearing quickly into the soil after the grass begins growing. It also helps aerate the soil and gives the grass a better environment to begin its growth cycle.
• Coconut fibre is now being harvested as a good substitute for peat moss. It carries many of the same qualities as peat moss but is apparently more environmentally friendly. Coconut fibre is sourced from the husk fibres of coconuts and is a good use for what is often looked at as a waste product.
• To protect your plants from cutworms, cut out the bottom of a margarine container and press it into the dirt around your plants.
• Plant mint between cabbages to discourage pests.
• Place large rocks next to garden pepper plants, the sun will warm the rocks and attract heat toward the plants.
I enjoy your questions and tips, keep them coming! Missed a column? Can’t remember a solution? Need a speaker for an upcoming event? Check out my brand new website: reena.ca
Reena Nerbas is a rural Manitoba home economist is a lab coat - and she’s not afraid to use it. Keep your questions coming:
Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition September 6, 2012