The trim is one of the trickiest parts of a home to be properly painted or stained. There’s many steps that must be taken for the trim to be painted well including:

  • Nailheads must be set below the surface of the wood
  • Holes need to be filled and sanded
  • Damaged wood must be repaired and replaced
  • Old paint and varnish must be removed

The work that needs to be completed on both the walls and the trim should be done before you begin painting and staining. There’s no rule as to when you should paint the trim -before or after the walls are painted- the only thing that matters is that the prep work should be done before the painting step begins.

Safety Measures

When you’re stripping the surface, wear protective glasses along with a dust mask. The chemicals that you’re using can contain toxic fumes. The room needs to be ventilated properly as well. Wear gloves to keep the chemicals off of your hands. You’ll also protect your hands from splinters.

As an additional precaution, when you’re painting, you’ll want to test for lead. Many homes may have lead paint in them, especially those that were built prior to 1978. You can remove lead paint yourself if you take the right precautionary steps, but in some cases, you may need a professional to do the job.

Get The Trim Ready For Painting

Once the trim has been scraped down, you’ll want to wash the surface of the trim with a mild household cleaner. Then, rinse it with water or a water and vinegar mixture and let the trim dry. Scrape any remaining loose paint from the trim. 

Sand The Trim

Use a small flat sander to sand the walls or woodwork. For more contoured surfaces, try to use a flexible sanding block. These flexible sanders work great for more curved surfaces.   

 

Have A Strategy

If you’re a less experienced painter, it will be easier if you paint the trim first. This will make it much smoother to prepare the details and paint all of the details. Once you paint the trim, mask it off with painters tape. This will prevent any splattering from occurring while you’re painting of the walls. 

Tips For Painting The Trim

Once you complete all of the prep work for painting the trim, use a primer. Next, topcoat the trim using some kind of a latex or enamel. Remember that glossy surfaces accentuate the woodwork in a home, making it stand out from the walls. Moldings, doors and windows require a higher sheen than a wall since there’s more contact on these surfaces.

Painting trim can be challenging, but when you do it safely and in the right order, your painting job will go much more smoothly.

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Taters, spuds, potatoes, no matter what you call them, they are delicious baked, steamed, fried, or boiled. This versatile root vegetable is a mainstay of the diet of many cultures and so easy to grow at home.

No matter if you have a spacious garden plot, or a few pots on the patio, terrace, or balcony: you can grow potatoes. However, before you head out to the home and garden store for supplies, there are a few things about cultivating potatoes you may want to keep in mind.

Best Time To Plant Potatoes
Potatoes can be planted at any time in mild climates. For homeowners living in areas subject to frost and freezing, potatoes should be planted as early in the spring as possible once the soil warms up. Potatoes planted too early in the cold and wet ground will rot before they can sprout. Although new growth on potato plants will tolerate a light frost, the potato will not send forth growth until the soil warms.

Selecting Seed Potatoes
Don’t bother looking for potatoes seeds in a catalog or at your local home and garden supply store. You won’t find them. Instead, potatoes are grown from what is commonly called “seed potatoes”. A seed potato is simply any variety of potato with at least one “eye”.

When more people used to grow their own potatoes and store them for the winter, the wizened few that remained in the storage bin become the “seeds” for the next season’s crop. If you don’t have any old potatoes lying around, select a few intriguing varieties at the local farmer’s market. There are dozens of different varieties to choose from. Cook up a few and determine your favorites. Select a few of the healthiest, blemish-free potatoes of your choice for seed.

When planting seed potatoes, you can plant the whole potato or cut it up into multiple pieces. Just make sure that each piece of potato has at least one “eye” to encourage sprouting and vigorous growth. If you plant the whole potato with multiple eyes, you should have an abundant crop, but the potatoes will be small. Planting seed potatoes with only a few “eyes” will result in a smaller crop. However the potatoes will be larger than those grown from a seed that has multiple “eyes”.

Potatoes grow best in a sunny location in nutrient rich soil enhanced by organic compost. Enrich the soil with a generous supplement of well-aged herbivore manure (cow, horse, sheep, goat). Make sure to choose a full-sun location with good drainage. Potatoes require sunshine and a lot of moisture, but hate “wet feet” and will not do well in heavy clay soils or in a location with standing water.

Plant seed potatoes three to four inches need in mounded rows spaced 12 to 18 inches apart. Dependent on the warmth of the soil and the amount of moisture and sunshine, the new plants will emerge in two to three weeks. When the plants have grown about a foot high, “hill” or mound 10 to 12 inches of soil around the base of each plant. This ensures that the new potatoes are well covered with soil, protected from sunlight which will cause them to turn green. If any potatoes turn green, discard them at harvest as they will be bitter.

Provide potato plants with plenty of moisture to prevent the hills from drying out. The potatoes will be ready for harvest in the fall. Freshly dug potatoes from the garden have a flavor and texture that is better than any potato you can buy at the supermarket, and you will have the satisfaction of knowing that you have a bountiful supply of spuds for the winter: flavorful and free of pesticides and harmful chemicals.

 
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