Exhibitors prepare for home and garden show
By BOB RUGGIERO
In the current nationwide economic slump, more homeowners are eschewing expensive family vacations for home improvement projects at a rate that might make Tim Allen envious. So both green thumbsand those who just hit them with hammerswill descend upon the Berry Center on Feb. 27-28 for the Third Annual Cy-Fair Home and Garden Show.
Homes are where people spend most of their time, and Cy-Fair is a great place to have a show because it's suburbia," said Tony Wood, show organizer. He adds that last year's attendance topped 6,000.
More than 200 exhibitors will showcase everything from pools, spas, fountains, decks, sunrooms, kitchens and floors to plumbing, painting and landscaping services. One exhibitor is going to have a Texas-shaped sink. Where else are you going to see that?" Wood said.
Many attendees will undoubtedly be looking for plants and flowers to replace the ones killed in this winter's unusually brutal weather. But owner Fred Billings of Buds & Blossoms in Cypress has some different advice: not so fast.
Don't get too trigger happy on yanking out plants that don't look too good," he said. It hasn't been nearly warm enough for them to push out new growth, and a lot of them will make it. Most of that root mass is still healthy."
As for the landscaping that does need to be replaced, Billings said that homeowners should not be afraid to take a purchasing risk.
We enjoy so many of the semi-tropical plants here because they have a long blooming period, so it's very easy to get gun shy about buying new ones. But they're extremely fast growers, and you can always buy them in a smaller sizes."
And if all else fails? Gardeners can rely on that hardiest of flowering plants: the Knockout Rose.
Buds & Blossoms will be bringing a variety of flora and fauna for sale, including specialty plants like the Purple Ballerina Angel Trumpet, Root Beer Plant and the Mexican Flaming Vine.
The show will feature more than a dozen speakers, including LaVerne Williams, owner/founder of Environ Associates and a pioneer in the field of green building." He'll tell attendees how both new and existing homes can have less of a negative impact on the earth, and save in high energy bills.
"Air leaks are the biggest problem in a home," Williams said. "Once you stop them you'll easily decrease the amount of energy you use on heating and cooling. And you shouldn't have to have an air filtration system to take out toxins. Your house shouldn't be creating them to begin with."
Williams also said the design flow of the home, as well as its position in regards to prevailing breezes and shading, can make a big impact on an energy bill, especially during the summer.
Another exhibit of interest this year is the Ultimate Backyard" display, which will feature ornate landscaping and an outdoor cooking/grilling stage with live demonstrations.
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