HILLSBOROUGH COUNTY, FL (WFLA) – Green grass. Prosperous plants. Fresh flowers: Getting a lawn and garden to look picture perfect can take time, effort and a whole lot of money.

The folks at Hollie’s Farm and Garden in Lutz are in the business of helping homeowners spruce up every inch of their yards. Owner Scott Radford has a simple first step: plan on paper.

“If you bring us [a diagram], we will be able to see the dimensions all the way across the house,” Radford said.

Now, the fun begins, filling in all the open spots with luscious plants and colorful flowers. Keeping the pests away can be a pain. Experts suggest using coffee grounds or egg shells to keep out insects.

Keeping weeds away is a challenge, too. Use distilled white vinegar to kill them or simply dump boiling water all over the weeds.

Maintaining a lawn mower can be a chore in itself. “The sharpening of the blades is generally something overlooked,” Radford said. Check the blades often. And, if grass gets stuck in the mower, the solution might be in the kitchen. Grease the blades with cooking spray for a clean, problem-free cut.

Now, where do you put all that yard waste? Radford has a creative and clever spot: a barrel. “You can easily turn that into a composter—or rain barrel—super easy, he said.  Barrels are cheap on Craigslist or other online bulletins.

And plant bug-repelling shrubs or flowers all over your property to keep away insects. Lavender and Citronella plants work great.

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