1. Citrus-rind seed starters
Grapefruit, orange and other citrus rinds are just the right size for starting new seedlings. Make a hole in the bottom of each one for drainage and add some damp seed-starting mix and seeds. Then, when it's time to move them outside, plant the whole works in the ground—peels and all. The citrus rinds make the soil more acidic, however, so only do this with acid-loving plants like radishes, peppers and
— JUDY WILDER
2. No More Smelly Lawn Clippings
After mowing, dump all of your lawn clippings into a "green refuse" bin. But after a day or so, the grass clip- pings turn into a slimy, smelly mess. To combat the stench, raid your electric paper shredder and through a few handfuls of shredded paper into the bottom of the barrel. The paper helps absorb the moisture and reduce the smell.
— EMIL MACHRONE
3. Extension Cord Tamer
— GRAHAM DALY
4. Take Your Glue for a Spin
If you don't like waiting for wood glue to come out after you squeeze the bottle, put the cap on and swing it around a couple of times. Centrifugal force will concentrate the glue at the top of bottle, making it come out of the nozzle faster.
— ALAN PEROUTKY
5. Golf Tee Paint Helpers
When you're painting or varnishing small projects, it's best to elevate them for good coverage and to keep your project from sticking to the worktable. Use an old piece of pegboard and some golf tees. The pegboard keeps the tees in place, and then you can arrange them as necessary for different size projects.
— TERRY MEINCKE
6. Right Side Up
A polarized plug has a larger prong on the neutral leg, so it has to be put into an outlet a certain way. As I get older, I find it harder to see whether I'm holding a polarized plug right side up when I'm pushing it in. And it's especially hard to see what I'm doing when there's furniture in the way. That's why I make a dot on the tops of all my plugs. I use a black marker for light-colored plugs and white correction fluid for dark- colored ones.
— NORMAN SCHOCK
7. Mud Ladle
No sooner did I finish digging footing holes for a new shed than it rained, filling all the holes with water. It looked like mud soup! I had to get rid of it quickly in order to pour concrete, so I fashioned a "mud ladle" out of a section of round duct work, a piece of 3/4-in. plywood and a solid wood handle. Thanks to my invention, I was able to scoop out all the water in just a few minutes.
— DAVE CHOUDEK
8. No-slip Grab Bar
Sometimes the grab bars in my shower can get a little slippery. My quick fix was to wrap them with Stretch & Seal silicone tape. It grips well and stays where you put it. Just be sure to stretch it as you wrap it so it sticks to itself. I've also used it to get a better grip on lots of other handles.
— BRUCE KNOTT
9. Easier Twisting for Wire Connectors
10. New Parts For Old Tools
— JASON WHITE
11. Replace Baseboard Heater Covers
12. Chirping Smoke Detectors
13. Got Wasps?
Photo: Leonid Eremeychuk/Shutterstock
14. Another Way to Remove Popcorn Texture
We ran a story a few months ago on how to remove popcorn texture from ceilings. One of our readers, John McKinney, wrote to us with a tip of his own. "I use a Homax Popcorn Ceiling Scraper," says John. "It's a rectangular scraper that you screw onto a painting pole or broom handle. The rectangular part accepts a plastic grocery bag that catches most of the texture as you scrape it off. You can dump the bag when it gets too heavy or put on a new bag." The Homax popcorn scraper is available at home centers and online for about $20.