The daffodils and warm sunshine are beckoning us outdoors. So, let’s go!
By Kristin Scott
An outdoor market rooted in the community
Spring is nearly in full swing, which means it’s time to get our lawns in shape. Since 1968, Wingard’s Market in Lexington has provided us with lawn-care supplies, locally-grown produce, regional plants, gifts and outdoor décor. With more than 50 years of experience, Wingard’s knows exactly what your lawn needs, and when it needs to be done. Owner Wally Steinhauser says their products are very effective, which can make your lawn and garden the envy of the neighborhood.
Wingard’s offers tips and tricks on its website, including a monthly to-do list. Spend this March and April gathering your supplies to fertilize trees, shrubs and daylilies. Clean out your flowerbeds and freshen up your mulch. Wingard’s recommends pine straw, which adds acidity to the ground and is helps flowers grow. Get all your planting done before the heat sets in, and ask what products you need to help your plants blossom.
Not sure where to begin? Wingard’s staff can help determine what kind of grass you have and how best to care for it. Just bring in a sample. While you’re there, you can get your supplies, including a spreader, fertilizer, plants and more.
The website also includes a four-step program on lawn care during each season. Hurry up and check that out because step 1 should be taken between Feb. 15 and March 15. That’s when it’s recommended you spread fertilizer and weed control. It’s almost time for step 2 which is to fertilize again in April or May, after you’ve cut the grass a few times.
Don’t forget to add a few pops of color to your yard and flowerbeds with some lawn and patio décor. Colorful spinners add a whimsical, artistic flair. Just place them in the windiest part of your yard and watch the colors shimmer and dance. Add character with some vibrant mushroom stakes in and around your garden. You can also use colorful pots and patio furniture to brighten porches and shaded areas.
You can get all this and more at Wingard’s. What’s more, you’ll be supporting a locally-owned business that’s rooted in your community.
Local experts in beautiful outdoor living
There’s a hidden gem on Two Notch Road in Columbia where exquisite patio furniture and accessories are sold. Dottie Reynolds and her husband John Chamberlain have owned Casual Living since 1986, making it the premiere place to buy patio furniture and accessories. The staff can help you build out your patio design no matter what it currently looks like.
Not only is the patio furniture at Casual Living stunning, the personal touches throughout the store are easy to spot. The furniture and accessories are handpicked by Reynolds, to ensure a unique look. She and her staff can tell you what pieces are best for you. “If you come into my store looking for furniture, I’m going to ask you where you are going to use it, because that can make a big difference,” Reynolds says.
Since you can buy patio furniture everywhere, Reynolds is ready to confidently point out the differences. She and her team can differentiate between material types because they understand the ins and outs of them, and where best to use each — beachside, on a screened-in porch, by a pool, or even indoors.
Each manufacturer makes furniture differently, so some are better suited for certain areas than others. This is information you aren’t going to find online, at a discount store or in a big box store. Teak, wicker and aluminum are a few of the materials you’ll find at Casual Living. Teak is a popular seller because it can sit outside forever without rotting. Reynolds also loves mixing pieces and materials for a custom look.
Furnishing a patio is an investment and you want the pieces to last, so it’s important to determine what will work best for your project. For example, when purchasing cushioned patio furniture, knowing it will last and be mildew resistant is a top priority. Casual Living carries top-of-the-line Sunbrella fabric cushions. They also sell the fabric by the yard for reupholstering projects. Sunbrella’s newest product, Sunbrella Rain, is completely waterproof. Due to the unique process, manufacturers who use this product are limited. Casual Living is proud to be one of the few who carry it.
The store also offers interior designing services. A designer will come to your home to help you plan a patio that is beautiful, unique, and tailored to your lifestyle.