It's not too late to add a touch of holiday cheer to the outside of your home.
A large wreath can be a family project. Use evergreens or other plant material from your yard, and make it visible from the street. If you're having trouble forming a circle, make a swag instead. Use colorful plastic ribbon or leftover ornaments to decorate your creation.
If there are fruits, berries or flowers in your yard, use them to add color to the evergreen decoration. Hang it on a front door or above the garage door and place a spotlight on it.
Strings of lights are one of the most inexpensive ways to add holiday color to your yard. When it comes to lights, less is sometimes better than more. If you have just a few strings, swag them over your front door.
If your budget allows, buy a few more strings and drape them on your trees and shrubs or outline the roofline of your house. One illuminated item, strategically placed at the peak of your house, will add merriment.
To make small, inexpensive Christmas trees for the front yard, buy coned-shaped wire trellises used to support vegetables. For a Christmas tree they should be used with the small end pointing up. Cover the wire trellis with at least two strings of lights. Secure the strands with cable ties.
Look through leftover decorations and see what can be used outside. Hang ornaments on a tree or shrub, string that old garland from branch to branch, or use that extra artificial tree near your front door.
You may have heard about the region's new water restrictions that are in effect until June 30.
You can irrigate established lawns and landscaping one day a week before 8 a.m. or after 6 p.m. These restrictions do not apply to reclaimed water. Water on Monday if your address ends in 0 or 1; Tuesday for addresses ending in 2 or 3; Wednesday for addresses ending in 4 or 5; Thursday for addresses ending in 6 or 7; or Friday for addresses ending in 8 or 9, or if the location has no address or a mixed address.
Under the rules that were revised this week, sod replacement is now permitted but there are special watering restrictions. Irrigation of new sod is allowed every day for the first 15 days after installation and on alternate days for the following 15 days. Residents with new sod who have even-numbered addresses may water on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday. Odd-numbered addresses may water on Wednesday, Friday and Sunday.