Humble Home & Garden Show

First I want to thanks all the folks that came to the Humble Civic Center during the Home and Garden Show in February. I've done plenty home and garden shows, but their show is really good. They really have a great turn out, with lots of interesting booths. I got to give 2 seminars, answer questions, and have a booth where I showed products and answered more questions. I got to meet so many wonderful people and take pictures. Y'all are like family now. My favorite thing is when someone asks a question and they think that there is going to be a complicated answer, and it's a real simple one. And this light comes on inside there head, and they know....they can do that project. So many ladies are tackling the improvement jobs around the house. They save themselves some money, and feel good about accomplishing the project. It makes you realize...everything is easy, if you know how to do it and you have the right product. And that's my job, and I love it!

Now to the email.....

Question: Hi Johnnie ...I appreciate your column and have a somewhat unique question for you. I have squirrels eating the lead jacks that cover my vent pipes on my roof. The roof is only 4 years old and I have witnessed the squirrels literally chewing and swallowing pieces of the lead jacks. I have temporarily put duct tape over the top edges to keep rain from seeping in until the jacks are replaced. The roofing company I used has not heard of this before and they have been in the Gulfcoast area for many years. What gives with the squirrels? And what would you recommend to put on the jacks to keep the squirrels from eating the new ones?

Answer: Believe it or not ...they are sharpening their teeth....the lead is soft enough for them to chew through. But that doesn't have to mean you put up with it. There are 2 ways to deter them from coming back. When your roofing company replaces the jacks...have them put a application of Bye Bye Birdie on the tops and's a sticky substance and the birds don't like it and nether will the squirrels. Second use the Messina Animal Stop and spray around the jacks and on top of the Bye Bye Birdie. I like Messina products because they don't have a bad odor, like a lot of the other animal deterrents. Remove any tree branches that allow access to the top of your roof.

Question: Johnnie, we have some cast iron outdoor furniture that sits by a salt water pool. We have had it repainted but it is rusting in certain spots due to salt water. Is there any product we could use to paint it as the furniture is still in great shape except for the rusting and we don't want the expense of sandblasting and repainting it again.

Answer: The same thing happened to me. The paint on the furniture came off in big pieces. Kill the rust first. Use the Rust Cure on the rusty areas. Spray and in a hour wipe off the oily residue. Then in a few days it will be cured and the areas sprayed will have turned gun metal grey. It will never rust again. You can leave it like that or you can spray paint with any metal spray paint.

Question: Johnnie, I want to take the varnish off my kitchen cabinets. When I went to look at paint removers..they all look so caustic. Isn't there any paint remover that can be used without having to wear a mask and glasses?

Answer: There is a paint and varnish remover that is so gentle. You don't have to wear gloves, you don't have to use goggles, infact you could put your hand in it and it wouldn't burn your skin. But boy does it do the job at removing paint and varnish. It's called Soy Gel. It's made from soy beans.(really) You only have to give it time to work. Apply it thick...about a ΒΌ of a inch and leave it alone for about 4 hours. You can even work inside the house..there is no odor or fumes. After 4 hours, take your finger and push through the remover and if you can see all the way down to the wood it's done working, and you can take a wet rag and remove all the Soy Gel. Thats it! Now you can either re-stain or paint. You don't even have to sand. This is a amazing remover. The best I have ever seen.


Tyler Candle Company makes a great candle. They also make a car freshener that just hangs up in the car and totally can make you car smell yummy. And if you have a closet that smells of athletic equipment, hang one up in the closet too.