I'm So Clever

Stretchy pre-wrap great for staking tomatoes

The winner: Parents of athletic girls know what pre-wrap is: a stretchy roll of material used to keep your hair out of your eyes while playing sports. As the mom of an athletic girl, we have endless amounts around our house.

Our tomato plants needed some extra support and, remembering my dad using old stockings to stake up the plants, I thought we’d use pre-wrap. It works great.

You can find it at any sporting goods store for just a few dollars a roll, and it lasts! Paula Lash, Huntersville

Flip-flops take care of cat hair

Cat lovers: When you find fur on your rugs and cushions impossible to vacuum, use a clean flip-flop to rub the surface, and watch the fur come up! Nina Lynch, Lake Wylie

See amazing video at: www.charlotteobserver.com/living/home-garden

Update on carpenter bees

Clever follow-up. After hearing from a local landscaper who used a stuffed brown bag to ward off carpenter bees – supposedly they mistake it for a wasp’s nest and buzz off – we asked readers to tell us about their experience. We heard from two readers who said they tried it and it worked. We checked with bug guy Michael Waldvogel, an extension associate professor at N.C. State. He was dubious for several reasons, noting that the bees might be disappearing because it’s the end of carpenter bee season. But as an experiment, he said it might be worth trying the bag trick at the start of the season next year to see what happens.