Lowcountry garden experts offer advice on combatting pervasive Virginia buttonweed | Features

The luscious lawns fronting Lowcountry homes aren’t immune to the warm-weather weeds that can leave lasting effects. 

Doveweed, nutsedge and chamberbitter are a few troublesome herbs that garden caretakers regularly encounter during spring and summer months when they fight to maintain healthy green spaces. 

Gardening: Diagnosing a plant pest problem takes some legwork

But Lowcountry residents have increasingly encountered what some agree to be the monster of all weeds, one that returns and keeps attacking no matter how many times it’s sprayed with herbicides during the summer, or dug out of the ground.

The Virginia buttonweed is deeply rooted and thrives in overly moist lawns. The pervasive, dark-green turfgrass weed that produces tiny white flowers above ground can be seen in yards across the Charleston region. It sprawls across yards with no mercy, often leaving behind brown patches.

It isn’t only impacting South Carolina residents. 

Virginia buttonweed

Carol Turnwald Feldhaus works to get rid of the Virginia buttonweed in her Summerville front yard Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020. The pervasive plant has invaded lawns across the Lowcountry and proves difficult to uproot. The plant is considered the “monster of all weeds,” according to some experts. It’s dark green and often identified by its white, above-ground flowers. Brad Nettles/Staff

The weed is rapidly spreading along Atlantic Coastal states and is now spreading inland in the United States, said Bert McCarty, professor of turfgrass science at Clemson University.

Randy Howie, who works in the diagnostics center at Hyams Garden and Accent Store, regularly sees customers who bring the plant to the store asking for solutions.

“The Virginia buttonweed has been the No. 1 thing people have brought in,” he said.

The weed has gained a presence in homeowner’s yards mainly due to its ability to produce both above and below-ground flowers, which in turn produce viable seeds, McCarty said.

Therefore, even it the tops are controlled or removed, the plant can still reproduce from below-ground seeds.

Summerville's Katie's Krops reflects on over a decade of national community garden work

What makes it even more frustrating is the herbicides used to kill Virginia buttonweed aren’t effective in weather above 90 degrees.

Howie recommends Weed Free Zone, but the product is only effective during cooler months, when the temperature is below 90.

Homeowners also can use Image Kills Nutsedge, though the product will only suppress the plant, not eradicate it.

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The main way people can combat the pervasive weed is with preventive measures, such as applying pre-emergent products in February, then again in May or early June. Doing so prevents buttonweed seeds left over from the previous year from germinating and producing more weeds the following summer.

“The key is prevention,” Howie said. “Preventing it as much as you can is going to give you the best control.”

Virginia buttonweed

Carol Turnwald Feldhaus works to eliminate Virginia buttonweed in her Summerville front yard Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2020. The pervasive plant has invaded lawns across the Lowcountry and proves difficult to uproot.

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Amy Coney Barrett bus tour features conservative Christian activist who was exposed to coronavirus at White House

But instead of isolating herself at home in Washington, in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines, the conservative activist is traveling the country. Since Wednesday, she has been boosting Barrett from a pastel pink bus bearing the nominee’s face and the words “Women For Amy” as it makes its way through a dozen swing states this month.

So far, the tour — officially put on by Nance’s group, Concerned Women for America — has kicked off with Sen. Kelly Loeffler (R-Ga.) near Atlanta, hosted college students in South Carolina, and met with Rep. Dan Bishop (R-N.C.) in Raleigh, with nearly 30 more stops planned.

At all the stops so far, attendees have posed for photos while standing shoulder to shoulder, with few masks in sight, according to social media posts. (Loeffler, who also attended the White House ceremony, said she has since tested negative for the virus.)

It is unclear if Nance or others on the bus have been tested for the coronavirus, which has killed more than 212,000 people in the United States. Her organization declined to comment to the Guardian on the apparent lack of masks and social distancing at its events, and did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Washington Post.

Nance is far from the only person potentially exposed in the Rose Garden, The Post reported, who has since scattered around the country with little oversight and no systematic contacting tracing efforts. On Thursday, Donald Trump Jr., who accompanied his father to the presidential debate and said he tested negative, held a packed campaign rally inside a Florida hotel.

In its focus on rallying support to confirm Barrett, a former clerk for Justice Antonin Scalia, Concerned Women for America will tour several states in the coming days that have been reporting a surge in infections.

“If we’ve learned anything from the confirmation process of Brett M. Kavanaugh, it’s that the left will stoop to anything,” Nance said in a video on Instagram. “The attacks on her faith, the anti-Christian bigotry isn’t just attacks against her. It’s an attack on you. That’s why Concerned Women for America is going to hit the road.”

As Barrett draws scrutiny from liberals over her involvement in People of Praise, a small Christian organization where she once served as a “handmaid,” the bus tour points to how antiabortion activists are citing her faith to rally behind her.

“What a historic moment for conservative Christian women,” Nance said in the video. “We get to sit on the sidelines of history and witness the confirmation of one of our own: a conservative Christian constitutionalist appointed by President Trump to the Supreme Court.”

Senate confirmation hearings start Monday, and with nearly all Republican senators having committed to supporting the Trump nominee, she is expected to be voted through as soon as Oct. 22. Nance’s bus, however, is set to keep traveling around the country through the end of the month, looping from Pennsylvania to the Midwest and

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Kitchen of the Week: ‘Cafe au lait’ project features massive stone island

Designed to look like a massive block of stone, the "Café au lait" kitchen by Milvia Hannah is the centrepiece of the family living area in a new home in Canterbury.


Designed to look like a massive block of stone, the “Café au lait” kitchen by Milvia Hannah is the centrepiece of the family living area in a new home in Canterbury.

A large stone island forms the striking centrepiece of this kitchen in a Canterbury home – it’s coffee-coloured veining giving rise to the name of the project.

“Café au lait”, by Wellington kitchen designer Milvia Hannah of German Kitchens, reflects the owners’ designer for an “organic” kitchen featuring natural materials and colours.

The kitchen, which won a regional award in this year’s national NKBA Kitchen & Bathroom Awards, has also been shortlisted for the prestigious SBID International Design Excellence Awards in London – the winners will be announced later this month.

Milvia Hannah of German Kitchens has won numerous design awards.


Milvia Hannah of German Kitchens has won numerous design awards.

It caught the NKBA judges’ attention for both its looks and craftsmanship: “The manufacturing of the exquisite marble island would have been tricky, but it has been well executed,” the judges said. “The combination of materials works really well together. Appliance placement is good, and the lighting adds to the kitchen.”

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Hannah says the kitchen was designed for the clients’ new house, where it needed to complement an elegant, open-plan interior, in a cohesive way.

Recessed seating at one end cannot be seen from the front of the island - it was designed this way to maintain the sense of the island being a large block of stone.


Recessed seating at one end cannot be seen from the front of the island – it was designed this way to maintain the sense of the island being a large block of stone.

The main feature of the Eggersmann German kitchen, was to be the island, and Hannah says it needed to look good when viewed from all angles. It also had to be ergonomic, with a strong organic aesthetic.

To this end, hand-picked natural stone was selected for the island benchtops, drawer fronts, side panels, recessed handles, plinths and integrated sink.

“This allowed the island to feature as a block of stone, keeping the uniformity of the texture and veining through all aspects of the design,” Hannah says.

Bold Italian lighting was chosen to reinforce the visual drama.


Bold Italian lighting was chosen to reinforce the visual drama.

The island features numerous drawers for storage and vast bench spaces making it well suited to entertaining.

“There is a recessed seating area for two at the end,” says Hannah. “But the front face of the island hides this from view to create balance, symmetry and harmony. False panels were created to achieve this look.”

Matt natural stone with an organic structure was selected for the island, with a muted soft matt stone benchtop chosen for the other side. This was complemented by rough-sawn timber veneer for the cabinetry in a colour that was found in the natural stone.

Cabinetry along the rear wall of the kitchen features rough-sawn timber veneer.


Cabinetry along the rear wall of the kitchen features rough-sawn timber veneer.

NKBA judges praised the craftsmanship of the island. Doors and drawers feature recessed pulls.


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Toyota Innova Crysta Facelift Spotted Next To Current Model: Differences, Features, Specs & Other Details

Toyota Innova Crysta Facelift Spotted Next To Current Model: Differences, Features, Specs & Other Details

Ahead of its launch, latest images from TeamBHP showcases the 2021 model of the MPV standing next to the outgoing Innova Crysta in the country. From the images, we could notice the all-new front fascia on the facelifted MPV.

Toyota Innova Crysta Facelift Spotted Next To Current Model: Differences, Features, Specs & Other Details

It features new LED headlamps, reworked grille and bumper. At the rear, the combination tail lamps receive new internals, however, the design itself remains unchanged from the previous model. The rear bumper design also remains unchanged.

Toyota Innova Crysta Facelift Spotted Next To Current Model: Differences, Features, Specs & Other Details

The company has also updated the alloy wheel design and will feature a dual-tone look. However, Toyota has not tampered with the overall silhouette of the vehicle, which gives it an elegant look and amazing road presence.

Toyota Innova Crysta Facelift Spotted Next To Current Model: Differences, Features, Specs & Other Details

Although the interiors of the 2021 Innova Crysta does not seem all that different from the outgoing model, the reports suggest that Toyota has made some trim-level changes. The G variant of the MPV could get a new full TFT MID and ambient roof light. Additionally, the V variant could get VSC and Smartkey.

Toyota Innova Crysta Facelift Spotted Next To Current Model: Differences, Features, Specs & Other Details

The images also suggest that the facelift version of the MPV could get new seat upholstery. Whether the 2021 Innova Crysta will feature any form of connected technology from the brand remains to be seen.

Toyota Innova Crysta Facelift Spotted Next To Current Model: Differences, Features, Specs & Other Details

The Toyota Innova Crysta is currently offered with two engine options: 2.7-litre petrol and 2.4-litre diesel engines. The petrol engine produces a maximum of 164bhp and a peak torque of 245Nm. While the 2.4-litre diesel unit churns out 148bhp and 360Nm of peak torque.

Toyota Innova Crysta Facelift Spotted Next To Current Model: Differences, Features, Specs & Other Details

Both engines are offered with either a five-speed manual or a six-speed torque-converter automatic. We expect Toyota to retain the existing powertrain on the 2021 Innova Crysta as well.

Toyota Innova Crysta Facelift Spotted Next To Current Model: Differences, Features, Specs & Other Details

Toyota is also said to be working on a new CNG variant of the Innova Crysta for the Indian market. Ahead of its launch, the CNG model of the MPV has been spied testing in the country — here are all details.

Toyota Innova Crysta Facelift Spotted Next To Current Model: Differences, Features, Specs & Other Details

The Toyota Innova Crysta petrol variants retail between Rs 15.66 lakh and Rs 21.78 lakh. While the diesel variants are priced between Rs 16.44 lakh and Rs 23.63 lakh. Once launched, the 2021 Toyota Innova Crysta is expected to receive a slight premium over the outgoing model.

Toyota Innova Crysta Facelift Spotted Next To Current Model: Differences, Features, Specs & Other Details

Thoughts About The Toyota Innova Crysta Facelift Spotted Next To Current Model

The 2021 Innova Crysta features a new front fascia to tell it apart from the outgoing model. However, Toyota has retained most of the design and features from the current model on the 2021 Innova Crysta. The company is expected to launch the facelift model of the MPV sometime next year in the country.

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Kitchen Features to Consider If You’re a Regular Entertainer

Getty / With love of photography

If you love to entertain, you’ll want to make sure your home—and specifically your kitchen—is up to the job. Luckily, a few simple upgrades can transform your space, turning it into a hub perfect for hostessing. Here, Breegan Jane, a designer, entrepreneur, and Extreme Home Makeover personality, shares her kitchen must-haves for regular entertainers.

Related: Quick Kitchen Upgrades That Won’t Break the Bank

Bar Seating

Bar seating is a really great way to include guests while you’re busy in the kitchen. “Whether it is off the island or on the other side of the cabinets or something entirely unique, this will allow you and your guest to interact while you cook or prepare the meal,” she says. “Nobody wants to be all alone in the kitchen while your guests are over, and this way, you can entertain while still being part of the conversion.”

Man-Made Countertops

Upgrading the area you spend the most time in can be expensive, so Jane suggests making some less costly swaps that pop. “A great stone or marble countertop can really elevate your kitchen, yet natural stone and marble are quite expensive.” Her solution? Beautiful man-made mediums—they are more affordable and easier maintain: “Most people won’t know the difference, and when your guest spills red wine on your white countertop, it’s no big deal!”

Updated Hardware and Paint

Something as simple as changing out your hardware, like pulls and faucets, or repainting dull or outdated cabinets can enhance this area—without taxing your wallet. “Finding interesting colors or finishes can elevate the space,” notes Jane.

Makeshift Island

Kitchen islands are always a great feature, Jane says, but matching them to your existing cabinets and countertop can be tricky and costly. Plus, if you already have an extended dining room table, you may not always need that added space. “A great alternative is getting an old table or cart second-hand, fixing it up, and painting it a cool color. Bam—you’ve got a great statement piece for the center of your kitchen,” says Jane.

Fridge with a Glass Front

A secondary built-in refrigerator with a glass front is a perfect place to put grab-and-go items that your guests won’t feel intimidated to help themselves to. “You can see exactly what is available without feeling like you’re being nosy or intruding,” she says. It doesn’t have to be big; a simple under-counter fridge will work. “This speaks to your guests visually and says something like, ‘Hey, maybe you’d like sparkling water or even a beer—help yourself,’ and thus, makes people feel more at ease and welcomed,” says Jane.

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2020 Toyota Highlander features new look, improved interior, better fuel economy

With the redesign of the exterior the overall dimensions of the interior improve with a cabin that feels roomier in the first and second rows. As is the case with most SUVs in the segment, the third row is cramped and should be reserved for children.

Cargo room, however, is much improved with 16 cubic feet behind the third row and 84.3 cubic feet of overall space.

There are five trims available for the Highlander including L, LE, XLE, Limited and Platinum. My tester was the top-of-the-line Platinum trim. It had an MSRP of $48,800. With a few optional equipment packages, my tester had a final price tag of $51,654.

Fuel economy for the 2020 Toyota Highlander sees a slight improvement from last year. Even my AWD tester saw a one MPG gain year over year. Overall, the AWD V6 Highlander has an EPA rating of 20 mpg/city and 27 mpg/highway (compared to 20/26 last year). In a week’s worth of suburban driving, I averaged 23 mpg.

In a bland segment full of vanilla SUVs that all remain oh-so-popular, it was wise for Toyota to re-engage with an updated Highlander. As the pack was starting to catch up and surpass it, Toyota manages to gain interest with a viable, attractive seven-passenger SUV.

Jimmy Dinsmore is a freelance automotive journalist.


  • Price/As-tested price………………………………………… $48,800/$51,654
  • Mileage…………………………………… 20 mpg/city; 27 mpg/hwy
  • Engine……………………………………… 3.5-Liter V6
  • Horsepower…………………………… 295 hp/263 lbs.-ft.
  • Transmission…………………………… 8-speed automatic
  • Drive wheels……………. All-wheel drive
  • Final assembly point……………. Princeton, Indiana

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LG ‘Rolls’ Out Craft Ice On More Refrigerator Models, Adds New Features For Today’s Next-Level Kitchen

ENGLEWOOD CLIFFS, N.J., Sept. 10, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — With more consumers experimenting in the kitchen as they spend more time at home, LG Electronics USA is expanding its industry-first, slow-melting LG Craft Ice™ technology to 19 refrigerator models while adding convenient new features designed to inspire consumers to take their everyday kitchens to the next level.

Experience the interactive Multichannel News Release here: https://www.multivu.com/players/English/8772151-lg-electronics-craft-ice-refrigerators/

The entire lineup of smart, Wi-Fi-connected LG refrigerators with Craft Ice can produce double the amount of Craft Ice in the same amount of time for bespoke beverages at home.1  Plus, consumers can choose from new featured-packed models with a versatile Full-Convert™ drawer that switches among five custom fridge to freezer temperatures,2 LG InstaView® “knock on” glass technology, and the largest capacity French Door refrigerators on the market.3   

“Today’s consumer is looking for a reliable refrigerator with more storage and organization, while also seeking new ways to get creative in their own kitchens as they stay close to home,” said Peggy Ang, head of marketing at LG Electronics USA. “Only

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Exclusive! MG Gloster SUV interior, cabin images out: High-end premium features at an unbelievable price

MG Gloster will get an interesting set of features, some of which you can find only in some high-end luxury cars. Express Drives has managed to get some interior shots of the upcoming SUV and here is what all it will pack in!

MG Gloster interior, cabin images (Picture credits – Pradeep Shah)

MG Gloster SUV is set to be launched in India in the coming weeks and will arrive as the carmaker’s fourth offering for the Indian market. The exterior of the Toyota Fortuner, Ford Endeavour rival is no more a mystery as it has been revealed in the company’s latest teaser videos. That said, the Gloster will in reality be positioned at a premium over the mentioned rivals. Moreover, the company confirmed in its latest teaser that the SUV will come with some interesting high-end premium car-like features like auto park assist. Now, Express Drives has managed to get a set of interior images of the MG Gloster SUV apart from the list of its key features.

MG Gloster panoramic sunroof (PIcture credits – Pradeep Shah)
MG Gloster climate control (Picture credits – Pradeep Shah)

Digging into the details in terms of what all the MG Gloster will have on offer, the SUV will come with a three-zone climate control system. Moreover, the vehicle will get 64-colour ambient lighting and hence, will be the first vehicle in its segment to offer this feature. That’s more than one colour for every mood (even for the super moody), isn’t it? Moreover, a panoramic sunroof will also be on offer with an anti-pinch mechanism for safety.

MG Gloster instrument cluster showing fuel range (Picture credits – Pradeep Shah)
MG Gloster instrument cluster showing battery voltage (PIcture credits – Pradeep Shah)

The driver can access a lot of information through an 8-inch coloured instrument cluster that also shows battery charge & fuel range indicator and you can see the layout of the same along with the dashboard in the image above. It seems like MG Motor India is aiming to offer the best creature comforts for the MG Gloster buyers as the vehicle will also come with ventilated front seats, however, these get a heating functionality only. A boon during chilly winter nights!

MG Gloster middle row captain seats (Picture credits – Pradeep Shah)

Talking of the seating layout, the seven-seater SUV will get captain seats in the middle row and the seats will come with diamond-style stitching for a premium and better feel. Now, in terms of safety, the MG Gloster will get some features that you will find only in some high-end cars like Volvos and the BMWs. In order to be precise, the Gloster will come with lane departure and front collision warning along with autonomous emergency braking and also, an adaptive cruise control.

MG Gloster gear shifter (Picture credits – Pradeep Shah)
MG Gloster dashboard layout (Picture credits – Pradeep Shah)

Based on the Maxus D90 sold in China, the MG Gloster is on sale abroad with a

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10 Interior and Tech Features That Impress Us

Whether or not you think the 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLS 580 is the S-Class of SUVs might depend on the added luxuries and features your money can buy. Then again, the multi-contour front seats with massage function, Burmester sound system, Airmatic suspension, and twin-turbo V-8 that come standard do conform to the S-Class’ refined way of life.

Competing against other heavyweights in the three-row luxury SUV class such as the BMW X7 and Lincoln Navigator, the 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLS 580 and its features have to put up a good fight, and optional upgrades are one way of doing so. The available third-row seat may not accommodate 6-footers, but there’s room to breathe, cupholders, and USB ports. At night the illuminated cabin brings a different kind of energy, and straight shots on deserted roads are exciting with 483 horsepower and Sport+ mode engaged. And why bother to pay for a therapist? The GLS 580 offers you a voice assistant that is always there to listen, and 10-minute relaxation programs for your physical well-being.

Following our test drive and ample quality time in a well-appointed Mercedes-Benz GLS 580, these are among the tech and interior features we like the most, and the majority of them do in fact come standard.

2020 Mercedes-Benz GLS 580 Features: Customizable Digital Instrument Cluster

With four selectable designs, a variety of layout options, animated menus, and touch controls that make scrolling a breeze, the MBUX instrument cluster is one to mimic. The illustrations, vehicle-information readouts, and multi-function gauges are outstanding and provide plenty of data. Instrument-gauge designs include Classic, Sport, Progressive, and Understated, which was our preferred style.

2020 Mercedes-Benz GLS 580 Features: Touchpad Controller

Like an iPhone, the touchpad controller keeps getting better. In the 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLS 580, the large touchpad, designed to accommodate all hand sizes, functions as a smartphone, and it’s easy to use. It’s accuracy and functionality help to point you in the right direction to adjust settings and to activate features quickly.  

2020 Mercedes-Benz GLS 580 Features: MBUX Interior Assistant

Reaching for a snack in your bag that is riding shotgun during night drives can be challenging, but it doesn’t have to be. There is an overhead 3D camera in the 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLS 580 that works with the MBUX system which can respond to your hand and arm movements for ease of access. To make adjustments in the cabin, point at the touchscreen or reach for the console touchpad, and the infotainment will display menus to change your settings. We tested the map-light function, and the ease of activating the light made it a breeze to find the Cheez-Its hiding on the passenger seat.

2020 Mercedes-Benz GLS 580 Features: Nine USB-C Ports

You won’t have to break up a fight over who gets to recharge their iPad, Nintendo Switch, or Android phone, because there are a total of nine USB-C charging ports in the GLS

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Garden Water Features

Garden water features are of course water features for your garden and this means things like waterfalls and fountains that you can use to add atmosphere and scenery to your garden relatively easily. When you add a water feature to your garden there are many types to choose from, from natural looking rock pools with built in fountains that will blend into the fauna and greenery in your garden, to more modern looking arrangements using stone balls and other features.

There are many benefits of water features and if you choose a good one for your property then you will find that this not only gives you a great feature to look at, but that it also transforms the feeling of your garden environment in other ways too. Here we will look at just a few of the benefits of garden features and what they can offer you.

Appearance: A garden water feature is a great looking thing to have in your home and one that will create a very natural feel in your garden. Often these will be made to blend into the appearance of your garden with natural looking rocks and the appearance of a small waterfall or rock pool. This can make a great feature for a garden and can take center stage, or it can be a smaller side attraction in the corner that shows attention to detail in your garden layout – something to find for those who are looking for it.

Sound: A garden waterfall doesn’t just look good though it also sounds great, and it’s highly relaxing to listen to the trickling noise it makes which can be likened to a babbling brook in a river giving your home the feeling of a natural setting. If you’ve ever listened to one of those relaxation CDs then you’ll not that they tend to feature trickling streams quite highly. This then is a sign of just how relaxing and calming a stream really is and how we are almost ‘programmed’ to enjoy that sound. If you enjoy sitting outside and listening to the birds for a moment’s respite from the busy pace of modern living, then this is the perfect way to get to enjoy that even more.

Light: Another great thing about a fountain is the way it refracts and reflects light. Here the sunlight will sometimes catch on the glass and reflect off of it, while at other times you will get to enjoy the lighting included in it. Usually this will be in the form of LEDs lighting the water from underneath and this will tend to be an electric blue or a neon green. In the evening then this serene lighting will be refracted and will dance around the garden in a similar way to the way in which a flame dances in the light – it can be completely hypnotic.

Wildlife: A garden water feature will also draw to your garden a host of wildlife and particularly birds that can …

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