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Homework: Turn a favorite location into abstract art |
Home & Garden

Homework: Turn a favorite location into abstract art

Grafomap turns the places you love into easy wall art.
A round Patioflame Table from Napoleon

Maps mounted as wall art are nothing new. Some are vintage, a la pull-down classroom maps. Others are made to look old and weathered. Some are accurate and to scale; others are snarkily reconfigured.

But never has making and ordering a custom map been easier than GrafoMap. Made to transform maps into graphic form, the GrafoMap is meant for poster-ing.

Tap in any location: your hometown neighborhood, the church where your parents married, the city you’re planning to visit next year. Zoom in or out, choose from a color scheme that makes your map more abstract, or less. Add text tagging the location Order a print for $49 for an 18-by-24-inch map.

Hang the places you love at eye level, and let your mind wander.


Outdoor gas table can be used year-round

A Napoleon Patioflame table takes the idea of gas fireplaces and moves it outside.

The self-contained gas Patioflame table can be used year-round and eliminates the potential for flying embers, ashes and smoke; it doesn’t conflict with many municipal burning regulations.

The tables have space for drinks and side dishes on the top. An optional wind deflector is available to help keep the heat in on windier days.

The tables from the Canadian-based company are available for about $1,300.


Revive Boston fern by saturating roots

Perk up your Boston fern by dunking it in a tub of water. Leave it until the root zone is saturated; this may take several hours but will ensure a thorough wetting.

This also is an effective way to hydrate the plant before leaving for vacation. Let the pot drain before returning it to its regular spot.

Where’s Doug?

• On Aug. 28, Tribune-Review’s home and garden editor, Doug Oster, will be at the 12th annual Red Ripe and Roasted Tomato and Garlic Festival at Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Oster will answer garden questions, sign books and cook Extreme Garlic Grilled Shrimp at noon. The event is free, and gardeners who bring a bag of produce get free admission to the conservatory. The produce will be collected by the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank.


— Staff and wire reports

Send Homework items to Features in care of Sue Jones, Tribune-Review, D.L. Clark Building, 503 Martindale St., Pittsburgh, PA 15212; fax 412-320-7966; or email

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