DEAR MARY: I love your column! During spring I put out beautiful, young plants hoping they would bloom flowers all summer long. But I’ve been having a problem: rabbits! They munch my plants right down to the ground. There’s a fence around my vegetable plants, so they’re safe, but my perennials and annuals are out in the open, and they’re getting destroyed. Do you have any ideas? — Connie
DEAR CONNIE: Short of fencing your entire garden and roping chicken wire around the lower 18 inches, there are two labor-intensive approaches that work pretty well. Plant vegetables that rabbits hate — peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes, corn and squash — among the flowers to repel them. This doesn’t look very aesthetically pleasing, though, so perhaps the second approach will be more appealing to you — and the rabbits. Plant vegetables rabbits love, such as beans, peas, parsley and rosemary, to draw them away from the flowers. Just be sure to plant this rabbit bait far from your beautiful flowers.
DEAR MARY: I know you’re a big proponent of carrying cash rather than a debit card. I’ve tried it, but I really like the convenience of a debit card, and I’m able to manage my spending better with it. The problem is I’m not earning any interest on the money in my checking account! Do you know of any high-interest checking accounts that would work well? — Maxine DEAR MAXINE: I do have good news and a recommendation for a checking account that pays up to 5 percent APY. Take a look at the new UltimateAccount offered by Northpointe Bank. Certain conditions must be met to get the 5.00 percent interest rate (mentioned below). But given your money-management style, I bet you’d easily qualify.