June 20, 2014 at 1:00 am

Welcome Mat: The latest and greatest for your home

Visit several gardens around Metro Detroit this weekend on various garden walks. (Jan Niebauer)

Several garden walks this weekend

Looking for some garden inspiration? Check out a garden walk this weekend — options abound. There’s one on Saturday in Mount Clemens, another today and Saturday in Grosse Pointe, and more in Wayne and Oakland counties. Milford’s 19th annual Garden Walk (pictured) will showcase six unique and diverse gardens. It runs from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, rain or shine. Tickets are $10 in advance ($12 the day of the tour); go to themilfordgardenclub.org for details. The Southfield Parks & Garden Club, meanwhile, is holding its eighth annual Garden Walk from 2-5 p.m. Sunday. Thirteen yards in the Riverbank Neighborhood will be featured. Tickets are $10; a shuttle bus will make a continuous loop through the neighborhood. Tickets can be bought the day of the tour at Shaarey Zedek Synagogue, 27375 Bell. For more on the garden walks, see the Home and Garden Calendar.

This week's winner is 'Water Garden'

James Young’s water garden has been a work in progress for nearly two decades. The original hole for the pond was dug at least 15 years ago, but the bulk of the work was done more than seven years ago. “Along the way, rapids and a waterfall were added,” Young says. Today, lily pads cover the pond’s surface, and “as you can tell hundreds of rocks have been accumulated, some found in fields and some purchased,” Young says. Young’s photo “Water Garden” is this week’s winner of the Homestyle Garden Photo contest. He’ll win a home or garden book and be entered as a finalist for the grand prize — a $100 gift card to English Gardens. To submit your garden photos, go to detroitnews.com/gardenphotos and click on “Submit a photo.” Or you can mail a photo to Homestyle Garden Photo Contest, 615 W. Lafayette, Detroit, MI 48226. Make sure you include contact information.

Consumer Reports: When using bug spray with DEET, keep levels low

The wet, soggy spring was great for gardening, but there is a downside: bugs. If you’re unsure what’s the best product to use as a repellant — especially if you have kids — below are tips from ConsumerReports.org:

■Try a plant-based repellent first. Examples include Repel Lemon Eucalyptus (which has a synthetic version of a naturally occurring chemical) and Natrapel or other products that contain 20 percent picaridin (a chemical similar to a compound in black pepper). Don’t use on kids younger than 3.

■When you use DEET, keep levels low. Consumer Reports’ experts recommend using no more than 30 percent DEET— ever. They say products with 95 percent or more DEET have been linked to serious side effects.

■Think twice about using DEET if you’re in a high-risk group. Children, seniors and people with weakened immune systems should use DEET with extra caution.

Paul Evans show opens at Cranbrook

Paul Evans was a metalsmith who studied at Cranbrook Academy of Art in the early 1950s. “He pushed furniture to become a piece of sculpture,” says Greg Wittkopp, director of the Cranbrook Art Museum. Teachers and art collectors Melvyn Maxwell Smith and Sara Smith had one of Evans’ cabinets, which is now in their sunroom in their Frank Lloyd Wright home (see today’s cover story). A new exhibition of Evans’ work — “Paul Evans: Crossing Boundaries and Crafting Modernism” — opens Saturday at the Cranbrook Art Museum and runs through Oct. 12. The Cranbrook Art Museum is at 39221 Woodward, Bloomfield Hills.

Palmer Woods Music in Homes finale this weekend

Palmer Woods’ Music in Homes caps off its seventh season this weekend with not one, but two concerts. Tonight, Orquesta La Inspiracion will perform Latin jazz at 8 p.m. Ticket-goers also will enjoy a Mexican feast and home tour. On Saturday, Kamau Kenyatta-Shahida Nurullah & Friends will perform a mix of jazz, Latin, blues and funk at 8 p.m. in a backyard concert. Before the concert, concertgoers will tour one of the homes, a 1928 Dutch Revival designed by renowned architect Robert O’Derrick,who designed the Henry Ford Museum at Greenfield Village. Tickets are $45 each, or $40 for groups of 10 or more; go to palmerwoods.org or call (313) 891-2514.

New school supply brand gives back to classrooms in need

Yes, school just ended less than two weeks ago, but hold on to your highlighters: back-to-school sales soon will be in full swing. Earlier this month, Yoobi, a unique brand of school supplies, hit Target shelves. But this California-based company does more than get kids ready for the next school year — it also gives back. For every Yoobi item purchased, Yoobi contributes a Yoobi item to a classroom in need. “We want to provide tools that engage kids and make them eager to learn, while also instilling the values of community and giving back,” says co-founder Ido Leffler in a news release. Yoobi offers more than 80 different items, from pens to journals to highlighters, all available in a range of vibrant colors: blue, green, pink and purple. Everything is less than $10. Visit your local Target store for information.

'Water Garden' by James Young of Canton Township is this week's winning ... (James Young)
Paul Evans' work is on display at Cranbrook. (David Guralnick / Detroit News)
Yoobi donates school supplies to classrooms in need. (Yoobi)