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Brandon woman hopes lawn décor brightens people’s day
By By Jill Meier
Challenger editor

September 19. 2013 10:10AM
Val Lange simply likes to make people smile.

And she’s hoping her colorful “lawn bling” on display along Brandon’s Holly Boulevard is doing just that.

“It’s a tough world, so if you’re going by and I can change your day, that’s my goal,” said the 54-year-old Lange, who “lives in the perfect spot where there’s a lot of traffic.” Her home is located at1605 Holly Blvd.

Lange’s original lawn décor was spurred two years ago after a lightning strike set fire to a tree on the Lange property. “When I came out the next day to survey the damage, I saw the tree and thought it would be a nice backdrop,” she recalled. “When the Lord dropped that tree, He knew I’d do something with it.”

Two years later, the bark is starting to peel away from the tree. But Lange likes the change. “It’s a natural process,” she said.

With the backdrop in place, Lange went about adding décor in a variety of primary and secondary colors. “I’m not always so great about putting colors together, so I stayed with primary and secondary colors because they go together,” she said. “I got paint in the brightest of those colors that I could.”

Situated on a sea of white rock – “because I wanted to catch people’s attention” – Lange added trinkets she’s found in stores or recycled from around her home, or created, such as her “clay pot man.”

“I find ideas on Pinterest,” she said. “I see things and then I get inspired.”

That’s what led her to the design of the weaved board, which she patterned after a quilt she once saw.

The bird feeder was made by a daughter and she made the post – inspired by the hit TV show, “M*A*S*H*”, and the two paintings on the easel were a thrift store find.
“I change it up a little,” she said. “But the clay pot man has to stay because he’s everybody’s favorite.”

Many of the boards used in her display came from an old barn on the property that was taken down.

Recently, Lange added a second display – the hen house – located on the opposite side of her driveway.

“I grew up raising chickens,” she said.

Again, she used old barn wood and repurposed an old bookcase for the hen’s nesting.
“I’ve always done flowers, but I have a lot of shade here,” she said, “So this is landscape design without flowers.”

The uniquely shaped tree that was hit by lightning two years ago was Val Lange's inspiration to create this colorful and original lawn display on her property along Holly Boulevard. Photo by Jill Meier

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