Q. How do you kill or get rid of fungus on a brick patio without killing the surrounding grass? We put in a 30-by-20-foot brick patio off our family room. The area is partially shaded. At first we did not have a problem, but now there is fungus growth in the shady areas.

We have tried using lime and straight bleach with a wire brush. This is effective for only a short time. Is there anything we can do to remove the fungus and keep it from returning? -- L.S.

A. Copper sulfate, also called bluestone or blue vitriol, can be used to get rid of moss with a minimum risk of harming grass or garden plants nearby.

Sold at feed stores and some nurseries, it is available in both powdered and crystal form. The powder is the easier to dissolve in water -- mix one pound of it in 20 gallons of water and spray over the mossy area. Copper sulfate may seem to be staining your brick, but the color is easily hosed off.

For future protection, apply a good masonry sealer over the surface when it has dried thoroughly.

Q. We have a log roller and would like to make newspaper logs for use {in the fireplace} this winter. I know that they are supposed to be soaked in a solution, but I don't have the recipe. Could you please print it? -- K.B.

A. The solution is a combination of two pounds each coarse salt and borax mixed in a four- or five-gallon nonmetallic container. Earthenware, enamelware or plastic that is not affected by boiling water are recommended. A five-gallon plastic garbage can is a good choice.

Put the salt and borax in the container. Pour in two gallons of boiling water, stir vigorously to dissolve the solids as much as possible. Let the solution cool, stirring from time to time. For soaking the logs, stand them on end in the solution in the container. Put in as many as you can without crowding or causing overflow. The solution should rise to the top of the container. If it does not, add warm water to fill.

Let the logs soak for about 24 hours. Add two quarts of warm water and turn the logs upside down. Let them soak, turning them several times, for two or three more days, or until all of the liquid has been absorbed. Remove them from the container and let them lie on paper in a warm place. Let them dry thoroughly -- at least two weeks.

For those readers who don't have a device for rolling paper into logs, this can be done by hand. Use any type of paper -- newspapers, magazines, scrap paper or junk mail. Roll tightly and tie with heavy twine. The paper-rolling devices are handier and can be purchased at building supply stores or housewares departments.

Q. I have a problem with drawers that stick and are very difficult to open. They are a part of a built-in storage wall. It may be due to faulty construction, but before I have the entire wall rebuilt, do you have any suggestions on how we can solve this problem?

A. Sticking drawers often are caused by moisture that has warped the wood. Drying out the drawer is the best remedy.

Put a small fixture with a 100-watt light bulb into a metal pan or rack and lace it in the bottom drawer of the built-in cabinet (it may take more than one, depending on the size of your built-in unit).

Cover the entire unit with a blanket and let the light bulb burn 12 to 24 hours. This should drive the moisture out, causing the wood to shrink. Continue doing this until all of the drawers fit properly.

Then mix equal amounts of varnish and mineral spirits, and coat the interior of the built-in unit as well as the drawers (everything except the facing) to prevent further moisture absorption and warping. Spray the drawers both inside and outside with lemon oil for further protection.

To facilitate smooth-gliding drawers, remove the drawers and rub the runners underneath with paraffin. A white candle also will do the trick.

Send inquiries to Here's How, Copley News Service, P.O. Box 190, San Diego, Calif. 92112-0190. Only questions of general interest can be answered in the column.