Thursday, 22 June 2017

Enjoy Your Garden During Super Hot Heat Waves

A sudden increase in temperature and sun exposure can cause a lot of damage to your garden, and, as a result, your enjoyment of spending time out there. However, with a little preparation, it’s still possible to enjoy your backyard space in the hottest of heat waves, and ensure you, your plants, and lawn are all well protected. Let’s take a closer look at some of your options.
 

Get mulching

As the sun scorches the soil that your plants live in, you need to give it as much protection as possible. Watering can help, of course, but even a good soaking will dry up long before the damp reaches the critical roots of your plants. So, start creating some mulch and spread it over your exposed flower beds. You can use dried grass clippings, straw, seaweed - even newspaper or black plastic sheeting. And the result is that the soil beneath the mulch will be cooler, and it will act as a layer of protection to prevent completely drying out.

The early bird

Watering is essential during heat waves, of course, but it is a complete waste of time and resources if you water plants and lawns during the hottest parts of the day. Your best bet is to get up early and do it first thing in the morning instead, preferably using soaker hoses which you can place beneath the mulch to ensure that the roots of your plants are getting the hydration they need.

Make use of shade

If you have vast expanses of open space, you and your garden are going to struggle when the sun is shining full on. Try and create shaded areas instead, which you can use to cool down and relax, and that you can grow shade-suited flowers and plants. Plantain lilies, ferns, and Bergenias are all beautiful plants that don’t just survive in the shade - they thrive.

Movable furniture

Fixed furniture can be a big issue in a heat wave, especially if it offers you no protection from the sun. Not only will you be unable to sit down in comfort, but the damage the high levels of sun do to your garden furniture can take its toll, too. So, consider trying to find a hanging chair stand or something that is similarly mobile. Using gear like this, you can either sun yourself when the temperature is comfortable enough and hide away in the shade when it gets too hot.

Go for a pool

The traditional garden pool doesn’t have to be hugely expensive - and it’s the perfect retreat for a hot baking summer. Compact pools are widely available these days and can be used all-year around, with a standard heating system switched on over winter and most definitely turned off to give you a refreshing dip in the summer. Go for a full in-ground option if you want to keep the view of your garden intact, although bear in mind that the excavation work tends to make the process more expensive. Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below!
 

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Build Your Front Yard Up To Be Breathtaking

 
When you own property, you probably do, on occasion, think about the curb appeal of the home. You want to make sure that it looks attractive to your neighbors and perhaps even stands out as a beauty spot on your street. A key part of the curb appeal for your home is the front garden. It needs to be lush, dazzling with unique features to ensure that it really stands out on the street. So, where’s the best place to start when ensuring that your garden looks tremendous?

From The Floor Up

 
You can start by thinking about the grass underneath your feet. First, what color is it? You really want your grass to be lush and a gorgeous green. It shouldn’t have burn marks from the heat of the sun, nor should it be dry enough to lose its natural splendor. The good news is that you can get grass greener to give your turf back it’s natural colour.

Or, perhaps, you have a mainly concrete front yard, and you want to change that with some new turf. Adding more greenery to your garden can give it the color that it’s been missing. Turf suppliers can provide you with the grass you need to make your garden look more lively and vibrant.
 

Of course, you might have the opposite issue of just a wide stretch of grass making up your front yard. If that’s the case, you can think about sectioning it with a path leading up to the front door from the edge of the garden. That would look stunning, we’re sure you agree. A wonderfully quaint choice would be to lay down stepping stones.

Adding Layers

 
If you really want to ensure your garden stands out, you could give it some little layers, again sectioning different parts of your garden. For instance, in one of the corners, there could be an elevated piece of land and perched on top of this, a stone statue. This is the type of unique feature we’re talking about that will make your gardens stand out. Sunk into the garden at the front, you could have a rocky alcove with beautiful decorative features and perhaps rustic red colors. Then, just around this, you could frame it with some beautiful tropical flowers. As well as giving your garden some character, this might also make the front of your yard look a little larger.
 
This can be important if you are hoping to attract buyers in the near future.

Expert Help
 

You might be able to complete most of the work on the garden yourself. However, in some cases, it’s possible that you should think about hiring an expert to help you out here. You can recruit the services of a landscaper. You’ll certainly need their help if you want to completely alter the aesthetic of the garden. Or, if you want to add a new build in feature such as a natural water fountain.
 

Use these tips, and you can ensure that your garden looks absolutely stunning, sending neighbors green with envy.
 
 
 
 


Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Grace The Ground In Your Garden

The best gardens don’t have a huge lawn and aren’t filled with paving slabs. They don’t focus on one style or aspect of their design. Instead, great gardens use a creative mix of everything. Achieving a unique and well-balanced look in your garden isn’t easy. In fact, you could probably write several books about this, alone. So, to help you out as best it can, this post will be focusing on the floor in your garden. And, the things you can do to it to make it look as interesting and beautiful as you possibly can. Now, all you have to do is go out there and get the work done. But, of course, it won’t be quite that easy.
 
architecture, art, bench
 
To start, let’s talk about paving. Most of the usable floor in your garden will be made with either decking or paving. And, paving is the most popular option at the moment. This sort of floor is similar to the tiles you have in a kitchen or bathroom. But, instead of using tiles, they use slabs of much harder material. These stone-like slabs can be laid out in interesting patterns and shapes, making basic artwork in your garden. A lot of traditional stonemasons will be able to do this work for you using their own designs. Or, if you’re feeling brave; you could look on websites like Instagram to get inspiration for your own designs. This will make the job feel as though you had a much greater hand in it.
 
Next, it’s time to consider the more natural areas of the garden. Paving is pointless; if the rest of the garden looks bad. Paving and landscaping go hand in hand; and, once you see the results, you’ll understand why. Your lawns and soil areas of the garden should always be smooth and level. This sort of look is first achieved by laying fresh turf; then, you have to keep mowing it regularly for its lifespan. But, landscaping doesn’t just include lawns. It’s also becoming very popular for multiple levels to be used in a garden. Using wooden and stone housings, a lot of people are creating smaller, sub-gardens above their paved areas and patios. And, once you have something like this; you have to decorate it.
 
The best decorations to have in your garden are natural ones. Often, big ornaments and large features will look bad over time. So, it’s worth investing in things that can be easily changed. Flowers will create a great splash of colour during the warmer months. And, in winter, you could consider finding some plants which can survive in the cold. Different plants like to grow in different temperatures. So, you can tailor your garden to the weather; if you put the work in. Always make sure you have the right type of pot for the plants you keep.
 
Hopefully, this will give you a good idea of what needs to be done; if you want to start improving the appearance of your garden. A lot of people don’t bother to decorate the floors in this sort of area. But, it’s worth starting here; it’s the biggest part of the garden.

Thursday, 8 June 2017

How to Landscape a Horse Yard

If you own horses, your horse yard may be your only chance to use your green fingers. It’s a way of bringing life and colour to outside the home. The are many plants that can add texture and character to your yard. However, being a horse owner, you have to consider the safety of your horses too. So, if you’re ready to invest and add value to your home, along with beauty, here are some tips on how to landscape a horse friendly garden.
 
3271499633_e1903e35e6_m.jpg
 
Add Plants
Plants can add colour and vibrancy to any yard. However, you have to be careful what you choose to plant. Popular flowers like Lilies and Daffodils can be toxic to horses. Here’s a list of safe plants and flowers you can use around horses. If you aren’t brave enough to use flowers, why not create your own vegetable patch? There are plenty of choices when it comes to safe vegetables for horses. If you still want to plant flowers with plenty of colour, consider using hanging baskets that your horses can’t reach.
 
Elderflower Bushes
Elderflower bushes can make your yard look elegant. They’re ideal for creating parameters or marking off certain areas for you and your horses use. They also have one other ideal advantage around horses. They repel flies! Unlike your horse, who will attract flies, especially during the Spring and Summer months. It won’t matter how clean you keep your horse or how often you clean your Vale Stables. You will still have to deal with flies wherever your horse goes.
 
Choose a Muck Heap Location
The last thing visitors will want to see is a big muck heap as soon as they arrive on your drive. The horses yard needs to be kept clean if you want to create a beautiful landscape. Choose an area where you can keep your horses muck out of sight and out of smell. Even if you choose to use it as fertilizer, you’ll never be rid of it completely, so it’s important to find a spot that doesn’t ruin the ambience of your new yard.
 
5125720277_3f6b1974a2_n.jpg
 
Make a Feature from a Trough
If your horse spends a lot time in your yard, it will need access to water. You can double up by creating something beautiful out of the trough. Use a beautifully updated vintage trough for your horse or create a water feature that can be sustenance for your horse and an ornament for your yard. Be sure to re-fill whatever you decide on with fresh water daily.
 
Barriers
There will be times when you’ll need to separate your horse from the yard. Fencing or stone walls are a great way to do this. Fencing is an easy way to link in with your stables and create a connection within the yard. However, you can be somewhat creative with a stone wall, carefully choosing each stone that’s placed. It’s durable and looks expensive without it having to be.
Many people think of gardens with grass and flowers, but a horse yard can be just as beautiful.

 


What Flowers To Have In A Formal Cottage Style Garden

A cottage garden is less regarded for rules but rather lack of. It’s really a case of doing what you love and allowing the flowing and free nature of the plants and pathways to conjoin together without proper conformity. While formal gardens are the opposite and thrive in a controlled and more traditional environment with well-defined spaces and sections which don’t cross each other. But, a cottage garden is relaxed, fun, colorful and very beginner-friendly. And if formal gardens are for the connoisseur, what if both of them mixed together to make a botanical utopia? There’s advice at hand if you’re willing to cultivate your own corner of delightful floral formations and wondrous wandering paths.
 
Image credit - Sharon Mollerus

Growing the winter rose

Also known as the polar star, this flower is wide, bold, thick and extraordinarily beautiful. The polar star rose is one of the HyBrid Tea Rose varieties and has distinctive large double pure white petals. You don’t see this kind of rose often, and it’s because they only grow around a specific time of the year. However, if you section off a part of your garden, whether at a right angle or curving cul de sac, the right amount of care should see it blossom in no time. Normally, however, the rose flowers from the months of July to September and is quite resilient to the temperature change. The foliage is toothed, and a possesses a green sheen on the stem. Grown with love and care, it should tower at approximately 1 meter. Because the petals are thick bugs and pest like to harbor in the scented stigma, but a good spray from a company like Youngs Pest Control should take care of all your hard work.
 
Photo source - geography.org

Creating a wild meadow

The seed choice is where you will start your wild ride of untamed and mesmerizing floral abundance. If your grass is overgrown or you’re combining your flowers with the grass, make sure to trim it, so it doesn’t take the resources your seeds are going to need to grow. Yellow Rattle is a hemiparasite which will wrap its roots around the grass roots and extract the water and minerals from it, that it needs; a versatile choice. The plethora of wildflower mixes is almost too much to comprehend, but native flowers to your country are obviously at one with the climate so don’t try to go exotic.

When it comes to planting make sure you’ve prepped the soil beforehand with enriching food and minerals. The planting hole should be in the same shape and size as your selected seed, for example, if your seed is a diamond shape, form a rhombus mound of soil over it. The surrounding soil must be loose to allow the roots to spread easily and the water to penetrate deeper without pooling underneath the surface. Keep watering the flowerbed until you know the conditions are healthy enough where you can let the patch dry, upon which take the necessary precautions pertaining to bugs and slugs. Birds will go digging in the newly laid soil as it’s soft and they know a worm of insect may be underneath as a meal for them. However they will uproot the seed and destroy all your hard work, so keep an eye on your patch and if you see a bird, shoo them away.
 


Monday, 24 April 2017

Make Your Garden Into A Sanctuary

It is spring, the finest time of year for gardeners. The country is in bloom and putting on a show. Not only that, your own quiet corner of the world will likely be repaying you for your care and hard work all year round. While maintaining a garden is a lot of work, when you get to see it blossom, it is all worth it. Just as Wallace Stevens taught us that there are ‘Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird’, there are also many ways of looking at your garden. You may see it, and the work that you put into it, as an exercise in beauty. When it comes alive in spring, it is mesmeric and all you want to do is share it with everyone (whether in person, or if you have one, on your Instagram account). Other people will look at their garden with a view to its utility. Dedicating part of your garden to growing vegetables, fruit or herbs is a great way to eat the freshest food you’ll ever have and maybe make some money too if you want to set up a stool at a farmer’s market. Another way of looking at your garden is as a social hub. This is great if you have visiting family, or you just want to get your friends together. The atmosphere at a barbecue is special and appeals to both adults and kids. However, an important perspective to have when it comes to your garden is that it is a place where you should be able to relax.


The world today is so often hectic and stressful that everybody needs to find their own way of relaxing. Some find that they can only unwind in the tumult and noise of the stands at a football stadium while others think that the picture of relaxation is a day at the spa. In any case, one’s garden, when organised properly, can be exquisitely relaxing, and it is literally in your backyard. If you want to turn your garden into your own personal oasis of calm and indulgence, here are a few things to consider:


garden chair.jpg


The first and most important thing that you need if you are going to relax in your garden is somewhere comfortable to sit (check out bramblecrest for some ideas). Picking the garden furniture that is perfect for you is obviously a personal thing, but without it, you will be stuck sitting on the grass. Depending on the time of year, that may be somewhat impractical and not all that comfortable in any case.


patio.jpeg


Secondly, if you want to be able to retire to your garden all year round, you will need to make sure that it is not too cold during the winter months. Investing in a patio heater or a fire pit is a good idea. On those mild nights where you do not want to sit in front of the TV again, curling up on the patio and watching the sunset is just perfect.

Thirdly, if you enjoy being in your garden but you also enjoy watching films, then why not consider installing a projector and a screen and having your outdoor cinema.

Before long, your garden will be the envy of your friends and they will be jealous that you keep it all to yourself.

 

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

A Bloomin' Lovely Garden

With summer on its way, us green fingered folk can already imagine our gorgeous gardens in full bloom. We’ve waited through the barren winter, but our outside space is about to burst into colour again. Of course, no garden will explode without a little work. Now is the perfect time to ensure your garden becomes the colourful haven you want. You may have existing plants that return each year. If not, get to work. Here are a few ways to ensure you have a blooming lovely garden come the summer months.
A WIDE RANGE


Every gardener dreams of a flourishing outside space.A well-done garden is a feast for the eyes, and we’re more than ready to gorge ourselves. But, how do you achieve the vibrant garden you can picture in your mind? Variety is the answer. Sticking with one colour or plant type will make it harder to achieve a colour explosion. Instead, look at a range of different plants, in a range of colour schemes. How you arrange these in your garden depends on your personal taste. You may want to keep each plant in a neat section with its own kind. Or, you may want to mix things up and go for a wilder feeling. Whatever you do, it can pay to mix colours throughout each section. An organised gardener may want to keep each colour separate, and there’s no denying that this can work. But, it can be harder to make a garden pop when working to such strict codes.




A WATERING SCHEDULE

Your plants will not stay vibrant if you don’t get on top of a watering schedule. Instead, they will fast become tired and washed out. It’s worth watering in the morning and evenings if the weather is hot. For the most part, the dryness of the soil will show whether this is necessary. Try to water at the same time each day. You could use a hose, or install sprinklers which come on automatically and do the job for you. You’ll need to bear in mind water restrictions, too. It may be worth installing a private water supply. Visit the Nicholls website, and others like them to get an idea about whether it would work for you. The primary benefit of a private supply is that your water use can never be limited. Private supply is also an eco-friendly option, so you’ll still be doing your bit.

PROPER MAINTENANCE

To keep things looking lovely, stay on top of maintenance. A mixed colour scheme can look fantastic when done right, but it can get out of control fast. You need to keep on top of what your plants are doing to ensure wildness doesn’t take over. A slightly wild look can work well, but complete wilderness in the garden is not what you’re aiming for. Make sure to trim back any straying flowers, remove weeds, and keep an eye on cross pollination. Some plants spread like wildfire, and they alone could ruin the whole image.


Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Making Your Garden A Social Hub This Summer

It’s almost summer, which means that the season for socialising outside is almost upon us. It’s time to go to rooftop bars, to beer gardens, to take a picnic to the park and sprawl out on the grass with your loved ones to really enjoy the sunshine - but most of all, it’s time to take a look at your own space and figure out how you can use it this summer for social occasions.


Add Decking


The grill man
Image source


First of all, it’s time to add decking. If you’re a whizz at DIY projects then you could consider going to a lumber yard, picking out what wood you want to use, and making it yourself, but if you think you’re probably the sort of person who’ll buy the materials and let them rot in your garage all summer instead of actually doing the work, then it’s a good idea to call in the professionals. Make sure that there’s enough space to put out some chairs and a table, for anyone that you want to invite over for dinner - and add an area where you can put your grill so that you can cook your meat and veggie burgers in safety.


Make Sure There’s Shade


Brown and White Wooden House on Green Forest
Image source


It’s important to make sure that your back garden has some areas of shade. Not everyone tans easily and you don’t want anyone to end up with bad sunburn because they don’t have anywhere to shelter in your back garden - it’s important to remember that comfort extends past chairs and tables and into people having what they need to stay healthy. Likewise, make sure that it’s easy to get into your house to get some water and to apply sunscreen. Not only can the sun’s UV rays cause sunburn and skin cancer later down the road, but being in the sun for too long can lead to heatstroke.


Add Some Quirks


Girl, Jump, Trampoline, Outdoor, Garden, Shrubs, Up
Image source


If you have enough cash to spare then why not make your back garden a fun place for people to be? You could add a trampoline for the kids and maybe even a hot tub for the adults. Quality hot tubs may cost a little money but they’ll be worth it when you’re relaxing outside at night with your partner under the stars, feeling the warm bubbles bursting against your back. There’s very little that’s better for you than to have an excuse to relax - and let’s face it, the warmth and the gentle rippling of the water will make you feel as though you’re far, far away from home, in a place where the summers are much warmer!


Make It Beautiful


botany, desktop backgrounds, desktop wallpaper
Image source

Finally, it’s time to make your garden gorgeous again after neglecting it during the winter. Make sure that you keep watering your borders, and pull up all the weeds from the roots to lessen the chances of them growing back again. If your lawn is overrun with moss and weeds then you could try a natural weed killer followed by plant food which will help it grow back to its lush green best.