Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Ways to Spruce up Your Garden

Has, in recent seasons, your garden been looking a bit lacklustre? If you garden didn't even look good in its heyday last summer, then perhaps it’s time to start taking action now in order to spruce it up before this coming summer arrives.
 
You could brighten the area up with a whole host of lights — they add a real character to the environment and even mean you can spend nights outside during the summer without having to bring a torch out with you. Decking lights are a great feature for any of those of you whose gardens are blessed with a decking area, but there are other areas in your garden where you can utilise LED lighting to spruce it up. LED plinth light can be mounted and sit on top of posts, such as veranda posts and solar-powered lighting can be stuck into the soil in various points and positions. You could, if you have any sort of path running through the garden, place lights on either side of it in order to spruce up the path.Solar_garden_light.jpg
 
And why not make a splash when sprucing up the area? You could introduce a bird bath to your garden in order to give your garden a different kind of edge, whilst in turn attracting all sorts of different types of birds to your area who will bring with them an instant and healthy dose of ‘spruce’. Or, if you’d prefer, you can go the whole hog and opt for a fancier water feature. Features, fountains, ponds and pools are some of the best ways to give your garden a new lease of life because, when first introduced, they offer something completely different to your area. Make sure to have a look at some of these stunning water features.

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But it doesn’t all have to be necessarily expensive: you don’t need fancy and costly tools and areas to help spruce your garden up.You can add colour to your garden, and not just by way of the flowers you plant or grow there. A good idea is to buy cheap and colourful plant pots, or even paint old ones to add even more vibrancy to your outdoor haven. Whether you go for summer pastel colours, or bold bright ones, your garden will be brought to life instantly. However, you should always continue to take care of the basics of your garden, which is looking after the nature that grows there — because if done right, they are a way of really sprucing up the environment themselves. You should begin to tend to your lawn as soon as the weather allows you to. Feed your lawn on a regular basis with granular feed, and continuing to do so throughout the summer months, will stop your grass from ever looking as it is suffering from a serious case of wear and tear. This makes the garden look greener and far more inviting.pexels-photo-212324.jpeg
Green grass
So, there you have it. A few things you can do and introduce to your garden to give it an injection of life and really spruce it up!

Thursday, 16 February 2017

Getting Your Garden Summer Ready

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We might still be waiting for spring to make an appearance, but it is never too early to start thinking about the summer. In fact, if you want to make the most of your garden when the sun starts to shine and the temperature hots up, now is the perfect time to start getting your garden ready for summer, and here are a few tips for doing just that:


Feed Your Lawn
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If you want your garden to look luscious and green when your guests rock up to the first barbecue of the summer, you need to start feeding your lawn regularly come spring. This will stop it from getting yellow and ‘threadbare’ so that your garden always looks fabulous.


Sort Out Your Paving
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If your garden has a significant amount of paving, you will want to make sure that it looks good by the summer. Paving that is dirty, filled with weeds and cracked can make the best gardens look grubby so it may be worth checking out local paving centres for new paving, if yours is beyond help.


If your paving is just in need of a good clean, a good once over with a pressure washer and some well-placed weed killer should see you right.


Flower Power
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Few things are able to transform garden from drab to fab like the inclusion of a few well-placed flowers. Whether your garden consists of paving stones or grass, there is a suitable flower solution out there for you. If you’re not a fan of getting down and dirty in the garden, you might want to invest in a few baskets and pots that you can fill with pretty blooms. If you don’t mind gardening, then digging around the perimeter of your property and filling the beds with flowers is a great way to add colour while maintaining the functionality of your garden space.


Clean Your Garden Furniture
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If your garden furniture has been left languishing over the autumn and winter months, now is the time to get them out and give them an airing. Leave them out for a few hours on a dry day to get rid of any musty smells and spend an hour or two giving them a thorough clean. If your garden furniture is plastic, a good going over with soap and a sponge should suffice, but if your furniture is made from metal or wood, you may need to scrub it with a wire brush to get rid of any rust or mould that has started to appear on the furniture.


Let There Be Light
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At this time of year, you can usually pick up outdoor solar lighting at very reasonable prices, and it is great for adding some sparkle to the garden on those long summer evenings spent eating and drinking with friends. Lights can be fixed to fences, wrapped around gazebos or even attached to outdoor walls for a special tough.


Cut the Grass
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Of course, you should also start cutting your lawn as soon as spring hits and it gets a growth spurt. Cut grass at least twice a month to ensure you don’t end up with a jungle on your property come summer.


Monday, 13 February 2017

No Yard? No Worries, You Can Still Garden

Maybe you’re moving to a new property that doesn’t look like it can cater to your hobby of choice. Maybe you’ve always wanted to give gardening a go but you don’t have the space. Whatever the case, having no garden on your own property isn’t the end of your green-thumbed dreams. Here, we’re going to look at how to indulge when it looks like the space you have won’t let you.

Get indoors
Nowadays, there are plenty of ways to garden indoors. In fact, one of the best parts of indoor gardening is choosing containers and placement that contributes to the d├ęcor of the home as a whole. One of the challenges about gardening indoors is about properly knowing the demands of it. Your garden won’t get as much natural water, so if you don’t want to spend too much time watering all your indoors plants, then you want some with fewer demands. Cacti aren’t your only option. Orchids make a very popular choice for indoor gardens because of their relatively little need for water.
Get vertical
If you want plants that can bask in the sun and the rain, then you should look at using any vertical space available. Lightweight trellises with attached planter gardens offer some space that won’t only brighten up your yard but are also very easy to move if you need to. You don’t necessarily need to build permanent structures to house your vertical garden. Just make sure you carefully consider the placement of them. Take a look at whatever outdoor space you have and how shade affects it during the day.
Get communal
If you simply want to garden for the enjoyment of the hobby or you want to grow some of your own food, then it’s not as important that it’s a part of your home. In fact, allotments can be a great way to even make some friends that share the hobby. An allotment blog can help you find the garden centers near you and even the events that pop up that allow you to play a bigger role in the community. If there isn’t one available, then you could go about pushing to start one, yourself.
Get inventive
If none of these options sound like a fit, then you might need to put a little more creativity in where you decide to add a little green. Hanging baskets at the entry of a home are a great way to add some curb appeal to the home, for instance. A drab balcony can be transformed with a little greenery, too. Even windowsills can be great choices if you use the ones that are going to be facing the sun for most of the day. There are plenty of ways to find space to pot your plants.
Gardening can be as creative or perfunctory as you want it to be. Think about what you want above all else and make the right choice of how you get it. Having no garden shouldn’t be any obstacle.

Thursday, 26 January 2017

Turn Your Balcony Blues into a Flourishing Garden



Not everyone is able to have their own garden. But just because you don't have a garden, it doesn't mean you can't do any gardening. If you're fortunate enough to have a balcony, it can be a brilliant place to create a mini garden. Even with just a small amount of space, you can add some beautiful plants to your balcony that you can enjoy. You can even attract some wildlife, ranging from insects to birds and squirrels. If you want to create a balcony garden, have a look at the tips below to get started.


Put Plants at Different Levels


Even with only a small space such as a balcony, you're able to create a dynamic and varied garden. One of the great things about a balcony is that it can still offer at least three levels for you to use. You can place plants in pots and planters on the floor, hang them from the railing or barrier of the balcony, and suspend them from the roof with hanging baskets. You can maximise the space you have to make a tiered garden with a variety of plants. You could have anything from trailing plants in your hanging baskets to a small fruit tree on the floor.




Draw in Wildlife


If you like gardens for the wildlife they attract, don't let having a balcony stop you enjoying it. There are several things you can do if you want to attract some wildlife to your balcony. You might not be accessible to hedgehogs, but your balcony can still be reached by bugs, birds, and squirrels. You might choose to hang a feeder if you want to attract birds. Another option is to choose your plants carefully if you want to attract bees and other insects to your balcony.


Consider the Weather


When you're selecting the plants for your balcony, don't forget to think about the weather. Of course, you need to select plants that will do well in the climate. But you also need to think about the safety of having various containers on your balcony. If the wind picks up, is there a danger of anything going flying? Selecting heavier contains is often best to ensure that they stay in place. However, your balcony might protect everything from the wind.




Create a Seating Space


Some balconies are bigger than others. Perhaps after adding plants, there might not be space for much else. But if there is room, you might want to create somewhere you can sit and enjoy your garden. Just try not to place any seating directly under hanging baskets, or you could end up being dripped on. A bistro table and a couple of small chairs are great additions to your balcony, giving you somewhere to relax on a sunny day. If you can't fit them in, you could consider a single chair, such as a rocking chair or armchair.


You only need a small amount of space to create a garden. If you have a balcony, it might be enough to give you what you want.


Wednesday, 25 January 2017

The Fantastic 5: Small Garden Additions, Huge Garden Upgrade

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Nothing beats having a garden that’s sparkling with personality and style. Whether you use it to host parties with friends, or as a tranquil getaway doesn’t matter. The outside space can offer something that no other part of the home can. Not making the most of it would be a huge waste, especially when you achieve so much with just five simple improvements. What are you waiting for? Let’s get to work.


A Fake Lawn
For most homeowners, maintaining the garden is a bigger struggle than creating it. Unfortunately, mowing the lawn can literally cut into your leisure time. Thankfully, astroturf solutions offer the perfect aesthetic all year round. Better still, you’ll no longer have a huge lawnmower taking up space in the garage or shed. You can still dedicate areas to planted flowers or orchids to maintain the natural beauty. However, maintenance will instantly become far easier.


Decking
The perfect modern garden will almost certainly boast a decking area. This one addition adds a far greater sense of practicality to the external parts of your home. Building a simple deck doesn’t have to cost thousands. You can have it completed in a short space of time too. Combine it with the right rattan furniture and a suitable cover for a stylish outside venue. Best of all, the upgrade will boost your property’s value as well as your enjoyment of it.


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Suitable Lighting

Lighting is a crucial aspect in all parts of the home, and the garden is no different. Without outside lighting, you limit time in the yard to daytime. Solar LED lights can extend your outside time into the evening. This can allow you to spend time with friends and family, or relax alone after a tough day at work. It certainly beats wasting a night in front of the TV. And as a bonus, the eco-friendly solution means you’re having a less damaging impact on the environment.


Suitable Heating

If you are going to spend evenings in the garden, it needs to be warm. A garden stove not only adds heat, but it provides a natural vibe that the whole family can enjoy. Meanwhile, some stoves can even double up as a BBQ. Just be sure to choose kiln dried logs for a cleaner burn, and those relaxed afternoons and evenings will feel like heaven.


A Water Feature

Most people would love a swimming pool in their garden. And it can be achieved on a relatively small budget. However, the far more accessible option is to have a water feature built in. There are plenty of options, and they all add to the sounds and sights of the perfect garden. Of course, you need to ensure those aspects are safe when children are around. Nevertheless, they can complete the peaceful vibe as you look out at the orchids and blooming flowers from the comfort of your deck.


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Final Thought

The garden is a unique space, and it should reflect you. Above all else, make sure those decisions are based on your preferences. As long as you feel happy and relaxed in the outside area, it will make your property feel more like home. What more could anyone want?


Tuesday, 24 January 2017

Will You Be Left Behind When Spring Has Sprung? Here’s How To Stay Ahead



At this time of year, it’s easy to concentrate on keeping yourself cosy, warm and occupied inside of the home. Because of the harsh temperatures and the even harsher weather conditions, you don’t always want to prioritise any work that needed doing outside of your house. But, a keen gardener will always get ahead of the game and start early. It’s true, there are ways that you can enjoy your garden in winter, but you can also work on getting it ready to enjoy spring as soon as it’s here.


Clear What You Can


Firstly, you should work on clearing away whatever you can. This may be a task that you set yourself at the very start of winter, which will mean that you have less to do now. But, if your garden is currently full of weeds and leaves and dying buds, it’s time to get outside and get to work. Rip away what you no longer need and clear beds ready for planting. You’ll also want to deadhead anything that will reappear in spring.


Pick Out Your Furniture


Then, when the garden is a lot clearer and tidier, you’re going to want to start doing your research for how you’re outside living space will look. If you want to enjoy your garden as soon as the warmer days arrive, you’re going to want to get this task done fast. Whether you choose comfortable sofas or wicker furniture, consider what options will work best and pick out a set to buy now.


Plan Your Design


Now that your furniture is chosen, you can think about the design of the rest of your garden. You might have gone with the same style in the previous years, but if you’ve chosen a new style of outdoor living furniture, you might want your garden to follow suit. Either way, you need to know what you’re going to plan and where you’re going to plant it. You could even think about buying bulbs and keeping some plants indoors if you want to get them all into the ground as soon as the frosts are finished.


Create A Cooking Area


Then, you’re going to want to complete the rest of your living space. Choosing the furniture isn’t enough. If you plan to spend a lot of time outside during spring and summer, it’s likely that you’ll be dining al fresco on many occasions. So, you need to work out what cooking equipment you’ll need, including any grills, as well as additional seating, drinking areas or preparation stations.


Decorate Away


At this point, you might feel as if your outdoor living space is really taking space. But, it’s likely to be missing a few things. To ensure that the space feels comfortable and complete, you’re going to want to accessorise in any way that you can. Firstly, you might want to add in some lighting, or at least purchase it ready, for when the nights draw in and you’re still outside. It can also be an idea to stock up on blankets and throws to decorate the area, as well as heaters for when the weather drops.



Monday, 23 January 2017

In the Night Garden: Designing a Garden for Evening Hangouts

Do you want to use your garden more often? Too many people only get outside when it's warm, dry and sunny. Even when it starts to cool in the summer evenings, they retreat inside to continue their fun elsewhere. But if you think you should use your garden more often, you can set it up for evening use. As the sun goes down and even when it's almost completely dark, you can continue to sit outside and enjoy your garden. You just need some useful features to ensure the space is still enjoyable in the dark.


Rustle Up Some Warmth


The first thing that might concern you about using your garden in the evening is the temperature. Even in the summer when there's a rare heat wave, it can cool down in the evening. And if you want to use it at other times of the year, the temperature could be much lower. But don't let the cold stop you from enjoying your garden. Start by installing an outdoor heater or having somewhere you can light a fire. Create a comfortable seating area with blankets and think about how to shelter it from the wind too.


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Light Up the Night


Of course, you're going to need some light for your garden if you want to use it in the evening. If nothing else, it will help to make the garden safer. There are several types of light you might choose to use outside. Installing some LED decking lights is a great idea so that you have some lights under your feet. Put lighting at different levels, including over your head and close to you when you sit or stand. You can use wired lights, solar powered lighting, lanterns and candles for different effects.


Keep the Drinks Flowing


When you're out in your garden, you're probably enjoying the space with friends or family. If everyone is having drinks, you don't want to have to keep going back inside the house. There are a few things you could do if you wanted to keep the drinks coming. Setting up an outside bar could give you a space to make drinks all evening. You could even consider some facilities for making hot drinks. Have an outdoor kitchen or just use some camping equipment to make hot drinks for anyone who wants them. You could even use an open fire to boil water or milk.


Provide Some Entertainment


You might also want something to do while outside in the evenings. Your first thought might be to have some music. If you want to do this, you need to think about soundproofing. You should try to make your garden as insulated as possible, so your neighbours don't hear you. This is good practice anyway if you're going to be outside chatting. Don't forget to consider getting some speakers that are designed to work outside. They need to be tough and possible stand a bit of moisture.


You don't have to abandon your fun in the garden when the sun goes down. If you want to continue partying, it doesn't take much to create the perfect evening space.


Thursday, 19 January 2017

Incredible Landscaping Ideas You Can Get Done for Summer



Summer is still at least half a year away yet, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get some work done in your garden! In fact, some renovation of the outdoors of your property right now could be started around now and be finished for summer so you can enjoy them properly in the sunshine.


You shouldn’t underestimate the ability of your garden to adjust to the colder climate. A lot of people seem to think that winter is a time in which nothing is worth doing to your garden - that you’ll just end up wasting your time because everything out there is dead and infertile.


But this simply doesn’t apply to every sort of garden work. Indeed, crafting a beautiful garden for winter is something a lot of gardeners are keen on. But what about landscaping? A lot of people would dismiss any full-on renovations for this time of year. Besides, how would they possibly be done in time?


Not all renovation projects take nearly a year or more to complete. Here are a few ideas you get started on now and finish in time for the sunny months.




Secluded resting place


Feels strange the type the phrase “resting place” when talking about your garden, right? I’m not referring to building yourself a grave in your backyard! I’m referring to the development of a small and simple getaway tucked somewhere near the back of your garden. Bring in a few hedges and flowers towards the back of your garden and get yourself a luxurious outdoor chair. Position everything so where you’re sitting is out of the house and vice versa. In other words, make this seating area secluded by vegetation. You’ll be surprised at the feeling of escapism this can bring!


Decking


This is one of the most popular home renovations of all time, and for good reason, too. It’s practical, fun, luxurious, and adds great value to a property. But can decking really be completed within six months? If you get the planning done properly and work with good contractors, then you can get it done in a matter of weeks without having to skimp on quality. In these darker, wintry months, you may want to ensure that there’s decent protection so the wood doesn’t get too wet while you’re working on it. As long as you have that, there’s no reason why you can’t start a decking project in winter and get it finished by summer.




Courtyard

Another project you may think takes much longer than it actually does. Even if you throw in some new steps leading up to your back door, the project can be completed in a matter of weeks. Of course, a “garden courtyard” is actually a much more vague term that you may realize. There are so many varieties out there, so it’s possible that the image you have in your head is a very complex project that could indeed take a little too long for it to be ready in time for summer. Your best best is to check out a bunch of courtyard ideas to see what would work best for your garden.