A Garden for the House Sounds Nice

a garden for the house

When driving through most residential areas, it quickly becomes apparent how the yards and landscapes all blend together. It seems that the homeowners all selected similar trees and flowers, typical yard ornaments and other props creating a dulling repetition of immaculately tailored lawns. But, still, a garden for the house does sound nice doesn’t it?

In such a sea of sameness, it is always easy to appreciate a compelling landscape effort that takes the road less traveled. There exists an almost infinite array of plants, features, pots, and props to make a garden for the house project truly unique. Creating that one-of-a-kind landscaping effort is a challenge limited only to your fertile imagination and available budget.

Work With Nature

Whatever features you propose to implement, never fail to keep the peculiarities of your house and property in mind. The best landscaping efforts will always work in harmony with existing surroundings, enhancing strong points and drawing attention away from any problems. In other words “it’s not nice to fool Mother Nature”!
Also be honest about how much time you will have to maintain your planned oasis. It serves no purpose to install a dazzling and enticing landscape only to watch it die or become overgrown from lack of attention.

Garden Features are Many and Varied

In the case of garden features there is lots of to think about. In and of themselves they can seem quite ordinary, but a properly executed landscape design and location can reveal hidden qualities highlighting the features you install. Garden cascades, ponds, wall mounted fountains, labyrinths, mazes, fencing, patios and a myriad of alternative garden features can create a landscape like no other. Something as simple as installing a mosaic walkway rather than the bland, boring cement squares can create a stunning and unusual feature.

If your garden is designed with an over-arching theme each feature should compliment that theme. As an example of an Asian theme, your pathways may well be constructed of bamboo instead of stone or concrete.

When designing a garden for the house including a garden water feature, whether large or small is tempting. If included, make it more interesting with a unique stone bridge or an unusual plant such as an Amazon Lily pad to compliment it. An interesting garden bridge might be as simple as large flat stones above the water’s surface. Or, perhaps, a formal painted and lacquered structure with room for a table and chairs. Does this take both work and money? Yes! Is it worth it? Yes!

Garden Walls are Great for Privacy

Where privacy is a concern garden walls will add a lot of interest to a garden for the house. Walls can be installed along your property’s boundary lines or they can be used to separate areas within the yard itself.

Walls can be constructed by any number of materials to compliment your vision. You can even use plants as borders which will keep your space all “green”.
Garden accessories run the gamut from rustic to formal. Scour local flea markets for plant supports, containers or anything which may be adapted to resist the outdoors. Old wine racks may also be transformed into elegant plant stands Even old discarded headboards or even bed frames can work. Wrought iron pieces of furniture, the older the better, will work in any style garden.

Location, location, location!

How you place your plantings will do wonders to transform your garden into a one-of-a-kind landscape. Rather than a neat hedgerow, plant a small garden maze with a center for a distinct feature like a statue or other theme appropriate accessory. Rather than a plain square bed of flowers, think about a flower clock or flag comprised of colorful plants.

Pleached features, topiaries, and other strategically pruned plants will certainly draw attention to areas of your landscape. Fill containers and window boxes with plants not often seen but still easily grown in your area. Geraniums and petunias are safe favorites. Try some other plants for a more interesting transformation.

Do some research and look at some gardening history books for concepts to make your setting more of a standout. Take your time to design your garden with unique features. You will find more fulfillment and satisfaction from your surroundings.

Doesn’t A Garden for the House Sound Nice?

Six Gardening Tips For A Glamorous Space

six gardening tips

Six Gardening Tips That Guarantee Results

When you have a tiny yard and would really like a simple but well-maintained garden, you only require two things – dedication and knowledge. Here are six quick and easy gardening tips on how to keep your garden healthy and glamorous.

1. “Dead-heading”

Keep your border free from dead flowers and dried leaves. “Dead-heading” ( the removal of dead flower heads) will encourage the plants to generate additional blooms for longer. Several perennials like geraniums and dahlias, and some annuals benefit from having exhausted blooms cleaned up and removed.

2. Pinch out tops.

Certain plants – particularly foliage plants like Coleus – respond with a burst of development if their tops are squeezed out. Pinching out makes the plant much bushier so additional blooms are produced. Fuchsias are susceptible to becoming leggy unless they’re pinched out.

3. Fertilize lightly.

A minimal amount of fertilizer will further enhance the development of your vegetation. When you water your yard frequently, you have to fertilize it more regularly because of nutrient depletion. An every two week applying of liquid fertilizer is oftentimes more beneficial than granules as it is more easily absorbed by the leaves. Container plants will be significantly more healthy with a half-strength treatment of liquid fertilizer applied regularly.

4. Weed out.

This really is one of the best methods to preserve the attractiveness of a garden. Don’t forget, weed growth competes directly with your plants for both nutrients and moisture. If the weeds are not close to seeding, abandon them about the bed to decompose down for mulch. When you have to use a weed killer, try to get a wick applicator, instead of spray. This can protect your plant life from drifting spray.

5. Water them properly

One good tip when it comes to sprinkling your garden is always to provide a thorough soaking once per week, ensuring there isn’t any run-off to cause erosion. Deep watering is going to encourage the growth of deeper roots which will be capable to tolerate dry spells.

6. Say no to chemicals as often as possible

Chemicals are harmful to people and frequently destroy the normal predators of the pests inside your garden, so eliminate them if at all possible. There are many organic alternatives that work nearly as well.

Using these six simple garden tips, your healthy garden will quickly be the focal point of your yard and the envy of the neighbors.

A Kitchen Garden Is A Wonderful Thing!

kitchen garden

Make A Kitchen Garden Part Of Your Life

Grown right outside of the house, the benefits of having a kitchen garden in your backyard can be very time saving. In the current world of large grocery stores, most don’t have kitchen gardens anymore and all sorts of foods can be found year round with no strong effort of experiencing grown them. Despite this allure, the benefits of having a kitchen garden remains very real, and until you have tried the taste of a homegrown oregano as part of your pasta sauce that has been picked out right outside your back door, you may not comprehend what you are missing.

There’s certain initial work and expense involved with any backyard garden, but it is all extremely easy and very little work or investment. You may invest in developing a smaller area and also have it landscaped to create a gorgeous backyard garden, or you can purchase a few large pots and have them set right outside of the back door for easy access. What’s much more important regarding your kitchen garden is just what you decide to grow.

Many people with a kitchen garden elect to grow herb plants that they would likely regularly purchase at the grocery store. This is particularly popular with immigrants from other countries. They frequently bring or order seeds from their native homelands and grow them here in their kitchen gardens in order to still enjoy many of the same foods they depended upon in their home countries. For example, Italian immigrants once had gardens filled with spices and greens they used in Italy for their everyday cooking and to help supplement the things they bought right here. Asians brought over seeds of bitter melon and various cabbages for basics in their cooking. A lot of hybrid dishes seem to have been made that way and so are staples in American cooking today.

Starting with perennial herbs and perennial vegetables which are incredibly easy to grow crops is recommended. Rosemary, chives, oregano, thyme, sage, rhubarb and asparagus complete a good base for adding annual herbs and veggies. These base herbs will carry any chef through many recipes summer through winter. Supplemented annual herbs may be harvested and frozen or dried for off-season use.

Periodic veggies that are preferred with any kitchen garden are tomato plants. Being the countries’ most well-liked garden veggie, the tomato helps make the backbone of most kitchen gardens for good reason. Completely ready off of the vine in the summer, tomatoes are a real treat fresh from your backyard! They will taste much sweeter and well-balanced than grocery store tomatoes, and with the heirloom resurgence tomatoes are also beautiful and varied in shape and textures.

Peppers are another kitchen garden favorite. They also can be easily preserved and enjoyed fresh, and growing your own personal peppers will save you lots of money on grocery shopping. If you’ve never enjoyed the health benefits and simplicity of growing delicious fresh peppers before you ought to. Even kitchen gardens in the far north can enjoy a harvest of sweet peppers with the right types produced. Both tomatoes and peppers are as easily grown in pots as they may be in the earth.

Lettuces and other greens are another great seasonal kitchen garden enhancements. There are numerous kinds of lettuce with a lot of flavors, several of which you can normally only find in elegant pricey restaurants. Grow them yourself at home and appreciate gourmet right outside of the back door cheaply! Other seasonal greens including swiss chard, healthy spinach, cabbage, and microgreens are all expensive from the store too, and are very easy to grow at home. Save money on food shopping by growing your own greens.

Today, people are eating healthier and they are more interested in the quality and flavor of their food. If you’re still not sure about the ease of a kitchen garden, test growing a couple of plants in containers and watch your family enjoy the simplicity of picking fresh herbs for improving the household meal. Children love growing and harvesting these foods and the kitchen garden can become a project for the whole family!

Healing Plants & Herbs

healing plants and herbs

Healing Plants and Herbs in Medicine

Almost any condition – including cancer – can be relieved by using healing plants and herbs. The derivatives of the plants and herbs (such as berries, leaves, bark, flowers and seeds) are also used to treat some medical conditions.

As herbalism becomes more accepted in our mainstream communities, we’re learning more about its healing powers. Improvements are being made in quality of the plant and herbs sold in stores and online and clinical research is also touting the benefits of using healing plants and herbal medicines in both the prevention and treatment of some diseases.

In a recent study conducted by the World Health organization, it was estimated that roughly 80% of people the world over make regular use of herbal medicines for at least part of their health care regime.

It’s highly understandable that people would be turning to herbalism since the cost of prescription drugs continues to increase worldwide. As people are learning more about healing plants and herbs and how to use them – thanks to easy access to the Internet – the interest in growing these plants for their own benefit is also experiencing rapid growth.

Some conditions that are increasingly being treated by the use of healing plants and herbs are:

Asthma – A respiratory condition that can be triggered by allergens such as mold or pollen, food additives and preservatives and coloring used in food, strenuous exercise and stress. A few natural remedies that have been found effective in treating asthma are flaxseed oil, Ma Huang, coleus, licorice and lobelia.
Eczema – Skin condition where patches of skin become inflamed and scaly, sometimes causing blisters and itching when irritated. Natural, herbal remedies that may help alleviate the symptoms of eczema are aloe vera, coconut oil, comfrey leaf, yarrow flowers and Echinacea root.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome – A severe condition that seems to be triggered by psychosomatic reactions to stress. The symptoms are bloating, constipation, diarrhea and cramps. You may be able to help your irritable bowel symptoms by drinking a daily cup or so of peppermint or ginger tea. Another ‘natural’ way to alleviate the symptoms is to get into a regular habit of exercising to release natural, pain-relieving endorphins.
Cancer – Herbal remedies for cancer treatments are being studied and the jury is still out on their effectiveness, but there are many herbal concoctions that can help prevent and alleviate the pain and other results that some modern cancer procedures can cause. Astragulus is an herb that can be helpful for immune system problems that chemotherapy and radiation cause. Enchinacea (also known as Purple Coneflower) is antibacterial, antiviral and can also be used for healing wounds.
Arthritis – Types of arthritis include the crippling Rheumatoid arthritis and it can be a painful and cause swelling because of the inflammation. More people than ever are seeking alternative medicines to reduce pain and swelling of the disease. Aloe vera used topically, Boswilla and Cat’s Claw for their anti-inflammatory properties and eucalyptus leaves for pain are just a few of the healing plants and herbs commonly used for symptoms of arthritis.

Final Word of Caution

Before taking any herbal concoction for a medical condition, you should meet with your health care provider. Some of the healing plants and herbs may interact with medications you may be taking for other conditions, so doing your initial research is extremely important.

Basic Garden Tools: 5 You Must Have

basic garden tools

5 Must Have Basic Garden Tools

Whether it’s from someone new to gardening or simply a new homeowner, a popular question we receive is what are the basic garden tools you should have. So, we have outlined the 5 most useful basic garden tools for beginning gardeners and new homeowners as well. You’ll find , plenty of gardening tools to choose from. And depending on the kind of gardening you want to do, if you will do your own landscape upkeep, what types of garden soil and plants you may have and just what you enjoy, your range of tools won’t regularly be exactly the same as someone else. There are however a few very basic and very necessary gardening tools that each and every beginner gardener and home owner should have available. These basic garden tools all play important roles in gardening and landscaping and are absolutely necessary.

Before starting, please be aware that we’re talking about non-motorized hand tools. Tools such as yard tractors, mowers, weed whips, as well as other related gear can be a subject for another conversation.

A few pairs of comfortable work gloves

How basic am I going to get here? Well, some knowledgeable landscapers and home gardeners will attest to that, when forgotten, being without good work gloves can wreck the day. Gloves prevent your hands from getting cut up and stuck. They keep your skin from prickles and scrapes as well. Plus they will help increase an extra amount of grip when it’s needed. You won’t need gloves that are fancy. Simple work gloves with rubber texture gripping on the palms and undersides of the fingers with cotton knit fabric overall are perfect. They normally are inexpensive and come in big multi-packs. Keep a pack of these in your shed always. Heavier rubber gloves become very hot, sweaty, and smelly, and they’re never very good for precise, delicate work like weeding.

A good hose and nozzle

How are you going to get the water to the plants easily? Know how much water hose length you’re going to need by measuring before you purchase. It is easy to join two lengths of hoses together. Vinyl hoses break down quickly, so spending money on a completely rubber hose will pay off- since the hose will most likely last your lifetime. Sprayer nozzles don’t have to be costly or extravagant. When you have a garden and plan on overhead irrigating, purchase a sturdy watering wand for applying overhead water. Good wands apply lots of water fast with a gentle spray that will not destroy flowers, blossoms, or potting soil.

A leaf rake

A wide, usually lightweight rake used for not only raking fall leaves, but for raking almost anything on surfaces. If you don’t use a bag on your lawnmower, a leaf rake will do a good job gathering up grass clippings.Use a leaf rake to remove or distribute mulch. Rake up dead flower petals from under more substantial plants. And so on.

A basic spade

A simple spade made of tempered steel and a round point, and a 48 inch shaft is perfect for the majority of your needs. You will need a spade for planting, making new garden beds, turning compost, putting on mulches or garden soil, burrowing for repairs around the house or excavating for a fresh outdoor project. Later on, you might want to include a shovel with a bigger scoop area for convenience in shifting mulch, garden compost, sand and more.

A set of hand pruners

A basic set of pruners can help you trim shrubs and perennials quickly. Taking out dead and diseased wood, dead growth at the end of each season, removing seed heads, fruit, and even flowers for a vase, basic pruners are a must. Look for utilitarian hand-held bypass cutters. This is the one particular tool on our list which you want to make an investment in. A quality set of pruners by using appropriate maintenance may last for many, many years, but frequently are priced in the $35 to $60 range.

There are MANY more tools available and quite a few are very helpful but those can be acquired in the future when you want them for a particular project. These are the 5 basic garden tools which will get most any garden enthusiast through the seasons and are an excellent starting place for building a larger tool collection.