Preparing Your Home and Garden for Spring

As the cool winter begins to subside, everyone is looking forward to the coming of spring. Spring means lighter and warmer days. Nevertheless, you cannot fully enjoy spring if you do not prepare your home and garden for it. Preparing your home and garden for spring means a lot of work, so it is important to evaluate the work ahead in order to accomplish them in time. Start by checking the outside of your home and check out doors and windows. It is also a good idea to check out your exterior wall as well and find out if there are cracks, holes or leaks due to the cold season.

It is necessary to review your major home ventilation, hating and air-conditioning systems. Before the climate changes, make certain that filters are replaced or cleaned and the air conditioner in good condition. Clean windows, ceiling fans and clean the fireplace. Do not forget to check the emergency systems in your home such as the smoke alarms, home alarm, carbon monoxide alarms and fire extinguisher and make certain they are in good working condition. Check other areas in your home as well, like the roof, clean the gutters and remove twigs, leaves and branches on the roof.

Prepare your garden for spring since winter could definitely affect it. Winter has frozen your plants, trees, destroyed plants, flowers and left your garden in a kind of mess. The first thing you should do is to find out when winter ends officially so you can begin rehabilitating your garden. Remove twigs, dry leaves and other items that could mean obstructions on your garden. Clean the entire are with a rake and prepare your garden tools. Make sure they are sharp and ready for use. Start buying bulbs, seedlings and garden decorations.

Cultivate the soil so it will be ready for new plants to be planted. Prepare your walkways and areas adjacent to your landscaping. Make sure to replace old and cracked garden hoses and remove tree limbs and debris from the sidewalks. If there is no more snow in your area, it is a good time to begin planning your spring landscaping and lawn maintenance. Pressure wash paver and concrete areas that have turned dirty during winter and power wash brick walls, vinyl siding and the vertical surfaces in your home if necessary.

By preparing your home for the spring is rewarding today and still rewarding three months from now. Remember that your home goes through many changes due to climatic changes and as it ages. Spring preparation and maintenance is good for every homeowner. Furthermore, it is more important if you plan to sell your home soon. Homebuyers want to make certain that all home systems are well-maintained and taken cared of before they purchase. If you are unsure, consider hiring a professional home inspector. A home inspection covers your home from top to bottom. So, what are you waiting for? Prepare your home now because the warmer climate is just around the corner. Time to go outdoors and enjoy the sun.

Useful Techniques to Create a Beautiful Home and Garden

The home and garden TV shows and online articles are all about techniques and suggestions on how to create beautiful homes and gardens. Most homemakers watch these programs avidly to gather tips that help decorate their homes. Many online writers also give you systematic instructions and clear guidelines on money-saving ideas for better home and gardens. Investing in a designer is expensive and if you have a good eye and flair for design, go ahead and take up the challenge. You can join a group or newsletter online and ask for advice.

Visualize what your home and garden could look like

This is an important and useful home and garden tip. Imagine what it will look like when the trees, shrubs and plants that you have planted reach their ultimate size. When you change the position of doors and windows, make sure the view that meets your eye is pleasant to behold. When converting a bedroom to a bathroom, properly align windows and doors and counter check if the flooring and walls can withstand upheaval and plumbing. Convert an unused porch or study to a solarium. This job requires professional expertise and help. Whatever project you undertake, make sure you provide for all seasons.

Spring cleaning does not have to be in Spring

Rake off that snow mold from your lawns and start getting ready to let your garden grow. Remove all old twigs, branches and lawn waste and check if the soil is dry and crumbly. If it is sodden, one has to wait awhile. Consider a garden trellis this spring as a useful home and garden decoration. Use attractive climbers to intertwine the trellis and give character to your garden. It is time to bring out the garden furniture and give it a fresh coat of paint or polish. Birdbaths need to be cleaned and fresh water used. Bring out those Water fountains and statues kept in cold storage out for airing. Clean out Window boxes and hanging baskets and pack them with soil and mulch in readiness for planting.

Read instructions carefully before choosing your garden plants

Garden supplies are available in many home stores. All plants and seedlings come with tags, which provide useful advice on how to care for plants, whether they are seasonal, or not, how much sunlight and water is required for tending, etc. Buy books, which teach you useful home and garden decorating tips that make it easier for you to plan your garden. Make sure you adorn the pathways and driveways tastefully. Create a little landscaping in one area of your home. You can also have a vegetable patch in your backyard. Keep an eye out for those pesky bugs and wild animals that can destroy your garden. Use pesticides and herbicides regularly

Top 5 Tips to Improve Your Garden

1) Keep your outside space tidy
Open out the space and maximise the area by trimming back any overgrown area’s ensure that if your potential purchasers arrive the drive way is cleared of any children’s toys, cars, gardening waste, bulk waste and rubbish bag. You may be having a clear out as you’re moving but they don’t need to see it. It is usually men who notice how easily maintained the garden space is and having an messy or overgrown space can really put them off.

2) Add some colour
Where ever possible make your space seem more pleasing to the eye by adding some floral decoration. A simple touch is to buy a set of pots or maybe a hanging basket and plant colourful healthy looking plants and for the time your house is being viewed it will be appealing. Try to avoid heavily scented flowers as this can be quite personal and the wrong smell could leave the wrong lasting impression. A real benefit of pots or basket is they are usually relatively inexpensive and you can always move them with you to a new property.

3) Edging the space
The edging of your space should also be well maintained depending upon the type of space you have. If your property has a smaller outside space blurring the edges with some potted plants but not too large can make an improvement and in some cases painting the walls a lighter colour can brighten the space but ensure the colour is neutral and in keeping with the rest of the property’s overall look. If you have a fairly big garden show it off with clearly defined edging ensuring that all fencing looks in good repair and freshly painted or any brickwork is pristine.

4) The entertainment space
If you have a well maintained clearly defined back garden space use it to your advantage by creating a scene. Have a cleaned and well maintained barbeque on show with a chair and tables as if you use the space to entertain and relax frequently even if it’s not your personal taste most potential purchasers can be sold by the idea of something rather than the reality. If you have the benefit of sunshine maximise the effect by offering refreshment when they reach the back garden and invite them to sit and make themselves at home.

5) Water features
If you have the chance and the funding to add something just a little bit special for the extra effect then purchasing a self contained water feature that is both attractive and child friendly

Can make the memorable feature that puts your property ahead of the other’s in the same price range.

Useful Home and Garden Makeover Ideas

Gardening experts give practical and useful home and garden tips online or on TV shows which are very instructive. Incorporate their ideas and suggestions to give your garden a face-lift. Several factors go into creating a beautiful garden. While the size is not very important, proper placement of plants, pathways and garden furniture all combine to create a beautiful garden.

Remember to follow these simple instructions

Prepare the soil before you bring in plants and vegetable seedlings. Clean out the garden and use lawn clippings, branches and leaves by renting a shredder and re-use this as fertilizer for your lawn. Make a compost pile in one sunny corner of your yard. Make sure to place a layer of soil over your leaf and waste products. Check out how much sun or shade is required for a plant by reading instructions on tags when they are bought. Select the right spot and make your soil bed. Remember, it is not necessary to dig too deep as this can choke a plant or create root rot. If a tree is to be planted, remember to leave a clear area all around for the future.

Care for your plants with the right fertilizers

A useful home and garden tip is to plant the best of the lot from a vantage point so that when one looks from a particular window in the living or dining room, they have a lovely view of the garden. A vegetable patch could grow in the backyard while a beautiful Japanese maple could lend an aura of beauty when viewed from the patio or the dining room. Create a pathway from the entrance of your home to the driveway and plant shrubs and flowering trees on both sides.

Create a landscape with a collection of a few plants and rocks and place an ornamental statue to highlight a particular area. Protect your plants from deer and rabbits that can destroy your garden. Plant nectar-fresh flowers to attract pretty butterflies and hummingbirds. Hang a few feeders outside your solarium if you have one and watch the birds feed.

Points to consider when creating a garden

Think ahead. Do not plant trees and shrubs that will outgrow your garden space and look crowded. Make sure you buy plants and flowers that are seasonal and are contained in the space provided for them. Use these useful home and garden tips to advantage and sit back and watch that garden grow!

Top 10 Home and Garden

My husband and I have been gardening together for over thirty years. He has a degree in horticulture and I have a degree in library science. So, when we combine our love of books and gardening, we end up with a vast gardening resource library.

I want to share my favorites and think they will become your favorites as well. Below I’ve listed my top 10 favorite home and garden books that I believe beginners and professional designers alike should consider purchasing for your own home reference library.

Top 10 Home and Garden Books For Every Beginner and Designer

  1. The Well Tended Perennial Garden: Planting and Pruning Techniques by Tracy DiSabato-Aust is a classic. Tracy is well known in the gardening world for her 20 plus years experience in maintaining gardens and in this book she tells you exactly how to prune perennials. Also, In the very first chapter, she speaks of designing a garden with its maintenance in mind. Her advice is to ask yourself “Who’s going to maintain this garden, me or a professional crew?” Great question!
  2. Landscaping With Perennials by Emily Brown is another favorite of ours. Advice on garden layouts for slopes, shade, bogs, parking strips, creating cutting gardens, island beds, or a fairytale woodland garden is all here. Included are line drawings, photographs, plant lists and more. A real delight to read.
  3. Gardening With Color by Mary Keen. A garden designer and consultant herself, Mary has filled this book with gorgeous full page photos. Excellent advice on designing with the six color categories for gardens including: blues, reds, greens, grays and white, and yellows makes this book another great choice for your library.
  4. Armitage’s Garden Annuals: A Color Encyclopedia by Allan Armitage helps the gardener select proven specimen annuals that are interesting, important, and often overlooked. Armitage is a horticulturalist, teacher, and respected expert in his field and this plant reference guide is a perfect companion to his earlier Manual of Annuals, Biennials, and Half-Hard Perennials. Attractive and easy to use with inspiring pictures.
  5. Designing the New Kitchen Garden: An American Potager Handbook by Jennifer R. Bartley was published in 2006 but I’m just now finding out about it. This lovely book describes how to create a garden that is not only beautiful and well laid out, but is also productive. Who wouldn’t want a kitchen garden, or potoager, as part of their landscape? If you love growing your own fresh fruits and veggies, learn how to do it in style!
  6. All New Square Foot Gardener by Mel Bartholomew is my new favorite gardening book. This method has been around for 25 years so you know it works. I was skeptical at first. How can you “grow more in less space” like he says in 4’x4′ square boxes? Pictures with detailed instruction explains how to build these raised beds for your garden or deck. Great for everyone as well as kids and wheelchair bound gardeners. Learn more at www.squarefootgardening.com
  7. The Complete Compost Gardening Guide by Barbara Pleasant and Deborah Martin helps gardeners to not become compost failures. Unique, easy to implement techniques using heaps, bins, or enclosed composters make composting easier to create and tend.
  8. Plant Propagation: The Fully Illustrated Plant-by-Plant Manual of Practical Techniques by Alan Toogood. The title says it all. Learn how to get free plants and save yourself a ton of money…maybe even start a business. Very good pictures with directions. You’ll learn a lot from this book.
  9. Gardening With Grass by Michael King and Piet Oudolf shows how to use ornamental grasses to transform a ho-hum garden into a stunning garden. They even list perennials, by color and height, that grow well with particular variety of grasses. Planting grasses are highly recommended to extend your summer garden into fall.
  10. The Way We Garden Now by Katherine Whiteside is a nice book if you are feeling overwhelmed by your garden. This book lets you pick-and-choose from ten easy, manageable projects like adding edibles, planting bulbs, dealing with hedges, putting up deer fencing and even container gardening. Fun and engaging to read.

Any one of the books listed above will give you a great deal of insight on how to have an awe inspiring garden that will make your garden a paradise for you and your family. That’s why the are my top 10 books on home and garden that every gardener and designer should consider having on their bookshelf.

Permission is granted to reprint this article, unedited, provided proper attribution is made and the signature line — the above resource paragraph – is kept intact.

Home and Garden Ambiance With Decorative Water Fountains

There’s really nothing more peaceful than the sound of water running in a sparkling brook. Unfortunately, most of us don’t live where we can enjoy such sounds. Therefore, a lot of people are choosing to create this serene ambiance in their yards or right in their homes themselves. To do this, they are using decorative water fountains. These delightful additions to your home or garden come in many beautiful designs, sizes, and colors and are sure to enhance the beauty of any decor.

Many of the outdoor decorative water fountains are in the form of bird baths. After all, what bird isn’t going to want a little splash in whatever kind of water you provide? One of the greatest things about many of these outdoor fountains is that they require no additional plumbing. Each unit contains an internal pump that re-circulates the water over and over again. Some of are very heavy, so you should keep in mind that when you order one, you’re going to need help moving it into position. You can find lighter-weight fountains made of resin or fiberglass, but it you want a lovely marble or metal fountain it’s going to have some weight to it.

For a fountain within your home, you can choose from either table-top fountains or wall mounted ones. Both kinds are delightful and will provide your family with hours of peaceful viewing. There’s just something calming about watching and listening to water. Table top fountains come in a wide variety of sizes, shapes, and decorator styles. For example, you can find an exotic Japanese water fountain that incorporates motifs such as Buddhas and bamboo. In addition, you can find contemporary styles, country designs, and nostalgic fountains. There are so many different styles available that there’s bound to be something that will blend well into any decor.

Wall-mount decorative water fountains are a joy for people who don’t have a lot of extra space. Equipped with re-circulating fountain water pumps, they hang on your wall wherever you have the space, indoors or out. Some of these wall fountains are designed to give you a historical look with “carved” lion heads and guardian angels. Other models are sleeker and more contemporary and look like boxes with sheets of water coming down in a soothing continuous motion. Whatever style you’re looking for, you’re certain to find a decorative water fountain that will become a treasured conversation piece in your home or yard.

Have A Beautiful Home With A Variety Of Home And Garden Decors

There so many ways to beautify your home and you can make use of the variety of materials. If you have no idea on where to start then you need to have help and you can read along home magazines that give ideas or tips on how to make your backyard good and also the interior of the house. Another thing is you can browse in the internet for pictures of different landscapes and decorations that you can use. If you have the money then you can ask personal help from interior designers; just make sure that they have all the home and garden decorations that you personally chose.

The garden and the overall appearance of your house matters especially if you are the type of person that would have people come over and enjoy a quiet time bonding with each other. You can put to use other home decorations like gnomes that will help you create a mini wonderland in your backyard or have metal animal stakes which you can use to add details in your garden. Another garden decor that you can use and will give a big impact in the looks of your garden is a fountain. Fountains are so chic in design and have beautiful details and every spurt of water is really fun to watch. Talking about the interior of your home what you need to do is get the materials that will define your own personality. Do not be afraid to play with colors and accent it to whatever furniture you have a home. You can have variety of home decorations at home like lamp shades, lights and even table or indoor fountains. Making your house look good can make your guests and the whole family comfortable. Adding up a touch of your own style can help make the whole place transform from something dull into a very stunning and vibrant place. Make sure that you chose great quality home and garden decorations that will stay in a longer period of time. In order to have your decorations last long it is important that you take good care of them and store them in places that are moisture-free. Keep your house and the facade very beautiful to have the passers-by in awe.

The house and the backyard talks about the owner of the place so if you have a beautiful one then people will expect that you are also beautiful not just in the external aspect but also inside

Tips to Home and Garden With Charm

Whenever anyone is looking for a way to bring some peace and tranquility into their lives and surroundings, garden décor is probably a good place to start. Wind chimes are an ideal way to bring some sound into a peaceful place and the tinkling of these superb pieces of equipment is evocative of cool summer days spent in the peace of the surrounding nature.

But not all decorations and additions to the homestead have to be outside. Indeed, there are many table top fountains that bring a surreal charm to any environment. It used to be that these wonderful pieces of equipment were only for those who had money to burn. Initially, they were very expensive which put them out of the reach of most people. However, with the advent of modern materials and resources, they are now attainable by most people.

Table top fountains, which look like a pile of pebbles on top of each other, hide a wonderful spring like attachment which pumps water out over the stones to give a natural look and sound to the whole thing. Powered by mains electricity, this little gadget looks great in any home.

These kinds of table top water fountains come in many shapes and styles. Even bonsai trees are incorporated in some and water wheels are another favorite feature. The hand of Buddha is another one that many people like because of the connotations of the gesture. African family groups, a flying eagle or perhaps a bamboo style fountain will suit the more ethnic tastes of many but whatever style it is, there is usually one that will suit the individual.

Outside, many people love the thought of helping birds and animals throughout the year. Bird feeders come in many different styles from the rustic to the romantic. These great little feeders will ensure that the birds keep coming back for more and will also encourage them to build nests nearby.

Still outside, solar fountains are also another great way to ensure that birds and small animals will have fresh running water at their disposal all through the year. Because of the small solar panel, the cost of running this kind of equipment is kept to an absolute minimum and it is also ‘green’ energy which is another plus point.

Finally, it is human nature to decorate our homes and patios with wonderful objects that remind us of nature and anything to do with tranquility. Many people these days are finding that when they want to retreat from the rat race, all they have to do is to go into their outside space to find what they need.

Keeping the surroundings simple, with some water features and feeders, is probably the best way to ensure that peace prevails in the green surroundings. Specialist shops have taken not of this and are providing a huge choice of rustic furniture and decorations to enhance the surroundings which has ultimately brought prices down to within reach of the man in the street. This is a great opportunity to get back to nature and peacefulness.

Top Home And Garden Magazines

There is no place like home.

It’s a cliché but it’s true. It’s your home so make it look great.

All across the world, homes are decorated differently. They want to stand apart from everyone else in the neighborhood. A house down the street has a fountain in their yard. Your brother-in-law’s finished basement is a dream come true for a sports fan.

You’re left asking yourself, “How did they do that or how did they think of that?”

There are endless possibilities with how you can decorate your house or your yard. Most of them are pretty easy to accomplish. The trick is coming up with an idea of how it’s to look when done. Would your home look better with a Southwestern theme or possibly a look that resembles Asian culture?

Well, magazines devoted to topics such as decorating homes or garden tips are located in bookstores across the country. You can also find magazines on these topics at websites such Mags For Less at magsforless.com.

Here are some examples of home and garden magazines with some brief descriptions, plus they’re all available at the cheap magazines site I mentioned earlier.

  • Better Home and Garden Magazine – Contains how-to tips in planning and creating the perfect dream house. Each issue features creative solutions for your home; ideas for decorating, cooking, gardening, building, remodeling, etc.
  • Horticulture Magazine – This is the definitive magazine for the serious gardener. It will inform and inspire ideas to create a garden like no other. Each magazine includes articles on garden design, landscaping, soil nutrition and the latest in planting techniques.
  • Country Living Magazine – Caters to readers who appreciate the traditions on the country, wherever they may live. The magazine brings a country approach to a wide range of topics, from decorating, building, and restoring old homes. It also covers cooking, entertaining, gardening, travel and more.
  • Good Housekeeping Magazine – An American icon of consumer protection and quality assurance since its inception. Ever issue delivers a mix of independent investigation and trusting reporting along with personal stories. The magazine offers a rich editorial tradition embodying a commitment to the modern home and a woman’s quality of life.
  • Elle Décor Magazine – A colorful, imaginative magazine applies international style and ideas to home design. It features information on interiors and architecture, and in-depth profiles of today’s top designers. The magazine is a cosmopolitan approach to home and design, furniture, and shopping for the perfect pieces to fill any home.

With a little luck and hard work, maybe we can see your home gracing the pages of these magazine subscriptions. Someone else will be looking at their own home wondering how to make it look more like yours.

Home And Garden Décor

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Your home is the only environment that you feel the closest to and besides; it is the only environment that your have full control over and that you spend most of your quality time at. Needless to say we all find ways of personalizing our homes in terms of design and the look and feel aspects but fact is that limitations in doing this come in forms of lack of resources or lack of creativity and innovation. In this piece we focus on home and garden decor. We will present to you some of the top notch home design ideas and concepts that can administer an overhaul in your home and make you love your home even more.

In aspects of Garden design there is much you can do to give your home exterior that look and feel and that will give the serene environment that you dream of. One of most ways of giving your home exterior or home garden that idyll look and feel is placing around Japanese lanterns. The Japanese lanterns come in different designs and art concepts and it is entirely up to you to pick on the ones that strike you. The Japanese lanterns will add a spark to your home garden. The lanterns also come in various art concepts and designs and as much as they are carved on different material. At the end of the day it will be your pocket and your personal choice that governess what you settle for.

Koi ponds are some of the most popular features when it comes to home and garden decor. What you need to know about a Koi is that it sea drum shaped Japanese fish that will adds life and color to your pond with its dazzling colors and playful character. Maintaining a koi pond can be a truly fulfilling hobby and watching the movements of this elegant fish can be indeed stress relieving. If you are also interested in implementing some landscape architecture in your home environment you can actually do this for your self or get a professional to do this for you. Landscape architecture is all about the design of the outdoor and public space to achieve environmental socio-behavioral as well as aesthetic outcomes. Al these ideas and home design concepts can be integrated to give your home that excellent look and feel.