Dress Up your Garden in Inexpensive and Beautiful Ways

landscapingLandscaping accessories are your finishing touches to your garden to make it more beautiful and personal. After you have treated your soil with mulch, painted your fence and filled the pool with water, it is time to enhance your landscape. These accessories will make your garden complement the exterior look of your home.

From water structures to furniture and to garden fixtures, you can find a wide variety of outdoor accessories that can make your landscaping project a success. Make sure you choose ones that are made up of durable materials since they are constantly exposed to harsh conditions. They should also be treated with care for them to last long.

There are a lot of websites offering affordable sturdy accessories so make sure to select them according to your landscaping needs. Here are some great landscaping accessories that will make your landscape a head-turner:

Hot Tubs

They are really wonderful accessories and they are easy to install. Some tubs have a plug-and-play feature so there is no need for installation.

If you want to save money on electricity, then buy a tub that has high efficient energy management system. These hot tubs will make your backyard very attractive.

Table and Chair Set

This set is very essential especially if you want to adore your garden. You can sit and have your coffee while enjoying the green scenery and calm ambiance your garden offers. You can place them in the patio where you can gather your friends to have tea while showing off your landscape.

Beautiful Borders

Trellises and arbors are usually used in order to create beautiful borders for your landscape. They are usually made from wood and can be decorated with flowers or veins to enhance the look. Arbors are wonderful entrance to your garden.

Your visitors will be truly amazed of such welcome. Trellises are like fences that you can use to separate your flower garden from the rest.

Planters

Planters will surely enhance your overall landscape. Place your most elegant plants in planters and have them in dull areas in your yard. Keep in mind that you have to choose planters that will complement the exterior and interior appearance of your house.

You can place them at the front yard to attract more attention. You can also have them around the pool, your window, near your patio or along the fence. There are countlessways you can make use of planters.

Fountains

Fountain is a beautiful water structure for your garden and they are really relaxing to look at. They are mesmerizing for you and for your guests.

However, you can make it stand out by placing flower gardens around it. You can also make the fountain more attractive even at nighttime by placing garden fixtures on it. You can do a lot of things to incorporate your fountain in your garden.

Ornaments

From statues to gazing balls to signs, you can make your landscape beautiful with these assorted ornaments. They don’t have an important function but they give your garden that attractive look. However, don’t overdo it or you will end up with damaging the yard’s beauty.

landscaping tipsGarden Light Fixtures

These garden light fixtures will surely make your landscape unique. Light up your yard even at nighttime with these gorgeous light fixtures. Also they improve your security in your house since intruders don’t have shadows to hide into when they get near your home. You can have a safe outdoor space with the help of these light fixtures.

Placing these accessories can be done by yourself since you know which areas do and don’t need improvement. Remember, well-placed landscaping accessories will give your garden that unique and inviting look.

Xeriscape Landscaping

gardenXeriscape landscaping, also known as Xeriscaping or Xerogardening is a specific type of landscaping and gardening which is done by reducing or eliminating the need for additional watering or irrigation from an external water source.

While it can be done in any part of the country, it is especially popular in regions that experience frequent droughts and restrictions in the amount of water people are supposed to use for non-essential things.  It is one of the most environmentally-friendly options available when it comes to gardening and can help you reduce your monthly water bill. This will save you enough water for your necessities and help you save money to spend for other needs.

Advantage

There are many advantages in using this type of landscaping, including the fact that it reduces the need for imported or ground water.  It can also greatly reduce the amount of time you need to spend in your yard as most of the plants will grow quite nicely without any extra work done on your part.  You will be able to plant most of these plants and then let them grow in a natural manner and only intervene for a couple of times per year to trim them or perform other basic tasks.

Factors to Consider

 

Types of Plants

The types of plants used in xeriscaping will depend on the region you’re in.  One of the basic tenants of this type of gardening is that you almost exclusively use plants which are native to your region.  This is because if they grow naturally in this area, they are likely well-suited to the climate and will survive on the amount of water which they can get naturally through the rain.  If you live in a desert region, you’re likely going to have things like cacti and other plants which need very little water.

You can also use beautiful rocks and other non-living items to diversify the area without needing to bring any water.  In areas where rain is more plentiful you can use a variety of other plants.

Capturing Rain Water

If you want to use a specific plant in your xeriscaping project but worried that it will need more water than it will get naturally, you can supplement it with water using a system that captures the rain water.

There are several products available in the market that is designed to catch and hold rain water for weeks or even months at a time. This can really help allow greater diversity for your project and save you time and energy from getting it manually watered.

X-Ratings

For those who are serious about embracing this type of landscaping, they can apply to get their xeriscaping rated by the Denver water department.  While this is an informal rating, it is a fun and comical way to bring attention to this method of growing plants.  The ratings range from X to XXX depending on how much water is required to use in each project.

Tips for a Relaxing Backyard

Updating the landscaping in your backyard can be a fun and enjoyable experience. While each person has different goals and ideas in mind, most people really want the end result to be a cozy backyard where they can sit back and relax. Even if you enjoy the actual planting, weeding, gardening and other activities associated with this type of project, you will want to make sure your yard is an oasis that you and your family will love.garden

When attempting to create a relaxing backyard for your home,you will have your preferences on what you would want in your yard. The following list of key tips for landscaping your backyard to make it your own personal paradise.

Privacy

Most people love having a little privacy so they can really let their hair down. There are many ways to make your yard private even if you have neighbors very close by. Using natural items like trees and bushes along the border is a great start. Adding a fence with thick vines can also help keep prying eyes out of your property.

Wildlife

While not everyone loves wildlife, it can be relaxing for most people. Adding in bird feeders and other items which will attract the type of animals you enjoy is a great way to bring a natural serenity in your backyard.

Water

You can add a pool, a small pond, a fountain or even just a bird bath for a great looking and very relaxing addition to your yard. Many people who add fountains or small ponds will stock them with fish which can be an excellent addition to any yard.

Comfort

Relaxing in the backyard should be done in comfort. Putting up a hammock is a great idea, and having a section available for patio furniture so you can relax with friends or family is another excellent option.

Music

Sometimes there is nothing better than sitting back in a natural backyard listening to soothing music. Incorporating speakers as part of your landscape is a fun idea which many people don’t even consider. There are many waterproof speakers with different designs available so think about adding this modern option to your serene backyard.

There are many other factors that can influence how relaxed you will feel in your yard once it is done. Each person is a little different so make sure to plan out your project ahead of time so you get it right. Consider the types of plants and animals you want in your yard. Though having wildlife in your backyard can be a great way to bond with nature, the noises they make may disrupt the peaceful environment you wish to have.

Also, evaluate how much you enjoy the actual work in your yard and choose options that will meet your desires. If you love working in the yard, you can choose plants which take a little extra time. If you would rather not spend any more time than necessary to keep your yard looking beautiful, there are plants intended for that purpose as well.

Feel the Heat: Tropical Landscaping and Lighting

Are you a fan of gardens and landscape scenery of flowers that are very rich with colors and plants that have foliage that looks so special and extravagant? Then you must be a fan of tropical gardens or you may have just found the perfect landscaping idea for you.

Tropical landscape plants are those plants that commonly have broad leaves, green foliage and most of all, bright and beautifully-colored flowers. This is the unique feature of this type of landscape – having plants that are rare. Not only that it is rare because they are found naturally in tropical countries, but they are also not used commonly as garden and landscaping plants for they take up much area because of their size.

tropical landscape

Exploring: Tropical Landscape

Tropical landscapists do not worry or have difficulties in searching for plants that grow vigorously, but they have problems in finding the appropriate plants to be used in a landscape setting.

Here are the plants that are commonly used in tropical landscaping and gardening:

Palms and Cycads. These are considered to be classic ornaments or tropical trees because they are commonly found in almost all tropical landscapes. They give a more “tropical” feeling and sense once you look at them because they are known only to thrive in tropic regions of the world. Having these trees is the best way to create your tropical garden. Other ornamental trees that can be used in tropical garden are apple and lemon trees. Tall and strong bamboos or the grass family can also be used because they tend to grow to the height of trees.

Short and Climbing. The tropical regions are known to be home for species of beautiful and colorful shrubs and vines. An example of these plants is the rose flower. Roses can bloom all-year round and produce very colorful and sweet-scented flowers. Other tropical shrubs and vine ornaments include many kinds of ivies, bougainvillea and other more that have colorful flowers.

Flowers. As mentioned earlier, tropical landscapes and gardens are known to have colorful flowers. Orchids and bromeliads are the best examples of these plants that are found and featured commonly in tropical gardens because of their very colorful and beautiful flowers. In addition to this, the flowers are very delicate and the ultimate prize in growing them is actually having them flower.

The Challenge: Weather and Climate

Tropical plants, as the name implies, are known to grow in a habitat that is temperate and humid. The problem with having this type of landscape is the weather and climate conditions. We all know that these plants cannot survive extreme cold.

When you are in an area that suffers from severe winter but you still want to have a tropical landscape because of its rare beauty, do not lose hope. You can still achieve having a tropical garden even though it is freezing in your area. You can actually place the plants you are going to use in the landscape in pots.

Putting and planting tropical plants in pots will enable you to transfer them in an area where they can be protected from the harsh weather. The greenhouse is the best place to keep your tropical plants in good and healthy living condition though the weather is not tolerable for them when they are exposed to it.

Landscape Lighting Suggestion

Landscape lighting is an art. You might think that outdoor lighting simply means throwing up some flood lights to point up at your tree at night is all you need to do and bam! You got your garden lit up.

Wrong.

If you’re like me and watch all those HGTV shows about home improvement, you’ll see that decks, patios, and gardens are not only outdoor spaces these days, they are part of your home’s fashion and style – to be used for parties and create a specific emotion at night.

Take your time and pick out the different styles of lights which you can use (check out the link above).

Lighting up your garden not only includes “up lights” for your trees, it includes lighting up things like:

  • pathways
  • deck borders
  • grass and garden borders
  • walls
  • pool

You can also choose between lights powered by the sun and lights powered by your power company. If you live in places with a lot of sun, solar lights work great.

So take your time and plan out your tropical garden carefully.

4 Simple Steps to Remember When Starting Your Vegetable Garden

This Spring will be different.

You’ll dust off the old gardening gloves (or open the package they’ve sat in for all these years) and start your long-awaited vegetable garden.

How do I know this, you ask? Well, I too, was once a casualty of garden procrastination. It wasn’t until I actually started my garden that I realized how easy and inexpensive they really are. All you need is a little know-how and a few lawn equipment tools and parts.

So, if you’re looking for a guide for the perfect budget-savvy backyard garden, let me help you get started.

garden

What Is the Goal of This Garden?

Before you start making any decisions with your garden planning, it’s important to understand why you are taking on this project in the first place.

  • Is it to get home-grown vegetables from your own backyard?
  • Is it to avoid pesticides?
  • Is it to grow something that can’t be found anywhere else?
  • Or is it just for a fun summer activity?

Depending on the reasoning for your garden, you can narrow down the criteria for getting it started.

Make It Easy

This may seem obvious to most people, but keeping your first garden simple can save you time and headaches down the road. Keep your garden within the scope of your skills and budget. Plant vegetables that are easy to grow. And most importantly, do your research – check out gardening books from the library, search the internet to get your questions answered, and don’t be afraid to approach your local nursery.

Nothing can trump a well-educated green thumb!

What Do You Want to Grow?

At this point, you should have a pretty good idea on what you’re looking to get out of your garden. Now comes the implementation. Take a minute to sit down and map out your garden. Draw a scaled diagram of your garden, with proper spacing for each plant you intend on planting.

For example, you’ll need about 8 inches of space between lettuce. Doing this assures you that you’ll have enough space for each plant to grow properly.

If you’re looking to make your garden as easy and carefree as possible…

I recommend avoiding:

  • cauliflower
  • celery
  • onions
  • artichokes

These veggies are temperamental and will test your patience.

So if you aren’t looking for a challenge…

I recommend using:

  • lettuce
  • carrots
  • cucumbers
  • peppers

Keep in mind that you can save a lot of time and stress by avoiding seeds and going directly to starters. These starters have already been grown for a few weeks, so their survival rate is much higher than seeds.

And they’re simple — just dig a hole, plant them, and watch the results. These should be available at any of your local nurseries.

Choose the Right Soil

Other than your climate, there’s no aspect of a healthy garden more important that the soil.

As a rule of thumb, you’ll want to use soil that’s loose and drains well. More specifically, you’ll need soil with proper amounts of nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, calcium and even boron.

These nutrients are used to maintain a proper soil pH level. Your goal should be to always maintain a pH level between 6 and 7.

If you don’t already have a pH meter, your local hardware stores and nurseries will carry them for a few bucks. Get one and use it often!

Conclusion

And that’s how easy it can be to start your own backyard garden. Trust me when I say that this will be one of the best investments you can make all year long. Not only will you share the process of growing your own food with your family and neighbors, but you’ll also have delicious, organic vegetables, that YOU grew!

It’s a feeling that I hope everyone can experience.

This article is by no means a comprehensive guide to starting the perfect garden, it’s merely some tips that I wish I would have known before I started my first garden. A solid plan for your garden will pay off in dividends come harvesting season. And who knows, maybe next year you’ll determine that your whole yard would look better as a garden.

What tips do you think are worth sharing with other green-thumbs? Let us know in the comments!
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