Choosing Garden Shed

When you have reached the decision about buying a new shed a good point to consider is the base it requires. If you are thinking of replacing your existing shed, then you would have to decide whether or not to keep the original base, or for a small fee and with minimal effort, a new one can be laid for you.

Whatever material you choose to have your shed made from your decision should revolve around what you need the shed for. Is it going to be just for storage or maybe a workshop? Perhaps you want it for both, in which case a larger shed is probably necessary. The size of the shed should also fit well into the space available. Make sure you take precise measurements of various parts of the shed. A good tip is to check the eaves and ridge height of the sheds to make sure you can stand up in it and also that it is a usable space to fit in and move around comfortably.

So what else will you have to consider when choosing your shed:

Are you going to be storing large items, you will need to take careful measurements to ensure that not only all the goods can be stored, but that you can also get the items in and out with ease.

If you are going to store large items then a concrete shed with double doors could be a good option. Concrete sheds are very popular due to their durable build and great safety record, and with the double doors it would make accessing the shed a lot easier.

The panels used in concrete sheds are virtually impenetrable which, coupled with some good quality uPVC windows and doors, means your items will be very safe.

A concrete shed also provides better security from the elements and from thieves than a typical timber shed. This is because it is made from more durable, watertight material that makes it less susceptible to damage from the elements. As it is a lot stronger, a new, well maintained concrete shed would probably be inaccessible to most if not all burglars.

Concrete sheds do not rot unlike wooden sheds, so rodents and other pests will struggle to gain access to a concrete shed compared to a timber structure.

Other aspects to consider are the windows and doors. Some sheds come with windows and some don’t. If you want to keep your items out of sight then it is a good idea not to have any windows, but make sure you have sufficient lighting installed so you can see when you are inside. If, on the other hand you are going to use your garden shed for a home office then windows would be a good idea, perhaps one that opens to improve ventilation.

The shed design is also something to take into account, particularly the shed roof. The most common are Apex, which is a two sided sloping roof with a ridge running along its length and a Pent, which is flat with a slight slope to allow rainwater to run off. Some people prefer the aesthetic appearance of the Apex, whilst others prefer the practicality and generally lower cost of the Pent. Apex designs can also be specified to have translucent roof panels to let in natural light, perfect if you wish to work inside your garden shed.

When thinking about location, you need to consider access, proximity to trees, bushes and garden beds etc. You shouldn’t really put a shed in an area that is susceptible to heavy rainfalls as standing water may rot a water shed. Although a concrete shed isn’t subject to this problem. Try to make sure you have at least two feet of space around all sides of the shed to allow for access for maintenance. A wooden shed would need regular treatment of the wood but a concrete shed requires little or no maintenance, which means you can find more interesting things to do with your days off rather than painting the shed.

Keep a Healthy Flowers Garden

Any garden big or small requires a strong base, which in this case is the soil. Inserting good, fertile soil is probably the best thing you can do for a healthy garden. The more fertile the soil, the more healthy your plants will be. You can either buy fertile soil from a store or choose to cure the one that’s already present in your garden. However, it is important to note that not all soil is the same, but serve different flower types and/or gardening needs.

For example, flowers and vegetables require nutrient rich soil, while herb plants achieve healthy growth with compost free soil. After you’ve determined the type of soil that’s best for your flower garden, you can add an extra layer of protection in several ways. First, keep tillage and compacting of the soil to a bare minimum, use a mulch to prevent erosion and grow as much to cover any empty spaces to avoid any occurrences of erosion.

All flowers require different growing conditions so don’t attempt to guess what they are. If you’re buying your flowers from a nursery, pay careful attention to the instructions on the package or simply ask the experts at the nursery. When inserting seeds or plants into a flower bed, be sure not to smother them or plant them to deep in the soil. To determine the right amount of sunlight for your flowers, keep a track of the level of sunlight each area of your garden receives. If your garden is set completely in a shady area and one that receives a minimal amount of sunlight, it is best to find flowers that grow well in shady conditions.

Lotus Flowers

There are several kinds of lotus flowers for you to choose from, available on the market today. Increase the luxury and ambiance that a garden pond provides already, by planting lotus flowers – these will bloom impressively and flourish in your personal outdoor sanctuary. Create an even more beautiful place to relax and unwind at home. Perennial plants such as lotus flowers are a great idea for any garden pond. These plants want good soil, however, and humid condition. Nonetheless, it is not absolutely impossible, to adjust them to more dry environmental conditions.

Winds as well as the height of the plant’s leaves may bend or become discolored, brown and dry or discolored. So you should care for your lotus plants with a dedicated, continuous observation. If you live in less than ideal conditions, for the safety and beauty of your lotus flowers and overall garden décor, be sure t tend to them properly.

Warm, if not what are considered hot temperatures, are preferred by the lotus plant. Eighty to ninety degrees are actually ideal conditions for this kind of pond life. As with any kind of plant or garden flower, a lotus flower under pf conditions will reach their full, flourishing and most beautiful potential. By their potential I mean the size and condition of the blossoms, as well as the health and fragrance of your pond in general. Of course, this adds to the appeal of your home outdoors and your ability to relax and unwind.

There are several kinds of lotus flowers, such as the “Chinese Dbl Rose” these are described as deep rose colored dbl flowers. They can grow to be up to three feet in height. Because this is one of the smaller lotus flowers, they can be grown in the water in a three gallon container. The Chinese dbl rose is a beautiful sight to see! You would be surprised at the bright color and the ambiance it creates all around you. This rose of a lotus flower may become the center of attraction in your garden pond. But there are many, many more kinds of beautiful garden pond plants on the market for you to choose from, and a long list of lotus, which is what this article will focus on.

The “Empress” or Alba Striata are great flowers. They are a whitish bloom with gentle strokes of pinkish colors on the edges of the petals. These plants can grow up to five feet tall in perfect conditions. The empress lotus flower bursts into a wide white rose-shaped blossom when in full bloom. As all plant life will, the Lotus flower will increase the oxygen in the air. It is also a great way to enhance your g pond and / or landscape design with a water plant which best suits your personal taste.

One of these bright and beautiful flowers is called the “Mrs. Perry D Slocum” and what lovely ladies they are! These flowers are multi-colored and abs el. The first day they appear pink, on the second day they are pink and yellow, by the third day of blooming they are a creamy, flushed pink color. These colors combined are luxurious buds you will certainly love. The Mrs. Perry D. Slocum lotus flower grows to be about four to five feet in adequate conditions. And will decorate your already relaxing outdoor pond with a burst of colorful, fragrant allure.

The lotus flower called “Momo Botan” is a deep, brilliant pink, it will produce double blooms, of truly elegant water blossoms. Older flowers are able to stay open through the night. The blooming season of this wonderful flower will last longer than the average blooming seasons of other flower blossoms, including, lotus lowers. These plants can also be placed in a small cont in your g pond.

The “Lavender Lady” is another lovely member of the family of lotus flowers. These are, as their name indicates produce dark, yet chalkish, and lovely, lavender colored blossoms with a tinge of pink. These beautiful ladies grow to become five to seven feet tall depending on the stability of their conditions. Like all other lotus flowers, you must be attentive to their needs as far as the amounts of water, light, and humidity. The conditions of your environment are only part of it. You can create special conditions when you care for your lotus flower, such as misting the flowers being extra attentive to their intake of water, the health of the surrounding plants, and the flower’s overall stability.

Another beautiful lotus bloom is called the Green Maiden. In addition to the elegance and grace of all these decorative females, is the common distinctive shape and color, which vary slightly between the separate species of this flower. In the case of the Green maiden, (as with many lotus flowers) their sequential pattern of color transformation goes from pink to yellow to a cream-color. The final blossom looks as though the tips have been dipped in a bright, yet subtle pink, the yellow can be seen more closely from the center of the bloom. These blooms can grow up to three feet in your g pond.

Another wonderfully named lotus flower is the Frankly Scarlet lotus flower. These are dark pink and a very impressive, colorful, and alluring addition to your pond. These plants can grow to be up to six feet and produce multiple, single blooms. Frankly, the frankly scarlet lotus flower is one of my personal favorites. Treat her like a princess and she will treat you like royalty too. Find our how amazing these flowers will look in your garden pond, not to mention the possible habitats that many kinds of lotus plants will help provide for other wild life.

Outdoor Decorating Tips

  • Porch or Patio: If you already have a porch or patio, simply putting new furniture out can make a wonderful difference in the presentation of your home. Alternatively, you can simply buy new cushions or covers for your existing patio furniture. Other quick patio spruce ups can be as simple as putting out a few flowering potted plants, adding gnomes or statues, or putting a small water fountain into the space.
  • Walkways: Having walkways outside your home add a cozy, homey and inviting feel to the overall outdoor presentation. Just a straight concrete walkway can be spruced up by putting a bit of garden bed edging along each side… putting small solar walkway lights on each side… or planting colorful annual flowers such as petunias on each side. If you don’t already have a walkway and want to create one, I think the prettiest are those made of stone. Add an extra decorative touch by making the walkway curve or wind a bit to your front door instead of leading straight there.
  • Yard ornaments: These can be as simple as a small bird house, a pole mounted outdoor lantern light, or even a wheelbarrow with flowers. Putting a little something extra in your yard defines you and your tastes, plus it gives your home a more unique personality that stands out from your neighbors.
  • Flowers, Plants, Vines & Bushes: Probably the most popular way to spruce up a yard quickly is to simply put out some pretty plants, bushes, vines and flowers. Annuals are great for adding dashes of color quickly, because you can usually buy them this time of year in bloom. To get continuous color and greenery, plant some perrenials too. Then once the annuals are starting to die out, you’ll have something to replace them. You’ll also have the added joy of seeing the perrenials sprout again for several years to come.

Discount Garden Furniture

The typical way to find discount garden furniture is to go to any garden furnishing store and head directly to the clearance section. Once you have made the rounds there, go through the main section of the store and look for “Price Reduced” and “Discount Price” tags. There are some high scale stores that will not advertise “discount garden furniture” even when they have stock, but will simply mark the prices down on the price tags.

Discount garden furniture stores abound and come in all types from specialty stores such as discount teak garden furniture to those which sell a variety of styles from wicker to cedar garden furniture. The key to shopping at discount garden furniture stores is to make sure that the discount is not because of a manufacturing defect that may cause bodily injury or an incomplete set. For example, the hardware that is used to secure garden furniture should be stainless steel to prevent corrosion, but not all manufacturers use this technique. If the hardware is rusted it could lead to furniture breakage.

Unfortunately there are some discount garden furniture retailers who acquire their goods through less-than-desirable means; wood furniture manufactured from areas where deforesting is prohibited is just one example. Especially in the case of teak and cedar, the labels should clearly state the source of the timber.

When a retail item becomes less-than-perfect, the price is reduced and this is another source of goods for discount garden furniture outlets. In many cases it could be a simple as a nick in the paint or a small dent that shaves 20 to 70% off of the original retail price. The same holds true for items with a full price tag; examine the goods carefully and if you find an obvious imperfection, you have a bargaining point that can help you save some money.

Buying discount garden furniture direct from the manufacturer is another option, and probably the best place to ask your questions concerning how to care for the items you are buying from them. The most expensive garden furniture won’t last long if it is not properly maintained. Protect your investment of time, effort and money that you used to find your discount garden furniture by investigating the best way to clean and care for the new addition to your home.

Caring for Conservatory Plants

Blinds will also help to keep your conservatory cooler which is ideal because too much heat can stress your plants. It also means plants won’t dry out and need constant watering. Cold is less of a problem because even plants used to sub-tropical conditions are fine at 4 to 8°C. Ventilation is important to regulate the temperature, so make sure you have enough airflow as plants like fresh air, even in winter. Fresh air also helps to prevent the build-up of fungal diseases and some plants, such as citrus trees, will shed their leaves if they don’t get enough air.

Watering is also important and in summer you may need to water your plants every day. Plants with lots of leaves tend to need more water than those with fewer leaves and those in small pots need more water than those in larger ones. Most bought plants these days come with clear instructions about watering.

Feed plants once a week in spring and summer but reduce this to once a month in winter when plants are dormant. A fertiliser which is high in potash is good for flowering plants. Green plants do well with fertilisers high in nitrogen while citrus fertiliser will keep your citrus trees in tip-top condition and help them to produce fruit.

Plants need room to grow so check the roots and if they are too tightly packed, re-pot in spring or summer. Prune plants if they start to become leggy but wait until after the plant has flowered. Pinching off the tips on bushier plants will also help to cut down on the need for pruning and also encourages flowering.

Hazel Tree

Identifying a Hazel Tree

The tree will grow to about 12m tall and can live for around 80 years if left to grow on its own accord. Hazel’s are usually coppiced to increase their life expectancy and can live for up to 700 years if coppiced. The smooth bark is greyish to brown in colour and begins to peel with age. The stems are hairy and flexible with hairy, rounded leaf buds which are blunt. Leaves are green, hairy and rounded with multiple teeth like pointed tips; these turn yellow before they fall off the tree during autumn.

Hazel trees have monoecious reproductive systems, which mean that the male and the female catkins (flowers) are located within the same tree, they must however be pollinated by other hazel flower pollen. The male catkins are yellow and hang in bunches on the twigs; they appear earlier than the leaves during February. The small female flowers are like buds and are red in colour. The female flowers are pollinated by wind and turn into rounded fruits; these hang in clusters of one to four. Once matured, they develop into nuts enclosed in a shell which is surrounded by leaf bracts.

Interesting fact: in spring, the hazel twigs are so bendy they can be knotted without breaking.

It is also challenging for bees to collect pollen from the hazel tree and they can only collect it in small loads. The reason being is the pollen grains aren’t sticky and will repel each other.

Significance to Wildlife and Surroundings

The tree provides plant food for caterpillars from numerous moths including the small white wave, nut-tree tussock, large emerald and the barred umber. Coppiced hazel in managed woodlands, where wildflowers are in abundance, help support life for lots of species of butterfly especially fritillaries. They also support lots of ground-nesting birds like the yellowhammer, nightingale and willow warbler as they frequently use the tree for shelter.

Dormice have been associated with the hazel tree for many centuries and they can also be known as hazel dormouse. It provides a good source of hibernation food for the mice and they will also eat the leaves.

There are many species of wildlife that make use of the hazel nuts apart from dormice; these include wood pigeons, woodpeckers, tits, jays, nuthatches and a few small mammals such as squirrels. Bees also extract pollen from the flowers and are an early and important source for them.

The trunk is often home to many types of liverworts, mosses and lichens. Fungus also grows below the soil.

How We Use hazel

The wood from hazel can be bent and knotted and was used for making things like net stakes, thatching spars, water divining sticks and furniture.

Now day’s coppiced hazel plays an important role in conserving British woodland habitats for many different types of wildlife. We also use the timber for many purposes and a poplar wood for making bean poles and pea sticks, which are used by gardeners.

Hazel trees were also grown for their nuts, on a large scale, right up until the early 1900s. There are cultivated versions still being grown in Kent, these are known by the name of cob-nuts. Today, nearly all of our hazelnuts are imported from other countries.

Threats, Pests and Diseases

There are not that many threats pests or diseases associated with the hazel, although they can come under attack from infestations of aphids and gall mites. Coppiced trees can also be prone to damage from deer if there not protected sufficiently.

Landscaping Brick

To transform any backyard into a wonderful entertainment area try adding a brick patio. It’s easy for anyone to build. To construct a patio, all you will need is brick and mortar, patience, and some time. You can decide which way to lay them, perhaps in a row all in the same direction. A basket weave design is also another wonderful idea and will give your project a distinctive creative look. To do this you will need to alternate the brick in a vertical and horizontal way, creating a wonderful design in the pattern.

For many years landscape brick materials have become one of the most commonly used items in gardens. You can utilize them to border your flower garden or to build a small retaining wall around your flowerbed. They are also a big support with water gardens. You can use the brick to encase the area around the water, which will add warmth and increased stability to the water feature.

Crushed brick over time will eventually sink into the ground. To help prevent this from happening line the bottom of the walkway with landscape fabric. You can do the basket weave with this idea as well depending on the other features in this area. You will be sure to get many compliments on your design.

Brick is a great way to line flower beds or any areas that do not have an edge by creating wonderful borders. Try using it on high traffic areas where grass has a tendency to wear out. You want to create visual attention to catch peoples’ eyes. The one advantage it has is that it can be laid flat or even stacked, and is easy to mow over to create that clean finished look.

Landscaping brick can be found at just about any building or garden supply center. Old ones found lying around can be cleaned up to look as good as new by using a brush, some soap and water, and a little effort. This is a wonderful way to save money on your project.

Water Features in Greenhouse

Water features in a greenhouse can come in the form of a pond, fountain, or waterfall. All three of these options fill the greenhouse with the sound of running water, creating a tranquil, relaxing atmosphere. The background noise provided by the running water also drowns out unwanted sounds, such as traffic.

Adding water features to a greenhouse not only develops the design aesthetic of the greenhouse, but also offers unique benefits. Sharing space in your greenhouse with a water feature promotes a relaxing environment for you, and helps your plants to thrive. Banana trees, for example, if planted by a pond, will pull the water they need from the pond in order to produce fruit.

A water feature can add both functionality and a decorative element to the greenhouse. By adding a pond to your greenhouse the ability to grow a wide variety of aquatic plants becomes available. Water lilies, cannas, water hyacinths, elephant ears, and more can be grown in a pond year-round. Fish can be raised in the pond as well. Koi, for example, make delightful pets and will help to fertilize the plants growing in and around the water.

Fountains and waterfalls provide a continuous source of running water, which purifies the air by adding moisture to it. The tiny droplets of moisture adhere to dust and other irritants, removing them from the air. The increased moisture also provides extra liquid for plants to absorb. Unlike mechanical humidifiers, fountains and waterfalls are constantly running, preventing the growth and potential spreading of mold and mildew in the air.

Running water produces negative ions which help reduce particles such as pet dander and spores. Studies at Columbia University and the New York State Psychiatric Institute have also shown that negative ions can help patients with seasonal affective disorder (SAD), because it is believed that negative ions create a biochemical reaction in the bloodstream that increases the levels of serotonin in the body. Negative ions increase the flow of oxygen to the brain, which increases alertness and mental energy.

Poolside Landscape

The space chosen as the area to build and design a pool is very important and thus, should be chosen carefully keeping in mind the right proportions and the overall area of the house. This spacing and designing again may vary depending on the look and styles such as formal, radical, classical or simple. The materials chosen to use as the border of the pool should be water friendly. The plants and herbs chosen to decorate a poolside landscape are usually the sort that do not grow tall or spread themselves too much. Leaves falling from these branches may make the water dirty and make the cleaning process more difficult. In case of big plants and trees, it is advisable to place them at a considerable distance from the pool water, to keep the water unaffected from leaves or droppings of the birds. Also, the roots of some plants may affect the foundation of the pool border and destroy it.

A poolside landscape can be adorned with plants with glossy leaves, and fixtures of bright colors complementing the blue color of the water to extend a glamorous look to the landscape. Too many flower plants are not recommended to decorate the poolside landscape, as they can attract birds and insects making it dirty and troublesome to clean.

Apart from plants, statues, fountains, wooden benches, swings also provide an exotic look to the landscape. Nevertheless, proper positioning and suitability with space and landscape can be considered to maintain the beauty of it. Various books, online courses, and professional outdoor designers can be found, to help carry out the job.