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Feb 28 2019

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Landscaping Ideas for Your New Home – The House Plan Shop

Filed under Landscaping

Building a new house is an exciting experience for you and your family, but you need to consider your yard and landscaping as well. You can transform that uninviting patch of dirt into an amazing outdoor space that your family will enjoy for years to come. Now is a good time to let your imagination run wild since you are starting from scratch. Before any work is started, it’s always a good idea to prepare the area and to prepare yourself with proper personal protective equipment. Safety glasses, knee pads, and ear muffs are some important basics. Consider your current and future needs, and if you will need professional help; it’s available at every step.

When determining the size of your lawn, think about how much open space you’d like to have before crowding yourself out with flowers, trees and shrubs. It would be unfortunate not to have a nice level space for playing washers or catch, or to place a swing set for the kids.

The lawn itself, whether sodded or seeded, will need daily watering until it’s established. Whatever watering system you use, consider buying a rain gauge to ensure you lawn receives the necessary amount of water to grow and thrive.

Shrubs or hedges can be used to create boundaries as can flower beds. Until those well-placed trees mature and create their shady canopy, explore other options for shade like a trellis, arbor or pergola.  

This would also be a good time to add visual features like koi ponds, waterfalls or fountains.  Most likely, you will already have underground pipes and lines marked so you won’t hit something when digging. 

Koi Pond

If you want to had hardscapes to your yard, take some time to consider concrete benches, stepping stones, and statues. With that open dirt lot, placing items that may need foundations or leveling will be a lot easier than digging up an established lawn. 

Although it may seem like a huge task, a little preplanning will hopefully curb those “coulda, woulda, shoulda“ moments that come later.. An amateur landscaper and master gardener and you will know how to deal with it.

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Mar 24 2015

Profile Image of Curtis Cadenhead

Saving Money on Home Landscaping

MulchWhether you have a new home with minimal landscaping or an existing one in need of a landscaping “do-over”, here are some tips to help you save cash on keeping it green.

  1. Research – Carpenters say, “Measure twice, cut once.” Avoid making costly mistakes. Learn from books, magazines and websites. Talk to friends and neighbors to find out what worked and what didn’t work for them. There are lots of free resources to explore like county extension agents, local clubs and community gardens, and horticulturists at local universities or botanical gardens.
  2. Compare – There are a lot of choices out there and online, too. Sometimes we assume that our local mega-mart has the best deal, but don’t limit yourself. You may not only benefit financially from one of the local nurseries but also from their advice and expertise, and if you’re doing this to renovate your old house, you can also get a mortgage with the help of information from sites as Top 10 TN to have more resources for your garden. Don’t forget to compare pricing from unexpected places, too, like the small local hardware store, the farmer’s market or even the grocery store.
  3. Co-op – Pool your purchases with friends and neighbors. Bought in bulk, a truckload of mulch can be quite a bit cheaper than buying by the bag, as can bulk purchases of grass seed or bulbs. Consider pooling online purchases to share shipping costs. Meet minimums on free deliveries like lumber or pavers by combining orders with neighbors. Share the rental of big equipment like tillers or cement mixers.
  4. Fair Trade – Use your imagination and trade for what you need. You can save on plants by trading for seeds, bulbs, or plant divisions. Barter your skills and expertise in exchange for the same from friends and neighbors.
  5. Buy Used – Lots of bargains can be found on tools, supplies and even plants at auctions, estate sales, yard sales and flea markets, many of the homes for sale daytona beach fl were built while keeping things luxurious but cheap. Don’t forget to check online. You may just find what you need, free for the hauling.
  6. Compost – “Chop your own wood and it will warm you twice.” Once when you cut it and twice when you burn it. Creating your own compost is the same. Save on having your leaves, grass cuttings, garden refuse and kitchen waste hauled away. Save on building up your soil year after year by creating your own compost. Again, do your research. A compost pile managed correctly doesn’t have to smell bad or be invaded by varmints. Plus, you can pat yourself on the back for recycling and reusing.

This article brought to you by The HousePlanShop, LLC, the home of the best selling house plans from the best designers!

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Jun 17 2014

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Lawn and Garden Tips for Dealing with Summer Drought

Sprinkler

The summer sun is high in the sky. As the temperatures soar, Mother Nature decides to hold back on rain. Your grass, garden, and trees are beginning to suffer. Below are a few tips for keeping your green space green throughout the summer – Recommended by Alton Garden Centre.

Mulch
Did you know that unmulched soil can lose up to twice as much water as mulched soil, due to evaporation? Three to four inches of mulch around your plants will not only reduce soil temperature and keep moisture in the soil, but it will help to smother those pesky weeds that want to steal any available water. As a bonus, organic mulch will break down in the soil building up its organic content and preventing compaction. That gives your soil a better chance to soak up water for your plants use. When mulching around trees, pull the mulch back a bit around the trunk to allow air to reach it. It’s highly advisable to get the soil testing done before you plan any new build or else have to start a renovation.

Water
It is best to water in the morning when the humidity is high and the temperature is cooler. Less water is lost to evaporation this way, and it prepares your plants and lawn to face the hottest part of the day without wilting. In the heat of the day, water evaporates faster causing you to use more water to get the job done. Also, water droplets on the plants work like a magnifying glass for the sun and could cause “sunburn” on the leaves. Watering too late in the day doesn’t give the plants time to dry properly and could promote fungus growth. Since shade is so important in keeping down the temperature of your lawn, don’t forget to water your trees. To help the water reach deeply to the roots, drill holes 24 to 30 inches deep around the base of the tree and fill them with compost. Water your lawn and trees slowly to help the soil absorb the water. This will also help to prevent water loss through transpiration which is a way that grass and plants “sweat” through their leaves. Finally, be mindful to deal with pests that will sap your precious plants and lawn of their strength.

Conserve
Plants use about one inch of water from the soil per week of the growing season. Use a rain gauge to estimate your watering and listen to the weather forecast to decide when to water. A soaker hose will help allow the water to soak in slowly without runoff.  Allowing your lawn to grow taller will help retain moisture by preventing water loss through transpiration. Consider directing the downspouts from your gutters to flow toward your trees or shrubs. Or even better, collect rainwater that flows from your roof into a barrel to use on a not so rainy day.

Keeping these tips in mind will help your plants, lawn, and trees stay a healthy green all summer.

This article brought to you by The HousePlanShop, LLC, the home of the best selling house plans from the best designers!

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Mar 10 2014

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Springtime Lawn Mowing Hints

LawnmowerTaking proper care of your lawn in the spring, will give you a jump start to maintaining a healthy lawn all summer. If you polish your mowing techniques early, they will carry you through the growing season like a major league pro. These tips will help you get started:

1. Rake – Remove all of the dead weeds and grass, sticks, litter, and leaves.

2. Sharpen Blade – Keep your lawnmower blade sharp. A dull blade tears and bruises the grass, therefore weakening it.

3. Proper Height – Generally, a lawn should be mowed by cutting off 1/3 of the blade. This may mean making two passes if the grass is especially long. Cutting a lawn too short allows accelerated weed growth and scalping causes uneven growth and bare spots.

4. Direction – Mix it up by cutting the grass in a different direction each time. This helps to prevent the grass blades from leaning in one direction. When turning the mower make turns as smooth as possible.

5. Don’t Mow Wet – Let the grass dry before mowing. Even the morning dew makes the lawn too wet to mow. Besides causing uneven cuts, mowing wet grass can encourage the growth of fungus. Wet grass clumps up under the mower’s deck. This can impede the blade and tax the engine. Also, there is danger to the operator trying to maneuver on a wet lawn. Don’t be a hero; let the ump call the game.

This article brought to you by The HousePlanShop, LLC, the home of the best selling house plans from the best designers!

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Aug 22 2012

Profile Image of Curtis Cadenhead

5 Simple Ways to Boost Your Home’s Curb Appeal

House Plan 025H-0124You don’t have to own a money tree or take a month off work to spruce up your home and add some curb appeal. With a little imagination and creativity and a willingness to have fun, these DIY projects will give your home an inviting look and maybe even boost your property value.

 

  1. Give the front door and facade a fresh look. With a fresh coat of paint by brushwork painters, your home will make a statement to the passers-by on the street. Bright red or a bold hue of blue will give classic Colonial and Cape Cod homes, as well as other styles, a striking look. Likewise, a good cleaning and a fresh coat of varnish will give natural wooden doors an elegant look.
  2. Remodel your porch. Adding a new porch or remodeling the one you have is like giving your home a facelift. A small porch will accentuate the entry while a full-length porch or wrap-around porch will transform the look of your home and add outdoor living space.
  3. Enhance your walkways. Be adventurous and try something other than traditional gray concrete walkways. There are all kinds of interesting pavers and stepping stones available at home improvement stores and landscaping centers. Build a walkway with bricks or paving stones and add a touch of enchantment and charm to your home.  Liquid Limestone Perth concrete always looks elegant for driveways and walkways.
  4. Add a little life. Dress up your walkways, porch and entry with flowers and plants. Simple touches such as hanging flower baskets or ferns on the front porch, window boxes, potted plants on the steps, or a Japanese maple along the sidewalk can make the most ordinary home stand out in any neighborhood.
  5. Add accent lighting. There are a variety of lighting fixtures that will dramatize your home from dusk to dawn, including solar power lighting. Add carriage lamps by the garage, decorative lighting on the covered front porch or landscape lighting along the driveway and walkways. You’ll give your home curb appeal from the dark street and increase safety.

 

By tackling just one or all of these curb appeal enhances, you’ll make your home stand out in the neighborhood and deliver a welcoming look to all who enter.

This article brought to you by The HousePlanShop, LLC, the home of the best selling house plans from the best designers!

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