Posts Tagged ‘landscaping’
Every homeowner may have a different reason for adding a gazebo to their backyard. Gazebo additions are often used as a kind of covered patio area that allows you to enjoy the natural setting of your yard away from your house. If you have a gardening interest, a gazebo can act as a permanent structure that helps define the garden (known as a garden bone). For general landscaping purposes, a gazebo addition will serve as a more beautifying object than a patio or deck. A deck gazebo can add a feeling of elegance to your deck installation. For outdoor parties, they will give you a covered area to set up a buffet table or an extra gathering area for guests. They are also perfect for more formal events like weddings or receptions after religious ceremonies. But, whatever the intended use, the best gazebo addition is as beautiful as it is functional, as romantic as it is valuable, to your home, your yard, and your life.
Five Keys for the Best Possible Gazebo Installation
- Gazebo Addition Placement: You might think you want to place your gazebo in the middle of your yard for decorative balance but, the best place for a gazebo is usually near other landscaping features. This can include more than just gardens. Gazebos work especially nice near water, whether you want to enjoy the trickling sound of your outdoor pond or watch the kids in your backyard pool.
- Gazebo Installation Dimensions: The size of your gazebo is usually a combination of decorative balance, budget, and purpose. A smaller gazebo will be more intimate but may reduce the options for its use when you have guests over to your home. A larger gazebo will allow more people to enjoy the structure but can also overwhelm your backyard landscaping and your pockets. Gazebo builders will have seen every size gazebo for every type and size of your yard. Sometimes it’s hard to imagine how a gazebo will look until it’s built without an experienced eye to help guide you.
- Finding a Builder for Gazebo Construction: Hiring a gazebo builder is the best way to ensure you get exactly what you want and need from your gazebo. You probably don’t realize just how many options you have for your gazebo installation. A gazebo builder will be able to help advise you on the place, size and kind of gazebo that’s right for you.
- Gazebo Construction Materials: Wood gazebo installation is the most traditional and still the most popular. Given that a large part of a gazebo’s appeal is the warmth and elegance it brings to a landscape, wood is hard to beat as a gazebo construction material. The one major drawback is maintenance: You’ll need to guard against rot, termites, and other wood-damaging pests. Aluminum gazebo installations do away with much of this maintenance. As faux wood finishes continue to improve, aluminum gazebos are beginning to catch on, but even these gazebos are far from indestructible: Make sure your gazebo meets the building requirements for wind storms and other local weathering conditions. Finally, vinyl gazebos are a nice compromise between aluminum and wood. Vinyl has similar maintenance-free qualities to aluminum and may provide a better texture than aluminum.
- Gazebo Construction Costs: The cost of adding a gazebo to the yard is usually the first question a homeowner will ask. Unfortunately, it’s also one of the more difficult questions to answer. No surprise there, right? Well, we can tell you the average cost of gazebo construction from data compiled from homeowners across the country who completed a gazebo project with one of our contractors. Our data shows this average is $10,667. You should know, however, that these figures often reflect the tough, economic decisions that homeowners must make more than the cost to build the “average” backyard gazebo. The only way to truly gauge how much your gazebo addition is going to cost is to solicit estimate along with a handful specifications to a local gazebo builder.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the average American household uses approximately 30 percent of its total water for outdoor applications. With that said, rain barrels are a great alternative for supplementing your outdoor water needs with rainwater. You’ll reduce your utility bills and help conserve water at the same time. This is particularly true during times of draught when water restrictions may be in place.
Capturing just an inch of rainfall from a 1,000–square–foot roof produces 600 gallons of rainwater for you to use. It’s basically free water—you just have to pay for the hold device.
A typical rain barrel system consists of a large barrel (typical food-grade plastic), a tube that connects to a downspout or gutter, and a garden hose attached to a faucet near the bottom of the barrel. When it rains, the water from the roof is captured in the barrel via gutters, where it remains until needed. The best part—you don’t have to make a major investment to reap the benefits of a rain barrel.
What are Some Benefits of Rain Barrels?
- Happier, healthier plants
Rainwater is free of the additives often found in tap water and well water. Rainwater is also slightly acidic, helping plants access soil nutrients.
- Reduced storm water runoff
Rain barrels can divert a limited amount of storm water from roofs, reducing strains on urban creeks and storm systems.
- Water savings
Rain barrels can save water, but the amount of savings depends on the storage capacity of the system and proper use and maintenance.
Installing a Manufacturer Built Rain Barrel
You can purchase a variety of rain barrels and systems from any garden center or home improvement store. Depending on the size you need and the style you prefer, prices can start as low as $75. Once you find your perfect fit, installation is easy. Follow these quick steps and you’re on your way:
- Make sure the rain barrel is properly attached to the downspout of the home. Insert flexible rubber gutter tubing to the downspout and insert the other end three to four inches into the top opening of the rain barrel. The length of the tubing will vary based on how far away from the downspout the rain barrel is located.
- Place the rain barrel in a location that is out of direct sunlight. Sunlight will cause algae to grow inside the tank.
- Place the rain barrel on top of two cinder blocks placed side by side. You can use other materials if desired, but the rain barrel must be elevated in order for the water to drain out of it properly.
- Install a fine mesh screen, such as window screen, over the top of the rain barrel. This mesh screen serves to prevent leaves from clogging up the barrel and to prevent access to mosquitoes, which will lay eggs in the water. To install it, remove the top lid from the rain barrel, place the wire mesh over the top of the barrel and then place the top back onto the barrel.
- Wait until there has been rainfall and attach a garden hose to the faucet located near the bottom of the rain barrel. Stretch the other end of the hose to the location that you want to water and then turn the handle of the faucet on the barrel counterclockwise to open the flow of water. Turn the handleclockwise to stop the flow of water when you are done.
- Drain the barrel of water after each rain during winter months (in moderate climates with periodic freezes). The barrel should never be more than 75 percent full to allow for expansion as the water freezes.
- It’s important that your rain barrel have an automatic overflow mechanism that diverts water back into the downspout once the barrel has been filled or to an overflow hose that drains downhill away from your home.
You’ll reap all the benefits of your rain barrel within the first season. It’s a low-cost, eco-friendly solution to a lush lawn and colorful landscape all summer long.Article Source
Having a swimming pool at your place of stay is a luxury. Owning a pool increases the lavishness of a home and at the same time being a source of relaxation to the owners. Even during winters if you can heat up your pool, then there is nothing like plunging into the pool late in the evening to enjoy the warmth while it’s still chilly. Yes, agreed that a pool can prove to be expensive, while building it and even when you are maintaining it. Yet owning a swimming pool is a chance of a lifetime!!! Think about it, being both a source of exercise and relaxation, you really don’t need to put your kids for training elsewhere.
Since a pool needs a lot of maintenance, here are some tips that you need to consider while taking care of your swimming pool
1.Proper circulation of the pool – Proper pumping of water to the pool is very essential. Without good circulation a pool is extremely hard to be maintained. It’s really important to continuously have a water flow every now and then to have cleanliness and you need to make sure that there the chlorine levels are balanced.
2.Filter the pool – Filtration of pool water helps to clear any kind of dirt that has accumulated in the pool. In order for the water to stay hygienic and clean, it’s so very important to filter the pool on and off. Don’t neglect these facts.
3.Amount of filtration required – This is one thing that many of you who own a swimming pool tend to forget. Filtration itself is not enough to consider. You also need to keep in mind the amount of time that would be sufficient for filtering a pool. If you do not determine the correct filtration time, cleaning it will all go in vain. Of course it all depends on the environment, climate and the type of pool one has.
4.The actual cleaning of the pool – This is something that is disliked by of the owners. Cleaning of a swimming pool is a mandate and you have to devote at least ten to fifteen minutes a week to keep your pool clean. Nowadays with automated pool cleaners, you do not have to worry much since they do half of the work. Cleaning mainly helps in avoiding clogs in water circulation.
The above mentioned points are basics which every swimming pool owners should keep in mind. We often tend to overlook such important aspects of pool maintenance. Landscaping helps in beautifying swimming pools.
If you have no idea what a xeriscape or a classic rosebud is, or if you want to get a nice, enjoyable view out of the window but wonder what trimming scissors are, then landscaping for dummies is for you. If you consider yourself a dummy when it comes to plants, then this article is for you!
The Basics of Landscaping
Some basic concepts when you want to start a landscaping project. First of all, there are a few simple ideas you can do to improve your yard. Secondly, what type of landscape are you looking for? What’s the average rain and temperature during winter and summer? How much time can you devote to maintenance? What type of plants grow in your area?
All these questions are crucial when it comes to plan your landscaping project, since humidity, temperature and local plants are very important factors for a successful yard, since not every plant will grow in your area and weather no matter how much you take care of it.
So, now that you are ready to do it, where can you get the 411 on landscaping? The most popular resource is the Internet. There are plenty of sites that have tips and information on plants and design.
The website I’d suggest to get started is the local site of the Extension Agency. The Extension Agency is devoted to provide information on growing any sort of plant, tree or shrub, and it’s useful for home hobbyists, farmers and gardeners. So, no matter what sort of plant you want to grow, there you can find the info you need.
You can also ask your neighbors about how they do their garden. They will surely give you plenty of ideas and secrets, and lot of support in your projects. You can even recruit some helping neighbors to give you a hand.
Another source of information is your local home improvement store, where you will be informed about tools you need to get started in your landscaping project. However, be careful about buying your plants there, since most of them are sold all over the country, and, therefore, they might not be suitable for your area.
The most suitable place to find both great information and the best plants are the local, small nurseries or greenhouses, where you can talk to the owners, who are passionate about landscaping and plants.
In small local nurseries you’ll find the best landscaping information for dummies to make your landscaping project a great success!