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Summerhouses Make the Perfect Home Offices

After suffering months and years of commuter travel which eats into your life at both ends of the day, it’s maybe easier if you can work from home and save yourself the expenses and stress, let alone your damage to the carbon footprint.

Working from home does present a number of obvious difficulties. If other people live in your home during the day and young children are allowed to play wherever they want, you will probably be worried that you might not be as productive as you would like to be.

The answer to this problem could be to add a log cabin summerhouse in your garden so you can be taken away from your home and all its distractions, like daytime television, and work quietly and efficiently making good use of fresh air and the lack of car fumes.

There are many cheap summerhouses on the market as well as many available in the good quality build bracket. If your company isn’t providing any finance towards your perfect home office, then the budget for your choice of summerhouse will be down to you, but a great log cabin summerhouse can be used for many purposes apart from a Home Office and can add substantial value and purchaser attraction in the future.

Choosing where to sit in your new log cabin summerhouse might be decided after a trial and error period because you won’t want to be distracted by watching the butterflies and birds spending the day in your garden you won’t want to be in full sunlight when it does show.

Decorating your home office space will make it feel like home with a balance of using the area as a home office summerhouse. Because it is your work area you will be able to paint in any colour scheme that suits you because you’re the only one that will need to look at it.

The only exception to this rule is to consider the value of painting full-size rainbows across your walls, when your managing director comes to visit to check that you are working properly.

Unless you are going to operate everything wirelessly from your home, which would include your telephone, your computer and your printer, you will need a supply of electricity to at least manage your lighting in your home office.

Adding a log cabin summerhouse to your garden gives you the opportunity to add solar panels to the roof to provide all of your electrical needs in your home office.

Choosing a summerhouse to relocate to your home office will add hours to your day which might mean you can be more productive in your work, which might mean more money from your company or you might choose to reallocate those hours to your family so you can spend more time together.

You should also think ahead of the times when you won’t need to use your log cabin summerhouse as a home office, so buy a summerhouse that is big enough to cope with any of your future thoughts.

If you maintain your log cabin summerhouse correctly, it will give you years of good use. If you keep it clean and tidy and office like and keep sufficient supplies in your office so that you don’t have to keep visiting your house for coffee or reality game-shows, your work ethics can only get better.

Soil

Many gardeners understand that a plant in a container cannot rely on the potting soil for nutrition, at least not forever. Outdoor plants that are growing in the yard are naturally replenished to some extent, by plants and old leaves that are slowly decomposed by rain and microbial action. This accumulated plant debris is a natural fertilizer.

Nutritional supplements are commonly called plant food or fertilizer. The term “plant food” has often caused hostile reactions within academic horticulture circles. Although it helps to think of fertilizer as plant food, it’s not. Technically, plants manufacture or produce their own food by photosynthesis. This natural process within the plant portions that contain chlorophyll converts carbon dioxide and water in the presence of sunlight into sugars that are the building blocks of green tissues. The mineral nutrients that are found in fertilizer are necessary to stimulate photosynthesis and therefore make food production possible.

Houseplants or plants that are grown in containers are quite isolated from the natural fertilization cycle. They struggle enough in their pursuit of light and water. Only when the nutritional needs of the plant are met by the conscientious grower, can plant vigor be insured. A vital and yet integral part of any plant maintenance program should be a regular fertilization schedule.

Most houseplant nutritional problems can be controlled with three major fertilizer elements.

The first element listed by number on the plant food package is nitrogen (N). It is the most important to overall plant growth. It also is the quickest one to dissolve in water and He available through the roots. Unfortunately, nitrogen is also the Element most quickly removed or leached out of the soil. Often much of the nitrogen disappears out the drainage holes before it is absorbed by the roots.

Within the plant, most of the ingested nitrogen is utilized in the manufacture of leaf tissue. A plant that has received an adequate supply of this vital nutrient will exhibit lush green leaves and plant parts. The lack of adequate nitrogen may result in lower-leaf drop, stunted growth, and an overall faded-out appearance. Too much nitrogen, however, can result in an overabundance of lush foliage or leaves. Tomatoes are a prime example of too much foliage with few fruits as the result of too much nitrogen. The leaves that are produced with an abundance of nitrogen are often soft and therefore weak. They are less likely to support strong plant growth and are often more susceptible to disease and insect attack.

Phosphorus (P) is the second number on the fertilizer product label. This figure is representative of the percentage of phosphoric acid, not just pure phosphorus. Plants need less phosphorus than nitrogen and also soils lose less phosphorus to leaching.

The presence of adequate phosphorus insures a vigorous root system and a sturdy stem. The element’s major importance is in speeding plant maturation and therefore development of flower buds.

Many flowering plants like hibiscus, vinca, lantana, purslane, bougainvillea and allamanda require high phosphorus fertilizers for adequate bloom count. The lack of phosphorus can result in stunted growth as well as lack of flowers.

Potassium (K) is the third major fertilizer element. Potassium combines with oxygen to form potassium oxide which is commonly known as potash.

The presence of potassium in the plant encourages flowering and plays a key role in seed quality. It also is essential for plant vigor and health. Cold- and disease-resistant qualities are enhanced with adequate quantities of potassium.

The regular use of fertilizer should be an integral part of your plant care, regardless of what kind of fertilizer you use. Never over-feed, but be consistent and observe your plants’ reactions to the fertilizer you are using.

Cost Of Home Remodeling

What is the Cost of Home Remodeling? It is important to figure out the cost of home remodeling before you decide to start tearing down walls. You should run the numbers of your home additions cost to decide whether your project is a smart investment. These numbers should include how much money you have on hand to pay the cost of home renovations, what you can afford to finance, any tax benefits, the cost of a reputable remodeling contractor and the materials you plan to use. Before you decide to carry out your remodel plans, you should ask yourself a few questions: Would it possibly be cheaper to buy a new house than carry out your remodeling plan? Will your remodel increase the value of your home?

A “home improvement” project, such as painting the walls or installing new carpet might make your house look more attractive, but won’t really do anything for the value of your home. On the other hand, adding a room or rooms or adding a second floor, DOES affect the value of your home. How is the market value of homes in your area? Are they holding up? Great. You don’t want to sink money in a money pit, even if you love your home. If you aren’t going to see a return on your remodeling investment, think long and hard about remodeling. If however, your house’s value is holding up, remodeling your home might be a great idea to increase the value and have a nice, renovated home to live in. Bathroom and kitchen remodels are especially effective at raising the value of your home.

A bathroom or kitchen remodel cost can be higher than remodeling your living room because of the plumbing and fixtures involved in those rooms. When figuring your kitchen remodeling costs, you will need to decide on the quality of fixtures you are going to use. Cost of Home Remodeling Start with a budget. Know what you can afford to spend, then figure out what you will do with the money. You can create a budget worksheet to help you figure this out. Possible things you might want to include in your remodeling costs of home additions worksheet: any new real estate you need to purchase, your foundation, framing, roofing, doors, windows, plumbing, electrical, HVAC, insulation, exterior treatments, walls, painting, ceilings, kitchen and bath fixtures, laundry, lighting, garage, deck, patio and so on. There are many estimators to help you estimate cost of home additions available online. Try several and see which one is easiest to work with and the most accurate in your estimation. Most of them will allow you to enter your home zip code to pull local numbers.

If you are going to need to finance some or all of your remodel, you must protect and build your credit score and understand financing. This is a topic too large to go over here, but it is very important. Well, there it is. Now you know that you should do your homework to see if the cost of home remodeling will increase the value of your home. If it will, then go to the next step and use a cost of home remodeling calculator to find out what your plans might cost in your area. If you are planning a remodel in the mountains around the Big Bear, CA area, we can help you figure out your remodeling costs. We have years of experience and many of our customers are very glad we helped them come up with an accurate estimate. We can help you too. Click here to return Home from “Cost of Home Remodeling”

Drawing Up a Vegetable Garden Plan

After you have chosen and measured your garden area, spread out a large sheet of paper—shelf paper will do. Use a simple scale, such as one inch for one foot. Draw lines every 3 inches across the paper to represent walkways 3 feet apart in the plot. Picture the space between the walkways as slightly raised beds. Down each of these beds you can run two rows of small-to-medium sized vegetables or one row of larger types. Extra-large vegetables, such as melons and squash, must be given two or three full beds to sprawl across. Seed packets give you some clues by listing heights and recommended spacing between plants, but also consider the points that follow.

1.Visualize mature height and spread

Such perennials as rhubarb and asparagus grow very tall and can be harvested for only a relatively short time.

They should be placed in the back of your garden so that they’re out of the way after harvest. Plant tall vegetables on the north side of the garden and shorter ones on the south side. Sweet corn, pole varieties of beans and peas, and tomatoes are all tall-growing vegetables.

Bush squash and eggplant can reach two and a half feet in height. Place them in the middle of the garden. Most other vegetables—bush beans, beets, carrots, and turnips, for example—grow no more than 14 to 18 inches high and equally wide.

Don’t be misled by the descriptive term “bush” when it’s applied to summer squash, eggplant, and okra. Bush varieties are more compact than the runner types, but even they can grow 30 inches high and 4 feet wide. Another misnomer is “dwarf” okra; in rich soil this plant can grow nearly 6 feet tall by the end of summer. Double-check the mature size of dwarf and miniature vegetables in the seed catalog or on the packet before you buy.

The size of some mature plants, such as Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, and cabbage, is not the same as the size of the heads at produce counters. Outer leaves on late-maturing cabbage, for example, can cover a 24 to 30-inch span. Cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and broccoli can grow to 24 inches high and equally as wide. Kale and collards don’t form heads like cabbage; instead, they develop tall, upright plants.

2.Think short rows

Divide each row into short segments, about 4 feet in length. This will keep you from planting too much of any one vegetable at a time. Plant long rows of vegetables only if you intend to can or freeze them or if they are a type you can leave on the plants for a vvhile after they mature. Vegetables that can be stored on plants include winter squash, potatoes, turnips, rutabagas, onions, and beans grown for dry seeds.

3.Interplant to save space

Interplanting lets you harvest more vegetables from a small garden. Instead of planting individual rows of quick-maturing vegetables (leaf lettuce, radish, curly cress, onion sets, spinach, turnips, and mustard greens), scatter a few of these seeds among young plants of larger or slower-maturing vegetables, such as sweet corn, peppers, tomatoes, and eggplant. Some gardeners never plant separate rows of radishes; they just plant radish seeds among the slow sprouters, such as parsley and carrots. The radishes are eaten before the parsley and carrots are more than an inch or so high.

You can use the same space to grow two or three crops in succession in a single season. Combined with inter- planting, succession cropping can help you harvest more from a given area. When you take out an early crop. plant another one as soon as you can work amendments into the soil.

Here’s a typical sequence of succession planting: plant peas or spinach in very early spring. As soon as these crops are out of the ground, rework the bed and plant warmth-loving vegetables, such as beans. In mildwiriter climates you can pull up ‘the beans and plant carrots, radishes, turnips, lettuce, or cole crops for fall and winter harvests.

Low Cost Basement Remodeling Idea

If you are looking to remodel your basement but don’t want to spend a ton of money, check out this low cost basement remodeling idea. This is based on a couple of things here first to keep in mind before you start this project. First, to keep the costs down you are going to have to make this a DIY project so just make sure either you or a good friend willing to help out is fairly handy. If you aren’t paying anybody to do the job it’s going to keep your costs low. Second, you need to make sure that the basement is completely waterproof, that is you don’t have any leaks or moisture problems. If you do, PLEASE take care of those issues first to save yourself some heartache in the long run. What you’ll find out here is that you don’t need to spend a whole lot of money to get a functional and clean looking basement. For this project we are going to assume that the room is a 10 foot by 20 foot room, makes the calculations a bit easier and you can simply adjust for your particular dimensions.

The Basement Ceiling:

First, if your basement ceiling is fairly clean from obstructions and ductwork, the most cost effective method to having a finished look is to simply just paint it. You are going to need a sprayer to do this one right. Don’t try and simply use a roller or brush. The sprayer will get you better coverage. If you don’t have one, find a friend that does or simply rent one from your local hardware store like Lowe’s or Home Depot. You’ll probably end up spending like $35 bucks to rent it for the day, but a single days rental should be all you need there. You’ll likely end up using a couple of gallons of paint to get the job done, and paint ranges anywhere from $20 – $50 a gallon so let’s just say it’ll cost you about $80 for the paint. All in all you are looking at $100 to $200 to get this size ceiling done.

If painting is not for you, then you could think about installing a drop ceiling. A little more expensive than painting (probably somewhere in the neighborhood of $2 to $5 per square foot) to get a more traditional looking ceiling. You’ll still get the benefits as you’ll be able to easily access to all the pipes, wires and ductwork overhead without having to tear it all up. A drop ceiling estimated cost for this size room would range from $400 to $1000.

The Basement Walls:

Just for an extra measure and to add a little piece of mind, you might want to think about putting a good coat of waterproofing paint on your walls to start with. Make sure it’s one that when dry will hold out water and not let it seep through. Once done, again the easiest and most cost effective solution is to simply paint the walls the color of your choice, if you don’t mind the look of concrete block walls.

Staring at cold concrete walls not your thing? Then you could do an unframed drywall installation. Although not as good as actually framing your walls, what you do is take 2×2 and simply attach it to the concrete walls with a strong liquid glue adhesive approximately 4 foot apart to attach the drywall to the concrete. Just make sure to measure appropriately so your drywall pieces attach at both sides for all pieces. Just screw the drywall into the wood strips. After they are all attached, use some drywall tape and mud to clean and fill the seams to make it all look like one piece. Once it’s all dry, pick out your favorite color of paint and get to work painting it. Just be sure to cut out for your electrical circuits so you don’t cover them up.

Drywall will cost you on average about $6 for a 4ft x 8ft sheet. So for this little project, you’ll need about 15 sheets. Add in the cost of the 2×2′s and the tape, mud, screws and paint and you are looking at around $300 for the walls. Not to shabby.

The Basement Floors:

Once again, paint is your friend as it’s going to be the most cost-effective solution for a DIY basement remodel. Some people will tell you to use some indoor/outdoor carpeting on the floor but I’m just not a big fan of that. Most of those carpets are pretty rough to the touch on bare feet. One thing that I am a fan of is carpet tiles. Check with some of your local flooring stores and see what they’ve got on clearance. If you have an outlet in your area even better. Sometimes you can find some really great deals on carpet squares/tiles that you could use in your basement. If you do go this route though, make sure your concrete basement floor is adequately proofed against moisture. Using carpet tiles you can easily replace them when one gets damaged, but it’s not something you are going to want to do all the time. Depending on the method you choose, you can expect to spend anywhere from $100 (for paint) to $600 for some discounted carpet tiles. One great thing about carpet tiles is just make sure you select by size. You can always use solid colors and mix and match them to get a great effect.

All in all, for this low cost basement remodeling solution you can expect to pay anywhere from $500 on the low end to $2000 on the higher end when you take into account the major expenses listed above and add in all the trim work and such. It just really depends on your choices and what you want your finished basement to look like.

What Laminate Flooring Can I Use On Concrete Basement Floor

If you are looking to cover up that cold and gray concrete basement floor, you’ve got a lot of options at your disposal. One such option is laminate flooring. What we are going to try and do here is explain just what laminate flooring you can use on a concrete basement floor.

Laminate flooring comes in all kinds of shapes and sizes and a huge array of finishes. So it’s only natural that you would take a look at this type of flooring to get the desired result you are looking for in your basement. From the solid wood look to a beautiful ceramic tile appeal, you can find a laminate that will work in all situations. Personally, I prefer the lighter wood shades as it tends to brighten up a basement. Darker shades will make your basement look and feel darker and smaller.

Most all laminate flooring is a type of floating floor. They are installed either using some sort of click and lock system or with an adhesive backing to lock them down into place. One type of laminate not to use down in a basement especially if you are going directly on a concrete basement floor is the adhesive kind. This will likely not give you the desired effect simply because they are kept in place by a glue. And glue’s in basements, especially directly on a concrete floor, is not really recommended. Basement floors will seep because concrete is a pourous material. It let’s water (and vapors) travel through it. So gluing a flooring material down to it is never a good answer.

It’s recommended that you use a laminate flooring with a click and lock system. These are easy to install and are made so that you can do it yourself. You will pay a bit more to have a professional come and install them. But if you’ve got a weekend to work away, it’s definitely something that you can try on your own.

If you are going to install laminate flooring on a concrete basement floor, please use a premium underlayment with a moisture barrier for added protection. If at all possible, use a subfloor to lift the laminate off of the basement floor so that there is a vapor barrier between the flooring and the concrete. This will allow the concrete to continue to breath and keep the moisture directly off of the laminate planks. At a minimum, a 6 ml plastic underlayment should be put down first, although this will not let the vapors evaporate like a raised sub-floor.

One thing to keep in mind is that many manufacturers don’t seal their laminates well enough on the back to prevent water damage. There are laminates specifically designed for sub-level installation, just make sure to check the ratings and you’ll be good to go from there.

Know what type of room your basement is going to be and check the AC rating of the laminate flooring you are planning to use. AC ratings are as follows:

  • AC1 is suitable for lighter, more infrequent traffic, e.g. a bedroom.
  • AC2 is suitable for general residential use in living rooms and dining rooms.
  • AC3 can be applied to more varied locations, such as small offices and other light commercial location
  • AC4 can be installed in higher traffic commercial areas such as boutiques, busier offices, and restaurant
  • AC5 is more durable still and can withstand the traffic of heavier commercial areas such as department stores and public buildings.

Knowing this, you can use just about any king of laminate flooring on a concrete basement floor. Laminate flooring is an extremely versatile flooring product and can be installed in virtually any room of your home, above or below ground. Just make sure that the job gets done right.

How To Finish Concrete Basement Walls

Tired of looking at those cold and bare, unfinished concrete basement walls? Think it’s too hard to tackle yourself? Think again! Read on for some options you have and special tips along the way.

Having a home with a basement can be a big time kicker in adding value to the overall price tag, that is if it’s a finished basement. Having a basement that’s finished raises the overall livable space of a home. It’s pretty simple really, a home with an unfinished basement has less square footage of livable space than a home that has a finished basement. One of the items to completing the look of a finished basement deals with those bare concrete walls. If you are looking to clean it all up, this should help you along the lines of how to finish concrete basement walls.

There’s really three options you have with this. The first one, probably doesn’t fit you as that’s why you are here in the first place, is that the basement is finished as part of building the house. These could be a new home or maybe an older home that you bought but the basement was already done when you got the home. The second option is to simply hire a contractor to finish it all out. And the third, which is probably why you are here, is to finish the basement walls yourself if you have the skills and time. You will still need to buy all the construction materials yourself, but you’ll save quite a bit by cutting out the time and labor charged from a general contractor. Here’s a couple of different options on how to finish concrete basement walls.

Furring Strips with Foam Insulation

We’ll start with the least desirable of the two eventhough it’s probably actually easier then the other option a little farther down line and that’s to use some simple furring strips and foam insulation to fake out your wall. Since you are really only going to be having the foam insulation between your drywall and concrete wall, there’s really no need to use 2×4′s as your furring strip. Suggest to use 2×2′s instead. You’ll want to secure these 2×2′s to the overhead floor joists and then also down the wall in a vertical pattern with some sturdy concrete screws. You don’t need many, probably 3 or 4 strategically placed screws per furring strip would suffice. Once you’ve got your furring strips in place, get that foam insulation out and start cutting pieces to fit in between your furring strips. The least amount of cuts you have to make the better so measure those furring strips appropriately! Once you’ve got the foam sheets fitting correctly between the furring strips, take it down and apply some adhesive to the back of it using a caulking gun generously around it until the bead runs from top to bottom. Just go from side to side as you work your way down the sheet leaving about an inch or so between the current bead and the upper bead until you reach the bottom. Pick it back up and press it in place. Be sure to apply even pressure over the board (pushing on the top, middle, and bottom) so that it secures properly. Give it about 30 seconds for the glue to take hold before you let go and move on to your next piece. One thing to note here, if you haven’t run your electricity to the outlets and stuff, plan to mix this in during the process as it gets rather tight as you are working with a lot less space. After you’ve got all the foam insulation up and in place, you can move on to the drywall. Install the drywall right over the top of it all using some standard one and a quarter inch drywall screws. Wa-la. You’ve just finished your concrete basement walls. In the long, run you’ll save some flooring space if your basement is small using this method, but if you are going to spend a lot of time down there, it’s probably not going to be worth the hassle you’ll run into trying to run all the wiring and outlets as there simply no room to “do it later” without really tearing something up.

Conventional Framed Wall

This method of framing a concrete basement wall is probably by far the most common and popular. Instead of the 2X2′s and foam insulation, this time on the trip to the hardware store your going to want to pick up some 2×4′s. I’m not going to tell you everything here on how to do this as there are simply a ton of resources online and elsewhere that cover building a conventional framed wall, but I will give you a couple of tips. Get enough to go from corner to corner in the entire basement. When you start building your wall, make sure that the 2×4 bottom plates are pressure treated (this will help them last a lot longer due to the conditions of a basement) to mount the 2×4′s to. The top of the frame should be mounted to the upper floor joists for support. To insulate them when you are done framing, you can use the standard fiberglass insulation, no need for the foam insulation here. The downfall with this type of framing on basement walls is that you lose some space, not much, but about 6 inches per wall. If your basement is really small this could be a problem. The upside though is that since you are finishing it out probably means you are going to be spending some time down there and this type of installation leaves you a lot of room to work that wiring to all those new outlets and switches to power up those big screen TV’s and sound systems (or blenders and bar accessories, or whatever else you may be doing).

How Much Does It Cost

This is probably one of the most important pieces that anyone wants to know is how much does it cost to finish basement walls? The answer? Well it’s really not a good one as quite honestly every situation and basement is practically different and depending on the way you go depends a lot on the overall bottom line of the whole deal. It’s one that you are just going to have to price out for your basement yourself. I know, that’s not the greatest answer or probably what anyone would want to hear but it’s true. Every job is different. Check around with some of the local contractors in your area and just get some estimates. If they are reasonable and it fits your budget, go for it. If not, take their estimates (and take notes when they are doing it) and price it out yourself if you were to do the work. What you are going to find is that overall, the contractors may get a better rate on the materials, but can you afford the time and labor portion of it or is it worth it to simply do it yourself, that should be your deciding factor. One other thing to consider if you do attempt this, it takes a bit of time. Plan on spending 2-5 days (dependant on the job) to do it yourself as it’s not something your likely going to finish in a single day.

What Edibles Should You Plant NOW? May Garden Guide

A good place to start weather you are starting from scratch or developing your garden year by year is to gain wisdom from all you can observe of your landscape. Doing this will minimize gardening pitfalls. Look out your window, walk around your garden area.

Collect all the information you can to gain understanding of what and when things should be done. Common sense goes a long ways, add that with your personal observations, and you have all you need to get a good start the best usage of your time to gain the most results.

Step back and look closely at how the landscape is performing, both functionally as well as aesthetically. Ask these questions: What goals do I have? Do I want a dual purpose garden? Will it provide mental respite as well as healthy crops? What features lend themselves to a focal point (dominant feature) or pleasant walkway for planning around? How do pole beans or upright sweet corn set the stage? How do the oregano and mint textures (leaf and stem) harmonize with the colors, silhouettes and shapes of their companion plants? What type of lighting and shadows from the sun at various stages of the day as well as the evening moon’s rays do you see to add to the excitement of the view? These are just a few considerations that may bring greater enjoyment to that bell pepper’s flavor or the pie grandma made from your rhubarb, or mint in your glass of ice tea, or maybe a fruit salad with hand-picked blueberries and strawberries.

Mark, stake, label, or flag to indicate the exact locations of seeds, vining plants, watering and fertilizing sites are. As your squash vines start sprawling over this will help you not get lost as to where the hose end went.

If you started your tomato plants indoors or purchased them, you will want to transplant them one inch or deeper (to the first set of leaves). Put stakes or cages up now so you don’t have to hassle with it later and risking damage to your plant.

Sweet potatoes are good to plant this month in the Midwest. Replace cold season plants with warm season varieties such as beans, egg-plant, and pepper. Work up the space, add some organic matter then plant after last harvest of your cold season vegetables. Keep proper spacing for sweet or pop corn to ensure proper cross –pollination and room for mature growth.

Shad from direct sunlight allows for a longer harvest time. Cool season leafy vegetables like lettuce, spinach and others will benefit from a shade cloth or fabric with the density of window screen over them.

After you cut and enjoy asparagus spears (not beyond stalks reaching pencil sized), allow the plant to grow and fern out (opening of leaves). Thin out and remove plant seedlings of beans, anise, and peas from any situation to avoid overcrowding. Select, if possible, the weakest plants to discard. New growth, tie up on vines as they need to avoid breaking stems and damage.

Watering good yet do so responsibly:

Keep as much moisture off the plant leaves, therefore minimize overhead watering. To continue watering from over head increases the chance of disease. If you must water from overhead, do it as early in the morning as you can so the leaves may dry during the day.

Grapes need a balance of (12-12-12 or similar) fertilizer. One quarter cup around each vine installed earlier this year. Apply fertilizer to older vies as the bulbs swell. Use one cup for two-year-old vines. One to One-one half cups for three-year-old vines and one to two cups of plant food for each year of growth on older vines.

Tomatoes need tomato fertilizer with an analysis 6-24-24 or similar product.

The first number is low so minimize adding nitrogen. Nitrogen encourages foliage and minimized fruit formation.

For your apple trees you will need to fertilize the ones which have been in place one year or longer. Administer one pound of 12-12-12 each year.

To save the energy of the rhubarb plant, cut off flower and seed stalks. Flowers from any squash and any fruits at the time of installation pinch off (remove). The plant will spend its energy trying to develop and keep fruit growing but it needs time to acclimate and establish in the garden.

Watch for asparagus beetles and striped and spotted cucumber beetles. These pests chew and transmit diseases in specific plants. Apple trees signs to watch for are codling moths; the caterpillars are leaf eaters.

Caterpillars start showing up on many crops this month, especially cabbages and broccoli. Inspect leaves for chewing, remove or apply a safe chemical control directly on the caterpillar. You could use Bacillus (Bt) biological spray per package directions.

Several insects that disrupt fruiting will visit your grapes; control them with insecticidal soap to lessen the impact.

Grape foliage with blackened or gray film on it will need to be thinned out so air movement can be increased through the plant. Check the base of grapevines after a severe winter for unusual looking growth. Cut vines to ground. Retrain the new growth onto the arbor or trellis. If the leaves appear pale or stunted, the nutrient level may be unbalanced or inadequate. Take a soil sample to your local garden center if you are unsure.

Blueberry bushes with a yellowing discoloration on the leaves are a sign of iron deficiency or unavailable nutrients. Iron sulfate at the label rate of application can be used to begin the recovery process. This may take a few seasons.

An insect identification guide with color pictures can greatly help identify unknown infestation problems. You can purchase these at local garden centers or nurseries.

Things To Consider When Shopping For Living Room Furniture For Todays Houses

Modern furniture for the home is now simple to get for the rooms of your house, and purchasing for the newest contemporary furniture is very convenient. You can find different kinds of modern furniture that range from living room furniture to outdoor furniture. For modern day living room furniture, there’s a huge variety of modern furnishings such as elegant leather couches, 2 or 3 seat leather sofas, the unique bobo leather sofa featuring arched Beech wood backrests, along with innovative chaise lounges which are built in assorted sizes and styles that can help enhance the look and feel of your house.

Furnishing your living area with contemporary furniture such as modern chaises not only lets you take it easy but also reflects your very own style and identity. The living room is definitely the essential place where guests and family stay; therefore it is supposed to be attractive, fashionable and comfortable. Your living room furniture must be robust and durable so that it won’t wear out, wrecking the appearance and stylishness of your room.

When looking to acquire modern-day furniture, there are numerous modern interior furniture options which include sofa beds, bookcases, sideboards, coffee tables plus stylish TV shelves. Be sure that the furniture that you’re planning to purchase for your house is comfy, that the colors merge with each other and that the styles and designs are fashionable and luxurious. For seating, you ought to get contemporary furniture that fits the configuration of your room. You have a choice of several cloth varieties which often include suede, polyester, micro fiber or leather.

Selecting which fabrics to order depends on the amount of money you’ve got and what you are able to afford; and also on your demands and personal style. Modern leather sofas or couches provide your living room space with a comfortable and high-end touch designed to cause you to be the envy of your acquaintances, who might also wind up buying the identical present day home furniture as you. Given that modern leather couches are heavy duty and even fade resistant, the leather will get softer and form fitting as time goes by.

For a budget conscious consumer, or just in case you do not have sufficient money to order modern living room furniture, you can go for the more reasonably priced pieces and style them in brilliant patterns that will go well with your style. It’s also possible to add stylish stools and cushions designed to blend with your sofa set, together with a matching rug which is durable and simple to clean.

Contemporary furniture can be purchased by anyone; it can be used in any room inside the house – and it is up to you to determine what you could manage to buy or what you love the most.

A Dry Basement Avoiding The Curse

Do you have a leaky or a dry basement? If it’s not dry you have a problem that needs some immediate attention as a homeowner. Getting your basement dry is another chore in itself though and is sometimes better left to the professionals.

The greatest nemesis that all basements face is dying an untimely death by water. There really is no point in even attempting to finish your basement if it suffers from water leaks or seepage or even a leaky basement window. If you try and avoid it by employing an “out of sight, out of mind” type of attitude, you’re simply delaying the damage by just covering up the problem. It’s still there, I promise you. You will ultimately find remorse in rotting floors and drywall, mold and mildew, and if you’re lucky that’ll be all it takes. For now, you should really take this opportunity, since you haven’t started that basement remodeling project just yet, to fix that water infiltration problems before you’ve gone and put up all the insulation and drywall and other stuff and get that dry basement that you need before the project starts.

When you start to try and track down the source for your water woes, there’s a multitude of things that you’ll need to look at. But here’s the two that are really the main culprits to most all basement water problems that you’ll find almost 90% of the time. The first one stems from Mother Nature and all her refreshing and renewing rain that falls building up all the surface water and the second is simply poor drainage to disperse all that water that’s falling down. The simple solution to this problem is to just ensure that all the water drains away from the houses foundation. Typically, this is one solution that most anybody can do themselves, but in heavier problem areas where the ground actually slopes into the foundation, you might need to employ the services of a good landscaping crew to redo the slope using those big machines that’ll grade the land into a proper slope away from your foundation in no time.

But what if you are successful in ruling out surface water problems and drainage issues but you still have those problem areas that leak in your basement, you may have a ground water problem. Ground water is not actually water that is on the ground, it’s actually water that is below the ground. If you want to sound all scientific than you could call it subterranean, but essentialy means the same thing if you hear someone calling it this. Basically it’s nothing more than water that’s moving in the ground from high water pressure areas to low water pressure areas. If it’s determined that your basement leaks because of ground water you’ll have to find a way of diverting and redirecting that water through utilizing a sump pumps and pits and installing a basement drain tile, two essential ingredients for quality dry basement systems. If you have a newer home this actually may already be done as buiders started putting these types of systems in with new home construction sometimes upon owner requests simply because it’s easier to install this type of system when the home is being built and not after it’s already finished.

Here’s some good news for you though, even if your house doesn’t currently have these as part of it’s drainage plan, you can still install them in your home whether it’s new or old. Here’s some key points to remember for this whole dry system to work. The basement drain tile can be installed either outside the basement wall or inside the basement itself. This “tile” is nowadays more along the lines of a perforated pipe rather than an actual clay tile. The sump pump and pit, however, are typically installed inside. For this inside installation to work, you’re going to need to cut out the flooring around the entire perimeter of the basement. This perimeter cut will need to be anywhere from 1 to 1.5 feet from the existing basement wall. Then you’ll need to do some excavation work removing just enough dirt and debris to put in some gravel, the drain tile and ultimately the sump pit itself. Once done you’ll have to pour a new floor over everything that you just tore up. It’s pretty genius actually as the water that was seeping around and through the old foundation will now flow directly to the gravel and drain tile, the new lowest points you’ve just put in with the least amount of water pressure. These will now move that same water along to the sump pit where it will essentially get flushed away via the pump making your basement a much safer, drier place.

As you can probably tell from the explanation just above, this task can become quite back-breaking and laborious fairly quickly. Not only that, depending on the situation it could require some specialized tools and skill set to really knock it out right to get that dry basement. Because of this, it’s not something that’s really recommended to take on as a DIY type project. You’d be much better suited hiring something like this out to a qualified basement professional. If you can’t find any problems causing your current basement water woes from the surface or drainage issues and suspect that you might have a ground water problem instead, seek some help by consulting a specialist or engineer that could tell you for certain before you just decide that’s what it is.