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The Many Benefits Of Outdoor Garden Fountains

Outdoor garden fountains can have many benefits, as well as add class and style to your outdoor decor. There are so many different garden fountains to choose from that no matter what your style or taste is, you will find on that will work wonderfully in your back yard or garden setting. There are just too many benefits to mention all of them, here are a few reasons to have a fountain in your garden.

One of the benefits of having outdoor fountains is that no matter whom you are the idea of hearing the gentle splashing of water can be calming and very relaxing. If you have had a long day, full of stress and worry, sitting by garden fountains can make these problems melt away. Many people have benches or chairs set up near or around them, and sit to meditate by a fountain. Just closing your eyes for a few minutes and listening to the water fountain can help relax you.

Another reason to have outdoor fountains is that they can be a focal point to an outdoor setting. For an example, if you have an Oriental theme going on, there are many different Buddha fountains, cascading or water fall garden fountains to choose from. These fountains can be as simple or as elaborate as your heart desires. Many of these fountains are fully self-contained, with everything but water and power to get you up and running, Most of the pumps and wiring is hidden behind or within the fountain itself. Some fountains even use solar power to make them work, whether they run while the sun is out, or store energy in a small battery for later use.

Another good reason to have outdoor fountains in your backyard is that these garden fountains are built to last a long time. While there are models that use real stone, many others use a heavy duty poly resin. These fountains can have the same look and feel as real stone, without all the weight and cost involved with buying stone. Because they are made from these materials, they are easy to clean and maintain, often with just a spray of the garden hose. Another great thing about these materials used in fountains is that they can come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, from the Buddha fountains mentioned earlier, Hawaiian Gods and Deities, as well as simple cascading fountains, simulated rock wall fountains, and Terra Cotta Bowl fountains, just to name a few.

Even government officials are starting to acknowledge the benefits of outdoor fountains, with many cities commissioning garden fountains in their neighborhoods. These are places where people can come, sit and relax, and just let the stresses of the day be released.

You can find outdoor garden fountains to fit into just about any budget. The costs really depend on how large and elaborate the fountains are, what materials they are made from, as well as their designs. The more complex, the more expensive they are going to be, however, there are many different designs that cost well below one hundred dollars.


Keeping Your Garden Clean & Tidy

Ive been cleaning up my garden a bit, now that its autumn and winter will soon be upon us. That's made me think about the constant work involved in maintaining a house, keeping it clean, in good repair, uncluttered.

I know very few people who dont complain about the clutter in their lives. Most people see it as a labor of Sisyphus, where you make a supreme effort to get your stuff organized, only to be confronted with the same problem again and again. A few people go to the other extreme houses so clean and neat (sterile?) that you could probably serve dinner off the floor with no ill effects.

Why are we confronted with clutter and too much stuff? There are lots of logical reasons: the low price of consumer goods enables us to buy many more things; the inability to get things repaired leaves us with fairly new objects that were reluctant to throw away; advertising encourages us to buy more and more; some homes lack adequate storage; inherited family heirlooms or special collections need their space; some people stockpile for emergencies or buy in quantity at box stores.

Those reasons all sounded really good, but theyre missing the point. Clutter is stagnant energy that causes tiredness and lethargy. It doesnt leave room for new things to come into your life and you feel bogged down. It can keep you feeling unfocused and aid in helping you put things off until tomorrow. It can make you feel ashamed, or depressed. It can distract you from what is truly important, and prevent you from ever getting out of the starting gate on projects.

Heres a question to ask yourself:

If my environment is a reflection of whats going on in my life and inside of me, what is it saying?

Is it saying, for example, that your attention is scattered and you are unable to focus on any one thing? That you are clinging to old ways of doing things and are unable to get out of a rut? That you dont feel worthy of living in a clean, well-functioning home? Do you acquire things out of a feeling of scarcity, or use shopping as a way to relieve anxiety?

Here are some practical steps for your clutter, in the one day at a time mode:

1. Make your bed when you get up
2. Put things away as you use them
3. Wash all dishes before going to bed
4. Declutter one thing per day (no matter how small)


Roadside Tree Boxes - A Garden Waiting To Happen

For those who live on typical city streets in an American suburb, there is one strip of land by your property you probably look at a lot, but never do anything with, that little chunk of land between the sidewalk and the street. They all look similar, they are either a little chunk of grass, or possibly a dirt and grass island, with trees as decorations.

Some cities refer to these areas as tree boxes, little roadside boxes created by driveways, sidewalks and the road. They tend to stand out from the nice landscaping you do on your lawn.

Now, you may be able to change that and decorate them as well. Before you do anything, you need to call your city to see what can or can't be done with that chunk of land. While it will still be city property, they may allow you to plant things, as long as you keep them neat. Some cities will require you tell them what you are going to do before you start planting, others will make you get a permit to put in a tree, but most are flexible to a resident wanting to help take care of the area around their home.

Some of the common ways to spruce up this piece of land, without having plants that are out of control, are to plant a small herb garden, others go with a tree and a flower ground cover. Some go all out.

In the Georgetown area of Washington, DC, these tree boxes have become not only something to decorate, but something to compete with. They hold an annual contest called the Georgetown Tree Box and Front Garden Contest. Every year about 400 people complete and there is a lot of prestige to winning the event.

This may well have you looking out your front window thinking what you could do to jazz up the tree boxes in your neighborhood. Again, you may want to start by talking to the city. In addition to being able to let you know what rules and regulations they have relating to decorating that area, they also will be able to give you an idea of what plants will grow well in your tree boxes. After all, they are planting medians and other areas of the city all the time.

A few tips:

You don't want the plants to be too high, or too bushy, as they can become a visibility concern as people try to turn into, or out of, driveways. Too much horizontal growth can also get in the way as people are trying to open their car doors.

Remember, the pavement surrounding the tree boxes is very hot, on all four sides. That means the soil in the tree boxes will be warmer than in other areas of your yard. Not all plants will appreciate this.

This is a small place, do not over pack it with plants or they will likely beat up each other as they compete for the limited amount of garden space.


Garden Benches - What They Are

Putting in a flower garden or any garden for that matter takes time and dedication. However, the result is gorgeous color, magnificent fragrance, wonderful foods to eat, and an overall sense of accomplishment. Therefore, why stand back and admire your garden from afar when you can use a garden bench to be closer. The great thing about garden benches is that they can be any size and made from just about any material. For example, a garden bench can be made from scrap wood lying around the house, logs, wrought iron, concrete blocks, marble, rock, granite, railroad ties, and so on. You could easily take a few pieces of old scrap lumber or a nice big log and create a quiet place to sit. If you want something more elaborate for your garden bench, you can purchase one already made or have one built.

The goal with any garden bench is to create a place of solitude, a place where you can sit and relax to enjoy the beauty of your garden. If you look at the Japanese garden, there are garden benches throughout so people can rest and meditate as they look at the flowers or listen to the flowing water. That same concept has been recreated in gardens of all types across the country. The key is to remember that when choosing or making your garden bench, it does not have to be perfect. After all, you want the garden bench to blend in with the garden or at least enhance its natural beauty. Therefore, while you might find something colorful and over the top, take time to consider your garden and how you want the bench to look.

When choosing a garden bench, remember that certain woods do not withstand the outside elements well. You will do well choosing cedar, teak, cypress, and mahogany, for instance. Another option, although some people believe it takes away from the natural look is a wrought iron garden bench or a plastic garden bench. Finally, concrete, marble, stone, and granite are also beautiful and durable but unfortunately, unless they have a cushion, they are not very comfortable. When buying or building a wood garden bench, remember the cardinal rule - the fewer screws and bolts the better the finished bench will look.

When it comes to size, again this is mostly a personal preference but in general, a four-foot bench will provide amble room for one or two people without taking up too much room in the garden itself. You also want to think about price so you want to determine your budget first. Typically, you can buy a nice wooden bench of cedar or redwood for around $200 - $300. Then for the larger teak benches, prices usually jump to somewhere around $1,000 or more.

When you are ready to buy a garden bench, if possible, you should try to buy from an online manufacturer that pays for shipping. The reason is that while you might find a great garden bench, the shipping costs can eat you alive. Many benches ship by freight adding at least another $100 to your order. Keep this in mind when you think you might have found a super deal from an online manufacturer.

Now that you have decided on the perfect garden bench, make sure to spend some time each day sitting on it while enjoying a cup of coffee or a beautiful sunset. That is what it is all about.


Garden Planters - A Fantastic Outdoor Accessory That Lets You Plant Anywhere

If you love to plant, but have run out of actual backyard space to do it, do not worry because there is a simple solution to your problem. That solution is garden planters. They are gorgeous outdoor accessories that allow you to plant almost anywhere.

Now, the reason why garden planters allow you to plant almost anywhere is because they are available in a slew of different types, styles, shapes, and most importantly, sizes. All of these options make it a breeze to find the perfect one to match your space and what you want to plant in it. For example, maybe you want to plant a few smaller trees and place them around your patio area, then a wonderful choice for you would be ones that are larger in size, probably something that is circular or square in shape would work nicely. Or, maybe you want some more room to plant vegetables, then a great choice for you then would be ones that are long and rectangular. Basically, there are just a lot of options available and other alternatives include ones that are tapered, others that look like vases, some that are even made to hang off a window, and there are even triangle and v-shaped ones.

One of the main things that you need to bear in mind when shopping for garden planters is what type of material it is crafted out of. You want to make sure that you go with a higher quality option. If you do not then you will be out of luck later on when you are stuck having to replace them and replant everything because it could not stand up under the elements.

With that said, some of the better options include durable woods like Shorea, Teak, and Redwood along with synthetic options like polymer and recycled plastic, and those made from stone and rock are also a good choice. Every one of these materials is very sturdy, plus, they all have an appealing look to them. For example, teak has a stunning golden natural tone when new that fades to a silver gray over time while Redwood has more of a cinnamon red appearance. Or, if you like a bold, distinguished look, then one made from the stone or rock would be the way to go.

For a stress free way to browse all the lovely garden planters that are available, forget about going to your local garden center or department store. Instead, just make a b-line for your computer and check out all the online stores. By the flick of the mouse you can hit every store that is out there and then when you do find what you want, it is shipped right to your house. Talk about convenience.

So, if you love planting and want to keep doing it even though you have run out of space, turn to luxurious garden planters to keep your hobby alive. They are ideal for planting almost anything anywhere your heart desires.


The Gardeners Top 5 Toolkit

Gardening is fun and rewarding and may be considered a hobby, talent or both and sometimes its just luck. Gardening is not as easy as it looks and involves dedication, time and consistency and many trials and errors. There are many aspects to maintaining a healthy garden, but some aspects are more important than others. An individual who likes to garden can have the knowledge to produce the best garden in the world, but without the right equipment and materials it just wouldnt be possible.

Below you will find a list of the top 5 pieces of equipment which gardeners simply cannot live without:

1. Trowel a trowel is a shovel-like piece of equipment which is used to dig up dirt and set small plants. There are many styles to choose from and type of handle on your trowel will determine how well it works. Easy grip, non-slide and non-slip grips are the best form of handle to choose. These will be easier to use and will require less work than any other form of trowel. A trowel with no grip will be difficult to use and could end up ruining your garden. Try one out in your hand first to ensure it feels comfortable. Theres nothing like having your hand cramp or the trowel slip while using it to dig in a beautiful, new plant.

2. Pitchfork a pitchfork is a gardening tool which has 2-6 prongs and a long handle. The sizes of pitchforks vary, depending on what they are being used for. The space between each prong varies as well. Pitchforks are used to separate, lift and throw loose pieces of material such as dirt and leaves.

3. Spade a gardening spade has a long, thick handle and a heavy flat blade. This tool is used to dig up and move pieces of dirt from one place to another. It can also be used to pack down dirt once the flower has been planted.

4. Pruning Shears pruning shears are tools which have a long handles and blades. This type of gardening equipment is used to allow gardeners to precisely prune rose bushes and other plants and unruly vines, etc. It can also be used to cut the grass at the edges of walkways and garden beds, in those hard to reach places. It is also used to trim the edges and remove dead leaves or wood on flowers.

There is no other piece of gardening equipment which can do the same job as pruning shears. Without the use of this piece of equipment, your garden will end up looking messy and disorganized. Always, always, always invest in good quality pruning shears. Good ones have a lifetime guarantee and low-end ones will make shrapnel of your heritage rose.

5. Wheelbarrow a wheelbarrow is one of the larger pieces of garden equipment. It is a cart with a handle and at least one wheel which is designed for easy transportation of materials from one place to another. Purchasing a wheelbarrow will save you a lot of time and effort, especially if you are off to the compost heap, and will make for a pleasant gardening experience. Another option is the 4-wheeled gardening cart.

There are many pieces of gardening equipment which will make this hobby easier and more efficient, however the ones listed above are recognized as the most important. These pieces of equipment will likely last a very long time.


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