Clean Up and Compost: Preparing Your Garden for Winter

One of the things I love about our new house is an already-picket-fenced-in area the previous owner used as a garden! I haven’t planted anything in it yet, but I plan on getting some good use out of it come Spring. However, in order for it to be ready for me come Spring, there’s a bit of preparation that needs to be done, am I right?

Beautiful young woman gardening outside in summer nature

Right now, with winter coming hot – or cold – on the heels of Fall, it’s the time of year we all enjoy getting cozy inside and snuggling up by the fire. For those with green fingers, it’s time to reflect on the summer’s bounties and think about preparing your garden for the coming chill. Preparation is the key to having an easy maintenance garden over winter, and helps it to burst back into life in next spring as well.  

Pulling up and bedding down

Start with your plants, digging up any annuals and adding them to the compost heap. Make sure that any bulbs are settled in ready for spring, pull out weeds, and cut back your perennials. Digging over the beds helps to aerate the soil and mix it up, and spreading a thick layer of compost or bark chips on top helps to replenish the nutrients and organic content. If you want some winter color, try adding wallflowers and pansies or some heather and cyclamen, which do equally well in easy to manage pots and hanging baskets.

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7 Air Freshening House Plants That Are Easy to Grow

This is a guest post by Michael from ThinkCrucial.com, a home improvement brand that helps people save money on replacement parts.

As we all learned in elementary school, plants play a crucial part in the planet’s ecosystem. As animals breathe in oxygen and let out carbon dioxide, plants absorb that carbon dioxide and process it back into oxygen. Plants within the home can be put to the same task, providing your home with fresher air. Not only that, but many plants can actually clean toxins out of the air, and make your home a better place to live and breathe in.

Of course, not everyone is a natural gardener, and some plants are harder to keep alive than others. Here is a list of seven plants that are not only best at keeping your home’s air clean, but are also the easiest to take care of!

Florist’s Chrysanthemum (chrysanthemum morifolium)

mums-indoors

In NASA studies, the florist’s chrysanthemum, also known as the garden mum, was the best performer out of all of the plants tested. The studies examined a number of plants in their effectiveness in removing five toxins:

  • Ammonia
  • Trichloroethylene
  • Formaldehyde
  • Benzene
  • Xylene

The garden mum was capable of dealing with all five in their experiments. Not only that, it’s very easy to tend to. Simply put it in direct sunlight and water it a light amount every other day. It is a perennial flower, however, so it only flowers for six weeks, and it only filters when it’s flowering. Once it is done, you’ll have to wait until next year, or else simply go out and get a fresh one. It is poisonous to pets, however, so be wary of keeping one in a home with pets, and take yours to the vet immediately if they consume any.

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Preparing Your Garden for Spring

I love Spring! Well, other than the incredibly high pollen count that sends my allergies into a frenzy, that is.

This young woman sneezing into a tissue either has a cold or really bad allergies.

This year I’m still a bit preoccupied with two tiny humans, so I won’t be doing a Spring Garden, but when Morgan from Craig Manor sent over this infographic, it was almost enough to make me reconsider! I think by the time I have everything ready it would probably be Summer, which isn’t at all helpful!

All the same, I figured I’d share it with all of you! I’ll just have to follow it myself next year!

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The Perfect Garden for the Perfect Summer!

It’s finally that time again! The winter coats are packed away, the washing is hanging up outside and the men of the world are taking their rightful place at the barbecue. Yes, it’s summertime! Now that the season of ‘Taps Aff’ weather (a very scientific way of measuring warm weather) is upon us, it is the perfect time to create a beautiful summer yard for all of the family to enjoy. Whether you are looking for a new theme or perhaps your grass just needs sprucing up, it’s important to have your garden exactly how you want it. 

Here are some fantastic ideas to bring it all together!

Bifold Doors to Bring Together Home and Garden

bifold-doors-scotland

One of the best ways to make the most of your yard in summer is with Origin  bi fold doors, such as those sold by Ekco. Unlike traditional patio doors, bi-fold doors fold all the way in thereby opening up your home and giving you unparalleled views of your garden. Not only do they look stunning, bi-fold doors have a low threshold which removes the barrier between indoors and outdoors essentially creating one huge living space for you to enjoy in summer. Bi-folds give a wonderful sense of space and light and allow you to keep your home cool in summer.

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Find the Perfect Mother’s Day Gift – at Uncommon Goods!

A couple years back, I was tired of purchasing the same ol’ type of gifts for friends and family. It all seemed so…routine! And BORING. And I felt like I wasn’t appreciating those I loved very well at all when it came to “gift giving”.

So I started looking for something a little different. Something unique. I wanted to find one spot I could go to see products that were fresh and new and not at all “common”. 

It was then that I discovered UncommonGoods.

Founded in 1999 and headquartered in Brooklyn, New York, UncommonGoods is a privately-owned retailer that endeavors to feature unique jewelry, designer décor, tabletop items and handcrafted gifts created in harmony with the environment, AND without harm to animals or people. All of the company operations are run out of the historic Brooklyn Army Terminal, where the lowest-paid seasonal worker starts at 50% above the minimum wage. Their mission is to support and provide a platform for artists and designers; in fact, half of what they sell is made by hand! Most of the jewelry products, home décor and tabletop items carried are created right here in the USA, and about one-third of the entire collection incorporates recycled and/or up-cycled materials. At the core of the company is a great respect for the integrity of the creative individual and the belief that it is the responsibility of UncommonGoods to use their business to impact the world in a positive way.

And let me just say right here how user-friendly their website is! I love that you can even search by recipient – men, women, babies, or even wives and husbands!

It didn’t take long for me to realize that I loved what the company stood for, but what about these products?

Of course, anyone who has been reading this blog for any length of time knows that I’m always on the hunt for neat home goods that serve a purpose, and boy, have I found some!

The Personalized Anniversary Journal

Anniversary Journal

Check this out! This beautiful book has places for photos and handwritten memories of each of your anniversaries – from year 1 to year 60! What a great tribute to your marriage – one that would look beautiful on your coffee table or the bedside table. And the fact that it can be personalized just tops it all off!

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