The Original Lighting in Your Garden Sheds

Do you think it is essential to light garden sheds? Some people do not and will often rely on the natural light coming in from the door. While natural lighting can be sufficient, it will not reach all the nooks in the shed. Also, you cannot rely on it when it is dark. And we all know how dangerous it can be to look for things in a dark shed, more so when it has garden implements. Instead of fumbling in the dark and risking bodily harm, you should think of some lighting solutions. Luckily, you have both natural and artificial solutions available to you. Your selection will thus have a lot to do with the use of the shed.

Natural Vs. Artificial Lighting

Natural light comes from the sun (and the moon during full moons), while artificial light comes from a source of energy. You can get natural lighting in your space by having openings such as doors, skylights, and windows. You can increase the brightness by adding more openings on the roof and walls. In this case, you do not have much control over the light. It depends on the season and the intensity of the sun. For artificial light, you rely on an energy source such as solar, wind, or electricity. Here, you have control over the amount of light as long as the source of energy is working at an optimum. Given that garden buildings should be at one with nature, going natural for the most part is the best way forward.

Considerations

When deciding what can work for your shed, you have to consider some factors. For one, the location of the structure matters a great deal. If the shed cannot get enough natural light owing to the shading around it, you will need additional sources. Alternatively, you can opt to move the shed to a place where it can receive more sunlight.

Secondly, the size of the shed will matter. With small spaces, you can make do with natural light. The same does not hold for large spaces where light cannot travel to most of the corners. In the case of the latter, additional sources would prove to be necessary,

Thirdly, how do you plan to use the shed? The usage will determine how much time you spend in the space. It will also determine the need for safety, which will inform your decision on light sources. Having considered these factors, you can now find the following lighting solutions.

What Options Are Available?

Natural Lighting

Here, you will rely on the sun on, and you need to find means through which you can increase the sunlight access. The positioning of the windows and doors is essential in this case. These should face south or west as this will allow for more light entry. Gables on the roof should have a north-south orientation as this allows for more light to enter the space. Where some structures bar the entry of light, you may want to consider moving them or the shed.

You can use a sloping roof such that one wall is higher than the other. The added vertical space makes for an excellent position to install windows. These can direct light into the shed. With this style, you will not have to compromise on the privacy of the contents in the shed. Note that you will need added ventilation to account for the added solar gain.

Another good option is the use of skylights. You can use ones similar to what you would have in a conventional home. When making a choice, it would be best to get those that allow for the removal of heat. That way, you will not end up overheating the shed, making it uncomfortable for use.

Adding windows to the shed is an easy and efficient way to allow more light into your space. These should be towards the south or west. Given that they come in a range of designs, it should be easy to find what works for your shed. If they open to the outside, then all the better, as they will increase ventilation in the space.

Artificial Lighting

In this case, you will have control as to the quality and the quantity of the light. Thus, in the selection process, you should have an eye out for brightness levels and energy efficiency. The latter is essential as it affects how much the lighting adds to your utility bills.

Solar-powered lighting is a welcome idea for people who live in sunny regions. Most solar panels will store charge for up to eight hours before they need a recharge. You can thus rely on them for the interior as well as exterior lighting of the shed.

Battery-powered lighting works for seasons when the sun is not a reliable source of light. These solutions come in varying shapes and sizes and are easy to mount. It helps that they are low-cost solutions.

Electric-powered lights are another way to go. These are similar to what you probably have in your home. They are reliable and will work as long as there is electricity.

Tidbit

Did you know that the colour of the shed’s interior has an impact on the lighting of the space? If you use a bright colour on the inside, light reflection increases, and this adds to the available light. You might want to try this before using additional sources.

Bottom Line

Ideally, sheds should have adequate natural lighting such that you only need a few artificial lights. It ensures that the spaces remain energy efficient, and it reduces the strain on utility bills. It would be best if you thus relied on reputable manufacturers who produce garden sheds that need little artificial lighting. Quick Garden is one such trusted and reliable manufacturer of garden buildings. You can have a look at our garden sheds and other products on our website. Feel free to contact us for more information.

5 Ways To Freshen Up A Bathroom

Have you ever had guests in your home and did not want them near the bathroom? If yes, you are not alone, as many people have faced challenges in keeping their bathrooms fresh. It could be that you have cleaned the space well only to find that there is an odour. Or the bathroom could feel musty, more so in log homes. These smells are a result of poor cleaning, lack of ventilation, humidity, and other such factors. Here are five ways in which you can keep your bathroom fresh:

Ventilation

Airflow is necessary for the bathroom. It thus follows that there should be adequate air flowing in and out of the space. Having open windows goes a long way in reducing smells in the bathroom. It is even more effective when there is cross-ventilation in play as in this way air can move from other rooms to the bathroom to the outside and vice versa.

Where the windows are not adequate, you can rely on an overhead fan to further aid in air circulation. People have a habit of opening the windows or turning on fans after using the loo. While this works in removing odours, it is not sufficient. Circulation should take place throughout the day, regardless of whether anyone has used the toilet or not.

Having moisture in the bathroom is an easy way to create a thriving environment for mildew. That is why you will come across spaces that feel musky and are uncomfortable to be in for long periods.

When you are using a fan to aid in circulation, it is essential to service it now and then. Cleaning it twice a year should ensure that it moves clean air through space. Also, if you live in a dusty region, you may want to clean it more often.

Getting Rid of Odours

The last thing you want is for guests and people in the house to walk into the bathroom and face odours. Not only does it make using the bathroom uncomfortable, but it is also embarrassing for you. Homes should be fresh in and out. The focus you put on the kitchen garden is the same that should go into your bathroom. Log homes are not all that different when it comes to conventional homes regarding bathroom spaces. And here is how you can protect yourself from embarrassing moments: use an odour eliminator.

In most cases, people use air fresheners featuring different scents. And these work in keeping the spaces smelling great for a while. But these products do not get to the root of the problem. Instead, they cover it up. Thus, where the odour is stronger than the freshener, you can get a whiff of the bad smell even after spraying the space.

Odour eliminators are the better choice as they attack the terrible smells. In this way, you can look forward to a space that is devoid of odours. Luckily, there are many options on the market. All you need to do is get a product labelled as an odour eliminator.

In some cases, you might find that the smell requires more than an odour eliminator. It could be that even with a fan in place, the air still smells terrible, and you need help in keeping it odour-free. Where this is the case, you can use an air purifier, which increases air circulation and removes bacteria from the space. The size of the purifier will ultimately depend on how big the bathroom is.

You can also use an air freshener in combination with the purifier and odour eliminator. Some people choose to make their solutions using water and essential oils. Many formulas exist on the market, and you can use a trial and error method to see what suits your space.

Dry the Space

You might find that the odour is not as a result of toilet use, but rather, owing to a mildew build-up in the space. It is vital to keep the bathroom dry after using it as this eliminates the chances of mildew growth. But you cannot always have a dry space, and you will need some help in achieving a mildew-free space.

Using desiccants is a good idea as they will absorb the moisture in the room, leaving the air dry. If you would rather stay away from chemicals owing to the presence of children and pets, there is an alternative. Having plants in the bathroom has been proven to aid in drying as well as freshening up bathrooms.

Thorough Cleaning

Sometimes, the odour problem comes down to the effectiveness of the cleaning methods. As much as most people do not want to hear this, it could be that you are not cleaning the toilet as you should. Leaving microorganisms in the bathroom increases the chances of odours, and the smell rises with the build-up. Common culprits in bathroom smells are toilet tanks and drains, which are often not cleaned. Ensure that you do not neglect any spots during the cleaning for the process to be thorough.

Using natural ingredients such as baking soda and lemon juice has proven to be effective in fighting odours. You can add these ingredients to your usual cleaning routine to get more out of the process.

Adding essential oils to the cleaning products also helps in fighting microorganisms such as fungi and bacteria. Plus, they smell good.

Making Changes

Sometimes, your bathroom may emit odours owing to structural problems. A good example would be porous caulk, which takes in odours and emits them. Re-caulking your tiles would thus be an excellent way to beat smells.

Also, consider the ability of the bathroom surfaces to resist odour and moisture. Sometimes, the problem lies in the materials in place. As much as making such changes could dent your finances, you will have a clean space in the long run. And that makes it worth your time and money.

Conclusion

Freshening up bathrooms in log homes requires some changes in ventilation, humidity, the products used, cleaning processes, and structures in place. With these factors covered, your space should smell great. Best of luck!

5 Flowers For Your Garden That Will Boost Your Mood And Calm Your Mind

Gardening has always been a simple way to boost one’s spirits. There is something about being surrounded by thriving plants that calms nerves and rests troubled souls. It is not uncommon for people to take up gardening as a way to deal with stress. And with the availability of wooden summer houses, you can garden all year long, thanks to the controlled conditions they offer. The scent of flowers as they bloom, the beauty of thriving herbs, and the glory of canopies heal the soul. But some flowers stand out from the rest regarding their healing and spirit-lifting abilities. These species not only ease your tension, but they also help you get better sleep at night. Over time, you should notice that your mood is significantly better. What are these flowers? Well, here is a comprehensive list:

Yarrow

Are you anxious? Do you need to keep an eye on your blood pressure lest it gets too high? If any of these situations apply to you, this is a flower you should consider planting in your garden. Not only does it look great in the garden when planted, but it also comes in handy in flower arrangements. You can thus pluck a few of these flowers when entertaining guests to create lovely pieces around which conversations can take place. It is robust and features flat heads, which are uncommon in most flowers. This variation in its appearance gives it a rare beauty that is sure to enhance the look of any room. The yarrow does not have a given colour as it changes with time. As it ages, the edges turn pink, giving them another variation over other flowers.

Caring for these plants will give you the peace you deserve. You could also use the plants as a sedative to help you sleep better. And when you need to watch your blood pressure, this plant is sure to be of help.

When planting, yarrow selects a site with adequate access to light. This plant does best in full sunlight. Where this is not possible, you can choose a location with partial shade. Note that the lack of adequate sunlight will lead to floppy stems that need staking.

Chives

Have you heard of the hormones dopamine and serotonin? Well, these are the happy hormones that have you feeling giddy about life, and about everything. But there is a chemical that inhibits their production. And when this happens, you are likely to feel depressed about life and find little joy in most things. That is where these flowers come into the picture. They block that depressing chemical, and they help you get your happy back.

But that’s not all they do. When consumed, chives help you enjoy your sleep more as they will virtually knock you out. Also, if you have been having trouble remembering the small or big things, you should get some help from chives. They aid in memory retention.

They work great as garnishes. They not only look appetizing, but they also taste as good. People who have not eaten flowers before may have a hard time getting used to the idea of consuming them, but once you have a taste for these chives, you will be going back for more.

You can plant these around wooden summer houses. They have fluffy heads, which are ideal for use in arrangements. Note that chives grown from seeds can take up to a year to get to a large clump. But the results will be worth it.

Roses

The rose is a classic flower, which does not get old even as time passes. And they are on this list for plenty of reasons, but we will focus on the two main factors. For one, they are beautiful, and they have earned their place in several flower arrangements. Whether you are going for a single stem variety or planning to have a bush, these flowers will not disappoint. They have an abundance of hues, and you can create patterns with them with ease.

Secondly, they have an unforgettable scent. You can probably remember the first time you got a whiff of a rose’s scent. They smell as beautiful as they appear. And this scent has been proven to ease anxiety and alleviate depression.

When planting roses, be sure to account for spacing. Miniature varieties will be ok with ten inches between them, while hybrids will require two feet. If you opt to go for the large types, anything from three feet will be ideal.

Peony

The Chinese are known to have age-old traditions that have seen them through the centuries. One of these is the medicines that they craft from herbs and flowers. The white peony, when used as a medicine, has been shown to reduce anxiety and alleviate depression. Having it in your garden would thus be beneficial to you and the people who surround you.

Additionally, this flower has a beautiful appearance. Its blooms are a sight to behold, and there is no denying that it is unique. From healing the body to soothing the mind, you can expect tons of benefits from this plant.

These flowers have both male and reproductive structures. You can plant one where you want to save on space, as they are self-fertile. Where you plant a peony with others, cross-pollination will take place.

Chamomile

If you want a plant that heals you from the inside out, this is it. Chamomile continuously releases vapours that travel to your brain. They reduce your stress and alleviate any tension that you may be facing. For a long time, people have used this flower to fight depression and anxiety. It is also used as a mild sedative as it can calm your nerves on those bad days. Have you heard of chamomile tea? It stems from this beautiful plant and has worked many wonders over the years.

Planting chamomile requires that you exercise caution as it is quite delicate. This plant takes about sixty days to reach maturity. It should be ready for harvesting about two months from the sowing of seeds. You can choose to use the flowers as part of arrangements or as medicine. Either way, you will reap the benefits of this plant.

Conclusion

There you have it, an easy way to ease those tense and anxious moments. Have fun!

7 Steps to Making Your Garage More Livable

Homeowners want more space. Their needs have grown, yet the spaces they have seem to be getting smaller by the day. Studies show that at least 70 per cent of households in the United States have outdoor living space. Of this 70, a staggering 71 per cent would like to make changes to their outdoors. This includes adding seating space, enhancing the look of their curbs, and adding accessories. People with log houses are also getting in on this trend. You may wonder what the appeal of all these changes is. Well, it all boils down to the need for relaxation. Yes, people want more space in which they can unwind. They lead busy lives and ache for one place where they can put their worries to rest and just be.

The garage has been of particular interest in all these changes. Most people do not use their wooden garages to their full potential. Now and then they park their cars in these spaces, and they add more storage items to this room. But there is more than a garage can do, other than being a parking space. You could use it as a man cave, a fitness space, a playroom for the kids, a sunroom, or a bathroom. And these uses are but the tip of the iceberg. If you open your mind to it, there is little that you cannot do with this space.

Now that you see the potential of this space, what can you do to make it more livable?

Preliminaries

First off, you need to think of how you would go about the changes. What do you want to add? How much will it cost you? Where you plan on having an extensive renovation, you should engage professionals. Activities that would call for specialists include moving walls, electrical wiring, and plumbing fixtures. These would enable you to gauge how long the process is going to take and come up with a budget to match this.

Permission is also necessary to ensure that you do not get into trouble with the law. Whatever applies to the task you have in mind, make sure you get it before you start working on anything. And lastly, note that work on your garage could expose you to prying eyes. Thus, it is a good idea to have a security system in place.

You do not have to put in a lot of work to transform your garage. Here are some simple steps you could undertake to get more out of this space when working with a budget.

Zone Separation

You have likely been using your garage as a storage space. If this is the case, people often put everything in one place, and it can get very messy. Thus, the first step in this transformation is to separate the spaces. Where your car will still be in the space, designate an area for it. It is best to have this area close to the door. In this way, you can have more space for the other uses towards the inside. Then, if you are storing tools and other work items in the space, create a zone for them. It could be towards the front of the car. Thus, you would have an entire side to yourself, which you can use for the purpose in mind.

Smart storage is an easy way to go about this separation. It enables you to stay organized by keeping your items safe and in one place. Plus, it makes space feel less cluttered, and it looks clean.

Where you feel that the separation does not work, you can use partitions. In this way, it will be clear what goes where and there will be less room for confusion. Some people find that clearly outlining zones enables them to get the most out of these spaces.

Turn on the heat

You will spend a lot of time in this room, and it thus needs to be comfortable. The type of heating you use will depend on the size of the space. If it is small, you can make do with a space heater. Where the room is big, you should get something much bigger to ensure that you cover most of the room. Additionally, you should look into cooling systems. Garages can get pretty hot during the summer, and you may require an efficient air conditioner to regulate the temperatures.

Insulation

With log houses, you will find that you can skip this step and enjoy the space throughout the year, owing to the use of wood which is a natural insulator. However, for other structures, you cannot skip this stage. You need to insulate the room such that it remains cool in the summer and stays warm in winter. If you have exposed beams, cover them up. Make changes to the space such that it feels comfy. Plus, you will notice a reduction in utility bills as you will not rely on the heating and cooling system much.

Plumbing

You do not have to call in a specialist if the garage has a water line running through space. You can hone your DIY skills and get to work by slicing a line off the waterline and creating a sink. You can use the water for a lot of things, including making drinks. Or you could skip this step if you do not need running water for the purpose you have in mind.

Flooring

Most wooden garages have standard floors. If the floor is in good shape, you can paint it and move into space. Ensure that you wash it and clean the cracks before applying a coat of paint. Where it is in bad shape, you can use rubber floor tiles as they insulate sound and feel comfortable.

Other Considerations

Consider how you wish to use the space. Suppose you want to use it as a home office, you should make it feel like one. Simple things such as boosting the Wi-Fi and adding furniture will do. Where you want to have a relaxing space, add coffee tables, books, comfy couches, and a TV.

It all depends on what you want to get from the space. Keep this in mind, and everything should turn out as desired. All the best!

Blue Paint Colours You Literally Can’t Go Wrong With

Painting your walls blue is a great way to try out various themes in your house. Blue is a versatile color, and for this reason people love using it on the walls of their wooden houses. This color can be anything from moody to calming. And given that you can use it with other colors without clashing, it is a great choice.

There are many shades of blue on the market, and thus choosing one may be a hard task. However, you can narrow down your search to the best options at present as you will see below. Going blue is natural and with these light, medium, and dark hues, your house will transform into a haven. Have a look:

Light Shades

If you want to create a calming effect in your home, your best bet lies in using a light shade of blue. It is neutral and will work with other light shades. Additionally, it is bright and will liven up your space. Here are some ideal choices in this regard:

Smoke Ring Blue

This shade features a refreshing crisp look that will be a welcome aesthetic in your home. You can play with it by adding fabrics in this or other tones. From navy to slate, there is a lot that you can do to come up with a blended appearance. You can also choose to go the other way by using bright hues such as red. The lightness of this color allows you to take your theme in any direction you would like. Plus, it feels warm and is great for lounge rooms and other places where you go to relax.

Borrowed Light Blue

Some colors make rooms appear much more significant than they are, and this is one of those magical hues. It makes the ceiling feel taller, the walls far apart and the space larger. In this way, your space will no longer feel cramped, and you will enjoy your time in the room. If you have felt that your house is a little tighter than you would like, this shade of blue will work wonders for you.

Blue Veil

As the name suggests, this hue does not jump out at you. Instead, it is quite subtle, and it makes your home feel welcoming. Thus, it is ideal for use in bedrooms and lounging rooms. The positioning of the hue will determine the appearance of the room. If you go high, the room feels larger.

Gray Blue

This color works best for small rooms as it makes them appear large and free of clutter. It somewhat washes over a room and reminds you of being out in nature. It has a soothing effect, much like what you would get from the ocean or staring at the clouds.

Early Frost Blue

If you love the color of fog, then you will love this hue. Some people think of it as a light gray, but with its blue and purple elements, it is frosty. It works great for anyone looking to liven up your space, more so for wooden houses located near water features.

Medium Shades

Maybe you do not want something so soothing or something so vibrant, what would your ideal option be? Well, the medium shades will work best as they strike a balance between these two extremes. Here are some options:

Jet Stream Blue

This hue reflects that of the sky, and it feels calming, without being so subtle. It works to blur the edges on the walls, and you can experiment with other colors for the desired effect. Try having some shades of green in the mix and see how this works out.

Drenched Rain Blue

Picture reflections of the rain with some elements of gray in the mix, and there you have this soothing hue. It works excellent in relaxed spaces such as breakfast rooms where you want to dance around between the intense and subtle colors. You can pair it with bright colors to increase its intensity.

Antiguan Sky Blue

This calming color is excellent for use in relaxing rooms as it soothes the soul. You can use it with other blue shades, or you could go bright to add some playful elements to your space.

Turquoise Tint Blue

If you wish to be at one with nature, you can paint your walls with this appealing hue. It is much like what you would see on an island. It feels tropical and is the ideal balance between intense and subtle. Looking at it, one can picture tropical fish swimming in the islands. Plus, you can add as many bright colors to the room as you would wish.

Celestial Blue

Where you plan on having other colors in the room, this is a great choice. There is no denying that this is a blue owing to the clarity in place. As such, if you place something of another color against the wall, the variation will be evident. It lights up a room and thanks to its play on nature, it has a calming effect.

Major Blue

This color inspires happiness in anyone who walks into the space thanks to its vibrant and calming feel. Pairing it with greens will make it pop and will remind you of being on a tropical island.

Dark Blues

These colors are bold and the darker they are the stronger their might. Here are some examples:

Searching Blue

While light shades are often the standard calming hues, this color has proven to be quite soothing. And what’s more, it has an exciting side to it which makes it quite playful on the eyes. It is a mix of confidence, vibrancy, and calmness.

Pitch Blue

This blue is as the name suggests. It is dark, bold, and impossible to miss. With some crisp and timeless colors in play, your space will be breathtaking.

Caribbean Sea Blue

Yes, bring in a color that reminds you of being out at sea. Feel the wind blowing against you as you throw caution to the wind. Be free, live, and enjoy the moment. That is what this color brings to life. You could also try the Santa Monica Blue, which reminds one of the sea at low tide. Or the Polo Blue which takes you back to the frigid waters of the Atlantic.

Be bold, go blue, and witness the transformation of your home.

How Much Time Should You Spend In The Garden?

Most people feel busy, tied up by their schedules. If you were to survey how much free time people have, you would be surprised. There is always something that they need to go. Work, home, school, the list goes on and on. If you feel that you barely have time to garden, this will be quite an exciting read.

To start with, having many activities per day adds to the pressure in your life, plus you end up feeling like the hours are not adequate for everything and thus, you end up giving up some activities such as gardening. However, this should not be the case, allocating time for this activity is quite essential, and not only to complement the beauty of log houses but also for your mental well-being.

If you start working on your garden for a few minutes each day, you should see the results in no time. Whether you choose to have veggies or flowers, you will ultimately end up with healthy produce. Thus, you can eat healthier, or decorate better, or both as you can grow flowers and veggies together.

Also, engaging your kids in gardening will help them spend more time in the outdoors. It also cultivates patience in them and enables you to connect with them on a deeper level.

How Much Time Should You Spend In The Garden?

The answer to this question will depend on what you would like to achieve from your efforts. If you are going for a large-scale operation, you should be ready to invest your time. Also, your organization will affect the time spent. Thus, it helps to organize the garden and service it as needed before planting anything. With these previous steps, you will end up doing away with many processes that would have come about in the future.

A vegetable garden is one of the easiest ventures in this regard. You spend little time in growing it and the rewards are high. Planting seeds should take a matter of minutes and aftercare practices consume minimal time. You can pop by the garden a few times a week to water and weed the plants, and enjoy healthy crops.

Let us take a look at the average time you would spend in the garden per season:

Summer and Spring

During these seasons, you can spend a lot of time in the garden. Anything from ten to thirty minutes a day will help you start the seeds and harvest the produce. You can also opt to spend more hours on the weekend if you work a lot during the week. Investing a lot of time during these seasons will enable you to get enough harvest to last you through the cold months.

Winter and Autumn

Most of your efforts in these seasons will go into getting rid of the summer plants. You will also need to work on the soil to provide it with the nutrients for the plants you wish to sow next. You will find that you will spend less time in the garden during these seasons. For one, the rain will provide enough water for the remaining plants, and weeding will not be required much.

Routines

After gardening for a while, you will know when there is a need to care for the crops. You will know when amending the soil is necessary, when you need to water the plants and when to remove last season’s plants. Everything will fall into place, and you will thus work out the time you need to spend in the garden as per your plants’ needs.

However, before you get to this stage, it helps to work with some estimates. During summer, you will spend at least two hours a week tending to your crops. In autumn, you will need at least one week, which reduces to less than one in winter. For spring, your garden will be good with two hours of work each week.

Note though that the above averages are for medium gardens. For smaller or bigger gardens, you should be ready to make the required changes.

Why Should You Spend More Time In The Garden?

Other than enhancing the appearance of log houses, are there any other benefits to spending time in the garden? Why, yes! Here are some of the reasons why people cannot seem to get enough of their gardens:

Exercise

If you want to get an intense workout, gardening is one way to go. It engages several muscle groups from your arms to legs to shoulders. At the end of a session, you will feel like you have been to an aerobics class. And you know how good it feels after you have had a long workout.

Stress Relief

Are you undergoing lots of pressure? It could be at home, at work, or in school. Having these thoughts circulating in your mind all the time can be tasking. When you are out in the garden, you will find that you will concentrate on what you need to do. You thus end up paying little mind to your problems. At the end of the session, you will feel much better. Stay away from your phone when out in the garden, as it will serve as a distraction.

Confidence

It feels great to work on something and see the results sprouting, which is what happens during gardening. It could be your first harvest or the beauty of the lawn. Whatever it is, you are sure to get a boost in confidence from seeing the fruits of your labor. It should not be long before you are bragging about your skills to anyone within ear reach.

Bonding

You can use this time in the garden as a way to bond with your loved ones. The kids can work on small tasks such as planting the seeds while the adults take on the heavy-lifting. The grandparents can also be part of this exercise, directing and weeding. This time together will help you catch up on each other’s lives and get you more close-knit than you were before.

All the best in your gardening!

Types Of Roses Which Are Best For Growing In The Garden For A Beginner

People have cultivated roses for a very long time, and during that period there have been many discoveries which have eased the sowing and maintenance practices to a large extent. Thus, the flowers that were so hard to cultivate years ago now have varieties which are straightforward to grow. These plants can withstand pest and disease infestation, which makes them excellent options for beginners who are yet to understand the intricacies of gardening.

What’s more, they feature the aesthetic appeal of the traditional types, and you thus won’t lose out regarding beauty. They are so easy to maintain that you can plant them and go about your activities, to the point of almost forgetting about them, and they will remain healthy throughout the seasons. You can now say goodbye to endless pruning, dusting, spraying and other activities which were characteristic of the traditional varieties. With the following types of roses, which are best for growing in the garden for a beginner, all you will need is regular watering and fertilization, and your bushes will be healthy and fragrant. Here are some excellent options:

Shrub Roses

Shrub roses are great for people living in cold climates where the temperatures may get too low for some varieties to survive. How many rose types can survive in temperatures of below twenty? Not many can do so, and you’ll probably end up at ground zero even after heaping tons of mulch and cover on the plants. With this variety, you can watch the temperatures lower without the fear of losing your plants. What’s more, these plants are also able to resist the effects of high humidity and hot weather. Additionally, they resist the diseases that are common in warm climates, and you can thus grow them in places where the temperatures lean on being unbearable.

Ground Cover Roses

If you have trouble dealing with pest infestations, this is a great variety to grow as it has a high resistance to infestations. It does not require much maintenance and this makes it ideal for beginners who are yet to find their way around varying conditions to ensure that plants thrive. Furthermore, you can use the plant in various places, including indoor decoration, borders, hanging baskets, and low hedges, amongst other options.

They have beautiful blooms that are sure to enhance the appearance of your outdoor space and have deep roots that can reach the water far below, thus doing away with the need for regular watering. Moreover, they do not get very bushy and will not go higher than two feet in most cases, which makes them excellent as ground cover options.

Pruning is not a regular practice with this variety, and you can do so once a year without running the risk of unhealthy blooms. The best time to prune the plants is towards the end of winter or the start of spring, and you can accomplish the task with the use of shears.

When pruning, aim at cutting the bushes by a third of their size and you will be ready for the coming year. With these few practices, these flowers will keep producing healthy blooms year after year.

Climbing Roses

This variety features many options, and you can thus make a selection based on the number of blooms that you want as well as their positioning. For some, the flowers start from the ground and travel to the tip. The varieties are not very tall which allows you to have an easy time during pruning and watering as well as checking for diseases. The plant’s short height enables you to reach down and smell the flowers as you enjoy their fragrance and gaze down on their raw beauty.

Once you choose what variety works for your space, you need to select the mode of cultivation, between bare root and container propagation.

Bare Root

The bare root varieties are not in the soil and therefore undergo packing to prevent the drying out of the roots. These plants have deep roots as they do not experience strain as is the case with varieties in containers. Once you get these plants, you should put them in the ground as soon as you can as the extra time reduces their viability. However, you may find that the ground conditions are not suitable for their growth and in this case you can unpack them and place them in a container. You can then move them to the ground as soon as the conditions become favorable.

These plants should go into the ground towards the end of autumn or early spring before growth resumes. Roses do best in warm soil and you should therefore avoid planting them during winter when the ground conditions are unsuitable.

If the conditions are as per the requirements, you should prepare the plants by soaking them in warm water overnight. You can then make a hole that is eighteen inches deep and wide before adding compost to loosen the soil and improve drainage capabilities. From here, you can make a twelve-inch cone and spread the plant’s roots over the cone. Proceed to hold the plant as you fill the void with soil which you will then compact a little before watering the ground.

Container Roses

These varieties have been in containers for at least one growing season, and you can find them at any time of the year, at a cost that is higher than that of the bare varieties. You can put them in the ground at any time as long as the soil is not too dry or frozen. Planting these varieties is similar to growing the bare varieties as you will need an eighteen-inch deep and wide hole. Take the plant from the pit and loosen the soil around the roots before placing it in the void and filling it with soil. Finish up with watering the ground and compacting the soil before adding some fertilizer to the top to encourage the plants to thrive.

Tips

If you want the bushes to grow at fast rates, an easy way to ensure this is by spreading used coffee grounds or tea leaves around the plants as this will increase the acidity of the soil, which is something that the plants enjoy.

When planting these types of roses, which are best for growing in the garden for a beginner, what matters is knowing what will work for your space and abiding by the given requirements. The best of luck!

Log Cabin Building Process From The Beginning To The End

Do you plan on living in a log cabin? The good news is that you can undertake the process by yourself, as long as you are open to new approaches and DIY tactics, and be successful at it. Do away with the thoughts that you need lots of experience and instead embrace hard work, planning, natural resources, and excellent tools. Here are the steps you need to follow:

Log Cabin Building

Planning

Skipping this step is paramount to watching your whole project fall apart so be sure not to take any short cuts in this process. The truth is that the most critical work revolves around planning your cabin as the design and tactics you have in mind will lay the foundation for your construction, and we all know how important it is to have a strong base underneath us.

Typically, construction of a log cabin will take up to 280 days, which translates to roughly nine to ten months of hard work. Without a solid plan, you could as well spend two years on such a project. The thing with planning is that it does not only refer to sketches but goes further into creating a schedule as to when everything will take place, including your expected time of completion. It helps you get back on track when you fall behind.

The plan should consider the building period you have in mind, your needs in the house, what other people have to say about building log cabins, the land in question, the amount of money you are willing to spend, the labor you wish to employ and the floor plan and designs. At the end of all these considerations, you should have what people refer to as the finalized costs. On speaking to log cabin builders, you will realize that more often than not, you end up spending a certain percentage less or more what you have stated and it thus helps to have backup finances just in case.

Planning log cabin

Coming up with the design can be hard at first, but once you let your creativity rule the process, you should enjoy the phase. However, where you face problems in creation, you can always consult an architect who can work with your ideas to bring your dream to life. You can also work with pre-existing plans if you wish to have a simple design.

Once the plans are as per your liking, you should visit your local planning department to know whether your design is in line with the current building codes. As you do this, you should have a registered inspector come in to look at the structural properties of your intended cabin as this will affect the approval or lack thereof of occupancy upon completion. It is essential that you understand the zoning laws in your region and where you are unsure of what applies to you, it helps to engage an expert in law.

The site you choose to locate the cabin should be in line with current and future zoning laws, have access to utilities and services and have adequate natural shelter. Additionally, you should analyze the ground conditions to see if they are a fit for your intended construction. A tip that comes in handy is to select a site with trees as you can use them to source for logs, thus incurring fewer costs in the process.

Most of the costs you incur will revolve around site preparation, foundations, utilities, services, lumber, insulation, roofing, fixings, and the tools in use. Using your natural materials and undertaking the construction by hand is an easy way to reduce the expenses. A square foot should set you back at least twenty-five dollars, devoid of the cost of land and interior finishing. Note though that this will also depend on the price of labor and materials in use. You can also save money by choosing a simple design.

At this point, you should know how much it will cost you, who will undertake the construction, where you will locate the cabin, the regulations in place and the expected outcome from the design. If you are unsure of any of the above scenarios, you should do more research before moving on to the next stage.

Preparation of Logs (Foraging)

This process involves finding desirable logs, felling and hauling them before debarking and drying them. The better the quality of the logs chosen, the less maintenance you have to undertake in the future, the longer your cabin will last, and the better the insulation properties your home will have. The lumber that’s best for your cabin should be at least thirty feet long, ten inches wide and limited warping such that you work with a maximum ratio of four inches of tapering per every thirty feet.

You also need to know how much timber you need. It helps to perform all the processes in a day as it prevents the loss of moisture and saves you a lot of effort regarding cracking and checking that occurs after a while of waiting.

Laying the Foundation

The foundation must be such that it can hold the weight of the cabin. It should prevent subsidence, transmit the cabin load and prevent the structure from sinking into the ground. The choice of the foundation will depend on the soil type, the size of the cabin, the land contours and the local resources available. It is advisable to use a pad foundation as this will reduce the work spent in preventing splash offs common in the rainy seasons.

Placing the Logs

This process is quite easy once you decide on a notching system that works for your structure and your level of expertise. The choices are butt and pass, traditional, corner post and half-dovetail. Once you lay the first course, have someone from the planning office inspect the construction before moving forward. Lack of approval at this stage could have you dismantling the structure upon completion. Floors are easy to assemble, thanks to the use of suspended lumber floors and from here, you can move on to the making of the walls, ensuring that you rotate the direction of the logs per layer. Doors and windows should follow, and you should ensure that you use lintel logs above the openings to maintain structural integrity. Finish up with any of these wall options: thatch, shingles, felt or metal sheeting.

Completion

You should now weatherproof your cabin in readiness for the coming seasons. Start by cleaning your logs before staining them and chinking your cabin.

That’s the entire log cabin building process from the beginning to the end. Good luck!

The Benefits Of Rosemary And How To Grow It

Are you interested in knowing about the benefits of rosemary and how to grow it? Get all the information you need from the health benefits to cultivation and aftercare practices.

Rosemary is an evergreen herb that is native to the Mediterranean. People recognize it for its fragrant smell that is quite distinctive. You can use it in drinks, such as teas, where you can reap its many health benefits, or you can use it to enjoy its scent in body products. Let’s take a look at the benefits of rosemary and how to grow it in a few simple steps:

What is Rosemary?

This herb belongs to the mint family and like many in this category, such as the oregano and lavender varieties, it boasts of a strong aroma. This feature makes it ideal for use in dishes such as chicken and lamb. It is also rich in iron, Vitamin B6 and calcium which makes it an excellent addition to one’s diet. If you get it from the store, you will find it in dried form as a whole or as a powder. If you plan on using it in teas or other liquid products, it is best when fresh or dried, but whole.

People love using this herb for its medicinal properties. In the past, people relied on it to boost hair growth, deal with muscle pain, curb memory loss, as well as boost the immune system. These benefits have continued to exhibit themselves over the years, and for this reason, people widely plant this herb. You will find it in many homes, either in the indoors or the outdoors. The great thing about it is that it is quite sturdy and where you offer it the protection it requires, it can thrive in any climate. This factor works for you where you have a wooden shed as you can adjust the conditions to suit the herb.

This perennial plant has a lifespan of over two years and can help you with improved concentration, slowing down brain aging and aiding digestion. Be careful when ingesting this herb as high doses can lead to vomiting, pulmonary edema, comas, and other severe conditions. As is the case with everything, the key to enjoying rosemary lies in moderation.

Cultivation

When it comes to planting rosemary, you have many options as to where you can start and grow it. It does not take up much space and will grow even in the indoors, such as your wooden shed. Once its roots establish, it is quite hardy and will survive for many years. Here’s how to do this:

Starting the herb

With many plants, you find that the options are often seeds or cuttings. In this case, the best way forward is the use of cuttings. Seeds take a long time to sprout, and in most cases, only a few of them survive. Cuttings are hardy, as long as you get them from established plants, and they often mature with ease. You can get a cutting from a friend, or you can get one from the local nursery. The ideal size of the cuttings should be four inches. It is important to note that the cuttings will result in qualities similar to those of the original bush. For this reason, be sure to choose clippings from a bush whose features you want.

You might find that you are unable to get the variety you want from a friend or the local nursery. In this case, you can look up the options available online and can get cuttings from another nursery. These herbs have many varieties. Some tend to be bushy and they grow quite large, which may not appeal to someone who wants to plant them indoors. Others tend to trail. Some have white flowers, others have blue, while others have purple. Go through the options and see what works for you.

Also, where you wish to start with something other than cuttings, you have the option of small plants or seedlings which you can get from the local nursery. Buying these will take away the waiting period and will allow you to enjoy the herb sooner than you would with a clipping.

Get your cuttings towards the end of spring as this is the ideal time to plant the herb. However, where you live in a warm region, you can schedule the planting towards the start of autumn. Where you plan on growing the rosemary indoors, any time will do as you can always alter the conditions to meet the requirements.

Take the cuttings and get rid of the leaves towards the bottom of the stem. An inch of space will suffice before inserting the leafless part into the soil. The importance of removing the leaves is that they can lead to rotting once they are in the soil.

Propagation

Each cutting will require a small container which you should fill with 2/3 coarse sand at the bottom followed by 1/3 peat moss. Place the clipping in the pot ensuring it is in a location with access to the sun. Note that the sun should not be direct as this can affect the growth of the herb. Ensure that the cuttings get water regularly as you wait for the roots to form. This process should take about three weeks.

You can speed up the process by placing the pot in a plastic bag with some holes at the top for air circulation. This will increase the temperature and ensure that the clipping is moist and warm. You can also dip the tips of the cuttings in rooting powder before planting them, as this will stimulate their growth.

Once the roots form, you can transfer the plants to the outdoors or larger pots in the wooden shed. At this point, they can put up with snow, high temperatures, and other harsh conditions. However, it is essential for the soil to be well-draining, otherwise, the roots can rot. You should also balance the acidity of the soil by adding some lime in cases where the conditions are too acidic.

Aftercare

Rosemary does best in moderately dry soils, and as such, frequent watering is not necessary. If it is in the outdoors, it can survive on rainfall. Fertilization is not required but some lime addition will help. If your winter temperatures tend to be below zero degrees Fahrenheit, consider placing the pots in the wooden shed in the cold months to protect the plants from damage. Pruning may be necessary where the bush becomes bigger than is necessary.

Given its evergreen nature, you can enjoy its leaves all year round. Enjoy!

Wooden garage flooring you can choose

There are tons of garage flooring on the market, and this works in your favor as you are free to choose the option that fits into your budget and meets your needs. Here are the main wooden garage (more information here) flooring that you can choose and what they can do for your finish:

wooden garage flooring

A garage floor does more than provide a foundation on which you can park your car and store household items which are no longer in use. It is also the surface that suffers damage from oil drips, chemical spills, moisture, and road salt as time goes by. Suitable flooring not only helps your floor appear aesthetically pleasing, but it also acts as a deterrent against damage from substances, thus giving it a longer lease of life. It also translates to fewer maintenance practices and ease of cleaning as well as dealing with cracks.

There are many options out there, and you may feel tempted to get any one of them and start working on your floor. However, not all of them will work for the purpose you have in mind, and some of them may not work with your current look. It thus helps to know what you can use, and whether you are okay with its upsides and downsides, in determining whether the option is feasible in your case.

The major types of flooring fall into two categories: coverings and coatings. Where your garage floor is relatively new and is thus in good condition, you are free to choose either of the two. In a case where the floor has been in use for a long time and has thus developed cracks that undermine its looks or other problems such as pockmarks, your best bet lies in the use of a covering. It will not only hide the blemishes but will also work to protect the floor from further damage. Coatings, though quite lovely, come with the downside of highlighting flaws and thus making them pop out more, thus undermining your aesthetics. Where you often face moisture problems, your ideal option would be coverings as they tend to be immune to such issues, unlike coatings which can peel after prolonged exposure. These are the first things you need to consider when making your decision. Now, let’s delve deeper into the flooring options:

Coatings

In this category, there are stains, sealers, floor paints, and epoxy paints. The good thing about using coatings is that you can save a lot of money if you do the application yourself. And the good thing about it is that it is not difficult once you understand the basics. These flooring work to protect the floor from stains, moisture penetration, and chemicals where the floor is in good shape. However, where you have a problem with damp concrete or the floor prep is incomplete, they can fail so be sure to keep this in mind as you select this option.

These options are not useful in situations where ground moisture can make its way through the concrete, thus creating a consistently damp environment. Where this is the case, the water prevents the coating from adhering to the concrete, and after a while, you will notice that the flooring starts coming apart in the form of flakes and chips and you thus have to invest more money in flooring. An excellent way to avoid a situation where your money goes to waste is to test your concrete slab’s moisture content. Where it is too high for the application of coatings to take place, it is best to go with a covering.

Where the above situation does not apply to you, using a coating is a good idea. Before you do so, you should note that coatings come with one major downside.  You require investing a lot of time in prepping the floor before application, and this can translate to many hours, depending on how much work is at hand. In some cases, you may find that the floor is very greasy or dirty and you thus have to bring in pressure washers into the picture to get it right. Also, where there are any holes or cracks on the surface, you need to work on them as part of the prep. Additionally, you will etch the concrete with muriatic acid to make the surface porous before using the coating.

Coverings

Here, you have two options: roll out mats or interlocking tiles. The good thing about using coverings is that there is not much work cut out for you as they are easy and fast to use. You can get the job done in one morning as the only prepping you need to do is to sweep the area thoroughly. You don’t have to work on any blemishes on the surface as the coverings will hide anything unsightly and you need not to worry about any damp concrete problems as this will not affect their effectiveness.

You can get the job done in one morning as the only prepping you need to do is to sweep the area thoroughly. You don’t have to work on any blemishes on the surface as the coverings will hide anything unsightly and you need not to worry about any damp concrete problems as this will not affect their effectiveness.

The downside to using coverings is that you can spend as much as four times what you would use on coatings. However, you have to admit that the time spent on installing and maintaining them is pretty minimal.

Here is something that you can consider if you wish to use a covering and haven’t got the cash to back up the undertaking: ordinary vinyl tiles. You will often find this material in kitchens and stores. The manufacturer does not expressly state that you can use this in your garage, but many people have done so and registered great outcomes. They come in many colors, allowing you to choose what works best with the look you have in mind. It is also a cheap alternative when compared to most coverings. However, the prep work is quite demanding, and you will need to clean and degrease the surface before placing them. You also need to note that it works best in temperate climates or heated garages as they are prone to damage from dampness. They also get ruined when they come into contact with stains and chemicals, but the good thing is that they are cheap and replacing them should be a breeze.

Now that you know the requirements for the various flooring options, it should be easy to choose what works best for your surface and with your budget. Good luck!