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Garden – the 5 benefits of growing your own food

Having a home garden comes with a number of benefits besides just giving your home a greater curb appeal. One of the additional benefits includes having the option of growing your own food which can include fresh vegetable, spices and herbs.

We are going to look at the 5 benefits of growing your own food.

You will save on your grocery budget

The main benefit of having your own vegetable garden on your backyard is that it will greatly save on your grocery budget. Because groceries are things you need on an almost daily basis especially if you prefer cooking as opposed to ordering out, you will realize that you save so much money when you grow them on your own as opposed to buying them from a grocery.

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You are guaranteed of fresh vegetables

In as much as groceries being sold at the grocer shop or farmers market may be referred to as fresh, you may not be able to verify this because you can’t tell how long ago they were harvested and kept ‘fresh’ using a preservative. When you are growing them for yourself, freshness is never in doubt because from your garden they head straight into your kitchen.

You get to control what you eat

One of the dangers that come with purchasing groceries is that you don’t know the kind of conditions they were cultivated under. Some farmers may use fertilizers and pesticides as well as preservatives that may end up being harmful to you. Growing your own food becomes advantageous because you have greater control over what you eat including the fertilizer and pesticides that you use on your garden

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Gardening in itself is a healthy activity

The time you take to tend to your garden has been proven to have really good health benefits such as exposing yourself to sufficient vitamin D from the sun’s rays. Additionally, it has been suggested that gardening is very relaxing and therefore just doing it for a couple of minutes every day will promote positive energy and also better sleep.

It will make your yard appealing

Fruits and vegetables are always very colorful therefore they will add some vibrancy and beauty to your yard therefore making it appear more appealing. In addition, the sweet scent of ripening fruits as well as flowers will attract birds and other flying insects that promote pollination and this will enhance the speed at which the plants in your garden grow as well as promote good health of the plants.

Taking all these points into consideration, I bet you have realized how much you are missing out by not growing your own food on your garden.

We trust that this article has just been the motivation you were waiting for.

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4 main reasons you should hire a gardener

Maintaining a beautiful garden is not an easy undertaking especially keeping in mind our busy day to day schedules. This is why sometimes making the decision to hire a gardener may be the best choice to enable our gardens to thrive.

Here are 4 main reasons you should hire a gardener.

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They are more experienced in the job

A professional gardener has been doing the job longer than you have therefore you can be guaranteed that they are more experienced in the job. Because of this experience, they will be able to accomplish things in a much shorter time because they already have the requisite knowledge such as knowledge of the soils, plants that will thrive in those soils and how to take care of these plants among many other insights.

They will ultimately save you money

Professional gardeners will rarely make money-costing errors in the course of doing their job because they are experts in that field therefore they are knowledgeable about basic things. This means that they will ultimately save you the money you would have spent doing trial and error, and making money-costing mistakes such as buying the wrong kind of plants for your soil, purchasing poor quality gardening material and so on if you were to do the gardening on your own.

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They have a more artistic perspective

Good professional gardeners can picture how they want the garden to look like by the time they are done with it and they will know exactly what to do and how to do it to achieve the look they are looking for. This is mainly aided by the fact that they have a more artistic perspective. This is why most of the work done by a professional gardener will be aesthetically appealing. The reality is that you can’t achieve the same results a professional gardener would have achieved on your garden.

They can help increase the value of your home

Curb appeal is one of the main factors that helps increase the value of a home because if it looks appealing on the outside, it means it has been well maintained even on the inside. A well-manicured lawn and beautiful garden are some of the things that enhance curb appeal and this can be achieved to near perfection by a good professional gardener.

If you are trying to weigh whether to hire a professional gardener to work on your garden or whether to do it for yourself, you better critically think about the above points. If you do decide to hire a gardener ensure that you do your due diligence and hire a gardener who is reputable.

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Here are 4 common mistakes to avoid when setting up your balcony garden

When setting up a balcony garden there are common mistakes that people will always tend to make and it’s these mistakes that will often result in their balcony gardens appearing crowded and unappealing. It’s therefore important for you to have a plan in place as you are setting up your garden so that you have an idea of how it will look even before you put your first plant.

Let’s look at the 4 common mistakes to avoid when setting up your balcony garden.

Congesting your garden

There is a common tendency by home owners to congest their balcony gardens with small flower pots as they assume that this is the best use of space. This is however a wrong approach. Regardless of how small you may think your balcony garden is, it may actually be better to have a few large flower pots as this will look less crowded therefore making your balcony more beautiful.

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Random planting

Randomly filling your balcony garden with plants that you like will not make it look appealing. In most case it will look scattered and disorganized therefore not pleasant to the eye. It’s actually advisable for you to select just a small number of plants and factor in contrast such as plants of different heights and different sizes well-arranged in the garden in a way that they complement each other. This will help ensure symmetry and make your garden appealing.

Failure to add some shade

This is especially important if your balcony garden is exposed to too much sun. You can’t assume that since you are on the sunny side you can’t find innovative ways to bring in some shade. It’s important for you to figure out natural ways of adding some shade to your balcony for instance through planting climbing plants which will help block off some of the sun.

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Lack of creative use of space

Some people have the problem of attempting to fit too much stuff onto a small balcony and this ends up making the balcony feel too tight. If this is you, you better learn to apply creative use of space. If you have a small balcony and you need to place a table alongside your flowers, take time and do some research on innovative furniture you can install such as foldout tables and desks. Such innovative furniture will enable you maximize on small and tight spaces thereby making your balcony appear less congested.

If you have struggled with the above mistakes, we trust that after reading this insightful article you now have solutions to your problems.We trust that overcrowded balcony gardens will now be a thing of the past.

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These are the 5 best plants for your balcony garden

If you are planning to set up a balcony garden it’s a good idea for you to do some research on the type of plants that will best suite your garden. This will mostly be influenced by the amount of sun or shade that your balcony is regularly exposed to.

If your balcony is exposed to too much shade then you will need plants that can cope without light and if it’s exposed to too much sun then you will need plants that have better coping mechanisms for dry climates.

These are the 5 best plants for your balcony garden depending on how much sun or shade it’s exposed to.

Geraniums - These are the 5 best plants for your balcony garden

#1 Geraniums

Geraniums are some of the best plants for your balcony garden if it’s exposed to plenty of sun because in addition to it being able to cope with little or no water for a couple of hours or even days, it’s a very colorful plant that will bring some brightness and vibrancy to your balcony.

#2 Grasses

Various species of grasses will also do well in your balcony garden if it’s exposed to too much sun because grasses are adapted to thriving even in dry and sunny environments. As long as they get water two or three times a week they will be good. Because grasses usually have a nice shade of green, they will add some natural vibrancy to your balcony garden.

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#3 Herbs such as lavender, basil, rosemary and sage

Herbs such as lavender, basil, rosemary and sage among others have been known to thrive even in sunny environments therefore they are very likely to do well in your balcony garden if it’s exposed to too much sun. Not only are these plants colorful and beautiful, they also produce very good fragrance that will leave your home with a very awesome scent.

#4 Jungle plants like bamboo, fatsia and hostas

If your balcony garden is exposed to too much shade then you will need jungle plants that are large leaved such as bamboo, fatsia and hostas. The benefit of such plants is that they are mostly evergreen throughout the year therefore they will help create a really good atmosphere in your garden.

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#5 Christmas box

Christmas box is a very sweet scented plant that will thrive in a balcony garden that is exposed to too much shade. This gives your garden the benefit of a vibrant colored plant as well as a sweet fragrance for your home.

If you are yet to try out any of these plants in your balcony garden then you are truly missing out. Make it a point to visit your nearest flower shop and check them out.

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The 5 golden rules for a beautiful balcony garden

There are many economic and personal reasons why people choose to relocate from suburbs to big cities. What’s notable however is that they have a hard time letting go of suburban niceties such as home gardens. This is the reason why you are likely to find so many balcony gardens in high rise complexes in big cities.

It’s however noteworthy that maintaining a balcony garden is not an easy undertaking and that is why we have chosen to share with you the 5 golden rules for a beautiful balcony garden.

#1 You need to figure out how it will get watered

One of the things you must have a plan for before you set up your balcony garden is how it will get watered and where the water will go afterwards. As long as you don’t mind making trips from your closest source of water to your balcony and you have a plan for draining the excess water then you are good to go.

#2 Consider safety precautions

Before setting up your balcony garden which in essence will be extra weight added to your balcony, you will need to consult a professional who can advise you on how much weight your balcony can hold so that you have an idea of how big your garden can get. You don’t want to compromise the structural integrity of your balcony in your quest to have a garden.

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#3 Your balcony is a space like any other

You must remember that your balcony is a space like any other therefore the consideration you would take when setting up your outside garden are the same consideration you should take when setting up your balcony garden. This therefore means that you should factor in the use of space, lights, and accessories, and so on as you set up your garden.

#4 Your plants should complement your home

The main reason you are having a balcony garden is so that you can get to bring nature closer to you. This therefore means that your choice of plants needs to complement your home for instance ensuring that you plant scented plants so that they can bring a good natural fragrance to your house.

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#5 Practice creative use of space

Keep in mind that you can’t afford to have an overcrowded balcony garden because it won’t look good. In addition, you should not put plants at the expense of your relaxations space. You will therefore need to apply creative use of space for instance going for a vertical garden as opposed to crowding up your floor.

When you make a decision to start a balcony garden you must bear in mind that you will not have room to slacken off. You must commit to take good care of your garden at all times because failure to do so will result in a very displeasing balcony. You don’t want such a sight for your home.

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3 important considerations to make when re-designing your garden

When you are considering redesigning you garden, this must be a very well thought out and planned process so that at the end of your project you can get to achieve your intended result. This is mainly because redesigning you garden will definitely entail not just your garden but the area around your garden therefore this can be a very costly affair if it does not involve proper planning.

We take a look at 3 important considerations you will have to make when re-designing your garden.

Whether or not to reduce your lawn size

Part of redesigning your garden will be deciding whether you want less lawn and more plants and structures or fewer plants and structures and more lawn. In many cases the former will be most preferred especially for a home owner who is familiar with how tasking maintaining a perfectly trimmed lawn can be. Reducing your lawn will have the benefits of giving you more space to plant as well as add structures which will enhance the visual appeal of your garden at the same time reducing the maintenance requirements.

Structures to fill up the space with

As you are thinking about redesigning your garden you need to take into consideration structures that you might want to add to the garden for either their utility value or aesthetic appeal. The idea is to be able to maximize on your garden space. Being around nature tends to have an element of peace and tranquility therefore you may want to take advantage of this and construct a good all weather structure that will have both aesthetic appeal and utility value as it becomes your own sanctuary where you get to commune with nature.

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Consider the natural habitat

Unless you are planning to create an artificial garden, the area where your garden exists must be home to some natural plant and animal life therefore you should consider not altering it too much. You could have plants that are natural to the area and this will ensure that you don’t disrupt the natural habitat therefore encouraging the wildlife to thrive. There is usually no greater feeling than the sound of birds singing in the morning.

The work of redesigning your garden is not a task that you have to struggle with on your own you can consider bringing in outside help such as working with a landscaper to help you actualize your idea. There are many ideas you can incorporate to make your garden and the entire outdoor area of your home appear amazing. All it requires is a proper plan, patience and working with the right landscaping team.

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5 mistakes you must avoid when planting a narrow garden

Narrow gardens are very common in many homes because they will always be formed as a result of lack of sufficient space to set up a large garden. They have been known to pose many challenges to their owners because they are not the easiest to structure and maintain.

This article seeks to look at the 5 major mistakes many owners of narrow gardens will make and offer some advice on how to avoid making such mistakes.

#1 Avoid putting a single path into the garden

You will naturally find yourself having a single path leading to your garden because it seems as though that is the natural thing to do since your garden is already long and narrow. However, this is a mistake because all it does is create emphasis on the narrowness of your garden. You therefore need to work on creating two or three different paths into the garden as this will help lessen the narrow look.

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#2 Avoid putting seats on the sides of the garden

When you arrange seats on the sides of your garden it will make the garden appear more like a long corridor and this takes away the beauty of the garden. It’s therefore more advisable to select specific spots within the garden to set up seating areas as this helps break the feeling of the long and narrow garden looking like a corridor.

#3 Avoid having a lawn stretching through the length of the garden

Setting up a lawn that stretches through the length of the garden will not look good as it just creates more emphasis on the long and narrow length of your garden. In addition, the lawn itself will eat into the garden space through reducing its width. The idea is to divide up your garden and have your lawn creatively laid to emphasize these divisions so that the long and narrow look is removed.

#4 Avoid using dark colors for your fences

One of the many disadvantages with long and narrow gardens is too much shade which makes the garden appear dark. This therefore means that if you use dark colors to paint your fence, you will suck up the little light getting into your garden therefore making it appear darker. It’s therefore advisable to use brighter colors on your fence.

#5 Avoid spiky plants

Because your garden is narrow, you are likely to have minimal space to maneuver as you tend to your garden or even just walk through your garden. Using spiky plants is therefore not a good idea because they will just end up pricking you every now and then. Be sure to go for plants that have smoother stems and branches.

Paying attention to these simple things to avoid has the benefit of tremendously improving the look of your long and narrow garden and will have the benefit of making it appear less so therefore enhancing its beauty.

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How to make your long and narrow garden to stand out

One of the most common challenges home owners face when they are trying to set up a home garden is lack of sufficient space and this results in the garden appearing long and narrow. Such types of gardens have ended up being very tricky to design in a way that makes it stand out. Well, if this was a problem you were facing then you don’t have to worry any more as we have a solution for you.

We are going to look at 4 ways on how you can make our long and narrow garden to stand out.

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#1 Add some shapes to the space

One of the first things you should do if you are trying to make a long and narrow garden stand out is removing the corridor effect. The idea is to divide up the space by adding some shapes in between so that the eyes don’t get to see the garden from end to end. You can redesign your paving or lawn by incorporating shapes like circles, rectangles or squares as long as it breaks the long and narrow feel.

#2 Make the spaces you have created more defined

Once you have decided which shapes to go with, you have essentially created mini barrier-less spaces in your garden which need to be filled up in a creative way without eating into the space on your garden. You can subtly demarcate these spaces by putting up a small paving or small lawns so that the space appears more defined. You can even find uses for the spaces you have created such as placing a chair, a coffee table and so on. This should mainly be placed on the part of the garden you are sure will not be used daily.

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#3 Create multiple paths to the garden

Having a single path that heads to the garden focuses too much attention on the path itself and this takes away attention from the rest of the garden including the lawn as well as your home. It’s therefore a good idea to create two or three interconnected paths that will lead to the garden. This will help make the space appear livelier and ensure the beauty in every part of the garden gets to be appreciated.

#4 Maximize on the spaces you create

As we have mentioned above, there are some spaces in your garden which will not be for daily use, especially those at the end corner of the garden. Such hidden spaces should not go to waste as you can maximize on them by creating things like secret areas where you can enjoy some privacy as you enjoy the tranquility of your garden or even set up a hammock for your afternoon power naps.

We trust that you now have an idea of creative things you can do to your long and narrow garden to make it stand out.

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How to make your small garden to stand out

Many people who would like to have a home garden will prefer having a big garden that stands out. However, this is not a luxury many get to enjoy because there is seldom enough space to set it up. People will often find themselves with just enough space to set up a small home garden. Well, we have some good news for you. Even with your small garden, you can still be able to make it stand out.

Here are 4 tips on how to make your small garden to stand out.

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#1 Consider the perspective you are working on it from

First and foremost, your garden is meant to be for your own personal enjoyment therefore you need to figure out where you will mostly be looking at your garden from, and that becomes the perspective you should work on it from. For instance, if you will want to enjoy the view of your garden from the patio, that should be your starting point in deciding on the layout of your garden so that it stands out from that point of view.

#2 Be bold with what you accessorize your garden with

You must always remember that the lawn and patio are part of your garden therefore the accessories you put here as well as the layout you chose for them must be bold so that they can stand out. You could consider geometric shapes and straight lines as the simplicity of this will make the garden stand out more.

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#3 Don’t overdo things

Maintaining the practice of simplicity, don’t use more than three different elements when decorating your garden because it will appear too busy and this is not a good thing. For instance, use only three different varieties of flowers, three different flooring materials, and so on as this will ensure your garden has consistency and symmetry therefore making it pop out more.

#4 Don’t forget about the lighting

You have to remember that for your garden to stand out, it must look as beautiful at night as it does during the day therefore you need to install good lighting that complements your layout as well as colors. Layer your lighting and ensure it complements the areas you want to stand out such as paths, steps, sitting area, small trees and interesting wall surfaces, among others. All you need to ensure is that your entire garden glows in the night.

These are very simple ideas to implement in your small garden yet very rewarding. Be sure to give them a try and you will be amazed as to how much transformation your garden will undergo and make it the envy of your neighbors.

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4 easy ways to keep your garden costs down

Maintaining a home garden is a rewarding experience though it can get a bit costly if you fail to follow certain basic cost cuttingpractices. This article seeks to look at 4 easy ways to keep your garden costs down.

Here we go!

1 Have a simple layout

It’s much easier and cheaper to maintain your garden if it has a simple layout. Provided you can easily access all the edges, then taking care of the garden should not be a challenge.

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2 Limit the variety of plants

The more the variety of plants on your garden, the higher the cost of taking care of them will be. It’s therefore advisable to limit the variety of plants on the garden to about 3 or 4 so that the work of taking care of them becomes easier and cheaper.

3 Reduce the size of your lawn

Your lawn will always take up your time and money as the grass will always require cutting and watering on a regular basis. You can cut down these costs by either replacing the real grass with artificial grass, or removing the grass and putting up something in its place such as a courtyard.

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4 Create a space for storage

When setting up home gardens, many people will forget about creating space for storage and this at times ends up becoming costly because as you tidy up, you don’t have a place to store things, as well as a space to put pruned off plants and other weeds or dead flowers. Have a space for this in your garden will save you so much hustle.

You realize that these cost cutting measures are simple practices that are easy to implement in your garden as they don’t require much effort just an alteration in the way you do things.

We trust that this has been a helpful piece of gardening insight.

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