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General Article

Three Tips to Use That Extra Space in Your Home Vegetable Garden

Three Tips to Use That Extra Space in Your Home Vegetable Garden

I am a very routine type of person. I try to wake up every morning at the same, albeit via the very annoying sound of the alarm clock my mother in law gave me as a Christmas gift. Maybe she is trying to tell me something, who knows. I am, however very routine. I like to do things a certain way, have my “stuff” in a certain location and so on.

The other morning as I was sitting at the breakfast table reading my newspaper I glanced up to look out the kitchen window at my vegetable garden. I had strategically placed my garden so I could view it in this manner, although my wife thinks it was pure luck. While admiring the fruits of my labor, plants with budding veggies and herbs ready to be plucked, I couldn’t help but notice some areas in the garden where I could have planted more.

You see, here in New Jersey we get about five really good months of vegetable gardening weather and because it is so short I try to make the most of it by using as much space as I can through a technique which I will get into in a moment.

Could I have fit in some parsnips or carrots there? How about growing some pole beans or cucumbers? Now I was driving myself crazy with the thought but I did write it down in my garden planner (my notebook I use so I can improve my garden each season).

When you grow vegetables along side different varieties in the hopes of using every inch of space possible that is the art called companion planting or intercropping. It is nothing new and has been in use as far back as Aztec culture (according to Wikipedia).

Intercropping is when you grow carrots in between your tomatoes, or pole beans in between corn. In other words, not only using that extra space, but in the case of our second example, using one vegetable (the corn) to help out its companion (the pole beans).

When you use solid intercropping in your garden, you get other benefits besides more vegetables, such as less space for weeds, support for neighboring plants (such as we already touched on), and provided shade for better moisture retention.

If you are going to take advantage of the space you have by using intercropping, try following these suggestions to enhance your success.

Tip 1

Plant your heavy feeding vegetables with your light feeders. This will allow those vegetables that do not need a lot food to thrive while vegetables that require a lot can still get what they need.

Tip 2

What would happen if you planted two oak trees next to each other about six inches apart? They would fight for ground space as their roots got larger right? Same holds true with many varieties of vegetables. So our next tip is to match vegetable plants that are deep rooted with plants that are shallow rooted. In other words the deep rooted plant will grow far beneath the soil, such as carrots and parsnips, while vegetables like garlic and onion will have their roots near the top.

Tip 3

Take advantage of the shade that taller crops, such as corn, sunflowers and tomatoes, provide by planting cooler crops, like spinach and lettuce, beneath them. These plants do not do well in very hot temperatures, but if you can shade them a bit they will still receive the sun they will need without getting baked in it.

Take advantage of every inch of space you have by implementing intercropping techniques that can help produce a more abundant harvest as well as many other benefits. Now, if I could only bury that alarm clock in the garden, hmmm.…

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Bathroom Renovations

Revamped Kitchens To Add Spark To Your Life

Through the evolution from early man to the modern, the one thing that man has always needed and installed in some form or the other, is the cooking area, the kitchen. But, there has been much attention devoted to them in the recent times, unlike ever before. For centuries in many countries the cooking place was the center of the home. There have been times in history, when entire families had to live by one fire; warming them through the cold days and nights, working as their cooking fire as well as their sole light source in the dark. To combat the heat factor, the houses in many hot countries ensure that the kitchen area remains separate from the rest of the house.
Lately the different areas are being placed closer than before. Though the kitchens are a part of the same structure, the recent styles have made it possible to move them to different areas easily. Similarly, to lower the living area temperatures in the warmer regions, people can now turn to advanced ventilation techniques instead of ousting the kitchen altogether.
The new style of houses, lack of servants and the change in social trend have impacted the kitchen set up across the world, so much so that kitchens today are similar in different areas. A stove that may support almost all kinds of cooking bowl, by manufacturers in Britain, is another innovative contribution in the field of kitchen equipments. To get rid of foul cooking odors, one can use the extractor fans which run on electricity.
In spite of the fact that cooking is based on the same kitchen fuels, the revamped kitchen styles have much to offer. It is not just the equipment, but also the look of the kitchen that has been worked on; offering the option to make your kitchen look bright and elegant. You can use a damp piece of cloth to steer clear or any dirt on the working surface in your kitchen. Other great kitchen ‘treasures’ include sink units, made of glass fiber, stainless steel or those that are vitreous enameled; cupboards that are fitted at appropriate heights and ceramic and plastic tiles for the kitchen walls.
The outlook of people, and not just the women of the house, towards the kitchen area has seen a huge shift which is witnessed by the extensive kitchen stores and shops that offer some great stuff for your kitchens. It was while walking around the kitchen department of a store, which was filled with casseroles, and other products with craftsmanship of a decorative; that the shopper noted and remarked upon this. He closed with an applaud for designers of the kitchen and its equipments, who’re finally giving this space the ideas, time and efforts it deserves, considering it is the woman’s most valued place in the house. The house kitchen is fast becoming the center of attention in a house.…

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General Article

Garden Redecorating – Tips and Tricks

Garden Redecorating – Tips and Tricks

Garden is one of the most striking area of any house, as in today’s, compact life owning a garden is not a privilege for everybody. Therefore it is extremely critical for the owner to take extreme care of the wooden garden decorative and accessories, especially wooden furniture. This write up gives away various maintenance tips and caring tricks that will not only keep your garden furniture good in looks but will also improve their longevity. Follow the below mentioned tips about the basic care of the wooden garden decorative especially furniture.

1. Climate is a very important consideration when planing to invest in an outdoor wooden furniture. Besides, the kind of wood that will best suit your need as well as climate is also an important tip to keep in mind.

2. Make sure that you keep your garden furniture stored and covered when not in use. You can keep them in the garage or under any overhanging wall as this will prevent them from climate disaster.

3. Reading the manufacturers instructions is also important. Don’t become the ignorant masters of these furniture as they require a lot of maintenance. It is important that you are aware with all the nuances before you set up your garden furniture.

4. Sun and rain might be the ideal situation for spending some time in the garden, but they are surely not the best of agents for your furniture. To avoid losing the sheen of the furniture place them under an overhanging or garden shade can do the trick.

5. Before the commencement of a new season, one can use various kinds of protectants in order to save the furniture from climatic changes. Depending upon the type of furniture, you can use paints, tar, oil, wax or even preservatives. Wiping is a very common and convenient method that can be used by the owners. All you need is just a dry cloth to keep the furniture free of moisture.

6. To keep the legs of the furniture free of unwanted mud and dirt, place four cups beneath the chairs. This is a very helpful tip, especially when there is a lot of grass in the garden. Out some wood preservatives in the cups and allow them to absorb completely for good effect.

7. To keep your furniture clean, ensure that you wash them with soap and water at least once in a month. Just take a moist or soapy cloth and wipe them. But do not allow the water to stand. Make sure that it is completely dry and use a wood cleaner if required.

These were some of the basic tips that can hep you curb the multitudinous problems that can trouble you in case you are not sensitive towards your garden furniture.…

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Home Renovation

Bathroom Remodeling Ideas – Transition it to a Room That is Comfortable

Bathrooms are often the one room in the house that gets neglected when you are in the mood to spruce things up. Bathroom remodeling is one of the most popular home improvement projects in the nation today. A remodeled bathroom will surely provide increased enjoyment of your home, and it is among the home improvements with the highest return on investment.
With so many options for your bathroom renovation, where do you begin? First, you may want to start an ideas folder. At this stage you may need help from a professional – architects, general contractors, design/build firms or bathroom designers, depending on the scope of your project. Your bathroom remodeling contractor will be able to make suggestions about the design and features and help you prioritize the improvements. Remodeling a bathroom can take a few days or a few weeks, depending upon the type of bathroom remodeling plans you choose to work with.
Large bathroom remodeling projects often involve isolating the toilet area from the rest of the bathroom, installing urinals or bidets, and even enlarging the bathroom area by expanding it into an unused room or closet. If you have a small bathroom that you want to remodel, you will find that it can be a bit challenging for you. You will want to spend plenty of time planning out the remodel and making sure you use the budget you have wisely.
The main thing to remember with bathroom remodeling ideas is that you can always redecorate. No matter what bathroom remodeling ideas you are tossing around, your best bet is to make a good investment in the project. Making a sound investment in your home is ideal especially when working with this kind of room. Even if your budget is on the small side, there are a variety of ways to accentuate what you have and make it look like you paid a fortune. Bath remodel can be fun and challenging task that can take your standard bathroom and transition it into a room that is comfortable, and has your personal signature on it!…

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General Article

7 Reasons to Go Ahead and Start That Garden

7 Reasons to Go Ahead and Start That Garden

Many people have the desire to start a garden, but they don’t know the first thing about what they should do or how to go about doing it. Instead of being intimidated by the garden, you should instead be thinking of what the garden can do for you. Here are 7 reasons to go ahead and start that garden you’ve been thinking about.

Reason 1 – Save Money

A garden is a cheap and reliable source of food for you and your family. A single plant will usually produce multiple vegetables. You can purchase a plant that is already started, and transplant it into your garden, for normally less than five dollars, or start your own plants from seeds.

Since most seeds cost less than five cents a piece, this will end up saving you the most money. When you compare the price of a single vegetable at the grocery store to the amount of vegetables that a single plant produces in your garden, you will understand the savings.

Reason 2 – Know Where Your Vegetables Came From

There have been multiple scares in the past few years about vegetables being handled in unsafe ways while they were still in the fields. When you grow your own vegetables in a garden, you will know exactly what they contain. The only chemicals you will need to worry about are the ones that you will add to your garden yourself.

Reason 3 – Exercise

It has been proven that gardening can burn more than 300 calories an hour. The movements you will be making while you are gardening are akin to many types of yoga stretches. These will help your muscles build strength and definition, as well as combine your workout with physical results in your garden.

Reason 4 – Sunlight is Healthy

Every human body needs sunlight, or more specifically, a vitamin that is essential to human life is absorbed directly through the skin from exposure to sunlight. Vitamin D, as it is called, is a nutrient that many of us are lacking in our bodies. The sunlight you get while working in the garden every day will increase your Vitamin D intake and make you healthier.

Reason 5 – Fresh Vegetables Anytime

When your garden starts producing vegetables, you won’t have to make a special trip into town to get them anymore. When you decide that you want a salad for dinner, you can step out your back door and harvest the lettuce, onion, carrots, peppers and tomatoes to include in your salad right there.

Reason 6 – Bragging Rights

Your garden will probably end up producing more vegetables than you can use. When this happens, you can share them with family, friends and neighbors, who will then comment on the size and quality of your produce. These type of compliments are a lot of fun to receive.

Reason 7 – Watching Something Grow

When your garden begins to flourish, you will have a sense of accomplishment. Watching the plants grow from nothing to providing food for you and your family is a wonderful sensation, and can be an educational experience for your children as well.…

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Renovation House

Buying Business Insurance

Business insurance is sometimes all that stands between your business succeeding and failing. In some states, the outcome of liability cases is oftentimes very much in favor of the plaintiffs. This means that carrying inadequate levels of insurance may put you at more risk than you know. There are various types of coverage available for businesses, but not all of them will come through when you find yourself and your business in a tough spot. A professional commercial insurance agent can make sure that your policy contains a realistic level of coverage that protects you against disasters.
Sometimes, general liability insurance is sold in a package deal. These are oftentimes called BOPs, an acronym for business owner’s policy. These packages are sometimes not provided with the levels of protection a business owner actually needs. When the different types of insurance provided in these packages are all lumped together as they are, it’s difficult to determine how much coverage you have for each type of insurance you carry. These policies are oftentimes more expensive than the policies that can be arranged by a commercial insurance specialist, in addition to their lacking coverage levels.
A commercial insurance agent can take a look at your business insurance policy and make sure that it gives you enough coverage. If it doesn’t, they can add riders to the policy to ensure that you’re protected financially against liability and other claims. They can also work out umbrella policies that can sometimes provide you with more protection at a lower rate than your standard BOP. If you need business insurance and aren’t sure how much you need to carry, talking to a professional agent is your best means of making sure that you get it done right and that your policy is cost-effective.
A business insurance policy may have to have different levels of coverage depending upon your state. In some cases, businesses may operate in several different states, and this means that they need separate protection for each of these satellite operations. Figuring out a good deal for coverage that will be adequate can be very complex and, sometimes, it can require a professional to get the job done right. Having a professional commercial insurance agent handle the job from the start ensures that you’re aware of your actual levels of risk and that you’re protected against being financially devastated by liability claims.…

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Home Maintenance – Extend The Life Of Your Siding

All to often vegetation too close to the home is the reason for dry rot and siding damage. The sad part is this is totally avoidable and almost always happens due to either neglect, misinformation or the belief that your landscaper is taking care of it. In homes with wood siding, trim, or overhangs, this always turns up on home inspection reports.
So where do I start?
Start Simple: check to make sure that all sprinkler heads are at least 18″ from the structure and that the sprayers are pointed away from the home. Make sure that all plants are at least 6″ away from wood siding. Remember moisture is woods worst enemy and the more your siding can breath the dryer it will stay. Make sure that all of your gutters & down spouts are working correctly, effective rain water directing can make a huge difference in only a 10 year period.
Go a Step Farther: Check to see that any brick veneer has all edges caulked so no water can get behind. IVY IS BAD. if you have ivy growing on your home and it is a wood frame structure, you need to cut it down. The feelers from the ivy break through the cracks in the weak mortar of brick veneer and delivers moisture to the wood framing year round. Ivy follows the sun upwards and works its way into roof sheathing and eventually roof composition. If you have an entire brick or stone building ivy can not hurt you until it reaches the roof line, the ivy should always be kept off of the overhang.
Keep It Off The Ground! Wood siding and mudsills need to be a minimum of 6″ above grade when dirt and 2″ above grade when concrete. If you do not have this clearance then you need to dig down the soil grade to achieve this. After lowering the grade it needs to have a grade away from the home of 2″ down for 18″ out. if you don’t have this clearance on concrete, your options may be limited. the first step is to locate the hight of the mudsill. if the mudsill is 3″ off grade or more, then you can just cut the siding 2″ off the concrete and still maintain a good siding overlap. if the mud sill is lower than 3″ then the best bet is to cut the siding up 1/4″- 3/8″ off of the concrete grade with an undercut saw. clean out new gap at bottom of siding and fill with Sikaflex premium waterproof caulking.
Keep It Painted! A good coat of primer and paint every few years isn’t just to keep up with the jones’, it’s also to keep up to date the proper protections against sun and rain.…