Category: Garden & Park

Mulch and Your Garden

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When it gets this cold outside, it can be good to think warm thoughts. As you do this, imagine spring time and how beautiful your yard is going to look in full bloom. But you know that this beauty doesn’t happen by accident; essential to any lush yard or garden is a good base of mulch. Especially now, in wintertime, a decent foundation of mulch can help bring the flora and fauna out of the ground a bit sooner when spring does finally arrive

Mother Nature has her own winter mulch. That would be the covering of leaves and pine needles, but those can be cleared or pushed aside. When that happens, the soil can lay exposed to the extreme cold and winter weather. That’s when you should call Hansen’s, your St. Louis mulch provider, to get your ground ready to bloom. Our quality, organic mulch will give those roots the warmth and food they need to stay healthy throughout the season and ready to bloom the moment the weather gets warmer.

Putting a nice layer of mulch in your yard helps keep hold in the warmth, allowing your plants and their roots to stay nearer to the surface. The closer they can remain to the surface, the sooner they can bloom. Just think: you’ll be the envy of the block when the plants and the grass in your yard is already beautiful and bursting with color while everyone else’s yards are brown and barren! With just a little bit of hard work and the help of a St. Louis mulching company, your yard can be in full bloom sooner than you expect!

No matter the type of yard work you want performed, Hansen’s Tree Service is here to help. Whether it’s tree removal or trimming, lawn services, or mulch in the St. Louis or St. Charles area, Hansen’s Tree Service will leave your yard looking clean, trim, and professional. Call today and find out how our landscapers can bring out the best in your yard!

Low Cost Garden Design Ideas You’ll Want To Try

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Are you looking for low maintenance and low cost garden design ideas? Choose a perennial garden that will greatly reduce your weed pulling and watering chores. Perennial flowers complimented by evergreen shrubs are a great choice for gardeners on the go. This combination allows anyone to cultivate a beautiful landscape with lots of shortcuts and is one of the best garden design ideas.

Selecting A Site For Your Garden

Selecting a site will be the first crucial step in planning a thriving perennial garden. Be aware of your ecological conditions to determine where an optimal site might be. The ease of access and visibility from the street, as well as within the home are factors to be considered.

Who says you have to build big? Forget all the stereotypes; not every beautiful garden consists of neat rows of cascading flowers and rows of shrubs. Get creative.

You may also want to use common sense when planning your garden; how much time can you commit to pruning, watering, and fertilizing? When looking to develop a low maintenance garden, it should be functional yet simple to maintain. Keep in mind, bigger is not always better. The smaller your garden, the fewer plants you must take care of.

Easy Use Landscape Fabric

When you begin a new perennial garden, spread a nonwoven polypropylene black landscape fabric over the soil. The fabric will keep weeds under control, embrace heat during cooler weather, and will allow the water to soak to the roots more efficiently.

Stop by a local gardening center and buy the non-biodegradable fabric that only weighs about 3 ounces per square yard. Use a few u-shaped metal stakes to hold down the fabric.

1. Measure your proposed planting site and keep in mind plants will spread out.

2. Break up any compacted soil and remove any weeds. Mix peat moss and composted manure into the soil if necessary.

3. Lay down the landscape fabric and secure the corners with metal stakes.

4. Get a bit creative by drawing a pattern or paths onto the fabric with chalk. Cut out the pattern you have drawn to display holes. This is where you will place your evergreens, seeds or plants, into each of the holes.

5. Space plants according to the recommendations on the labels. For a no-fuss garden, choose drought resistant plants, then fill in and cover completely with mulch.

6. A beautiful, healthy perennial garden requires water, fertilizer, and mulch. If you nourish your garden with time-release fertilizer it will continuously feed your plants for longer periods of time.

Developing good garden design ideas will surely provide years of beauty and enjoyment for you and your family.

Garden Lighting Light Up Your Life Inside & Out

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With spring in the air, we are all itching to get outdoors. Sadly, though, the night comes too quickly, before we’ve even had a chance to enjoy our outdoor living area. Many of us put in a lot of effort into the landscape, gardens and patios surrounding our homes, and we deserve to take full advantage of these areas. Home outdoor lighting is possibly the best way to extend your outdoor experience into the wee hours of the night. Here are five fantastic ways to use garden lighting to your advantage.

Up High: Outdoor structures, enclosures and gazebos all need home outdoor lighting to make them work once it gets dark. Fortunately, outdoor ceiling fixtures abound in styles you are going to love. These span the spectrum from elegant and classic gothic pieces to modern and tastefully trendy. Use post lanterns to illuminate and decorate a large area all at once. Oh, and let’s not forget the slice of heaven called outdoor ceiling fans. Words cannot describe the blissful calm that falls over you as a soft breeze surrounds you on a warm summer day or night.

Down Low: Landscape lighting or specialty lighting can alleviate annoyances as well as illuminate nature’s beauty. Use path lighting, deck lighting and in-stairs lighting to light up a walking path, staircase or corridor so that coming home in the dark doesn’t end in disaster. You can also use decorative garden lighting such as in-ground, underwater and fountain lights to make a beautiful setup really come alive. Novelty fixtures shaped like gravel, stone, rustic shading and more can blend into the surrounding nature for an even more magical effect.

To the Side: Use your walls to your lighting advantage with wall sconces. Homeowners love this option for several reasons. To start with, wall sconces are up on the wall, so they illuminate a larger area than fixtures that are lower down to the ground. Because they’re mounted to the wall, however, sconces won’t take up room or get in the way. What’s more, this garden lighting option comes with hundreds of styles and designs so you can really express your individuality and your taste with these fixtures.

Nice and Slow: Finally, torches can be used on a number of occasions. Outdoor parties will be an instant success with these mood-setting luminaries scattered around your porch or pool area. Use both lighting oil and candles to keep the party going longer. Alternatively, candlelit torches make for a most romantic evening for two. So the next time you want some special time with the one you love, set up for some solace under the stars.

These are just a few of the ways that garden lighting can enhance your outdoor living area. After a long and cold winter, we all want to break free and move around. With the warmer months finally here, don’t limit yourself to four walls. Get outside and make the most of your home, inside and out.

A Garden Trellis Design Improves The Appearance Of Your Yard

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A garden trellis design will create a beautiful environment around a home. A garden trellis design is the creation of expert gardeners who expect the spaces around a home to add wonderful atmosphere. These expert gardeners believe in planning a garden for maximum effect. They do nothing in the garden that is haphazard.

There are several great designs including the garden trellis design that are carefully created with just the right plants, structures and pavements. Each of these designs is meant to create a unity with all of the elements that go into a garden space.

A garden trellis design uses beautiful trellises as the focal point of a garden space. A trellis is a wooden structure that is used to create a unique garden. These structures vary in size and design. Some trellises are flat pieces of wood that are form a platform for the plants in a garden.

Other trellis can have round shapes on the top for another unique visual in a garden. These structures are available ready made in the local home improvement stores, and there are kits or plans available so the gardener can build one.

A Garden Trellis Design Will Receive Compliments Galore

A garden trellis design adds different heights to a garden. The plants and flowers in a garden trellis design are on different levels for a wonderful image. The dedicated gardener in charge of a piece of land for a garden will decide on a design for the entire space before buying a single seed or plant.

The gardener will try to create a unity between the main structure or home and the entire garden. The gardener will decide on a ground cover that will be acceptable for the climate and budget. The ground cover in a garden trellis design will be the first level of the garden.

A garden trellis design will have a second level above the ground cover which will be in planters or planted in the ground. This second level will tower above the ground cover. These plants can be chosen from the wide variety available, but a conscientious gardener will find plants that grow well in the local climate.

The trellises will add at least a third level to a garden. Trellises do not have to be the same size so even another level could be added with trellises of different heights. The trellises can be used to hold flowers but a trellis without plants will also be a great addition to many gardens.

Reasons For Owning A Garden Office

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When your home simply looks and feels too small for all your current needs then you have two options: you either move in a bigger home or simply decide to enlarge the one you have. This doesnt mean though that you should buy the house next door in order to enlarge your current one but you should simply start looking into other ways of doing this. The best solution for this problem could have a simple answer: a garden studio.

Investing in such a building can actually be a very good deal that one can make, especially because the studio can be used in more than one way. So you will not only enlarge your home but you will also have a room which you can use for a great number of things. Here are some examples of what you can use your garden studio for.

Garden office. This is probably one of the most used features of the garden studio. For those that work from home or that simply want to finish some of their paper load in the comfort of their home, this is the ideal feature. You wont be bothered by anyone and you also wouldnt bother anyone if you choose to decorate your garden studio as an office.

Garden workshop. There are many things around the house that we can do ourselves like fixing a pipe or simply redecorate our furniture. However, all the materials have to be stored somewhere and we also need a place where we can actually do the work without leaving dirty paint spots all over the kitchen floor. Therefore garden studios can be furnished in a simple manner so that one can have the space that they need for the DYI projects.

Garden guest house. All of us have had unexpected guests pop over when we least thought, therefore the need for a guest house was extremely felt. The garden studio can be simply decorate with an extensible couch, a dresser and a desk and can become the best place where you can invite your friends to spend the night. A small bathroom can also be included in the studio so your friends wont need to worry about going to the bathroom in the main house during the night.

Teenage room. You kids surely have lots of friends that come over all the time and even if you love their presence, sometime both you and them would want some privacy. With the garden studio you can create a room special for their needs. A big TV, a stereo box and a few potato cushions and they can spend their evenings with their friends undisturbed. Surely this would be a better option than having them leave the house altogether.

Riches And The Garden Of Eden

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Starting with the disclaimer that this is a purely secular set of observations having nothing to do with religion, I would like to bypass all the theological controversy and bigoted opinions of those who should know better with the assertion that something actually ‘did go wrong’ within the human psyche, and this schism, which undeniably destroyed a pre-existing harmonious and joyous relationship with nature, happened precisely with the concurrence of agriculture.

And it is agriculture I would like to focus the blame on, for if money is the root of all evil, then agriculture is the root of all money. It is true, is it not, that agriculture is the harbinger of civilization? Therefore, whatever civilization has bequeathed to us ultimately can be found in the implementation of agriculture. That is to say that literally- language, the mastery of fire, tool making, just to name a few technologies- have only a small role in the development and rise of civilization. On the other hand, civilization would be impossible without agriculture. (By the way, ‘civilization’ by its root roughly just means ‘urbanization’.)

When heard, the word civilization is generally received with a positive connotation, but in fact civilization is also directly responsible for the greatest man-made horrors upon this earth that we have ever seen. It is responsible for mega wars, genocide, and perhaps most tragically, thousands of years of mass slavery.

Another facet that one might explore about agriculture is that while it tends to feed masses of humans with a monotonous diet of food of dubious nutritious value, at the same time it destroys nature (or the garden if one prefers). But most importantly the advent of agriculture soon resulted in societies where 80 to 90 percent of the population became slaves, 10 percent warriors, a tiny percent scholars and architects, and the tiniest fraction the owners and rulers. That it is a fact of history but my question is: have things really changed?

Outdoor Garden Games For The Whole Family

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If its a nice summer day and the familys all around the house, maybe it would be a good idea to spend some quality time outside with outdoor garden games. Spending times with family should be a fun experience and shouldnt cost much money (in fact it can be absolutely free) the garden is a magical place that can really solidify family bonds especially if everyone enjoys the experience. Living in a nice suburban home is a luxury most Americans forget about, although they keep their gardens and yards well kempt they often neglect the actual utilization of the garden. Get-togethers are even more fun when there are games to enjoy.

A Little Something for Everyone
It is important to keep in mind fun activities that your entire family will enjoy from the youngest child to the parents. Fun games such as Twister can be enjoyed by the family while literally getting close to each other. Fun games such as scavenger hunts are a great way of teaching your children the vast plethora of different things that can be found in the garden, scavenger hunts can be arranged where they will bring back certain items that can be found in the garden. These can include tools, special leaves or flowers, even funny looking rocks. The whole family can get involved if you split into two teams and make a competition out of it. Outdoor garden games such as scavenger hunts are a great competitive way of teaching your children how to look for various things.

En Otro Vez
Another activity that can be fun and absolutely free is to set up a pirate treasure hunt that will bring your children around the yard looking for certain landmarks and counting their paces. This is a great way of introducing your children to the art of cartography and orienteering. This is an important life skill that your children will cherish for the rest of their lives. Outdoor garden games should challenge them mentally and physically to better their development into young adults. You can even leave some sort of treat as their treasure and you can also make the maps they have to follow more and more difficult as time progresses.

Closing Thoughts
The main point in playing these games is to have the whole family enjoying, when both parents are working and spend little time with their children it is necessary to spend truly quality time with them instead of sitting around staring into a television as most families do. Outdoor garden games are a great way of insuring tight family bonds.

Newberry, South Carolinas Wells Japanese Garden

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The midlands of South Carolina would seem to be an unusual place to find a Japanese Garden. The town of Newberry has just such a hidden gem in the Wells Japanese Garden. The garden was once privately owned by the Wells family, but was donated to the city in 1970 and is now a Newberry city park.
The garden was designed in 1930 by W. Fulmer Wells. The young Newberry resident had been studying architecture in California. Fulmer was influenced by the design of the Japanese Tea Garden that he had visited at San Franciscos Golden Gate Park. The building of the garden was carried out by his father, Henry B. Wells, Sr. The small, triangular shaped garden was originally part of a larger residential property containing the Wells family home.

The Wells Japanese Garden has an exotic Asian character. The garden features many of the design elements that would typically be found in a traditional Japanese Garden. The entrance to the garden is through a Torii Gate, a traditional Japanese style gate often found at temple entrances. Torii literally means where birds reside. Most wooden Torii are painted red, as is the one in the Wells garden. A small creek flows through the garden, and a stone Moon Bridge crosses the creek. The half circle of this style of arched bridge is meant to reflect in the water below, creating a full circle between the bridge and its reflection. The garden also has two small ponds. A walking path leads to another ornamental structure, a Japanese Tea House, or Japanese style gazebo. A bench there provides a place for quiet reflection. The posts used in the Tea House were originally part of the historic Newberry Opera House, before its renovation in 1930. The garden also has a Japanese stone temple lantern, another design element typically found in Japanese gardens.

The garden contains both native and exotic plants. Visitors will find water lilies, lotus, Japanese iris, crepe myrtles, cypress, and dogwood trees among the garden plants. The Newberry Council of Garden Clubs maintains the garden as one of their on-going restoration projects. The Wells Japanese Garden is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The Wells Japanese Garden is located on Lindsay Street in downtown Newberry, behind the Newberry City Hall. It is open from 7am-7pm. There are no restroom facilities in the garden. Visitors to Newberry should take time for a quiet stroll through this charming little garden oasis.

Fall Fun At Atlanta Botanical Garden

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Fall is a fabulous time of year to visit Atlanta Botanical Garden. The entire family can enjoy harvest and Halloween activities throughout the month of October. The garden comes alive with pumpkins, scarecrows, goblins, and seasonal fall blooms. Adults may enjoy special seasonal festivities during the Fest-of-Ale on Thursday evenings. Here are the highlights of the Atlanta Botanical Gardens fun fall activities.

Visitors can enjoy Scarecrows in the Garden October 2-31. Local businesses, organizations, schools, and individuals have created more than 100 unique scarecrows for the Childrens Garden and the Southern Seasons Garden. Viewing the zany, whimsical, and spooky creations has become a favorite fall tradition in Atlanta. After finding all the scarecrows, families can participate in free fall crafts and games every weekend from 10am-4pm. Each Saturday and Sunday local Atlanta chefs will showcase seasonal recipes in the Edible Gardens outdoor kitchen. Demonstrations are scheduled at noon, 1pm, and 2pm. Be sure to check out whats in bloom this fall including beautyberry, perennial mums, and spider orchids.

Adults will find live music and seasonal brews in the garden on Thursday evenings in October. Fest-of-Ale takes place from 5-10pm. Enjoy an evening stroll through the garden with your favorite cocktail. On October 11 join a garden expert for a creepy night tour of the Fuqua Conservatory. On October 18 the garden will host its fall market with local artisans offering unique gifts. Vendors will showcase jewelry, accessories, clothing, stationary, glass pumpkins and other ornaments. Its the perfect opportunity to do some early holiday shopping. Attend a free horticultural forum at the Science Caf on October 18 from 7-8pm. On October 25 local celebrity chefs will compete in a pumpkin carving contest. Attendees can place a bid for their favorite jack olantern at the silent auction. Allow time to explore the gift shop for a selection of garden themed books and gifts.

Bring the kids to the garden in their costumes on October 28 for a day of Halloween fun at Goblins in the Garden. A variety of festive activities and treats are planned including crafts, games, and pumpkin decorating. Enjoy the musical entertainment or ride the train or a pony. The Goblins in the Garden celebration runs from 10am-4pm.

Atlanta Botanical Garden is located adjacent to Piedmont Park in midtown, at 1345 Piedmont Avenue NE. The garden is open Tuesday-Sunday. Hours are 9am-7pm April-October and 9am-5pm November-March. Admission is $18.95 for adults and $12.95 for children ages 3-12. Parking is available in the adjacent SAGE parking garage.

Creating An Indoor Or Outdoor Pet Memorial Garden

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You can connect to the healing process by creating a pet memorial garden dedicated to your beloved pet. Losing a family dog, cat, or other pet can cause feelings just as strong as when we lose our human companions to death. Finding ways to cope is essential to moving through the grieving process. By creating an indoor or outdoor space in memory of your pet, you are sure to find greater peace as you contemplate positive memories that you shared with your loved one.

The first step in creating a memorial space is to determine whether it would be better suited indoors or outdoors. People who live in apartments or other dwellings without a private backyard will find that they can create a small indoor garden using a planter box or a large plant container. If you have a small porch space, you can place several plant containers in a dedicated space, and add a memorial stone that includes your pets name for a personal touch.

If you do have a private outdoor space, you will find that there are endless opportunities for creating a memorial garden. You may already have a garden space in which you can put a memorial stone, a bench that has been engraved with a special poem that reminds you of your beloved pet, angel figurines, or other objects that honor your pet.

You can also start from scratch with an outdoor space by planting a memorial tree with a stone engraved with your pets name near the tree. This will offer a living tribute to your pet.

Adding wind chimes, hanging your pets tags from a tree, using engraved memorial stones, or putting a framed picture of your pet near your indoor memorial garden are all beautiful ways to remember your pet. No matter what methods you use to honor your pet, create a unique space that speaks to you and that helps you to remember your pet with fond memories.

Whether a newly planted tree, an existing tree, indoor potted plants, an outdoor garden, or any other dedicated space for your pet memorial, you will find that tending to that space offers you solace and a place to honor your special friend. Helping your indoor or outdoor garden grow will also assist you in working through the grieving process. Many families have found that their family members, young and old, are helped through their own process of grieving when they are able to honor their deceased pet with a memory garden.

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