The 7 Gardening Tips Before Summer Ends

Summer often comes with challenges when growing your own produce in the garden. However, for some, it may take them sometime before they can know how to maintain their garden well. In many cases, it often turns out that growing vegetable on the backyard of your garden can help you a lot before summer. The following are the top 7 gardening tips that you need to know before summer ends:

1.Get a soil sample if you want to plant in the ground straight

It is impossible for you to start a new garden in your current bed, but its success will always depend on the soil’s quality. Instead of you guessing, you can take a small sample to an extension office or a local lab to determine the characteristics and nutrients of soil before making a decision on whether you need to use it or not.

2.Stay organic

When you are dealing with very small home garden, you need to stay organic since it is healthier. You can learn about organic gardening tips and tricks out there to enable you do it while using them as natural fertilizers. For any sure-fire trick, you can make a sludgy mixture made of natural compost tea as a way of enriching the soil to boost the growth of your plants.

3.Begin with easy growers

As a way of building your confidence when it comes to gardening, you can do some easy-to-grow veggies, such as tomatoes, lettuce, squash and snap peas. Since you do not need much experience, you will enjoy gardening thus enabling you to do others in the future.

4. Trying container gardening

If you wish to start small, you must have a container garden since it is a good option. Majority of vegetable species often flourish in small containers, and it is not hard to start growing your own crop. You will definitely have an easy time when growing and maintaining vegetables in these containers.

5. Building a raised or higher garden bed

Even though it may seem cumbersome, you planting vegetables in raised beds will enable you enjoy many benefits, which gardening straight does not. These may include easier weed and pest control as well as the use of richer and better soil—plus the capability of lengthening your growing time.

6.Watching out for pests

Snails, aphids, ants, slugs —there are many competitors trying to munch your hard-earned lunch out there. Bu using right pesticides, you will learn how to deal with pests thus enabling you enjoy maximum returns whenever they are ready.

7.Using starter plants as opposed to seeds

Seeds are always a great option for any experienced and skilled vegetable gardener. However, if it is your first attempt, you need to start small with plants from your store as opposed to tiny seeds. When you see them grow, you will learn on how to do it thus enabling you to garden during summer. Never do guesswork when planting seedlings.

What Will Homes Look Like In 15 Years?

Homes are very dynamic and styles keep changing with every passing day. What was cool and fashionable a few years ago cannot even be compared to today’s trends in the home space. As people’s needs and environments conditions keep changing, home needs will also change. The size of the house, the interior décor, and exterior décor will all change and in the next 15 years, home spaces will look nothing like what we have known them to be.

People are more cautious of the environment and as such, we will see less and less furniture being installed in home spaces. Organic designs and items will have gained popularity and stores like IKEA are already designing quality silicon products that will replace furniture in houses. Homes will be less congested as most of the items used today will be obsolete. Things like DVD players and radios are already losing their place in modern homes.

With technology, everything is becoming wireless. Homes will be smarter and will be operated remotely as we can already see in smart homes today. Home activities that currently require manual operations will soon be operated remotely. Lamps will be turned on and off remotely, curtains, windows, and doors will all be operated with the touch of a button. The kitchen space will also become minimal with the invention of multifunctional gadgets. One cooking gadget will take over the role of twenty current items and there will be less clutter in the space. Food preparation will be made easier and more environmentally friendly.

House designs will also change in the next 15 years. Those who opt to live in the cities might experience smaller living spaces due to congestion and this will lead to minimalistic living in terms of furniture needed. Spaces will be designed to be multifunctional to solve this problem. For example, a garage will be easily converted to a living room. In future, people may not need that three story house or the three car garage for the sake of space saving. Smaller spaces will lead to the use of bright colors to give the rooms an illusion of a larger space. People will keep experimenting with colors and as such, paint manufacturers will also come up with exciting and innovative products. People who opt to live outside the cities may enjoy the advantage of larger spaces and one can expect to see homes built using environmentally sustainable materials. Most of the materials that will be used in future homes must require minimal maintenance and enhance energy efficiency.

In nutshell, History has a way of repeating itself and with this in mind, one can expect that future homes will have a blend of high technological innovations, combined with historical styles mimicking past eras. There is no doubt that the environmental impact of the homes will be a major consideration for the future home as well as the need for space maximization. Technological advancements mean that future homes will have lower running costs and they will also be less cluttered.

3 Celebrity Homes That Can Inspire Your Next Home

Celebrities are always being watched. Being famous and being idolized by a huge amount of people can be stressful for most people. However, the fame comes with a lot of money, which is obvious. Being a celebrity means that people always have their eyes on you, looking at your lifestyle, the way you dress, who you hang out with, the places you visit, the food you eat and most of all, where you live. This can set really high expectations for anyone. However, with the amount of money most celebrities have, they cannot afford to disappoint their fans and all the onlookers.

Celebrity lives are luxurious. This means that they live in mansions decorated and designed in ways most people cannot afford. So the houses are always available for people to see and get inspiration from. Here are some of the most common, fanciest and most inspirational celebrity homes for you to enjoy and get inspired by.

1. Hugh Hefner’s playboy mansion

Hugh Hefner has one of the most luxurious and most amazing and inspirational playboy mansions of all time. The huge mansion, mostly referred to people as a castle, has a 4 bedroom guest house. But see, the 4 bedroom guest house is just a small addition to the amazingly huge 29 bedrooms in the actual mansion. Apart from that, the house is equipped with some of the most amazing and entertaining rooms that will entice you to never leave the home. The home has a tennis court for entertainment and working out when the house becomes too dull, a huge fully equipped catering kitchen and a wine cellar with any kind and any age of wine available. It also happens to have a home theater and a swimming pool. The house was however being sold for an astonishing $100 million which ended up being produced by the new owner of the home. The playboy mansion was purchased by the celebrity’s neighbor.

2. Oprah Winfrey’s mansion in Montecito, California

This mansion is known as “The promised land”. The house, which sits on a huge 42 acres piece of land has some of the most beautiful views any home owner would want for their home. The house is worth a total of $50 million, the amount which Oprah proudly gave to gain this mansion. The house has been located on a very quiet and peaceful land. On sight, there are amazing ocean and mountain views that make the house one of the most relaxing homes of all times. In addition to this, the inside of the house is completely breathtaking. The house has a wine cellar, gourmet kitchen, two home theaters to cater for her entertainment. The house also has 14 bathrooms, six bedroom and a total of 10 fireplaces. In addition to all these, the outdoors have a man-made lake, a tennis court, guest house barn and orchards.

3. Tiger Woods’ Jupiter Island Estate.

Tiger woods falls among the top celebrities with the most inspiring island mansions. His home in Jupiter Island is worth a grand total of $49 million which he purchased proudly after his divorce. Being a pro-golfer, his backyard is completely huge to cater for his games any time he feels like playing at his home. His practice are is close to a water body and the grass has been carefully trimmed and mowed. When Tiger purchased the land for construction of his home, there was an already existing house which they brought down to construct his mansion.

Mixed Pattern Interior Design Trend

Like the fashion world, the field of interior design is never static. New home interior decor trends keep emerging and likewise, old trends also resurface. These trends can usually be seen in architectural shows and magazines among other home improvement avenues.

The year 2017 too has not been left behind. It dawned and brought along with it a fresh set of interior design ideas. These range from interior finishes to interior furnishings among others. An ideal example of interior design trends which are in vogue in 2017 is mixed patterns.

The mixed pattern look

A few years ago, few could imagine or even think of going for a mixed pattern decor style. Most people would only stick to matching decor styles or even go for monochromatic sort of looks. This however is no longer the case, the mixed pattern look has made a grand entry in 2017. It is now one of the decor ideas that top many a designer’s list.

The mixed pattern look is being adopted for virtually all sections of the home. It is being seen in kitchens, living rooms, bedrooms, bathrooms, and even patios.

Mixed pattern decor tips

It’s important to approach mixed pattern decoration with a bit of caution. This is especially true if you’re doing it for the first time. A mixed pattern look can appear disastrous if not gotten right. Here are five tips to help you achieve an elegant mixed pattern look:

1. Stick to the same range of colors

When mixing patterns, it is advisable to go for colors which near each other in hue. A similar range of colors creates a neat look and an ambience of order. If for instant you have a pink colored patterned decor piece, you can mix it with fuchsia colored or lavender colored pieces. This would create a wonderful complementary effect and welcome feel of balance.

2. Minimize the number of mix patterned decor pieces

You should go easy on the mixed pattern items or finishes you introduce in a room. Don’t have several different patterns in a room as this will make it look busy. It advisable to go for four or five patterns on the maximum.

3. Go for different shapes and sizes

For a perfect result, you should go for different shaped patterns. Different shapes create a desirable kind of contrast and make your room look more appealing. You can for example mix florals with polka dots or checked patterns for a striking effect. In addition to having differently shaped patterns, it’s also important to have varying sizes of patterns. You should ideally pair large sized patterns with smaller sized ones for a great outcome.

4. Distribute patterns evenly

You should take care to ensure that your mix patterned decor pieces are evenly distributed. There should be some considerable distant from one uniquely patterned decor piece to another. Mix patterned decor pieces look busy and appealing when they are clustered together. You should therefore try to separate your patterns. You can for example employ the use of plain decor pieces to separate patterned pieces.

5. Choose bright and warm colors

The mixed pattern decor idea works best with bright and warm colors. These include colors such as light blue, light green, lime green, red, orange, yellow, peach, lilac, and purple among others. These colors look even greater when mixed with white or a small bit of dark colors.

A fresh style

The mixed pattern style is indeed a fresh style which will make your home look elegant. Additionally, it will also liven up your room by introducing a feel of energy. It is certainly one of the trends you should consider trying in 2017.

Interesting home renovation statistics in 2017

Home renovation is the process of improving and making additions to a home. This involves upgrading the interior which includes electricity and painting walls, exterior which includes upgrading roofing, masonry et cetera. Improvements can also be done on the property e.g. garden and outdoor structures such as garages. Renovations are done to a house to enhance comfort i.e. soundproofing some of the rooms like bedrooms, adding some items to the kitchen and luxurious seats to the living room. Renovations can be done for repair and maintenance, to create space, to save energy and for safety.

Renovation market data

The remodeling industry will continue to be steered by an economic approach and growing paychecks and growing equity in over the coming year. Mortgage rates have been predicted to increase not only in 2017 but through to the next years. High mortgage rates will slow down house sells therefore being a positive move for home remodeling as home owners will choose to renovate homes and make renovation investments. Home remodeling expenditures will elevate through the year.

Nationwide spending for home renovation has risen in 2017 to 6.7% (slightly lower than what was estimated in 2016), this being up to almost 317 billion US dollars. These figures are according to the Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity (LIRA). The LIRA is responsible for future turning point identification on home remodeling. Spending by home owners on remodeling and repairs has been forecast to increase 2.0 percent per year after inflation adjustments are made. Entry of new millennials will boost the already thriving remodeling industry.

Those dominating the remodeling market are older home owners. However they are slower in getting into remodeling investment as the previous generations.

Currently they are interested in buying older homes with cheap prices and in need of renovations. Home owners over 55 years are expected to have their expenditure grow by 33 percent by the year 2025. National housing prices have been growing healthily over the years. This has helped those owners trying to rebuild home equity lost during housing crush. However increasing house prices may raise questions on the affordability of young buyers. It might also mean that such young buyers may not meet expenditure to renovate such homes in future. Percentage of young home owners aged 35 years and below dropped to 31 percent.

According to forecasts, the remodeling industry is set to grow tremendously over the next years despite of such challenges. There is a strong wave of rental housing demand due to shortage of affordable housing in most parts of the country. This has prompted buyers to buy older homes and invest in upgrading the homes. Also residential houses are remodeled by both homeowners and rental property owners. Their expenditure budget has surpassed the 2015 budget of 340 billion US dollars.

There are several opportunities for more growth in the remodeling industry. As this is witnessed, other niches like environmental sustainability, energy awareness and the need for healthy homes will also witness a significant growth.

Top 5 Benefits of Having Indoor Water Fountains

Having an indoor fountain in your home has many benefits and for each person the top benefit or reason for having it may be different from the next. Some people simply love the sound of water while others appreciate the esthetic value it adds to their surroundings. One thing is for sure that having an indoor water fountain, big or small, have some unthought-of of benefits.

There are hundreds different kinds of water features designed to place in your home. They range from small table top fountains to large intricate wall waterscapes in various designs. Whatever your choice may be you are sure to reap the following top 5 benefits of having indoor water fountains in your home.

1. Relaxation and Tranquility

In our modern times where we are living fast paced lives, everything needs to be done quickly, and stressful situations are at the order of the day, coming home to the tranquility of the sound of water is bliss. Having a running water fountain in your favorite room where you like to end a day and relax is just what you need to create a serene and peaceful environment. A water feature that greets you the moment you enter your home is an equally good thought to lower stress levels once you walk through the door.

2. Visual Attraction

Water is an interesting, living, décor element that can create charming focal points in just about any room of your home. More often than not, water fountains are unique pieces of décor and with the correct illumination added, you can transform an ordinary focal point into something spectacular. By adding some plants around it to cover can add an element of mystery to the scene.

3. Green Noise

Water tends to have a calm reaction on most people and if you need to damp down some other disturbing noises while trying to work and even sleep water is the perfect way to do it. With an indoor fountain you will hear less traffic noise, animals or people distracting you from your much needed sleep or ability to work in peace.

4. Humidifier

During winter especially the air in our homes becomes dried out which in return can cause some health problems. One is a sudden dry skin that can cause us to be itchy and uncomfortable. Having a running water feature in the house will help to replace the moisture back into the air. Not only is it good for us but is good for our indoor plants as well.

5. Enhanced Air Quality

It is no secret that there are concerns about the quality of the air we breathe everyday all over the world. This concern is especially prevalent in offices where there are no windows that can open. It is true that air purifiers are available but even they have their drawbacks. They make a noise, are unsightly and produce negative ions. Indoor water features produce negative ions too but it attracts dust and additional irritants in the air and removes it. In addition water features are beautiful and makes a noise that most people adore. Much more that we can say from the typical commercial air purifiers.

Regardless what the reasons are for choosing your indoor water fountain, there are more advantages to it than what most people might have thought. With these benefits in mind, make sure you have a delightful indoor water fountain around where ever you spend the most time of your day.

6 Fun Things and Training Sessions To Do With Your pet

pets

Pets are our best friends but did you know that they can also make the best workout buddies? Unlike people, pets are always ready to follow you outside the door and will never complain about hills or cancel schedules. In a study by the Michigan State University, it was found that those people who owned canines were were 34% more likely to get the 150 minutes recommended for exercise every week then those who had none. You don’t need a lot of time and effort to provide your pet with enough activity. There are a lot of activities that you can do together to strengthen the bond between you and to stay mentally and physically healthy. Here is a list of 6 fun things and training sessions to do with your pet.

Running

Running is one of the best activities that you can do with your pet. Since pets are creatures of habit, they can greatly help you to accomplish your weekly mileage targets. Once they get used to this routine, they will be the ones waiting for you besides your sneakers. This may prove very encouraging since their excitement can change your attitude even if you were not feeling like training that day. When you have developed a perfect training buddy, you can now even take your companion to events organized for four-pawed runners and their owners.

Kayaking

Kayaking is another great activity that you can engage in with your pet. Go out with your pet on a sit-on-top kayak and first help your boy learn how to get in and out. Once they are good with that, you can take it out for a spin in the shallow waters that are close to the shore. Remember to stick to the slow moving rivers that do not get a lot of traffic.

Yoga

Have you ever seen your dog doing morning stretches? Well, if you didn’t know it turns out these pets are ancient to this practice. You can help them learn and try a few more poses. As you do this with them, it will also give you the opportunity to do regular health check for example feeling if there are any lumps under their fur.

Soccer

There are some pets that love soccer games, especially the herding breeds. If you love soccer too, you can go out and buy soccer-style balls which are resistant to sharp teeth. You can start by teaching your boy how to kick and dribble using their paws and nose.

Active fetch

Fetch is another great game that you can play with your canine. You can do it by putting the ball away and then running for it. You can also throw the ball and let your pup run after it as you do some muscle-building moves like lunges and crunches.

Cycling

If your pet has a lot of energy, biking will be perfect for both of you. It may also help them in case of any behavioral issues which may be due to not getting enough exercise. When your pet gets enough exercise, it will stimulate their brain to produce serotonin, the hormone that make anxious and aggressive pets relax.

7 Ways to Get the Most Out of Your Home and Garden

home and garden

One of the most important activities or hobbies any home can engage in is gardening. Gardening is something that should be taking seriously in every sanctuary that is really a home. It is not just some kind of fun or part time hobby to work around some farming practices or planting some vegetables and fruits you heard about. If properly done the right way, gardening can serve as a constant source of food for your entire family.

In the olden days before civilization took a greater part of some cultural practices, gardening was taken as an integral part of life. In fact it was impossible to find any home without a garden. So if you had a family then, they could have only survived on the food you got from your garden. Thus the art of planting crops and veggies was something that was very common then. However, nowadays not everyone knows what it takes keep a productive garden around their home. In this post we will discuss 7 ways to get the most out of your home and garden in order to reap a bountiful harvest every season.

Get a good location

If there is anything you should take very seriously when situating a new garden is picking the right location and topography. Using an awkward area that doesn’t have access to plenty of light will affect your harvest. Ideally, a wide space that gets plenty of sunlight will go a long way in securing your little backyard plantation.

Take time to build up soil first

Most people just rush into planting their best vegies and fruits without taking time to build up the soil they want to use. If you desire to realize high turn-outs from every season, then you must spend time in preparing the soil for plantation. You have to build up an organic soil that is deep and rich in soil nutrients. This is what facilitates the growth of crops.

Ensure adequate spacing of beds

You need to create enough space for each bed in order to increase yield. The plants should be arranged in such a way that they wouldn’t intermingle with each other. Ideally you should adopt a triangular pattern when spacing and situating each bed. A tight spacing can induce stress as well as attack from pest and insects.

Use compost and Manure

Composting everything is a good way of improving the fertility of the soil. You need to first feed the soil microbes with compost and organic manure in order to build a healthy soil. The microbes are responsible for supplying nutrients for the sustenance of the crops; so when they are well fed, the plant will be strong.

Try inter-planting

Mixed cropping or inter-planting is a good way to save space around the home. When there is need for space to pitch other structures in the house, you can inter-plant crops that are compatible. Make sure the crops can comfortably exist together before going ahead to interplant them. For instance, radishes, onions and carrots can go well together.

Pest Control

Pest control is a prerequisite to having a healthy productive garden. You can make the most of your garden by taking control measures to get rid of pests around the garden. Using wired electric fences and organic sprayers are some of the measures you can take to keep away common pests like rabbits, dogs, deer and bugs. Crop rotation also helps.

Learn to Preserve

Preservation is needed for anything to last long; your home and garden is no exception. If you want to sustain your family through with the proceeds from your garden then you must learn how to preserve through freezing, dehydrating, and canning. This will ensure that your favorite veggies and fruits are available all year round. All you need is to follow a good plan. Perhaps a gardening book on food preservation will help.

Different Types of Dog Terrier breeds

If you like dogs, and most especially you like small energetic dogs, you may find that a terrier is among the best you can get. They can be “best buddies” with you, and they need very little grooming but have “sense of humor” besides.

Terriers were originally bred to hunt and kill vermin, but their pet status is unsurpassed because they are so lovable and have several desirable features when it comes to finding a dog you like. They are intelligent (although they may not be the most intelligent of the breeds), and have several other advantages other breeds may not.

Here are some common and desirable terrier breeds:

Soft Coated Wheaten Terriers are very alert and spirited, but not timid. They have steady dispositions and confident heirs, which means that you can count on them in stressful situations. Because they are very intelligent, there are also particularly suitable for obedience training.

The Parson Russell Terrier is bold, clever, affectionate and exuberant. If you are high-energy and like to play a lot, this may be the dog for you, but if you may not have patience for a particularly spirited dog, you may want to find another type. Of all the breeds, this dog is likely going to need formal obedience training the most, because it will be too playful and too mischievous with its owners to really pay attention. However, if you’re patient and you like playfulness and a streak of independence, this terrier may be for you.

The Norwich terrier came about because small terrier breeds were bred with even smaller chair breeds like Yorkshire terriers. This type of dog is very content to live modestly and doesn’t need a lot of room. Their dispositions are affectionate, fearless, and alert. Because they’re happy and steadfast, this makes them ideal pets.

Norfolk Terriers are a lot like the Norwich Terriers, and are fearless, charming, ready to play, and spirited. They look a lot like Norwich Terriers, but they have folds in their ears that set them apart.

Kerry Blue Terriers make excellent watchdogs and are very suitable for the farm environment. The dog’s name comes from its “blue” coat, originally black in puppy hood.

Wire Fox Terriers are very powerful and fast. They’re very alert and have quick movements, which makes them suitable for very active lifestyles. It’s imperative, though, that the owner take control of the dog and train it. It also needs to get plenty of exercise.

Smooth Fox Terriers are lively dogs that like to play, and they are very intelligent and clever. Suitable for both the country and city, they take to training well. They are also usually very affectionate with their owners.

These are just a few of the terrier types available; you may want to consider one as your next pet. Generally, these dogs have good dispositions and make excellent pets. They tend to become very attached to their owners, and can be very playful. It should be noted, though, you need to give them enough attention and to put them through obedience training (formal if necessary), as well as give them enough physical activity to keep them well and active.

5 Cool New Tricks That You Can Teach Your Dog

A dog is man’s best friend. You will find one in almost all homesteads. It acts as a companion, security, and play partner among others. It is, therefore, essential to involve your dog in all activities as much as you can.You can do this by playing with him and teaching him new cool tricks.

Teaching pet tricks can be one of the sources of joys and pleasure in your life. Seeing your pet grow confident each day, happy and contended with the attention he gets from your merits more love and stronger and genuine bond.

What tricks are fun and easy for your dog and how do you teach them?

1. Shake- This method is similar to a handshake we individuals do to welcome or to thank someone. It’s cool when your dog learns this skill, and it’s simple. Lift your dogs’ paw and say, “SHAKE” loudly then give your treat and say “SHAKE” once more. Continue raising your dog’s paw and give it treats until it’s able to do it on its own.

2. Bow-With this command, your dog will bring his head to the floor. To teach this treat, you only hold a treat in front of your dog’s nose and let your dog follow as you bring it downward. Say “BOW” slowly as he nods his head. After a while, your dog will learn how to do it.

3. Kiss-Dogs don’t kiss, they lick. So the trick is to say “KISS ME” anytime your dog licks you. Soon, your dog will “kiss” you anytime you give him this command. It is the best way to appreciate it whenever it behaves in the right manner.

4. Catch- Some dogs naturally know how to find food before it hit the ground. So, when you toss a treat up into the air, say “CATCH” and your dog will recognize the command the next time you order it.
5. Fetch- It’s another treat that comes out naturally for most active dogs. You throw a ball and say “FETCH.” Run with your dog and as soon as your dog retrieves the object take the object from him and give him a treat. Do this continuously until your dog automatically run and give you the object to exchange it for his reward.

Teaching tricks are having fun and at the same time giving your dog new knowledge to cope up in human society- a society considerably different from his. It is also wise to consider all the risk factors that could be associated with the process of learning. A dog owner should do research to identify his type of dog. Different dogs have unique capabilities and through the identification of which category your dog lies is paramount.

You should also use the right methods of teaching the dog for it to learn quickly and fast. Do this with positive reinforcement and achieve it without any negative force or intimidation. Remember, to give your dog a handful of treats, not a mind full of threats. The above information is all a dog owner requires in ordering to enjoy his pet to the utmost.