The Beauty of Edging Your Flower Garden

The edging surrounding your garden is practically as important as the flowers themselves. The edging frames your garden, like the frame of a picture. It gives it well defined boundaries to separate your flower garden from the rest of your yard. A good edging enhances the beauty of your flower garden, turning it into a masterpiece.

These is an assortment of edging options to choose from, and it is up to you to pick the one that will best compliment your garden. A low retaining wall, made from brick or rock and mortar, is a popular choice, as it is solid and permanently boarders your garden. These types of wall edgings can be quite expensive; however, and you may decide that you would like to choose something not as permanent to edge your garden. You never know when you will want your garden to expand!

Another option is to simply line up bricks or rocks, using no mortar. Bricks can be lined up, stacked in a short wall, or set up diagonally, leaning against one another. Rocks can also be lined up or stacked to crate an edging for your garden. Rocks should be small enough to be easily moved, while large enough to make a visual impact. Rocks can be found while digging in your garden or for other landscaping projects, or in a friend’s yard or empty lot. Just be sure to ask for permission before taking rocks from someone elses property.

You can also purchase edging materials at a home improvement store or garden center. Have a look around and check out all the options that might look good in your garden. You can choose from plastic edging, which provides a simple border when stuck vertically in the ground, tiny fences, landscaping timbers, and boarders made from artificial rock. The options are almost endless. Just be sure that what ever you decide, that you select a good quality, durable product. You need something that will hold up, so you wont have to replace your edging year after year.

Border plants, such as perennials like alpine phlox, make a beautiful, natural edging. Low growing plants that grow quickly and can be divided and replanted each spring make a nice choice, so that you do not have to purchase new annuals every year. As with selecting any plants for your garden, make sure that you select plants that will work with your climate and the amount of sun your garden receives.

The lush, thick growth of comfrey, make it an excellent choice to border a large garden. It will stop grass from encroaching on your garden with its heavy growth. The flowers are beautiful and will be attractive in your garden, and you can use the leaves as mulch when they fall off. Comfey is only appropriate for large gardens, however, as smaller gardens can quickly become overtaken.

A delicious choice for edging your garden would be to plant strawberries or herbs. You can use the fresh herbs in your meals when cooking – just clip off as much as you need when you visit your garden.

You can select from a variety of plants, rocks, bricks or store bought edging to border your garden. Keep in mind that the edging you select should serve as a frame to accentuate and display your flower garden as though it is a work of art.

Beauty of Teak Patio Furniture

A patio is that part of the house which is not exactly inside the house, yet is generally the favorite space with most of the members of the house. Whether it’s for enjoying the summer evening breeze, or relaxing after a hard days work, or just spending some time with the family, a patio is surely a gift to the people who can afford one. And with the thought of a patio, the next thought that comes in mind is the furniture for the place. There are varieties of patio furniture. But teak patio furniture is the best option. One may ask here, why teak patio furniture? Well, teak is the most obvious choice for outdoor furniture.

Teak patio furniture has a certain elegance which is unique. It adds a grace to the exterior of the house. But more importantly, teak is much more durable than any other wood. In earlier days, teak wood was a favorite with the royalty. Teak wood requires minimum maintenance. Teak wood, because of the oils in it, is safe from natural decay and wood worms, more than most of the other woods. And teak has a beautiful understated sheen, which makes it a favorite.

Teak patio furniture come in various forms. You can set up a complete dining space in the patio with dining tables, chairs,bar tables and bar stools. You can create a more living room atmosphere in the patio by choosing a coffee table, with benches and chairs. You can go for a single teak chair or a luxury lounge chair. Variety is the other name when it comes to teak patio furniture.

You can also choose the shade of the furniture. You can have your teak furniture in it’s natural honey color or you can have it in a warm rich glowing shade of brown. Again some people like their teak with the natural coating of patina. Due to being exposed for long hours in the sun, the teak turns a silvery gray shade. This is called the patina coating. Many people prefer the patina as it is the easiest to maintain.

If you want the warm rich glow, you’ll have to oil your teak patio furniture. If you want the patina to be there, all you need to do is just clean the furniture with a 2:1 mixture of laundry detergent and bleach, mixed with water. Use a soft bristled brush to clean the furniture. Make sure you wash it off with enough water to remove all traces of dirt as well as soap. Besides there are specialized teak cleaners for cleaning your teak patio furniture. Doing this will keep the furniture clean and will allow the patina to develop well. But if you want to remove the patina, use commercially available teak cleaners that are made to remove the silvery gray coating. This patina removing has to happen in two steps. First you will have to clean your teak patio furniture with the base cleaner, which is usually a caustic soda and then you need to clean it again with an acid, like phosphoric acid. Sometimes, if your teak patio furniture is too much weathered, you might have to additionally scrub it with a scrubber or use a sand paper.

Remember, oil from food and other food stains can leave marks on your teak furniture. To protect you furniture from any stains, use a teak clear coat, which is commercially available. And though teak has it’s natural oils to protect it from water, yet it’s not a good idea to let water accumulate near and around your furniture. Remember, you don’t need to put any oil varnish or water sealer coating on your furniture. Let it glow in its own radiant color.

Garage Floors: Boring to Fabulous

There are various types of garage floor surfaces to choose from and most are available in a range of color options. What do you want to achieve with your new garage floor covering? Are you thinking about safety? Free flow floor tiles offer a stylish look with the added benefit of draining away melting snow or other liquids that may find their way to your floor. These slippery substances simply slide right through the flooring to your drain or out the front of your garage! Choose from a variety of colors ranging from graphite to royal purple or mix it up to create your own unique design.

Other flooring styles include but are not limited to:

Harley Davidson- available in signature orange and black with an embossed Harley symbol

Race Deck- beautiful high gloss aluminum diamond design

Fast Deck- do you need to take your flooring on the road? Fast decks are portable, slip resistant and gorgeous.

Snap Carpet- perhaps you want a wall to wall carpeting in your garage? These interlocking carpet tiles are the perfect solution.


Right about now, you are probably figuring up the cost and frustration of installing your garage floor covering. Are you imagining specialty tools and toxic fumes? You will be happy to know that some DIY flooring for the garage requires none of the above. These handy tiles snap together, simply with a patented step and lock design, which means you, will spend more time admiring the floor than working on it!

Garage Flooring Options

In addition to different color options, you will also find many DIY flooring for garage tiles come in differing sizes. Here are a few examples:

RaceDeck XLF- 18″x 18″ x.5″

Harley Davidson- 12″ x 12″ x.5″

Snap Carpet- 12″ x 12″ x.5″

Pros and Cons

There are several ways you can finish your garage floor, from simple paints or stains to high-end ceramic tile and several garage flooring options in between. The question is which one is right for you? The answer to this question depends quite a bit on you, personal taste, finances and usage of the are key as well.

Paints and stains are probably the cheapest DIY flooring alternative. Garage floor paint is ready to use right out of the can and goes on fairly easily with a roller or paintbrush. When you are finished, you have a nice looking garage floor that is easier to sweep and mop. On the downside, paint and sealants tend to wear off over time and hot tires can do quite a number on the finish. The cement slap in your garage may also develop cracks and it will be extremely difficult to seal and cover these. So, while this may be the cheaper initial option you should expect to reapply stains, sealers or paint periodically.

A mid line between paint and more expensive tiles is epoxy. This is a substance that you “paint” onto the floor but which bonds like a weld and resists most common garage chemical spills. These finishes are still cheaper than tiles but traditionally more difficult to work with. In fact, most people would skip the hassle altogether and hire a professional. You may still have issues with cracks developing even though epoxy is a much more durable floor covering.

Tiles and kits are the most expensive option, however they are also more resilient and user friendly. Some tile floors also require grout, epoxy and sealant but snap together garage flooring options require no specialty tools, epoxy or glues and can withstand weights of up to 50,000 pounds rolling!

At the end of the day, it all comes down to what you want to achieve and how much money you want to spend. You can expect to fork out several thousand dollars for a tiled garage floor, but remember this is a one-time investment and it could improve the overall value of your home!


Are you a car enthusiast whose ideal weekend is spent in the garage with your toys? Why not create a garage that compliments your vehicles while adding style and safety? Whether you want a classic checkered flag design or something more eye catching such as royal blues or purples, there is a quick snap DIY flooring option out there for you.

Japanese Gardening

The basics of a Japanese Garden

Most of us have a pre-determined notion of what a Japanese garden looks like. We think of certain details which come to mind, things like the ever popular Japanese maples giving off their fiery glow in the fall. Or expanses of Kurume azaleas or rhododendrons with their fine spring colors. Or perhaps it is the rustling of a slender bamboo in the breeze.

Whatever it is, there is always something soothing about the typical Japanese garden. But is there, in fact, such a thing as a typical Japanese garden?

There are different kinds of Japanese gardens, each having their very own personality, if you will.

Some of the best known gardens in Japan, have almost no plantings at all, but are comprised of carefully tended “seas” of fine gravel surrounding rock groupings. Perhaps there is no better example of this than the world renowned garden at Ryoan-ji.

Ryoan-ji is undoubtedly the finest example of a Zen type garden and receives tens of thousands of visitors every year. In fact, it is so popular, that one side of it is lined with a large seating area to accommodate tour groups. It is considered de rigeur for all school children in the area to visit Ryoan-ji as part of their education.

While such a garden may appear to be very simple in both its’ design and construction, it is accepted that much thought went into this magical place to reach this level of perceived simplicity.

Japanese gardens span the full spectrum of garden types, from the dry garden as at Ryoan-ji, to large pond type gardens with their lazily swimming and brightly colored koi. And everything in between.

One of the favorite tricks of Japanese garden designers in the past has been to use borrowed scenery to enhance their appearance. What this does, is to make the garden appear to blend in with, and take advantage of, the immediate surroundings. It gives the impression of much greater overall size.

Whether or not these surroundings are very close, or consist of distant mountain views, every effort is made to incorporate such views by carefully designing viewing areas to take full advantage of the natural surroundings.

Perhaps one of the most loved is the Japanese tea garden, with its’ own tea house. These gardens are usually quite small, and are sometimes included as a distinct part of a larger garden. The Nitobe Gardens in Vancouver are an example of such a tea garden. The garden itself is fairly large and contains most of the elements you would expect to find in an authentic garden of this type.

Should you find yourself interested in the fascinating subject of how to build your own Japanese style garden, an excellent place to begin is to study those gardens in existence already. Whether or not you have the ability to travel to Japan and visit some of these gardens first hand should not deter you. Fortunately for us, the internet has given us access to the best of the best.

Secondly, and by no means an inferior resource, their exists a wonderful variety of top notch books, almost all of which are available in the English language. Over the years I have been able to accumulate a substantial library by many of the finest authors on the subject.