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A Guide To Great Landscape Lighting

One of the fastest evolving markets in the service offering of US landscape gardening specialists is exterior lighting. However, outdoor lighting is not actually a specialty area that necessitates natural talent to engineer. Outside lighting can be a piece of cake to install even if you have never done any electrical wiring.

Landscape lighting is entirely about decorating all that is natural or man-made in the outdoor area adding a stunning and spectacular element to a dwelling’s after sundown appearance. Solar outside lighting is one of the easiest and low-cost methods to make your dwelling and garden safer and more beautiful.

Garden lighting is generally advisable, but specially about water features, which portray a distinct danger at night and is ideal for highlighting areas. Outside lighting is used to bring bushes and flowers to life at dusk, highlight particular areas around your property, shed light on pathways and stairs for safety and security. Not to mention it is a marvelous way to enhance the value of your house and to add and safety at night. As an accessory outdoor lighting is as functional as it is cosmetic, increasing the safety and security of any dwelling, since the home owner and family members are able to move about the property in safely after dark. Quite popular nowadays are low-voltage outdoor lighting set-ups. These systems by and large come complete with a step-down transformer. A large range of low voltage fixtures are available to achieve diverse lighting results. Outdoor lighting is an easy improvement that will make a large difference in the safety as well as the security of your dwelling as well the visual appearance at nighttime and is safer to run than your everyday mains lighting.

Solar powered systems are not dependent upon wiring nor do they use any transformers. One possible drawback is that they ordinarily only give off a subdued glow that lights a comparatively small area. An added benefit of solar outdoor lighting is that it is a piece of cake to install, and the installer wouldn’t have to dig under their driveway to run wires. Solar exterior lighting is supplied in a array of styles from a variety of producers offering solar exterior decor that fit your style. Exterior lighting is the ideal product for solar powered, wireless style lights.That said ,they must be placed in an area, which gets a large amounts of sunlight during the daytime. This exterior lighting alternative has been gaining in popularity the past few years. Solar outside lighting stores energy captured during the day and then when it becomes dark enough, the outdoor lighting switches on automatically. One complaint with solar exterior lighting is that you may not feel it is very efficient because they produce very little light and get dimmer as the battery runs out. Nevertheless most solar lighting can be as bright as traditional low-voltage. Now that manufacturing systems have improved and price tags are falling , solar lighting has become the hottest segment in the garden industry. Yet, the photovoltaics panel employed to charge the battery must be in a place where it will receive plenty of direct sunlight. It is a fast simple choice that can transform your yard decor or landscape. Solar landscape lighting provides many alternatives for you to integrate into your gardening project including pathway, driveway lights, accent lights, lanterns, fountains, and spotlights.

In the natural landscape, the majority of lighting, generally, is rendered by the sun, regulated by clouds and strained by vegetation. Light, or its absence can dramatically vary the visual aspect of your gardening projects. Try playing around with your timing and using various designs to change the mood over the evening for example set for evening, not too dimmed, and with a ruddy orange ambience. You can always expand fixed lighting with holiday lights and solar exterior lighting located amidst plantings to throw off a radiance around your garden. As with virtually all electrical devices, landscape lighting can be operated by intelligent switches, in particular timers.By using sensors and controllers you can prevent power wastage by your exterior lighting. There are many choices for outdoor lighting from which you can choose.

Thanksgiving Decorations and Party Ideas

When guests are invited to enjoy a traditional Thanksgiving dinner at your house, you may want to create festive and beautiful Thanksgiving decorations to transform your home into a wonderful autumn landscape.

Thanksgiving dinner is usually set around a formal dinner setting but if you are having a lot of guests and don’t have enough seating, you can set up a buffet table. Start off by using natural items you would find in the fall months. Go outside and collect changing leaves, pinecones, twigs with berries still attached and any other element from nature that you might think you can use in your decorations.

Press the leaves in books ahead of time so they have time to dry out before Thanksgiving Day. Create a thrilling cornucopia by spray painting all of the vegetables the same color; burgundy, silver, or gold. Your cornucopia can be used as your table’s centerpiece or for a decoration on another flat surface.

Use your leftover Halloween pumpkins in your Thanksgiving decorations. Bring a Thanksgiving scene to life on the front of your pumpkin by using paint with stamps or stencils. Cut a hole out of the top of the pumpkin and use it as a vase to hold gold or orange mums or carnations or daisies.

Instead of using pieces of paper for place cards, create variety by using mini pumpkins or gourds. Write the names of your dinner guests on the mini pumpkins or gourds to mark each table setting. Create an interesting and beautiful autumn garland by using autumn leaves, small pinecones, nuts and berries.

Drape the garland around the room for a festive Thanksgiving atmosphere. Plan a few fun games and activities if you are going to have kids at your dinner. Surf the internet for ideas. Make sure to use plenty of Thanksgiving Day colors throughout your entire home. Oranges, gold, browns and burgundies are the perfect Thanksgiving Day pallet.

3 Steps to Prepare Your Garden and Landscape For Winter

The summer is over, clearly autumn has arrived, and winter can’t be far behind. It is time to prepare the garden and surrounding landscape for the harsh months ahead. Here are 3 simple tips to help you get started.
 
Clean Up: Before the first killing frost do one last weeding in the garden. This will prevent seed heads from dispersing and give you a head start in the spring. Remove any diseased plants or foliage to prevent diseases from spreading or even lying dormant in the ground until next spring. Do not compost diseased materials. Cut back foliage that is done blossoming and unattractive at 2 to 3 inches off the ground. Plants such as lavender, Russian sage and astilbe bring interest to the winter garden if left untrimmed. Phlox, peonies, and monarda (bee balm) should always be cut back because they are highly susceptible to disease. Plants that still look good, annuals, hostas, sedum and others can be cut back after the first killing frost. Unfortunately, raking is a must for a healthy, attractive lawn and garden. 
 
Cover Up: You might be surprised to discover that most perennials do not need to be covered up or protected. However if you are trying to grow plants or shrubs that are not hardy for your agricultural zone, or it’s a first year perennial, or it is expensive or special you might want to take extra precautions. The preferred method for protecting garden perennials is to mulch, but mulching does not mean covering up your plants. The mulch material should be placed around the base of the plant, not covering the center or crown and should not be done until after several hard frosts. The idea is to prevent the ground around the plant from unthawing and refreezing causing the plant to heave or start spring growth prematurely. Materials for mulch can include shredded leaves (run your mower over the leaves several times), processed manure, or shredded bark. It is advantageous to use something that will break down over the winter and add nutrients or amend the soil.

Tender shrubs and roses often require some protection from the harsh winter winds, temperatures and animal damage. Plastic or wire hardware cloth can be used around the shrubs to protect the bark from rodent damage. To protect from winds and temperatures shredded leaves can be put in as well. Hybrid tea roses should be protected before the temperatures drop below 25 degrees F. There are products such as The Garden Dome that offer a simple frame and secured cover for shrub and plant protection. Continue to water evergreens and newly planted shrubs as long as possible.

Collect: Walk around your garden and yard and collect the decorative elements that would take a beating; statuettes, wind chimes, gazing balls, etc. Don’t forget about  ceramic bird baths that are susceptible to freezing and cracking. Take clippings of any annuals that you want to bring indoors. Consider cleaning out your containers and storing before the weather is miserably cold. Be sure to drain and bring in hoses and if you do not have freeze proof faucets those should be drained and shut off as well.
 
A garden prepared for winter is a protected investment. A little time and energy spent now will bring a more pleasant result in the spring.