Mar 27, 2010

Planting a Vegetable Garden Tips

There are many tips on planting a vegetable garden that will help you find success, whether you're growing a wide array of vegetables or just want to grow the best tomatoes in the neighborhood.

Finding your place
The most important thing you can do to ensure success for your vegetable garden is to locate it in the best place in your yard. The vast majority of things you will want to plant in your garden like full sun best, so planting your garden in a sunny spot will go a long way toward ensuring the success of your crop.

Of course sunny spots are often dry spots as well, so if you have a sunny spot that holds moisture well without being soggy, that's a good place for your garden. If all your sunny spots tend to be dry, however, you can always amend the soil to make it more hospitable for your plants.

If you're going to plant some things that like less sun or need a cooler environment, such as lettuce, consider planting your lettuce under a plant that will get tall and cast shade on your seedlings.

Preparing the soil
The most important tips on planting a vegetable garden don't really have to do with planting—preparing the soil before you plant gives your vegetables a good head start.

If you don't know much about the quality of your soil, a soil test kit can give you a lot of information about what's going on down there. You can do the tests yourself or give a soil sample from the area where you would like to put your garden to your local cooperative extension service. They can recommend soil amendments based on the types of vegetables you want to plant.

In general, most vegetables like a well-balanced and well-drained soil. Use of a conventional or organic fertilizer, as well as any amendments needed to change the pH of your soil should be done before you plant. Most common vegetable plants thrive in soils with a pH of five to seven.

To make the soil more friendly to vegetable plants, it's a great idea to add compost or manure to your garden plot as well as the other soil amendments. You can't really add too much compost, as it provides nutrients and a good home for beneficial microbes, as well as aerating the soil and improving its drainage.

If possible, till these amendments into the soil a few weeks before you want to plant your vegetables and water the soil well after adding them.

Another tips:

  • Planning the design of a vegetable garden will take a lot of your time when you are getting ready to plant. You need to know what vegetables you are going to plant, what kind of light requirements they need and when they should be planted for best results.

  • Knowing what planting zone you are in will tell you when to plant different items, or find out your area's frost-free date from the county Cooperative Extension Service. Most plants can safely be planted after that date, but some cool-weather plants like broccoli may need to be planted before that date to get a good growing season.

  • Mulching the vegetable garden is a good idea, because it helps cut down on weeding and keeps the plants moist. Mulch in combination with a drip-irrigation watering system will lower your water bill and ensure that more water is going to the roots of the plants, where it is needed most.

  • Pest control is very important after you have planted your vegetables. Do a regular inspection of your plants and remove unwanted insects that you can see, or spray with chemical insecticides or use organic methods when necessary to get rid of pests.

  • If you have a dog that likes to dig or other wildlife that is encroaching on your garden, try fencing in the garden space so your animals can't access it. You can also buy netting to help prevent the birds from eating your berries.
Site selection, soil preparation and planting your plants at the appropriate time for where you live are the most important tips for planting a vegetable garden. Controlling weeds and pests and ensuring that the garden is well-watered will go even farther to make sure you get to enjoy the fruits (and vegetables) of your labor.

Source: here

Mar 22, 2010

Get Rid of These from Your Kitchen !

Ellen Sandbeck, the author of Organic Housekeeping, mentioned six hidden danger in your kitchen. I think it’s very important information that you should aware; for the sake of your whole family’s health! Check it out…

1.Teflon-Coated CookwareStudies conducted by the Environmental Working Group have shown overheated nonstick pans emit a toxic mixture of chemicals that may cause cancer, birth defects, immune system suppression and increased risk of heart attack and stroke. The chemical culprits are fluorine compounds, which are used in water-and stain-repellent coatings on carpets, clothing, ironing boards, ovens and pots and pans.

2. Aluminum Pots and Pans
You need to get rid of any aluminum pots and pans because that aluminum has been linked to Alzheimer's disease. These pans are light, often cheap and are reactive. Storing salty or acidic food in an aluminum pot will pit the surface of the metal and contaminate the food with aluminum. Instead, use clay, stainless steel, ceramic, glass, porcelain or cast-iron cookware. One of the advantages of cast-iron is that it can actually provide small amounts of iron, a necessary nutrient.

3. Plastic UtensilsIt melts when it gets hot! A hot frying pan is an unsuitable location for a plastic spoon or spatula. Instead use stainless-steel spatulas, wooden spatulas, bamboo spatulas, wooden spoons, stainless-steel spoons, stainless-steel ladles, and glass or metal measuring cups.

4. Plastic Containers
Many plastics start to break down as they age and when they are heated, scrubbed or subjected to harsh detergents. Bisphenol A is the main ingredient in polycarbonate plastic, which is commonly used to make baby bottles, reusable milk bottles and reusable water bottles. Bisphenol upsets natural hormone levels and causes genetic damage and miscarriages in lab mice. To minimize your exposure to the chemicals found in plastics, when you bring groceries home, remove the plastic packaging and wrap all your cheeses and meats in freezer paper or waxed paper before putting them in a plastic bag or container.

5. Raw Meats
Diners who eat raw or undercooked meat, fish, shellfish, or poultry can end up with tapeworms, toxoplasmosis or trichinosis. Avoid cross-contamination by using different cutting boards for meat and produce. Also try this homemade spray system: Take two spray bottles and fill one with distilled white vinegar and the other with hydrogen peroxide. After washing meats and produce, spray vinegar first and then the peroxide on your countertops — no need to rinse.

6. Metal Containers
Acidic foods such as tomatoes, sauerkraut, fruit, lemonade, fruit punches, carbonated beverages, tea and wine can react with metal in containers and become poisonous.
Avoid these and use glass instead:

  • Zinc: galvanized metal containers may leach toxic amounts of zinc into the food.

  • Copper or brass: Makes lemonade, wine, tea, coffee and tomato sauce toxic.

  • Lead: Traditional pewter contains 25% lead and 75% tin. Many antique ceramics have lead glazes. Avoid using them for serving food. Also be wary of lead crystal.

Mar 18, 2010

Affordable Funky Furniture

If you want to decorate your home in style without spending lots of money, finding affordable funky furniture. It can be the key to your decorating success. You can outfit your home with stylish pieces that are comfortable and practical, while also making your living space uniquely yours.
I share here several designs of funky furniture for your inspiration.

Retro Chair with Step Stool.
For a retro touch in your kitchen or bar, consider adding a few matching retro chair and step stools.

Flip Top Bench Table
A flip top bench table is a terrific addition to your backyard or patio furniture collections, as well as for a child's bedroom or playroom.

Compact Breakfast Set
A breakfast set with stools that tuck away is an outstanding choice for a small kitchen.

Storage End Table
A storage end table is an attractive and practical addition to the décor of any room at your home.

Source :

Mar 12, 2010

Using Slipcovers Tips

This post still mention about slipcovers. Using slipcovers is a really adaptable option when it comes to changing the appearance of a room. If you like the idea of using fabric in your interior decorating, here are some ideas that may inspire you to experiment with slipcovers.

Modify the style of your furniture simply by fitting a slipcover. For instance, use a slipcover with a straight or pleated skirt to hide wooden sofa legs, or use form-fitted stretch slipcovers for a smooth, tailored look.

Improve the look and feel of your room by using slipcovers to coordinate mismatched furniture. If the floral print on that old secondhand sofa clashes with the checks on your favorite arm chair, then using matching sofa and chair covers is a cheap and effective way to give them a stylish new image.

Have fun with color. Changing your slipcovers according to the season or the occasion is a simple but effective way to introduce different colors into your home décor, without the expense or work involved in reupholstery. You might want to use light or pastel shades during the hot summer months, while darker warm and rich colors are great for creating an inviting scene in autumn and winter.

Experiment with texture. Slipcovers can be made from all kinds of fabrics, from denim and twill to damask and chenille. You can have a lot of fun and come up with some great results by mixing and matching different textures. You could try adding unique touches and details to your slipcovers by attaching tassels or sashes, trims or buttons.

You're not just limited to the living room when using slipcovers. Ready made dining chair covers are excellent for beautifying your everyday dining chairs for special occasions such as a dinner party or the holidays. And they are easy to wash. So, not only do they look elegant, they can help protect your upholstery from food and drink spills. Dining chair slipcovers can even be used on chairs with wooden backs – you can easily add padding by draping an old blanket over the backs before fitting your slipcovers.

Mar 8, 2010

Use Slipcovers for Updating Your Furniture

Your present furniture looks ugly already? You shouldn’t throw your ugly furniture to the nearest dumpster. Slipcovers are a modern way to cover and camouflage old-fashioned or damaged furniture that can still be useful in your home. Contemporary slipcover design ideas are fresh and decorative, so you will feel like you have a brand new piece of furniture to add to your living space.

To renew your worn out piece of furniture, follow these few simple techniques for turning an old furnishing into something fresh and decorative.

Slipcovers Help the Old Look New Again
Since slipcovers are made from fabric, you can use your personal style and taste to create a slipcover design that fits the motif of your bedroom or living room. Regardless of the theme of your room, whether it is classical, modern, or country, slipcovers can be used to make an old chair look like something new and exciting. Brightly patterned designs, soft pastel prints, or solid fabrics can all be used to introduce new design into your living room. Slipcovers can transform a bedroom from a dull and dated room into a room that is filled with color and pattern.

Slipcovers Bring Versatile Design to a RoomSometimes your living room or bedroom includes furnishings that are mismatched and incoherent in their design appeal. To bring harmony and uniformity to a bedroom, you can use a slipcover as a transitional decorative element. For example, a slipcover on a bedroom chair can be used to tie the colors in the walls, floor, and bedding together to create a unified space. In addition, you can add decorative accents to a slipcover like fringe, beads, rope, ribbon, and piping to add blending elements to the room design.

Slipcovers Wash Easily
Slipcovers are typically made from fabrics that can be washed on a regular basis. To avoid unwanted stains on upholstery, slipcovers provide a viable option. It is not possible to wash the upholstery on your favorite sofa or chair, but it is incredibly convenient to toss a slipcover in the washing machine. To ensure the best results from the addition of a slipcover, make sure that the existing upholstery on a chair or sofa is not so stained that the problem area will show through a slipcover.

Slipcovers Don't Require SewingFlamboyant fabrics and professional tailoring are not necessary elements for creating a decorative slipcover. Some basic designer tips can make the project a simple one. For an ordinary wooden chair, a padded seat cushion and a throw pillow against the back of the chair provide a perfect slipcover design.

These decorative elements don’t require you to sew a stitch. In addition, sheets and fabrics can be laid across a sofa or chair and tied at the bottom where the fabric meets the legs of the chair. Some rope or ribbon can be used to tie a knot or bow around the fabric and leg of the furniture.

Slipcovers are a modern way to update soiled or old-fashioned furniture. Contemporary slipcover design is colorful, low maintenance, decorative, and simple. You will feel like you have a brand new piece of furniture to add to your bedroom or living room design.

Picture source:

Mar 4, 2010

Railway-Side Paintings Gallery

For our terrace decoration, I really want to hang a painting there; but we have tight budget now. Fortunately, I remember this ‘gallery’. So, we went there to look for paintings.

The ‘gallery’ is located in a unique place. It locates on the side of railway track Bogor – Sukabumi. You can imagine how busy the seller to move the paintings every time the train is passing through. Luckily the train only pass trough twice per day…

Tens of paintings are displayed in a long row, right and left side of the railway. It’s like being in a museum or a gallery, hehehe. We found our choice and then we hang it on the wall. The most thing I like, the painting’s price is so affordable!

Mar 1, 2010

How to Fix Loose Wallpaper

Whether it was hung mistakenly in the first place or for some reason it just did not stick on well to the wall, wallpaper will become loose over time. Loose wallpaper starts with its edges curling or lifting up. Unless you fix the problem, it will get worse over time as more wallpaper will become loose. Don’t worry, you can repair this by yourself !

Loose wallpaper is very easy to reattach to the wall. Here is the guidance for you:

Step 1
Use a sponge to dampen the edge of the loose wallpaper. Lift and raise the loose end with a utility knife.

Step 2
Squeeze seam sealer (wallpaper glue) along the edge and back side of the wallpaper. Apply the adhesive along the entire length of the loose piece.

Step 3
Allow the seam sealer to dry for 15 minutes, or for the length of time recommended on the instructions.

Step 4
Run a paint roller along the length of the seam. Take care not to press too hard in order to avoid forcing the adhesive through the seam.

Step 5
Use a wet sponge to wipe off any excess adhesive that is on the wallpaper.

source : ehow

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