The fence is the simplest way to divide boundaries and to create privacy in your yard. The difficulty with fences, however, is that many municipalities only allow for the construction of fences that are 6 feet in height. This limits to the amount of privacy that can be achieved with just a fence. If you would like to have anything taller, there are a few simple ways in which privacy can be achieved. The best such way being, with plants!Read More
Seed catalogs arrive in the dead of winter and quickly become a portal into a fantasy world right when I need it. But come March, the bounty they portray starts to...Read More
A bird feeder can be an amazing addition to any outdoor backyard living space, yet what do you do when the birds aren't the ones that are feeding? Here are some tricks to keeping pesky squirrels out of your bird feeders and keep the birds off your outdoor deck furniture.
Use squirrel-proof feeders. There are several on the market that are weight-activated, allowing birds to feed but not squirrels. Some have better features, and might last longer, but are also a bit on the expensive side. This solution might sound like it needs a landscape engineer of some sorts but in reality, you can find the bird feeder you need for your modern or traditional garden.
Use a squirrel-resistant feeder if you are budget minded. These tend to be less expensive, and are not quite as sturdy but will do the trick. These feeders will definitely slow down the seed consumption and might work if you only have an occasional squirrel, but are not truly squirrel-proof like the choices above.
Spice it up! Try mixing some spice in with your birdseed! Birds naturally process spice with no harm to their bodies, yet squirrels have a much more complicated taste palate that is sensitive to spice. Experts recommend using hot peppers (capsicum), or pepper flakes to detour those pesky rodents. The only thing to stay away from is the use of powdered hot pepper, because it is known to blow into birds eyes due to wind and keep them away from your modern house design.
Minnesota has a garden and landscape culture unparalleled in most other states, here are 4 reasons to get your children involved!
1. A garden encourages you to spend time together outside
Life is hectic! Between sports practice and their ever growing social life, finding quality time with your kids is an ongoing struggle. Having a garden outside can be a simple way to connect with your children. Gardening is a rather arbitrary task that allows for you to engage in conversation while being outside and in nature. Leave the phone inside and take this time to have meaningful conversation with your child!
2. Grow vegetables that your child wants to eat
Nothing is more difficult than getting a picky eater to eat healthy food. Children are far more likely to be receptive to new or weird foods if they had a hand in the production itself. Perhaps bring your child to the store and let them have a say in what vegetables are grown! Everyone likes to be in charge of something, consider have your child take care of their own section of the garden. This will ensure your kids are glowing with anticipation for harvest time.
3. Teach your children valuable work ethics
Children, even as young as 3 or 4, can participate in tasks around the garden. From an early age a child's understanding of work gets formed. Children want to contribute and do things that make them feel valuable. Chores plant the idea that service is expected in the family. Giving a child a task such as "picking tomatoes" can be a win/win for children and parents. The child gets to be outside learning about plants as well as snack on tomatoes, all while the parents are instilling positive work ethics.
4. A garden is an outdoor classroom
One of the best teaching styles is the "hands on approach". One proven approach is to learn unique and fascinating facts about the garden and how food grows. This will get your child interested, and their inquisitive nature will do the rest. Soon enough you wont be able to stop the "Mom, why do_____?" questions. From the importance of earthworms to how to grow green beans, you could be planting the seeds for a lifetime love for biology and nature.