Awnings and canopies

In this country it often seems that Summer is incredibly short and fleeting. However, even so, on hot, sunny days you may find that your rooms which are exposed to full sunlight are just too hot or that sitting outside on your patio is unbearable after just a few minutes. If this is the case, you may want to consider installing a canopy or awning to an outside wall or to cover your patio area. A retractable system which is attached to brickwork of an exterior wall may just be the answer to glaring sunlight as it will give shade and deflect some of the heat. It will also help to protect carpets, soft furnishings and fabrics from fading by the sun. Awnings and canopies can also offer some protection from rain, enabling you and your guests to enjoy sitting outside for longer, even during a Summer shower.

Before spending money on an awning, do think carefully about the style of awning that you require and the size and make sure that it has the features that you need and that it is easy to use.

Growing vegetables on a balcony

As living space becomes more and more compact and apartment living becomes common place, you may still want to create a little splash of colour by planting in pots and containers on your balcony.

Do bear in mind that extremes may be felt more readily on a balcony. Plants will dry out more quickly and it will be windier than in a sheltered garden at ground level. Soil in terracotta pots can dry out very quickly, so either line the pots with plastic or use plastic or metal containers.

For balcony gardeners, chillies and tomatoes are ideal for sunny facing balconies but do plant in pots large enough to allow roots to expand. Choose smaller varieties of tomato like “Gardener’s Delight” and you will have a steady supply of fruits throughout the summer. If you have a wall to which you can fix a hanging basket then you could try tumbling tomatoes which hang down attractively and provide plenty of fruit. “Tumbler” or Hundreds and Thousands” are good varieties for baskets.

Pots of rosemary, thyme, sage and chives will also survive well on a balcony though rosemary may only be suitable if your balcony is a spacious one. You could also grow a row of lettuces in a couple of window box-sized containers. Pick the leaves as you need them and you will find they the lettuces will continue growing for a few weeks after you have picked the first leaves. However, you must make sure you shelter lettuces from the wind or the leaves may taste bitter and tough.

Benefits of Repairing Garage Door by Yourself

Your home garage door in the UK might fail to function effectively at one time or the other. Just like your house door, the door of your garage is one of the busiest parts in your home because it is opened and closed on daily basis. This means that some of its parts including the springs, hedges and others have high chances of failing. When your door fails, there is a need for it to be repaired fast to prevent it from total malfunctioning. You have the option to do the repair by yourself or work with a professional. You can decide to work by yourself if you have the skills and knowledge on how a door should be repaired in the most effective way. There are a lot of benefits involved in doing the door repair by yourself instead of working with a professional. This article offers you some to advantages of doing the repair by yourself.  Continue reading

Ideal Summer Bedding Plants

May is usually the month when early morning frosts become incredibly rare or totally non-existent and it is possible to begin planting out bedding plants for Summer flowering.

For many householders, it’s also the time to prepare the hanging baskets and container pots which are lined up on the patio. From the beginning of May onwards, garden centres and nurseries and even local supermarkets have a plethora of bedding plants for sale.

For hanging baskets, plant a few trailing plants like lobelia or trailing varieties of begonia and petunia which will hang down attractively, bringing colour and adding interest to a wall or dull looking fence. Marigolds are easy to grow and are suitable for beds as well as containers. Osteospermums and gazania will produce daisy-like flowers all summer long, especially if you dead-head fading blooms once they have finished flowering, encouraging further growth. Fuchsia are good to plant in pots on the patio. They often won’t survive through cold, frosty Winter days but if you plant them out in pots then you can easily move the pot inside during the harsher days of Winter or into a more sheltered position in the garden.

Within a couple of weeks of planting out bedding plants, you will soon find a splash of vibrant colours appearing in your flower beds, pots and hanging baskets.

Tips for buying a shed

Do buy a shed from a reputable company or manufacturer. Although it is likely to be more expensive, consider buying a shed constructed from higher quality timber – red wood pine will last longer than white wood spruce. Make sure you construct your shed on a solid, level base and use strong tongue and groove boards for the floor. For windows, you may want to consider joinery-made frames and toughened glass. Joinery frames are less likely to leak and toughened glass is an added safety option, especially if you have young children around. A good shed will have the option of a door opening to the left or right. Do fit strong, stainless steel hinges which are less likely to rust. If you are considering storing large objects inside your shed, then you may need to fit double doors. Opt for a strong tongue and groove roof and make sure you cover it in heavy duty felt. Once erected, treat the wood with a preservative to prevent fungi and mould growing. You can then paint it in the colour of your choice. Finally, if you are storing valuable gardening equipment or tools in your shed then you will want to fit with good quality locks.