Monday, December 30, 2013

Winter Garden Prep



It is hard to figure out what to do in the fall and winter garden so we found an expert to give us some tips from the ground up!

Friday, December 27, 2013

"Stamp" Concrete with Impression Patterns by NewLook



Learn more at www.ImpressionPatterns.com

An Impression Pattern is a durable, long-lasting polyurethane pattern. It's not a stamp. It's not a stencil. It's an Impression—the new method for imprinting texture and design into fresh concrete and overlays.

Impression Patterns are easier to use than their stamp and stencil counterparts and they're very versatile. They cost less and are much more forgiving.

They are available in many popular field and border stock patterns, including ashlar, brick, cobble stone, and random stone. You can even customize your Impression to achieve any intricate design you want.

Preparation

Prepare the Impression once the concrete is poured properly and finished with a steel trowel or bull float. Thoroughly coat both sides of the Impression with liquid release. Spray a liberal amount of release onto the concrete, as well. This prevents the Impression from sticking and helps it leave a well-defined pattern.

Placing the Impression

Place the Impression wherever you want. Don't worry about laying it down perfectly. The process is very forgiving. The marks and lines left from the Impression will disappear when the Impression is troweled. Adjust and move the Impression as needed until you are satisfied with its position.

Troweling & Finishing

One of the unique benefits of using Impressions is found in the finishing process. Begin by gently tapping and troweling over the Impression. This helps push the Impression into the top layer of fresh concrete so that the top part of the Impression becomes flush with the concrete surface. Use standard troweling techniques to achieve the desired finish.

Once the Impression is set, you can add texture using a textured roller. Be sure to coat the roller with release agent. Using powder release can also help prevent puckering and sticking.

Remove the Impression

Once the concrete is dry, remove the impression by lifting up from one end.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Dry Creek Bed Landscape


The Living the Country Life brand includes our Living the Country Life magazine, Web site, and broadcast programs on RFD-TV and on our extensive radio network.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Creating A Gravel Walkway



DIY quick tip: Create gravel walkways to tie all your yard zones together.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Do You Need a Backyard Firepit?

Depending on how the weather turns, you may find that you enjoy sitting in the backyard at specific times of the year. It is not uncommon to consider different ways to improve your back patio or deck - maybe you've considered a gazebo or garden, or even a firepit to keep yourself warm on cooler evenings. Do you need a firepit to enhance your backyard entertaining, however? It can be a solid investment or a folly, but if you consider the pros and cons you will find you've made the right decision for home improvement.
Here are a few points to consider if you have thought about installing a fire shoppe in your backyard:
1) How often do you sit out in the backyard? Do you think the addition of a firepit will inspire you to spend more time outside? The good thing about firepits is that you can use them year round - for cozy conversations during the fall and winter and marshmallow toasting and hot dog roasting in the summer. If spending time outside is a favorite activity, you may want to improve the experience with a comfortable firepit setting.
2) What is your budget? Firepits come in a variety of styles and sizes. Some are merely portable iron bowls you can find in a home improvement shop, while others are brick structures that require professional construction and installation. Some will burn wood, others work with gas. The type of firepit you want may not correspond with the money you are able to invest, so make sure you go over your finances before you make a firm decision.
3) Are there any obstacles to installing a fire shoppe? Having a place where you will have an open flame may affect your home insurance. Also, if you live in a condo or other planned community there may be restrictions to what you can have installed in your yard area. Check with your insurance company and HOA or board to see if any regulations prevent you from setting up something.
If nothing stands in the way of your plan to enhance your backyard relaxation, you next want to research what kind of pit you want. Do you have an existing deck or patio? You may be able to build onto it and install a gas line for it. If not, you may wish to landscape the backyard altogether with the firepit as the focus. A local contractor or backyard leisure store can offer you many ideas.
Enjoy your nights before the fire, no matter the time of year. A backyard fire shoppe will keep you warm.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/7267472

Monday, December 9, 2013

How To Prepare Your Lawn And Landscape For The Winter

With the fall moving quickly past and winter approaching, now is the perfect time year to prepare your property for the upcoming cold weather. Not only will your property be protected from harsh winter weather but come spring time, you will have less lawn and landscape work to take on. Preps now save you from major fixes in the spring! Most of the things that need to be done to prepare your lawn and landscape for winter are easy and inexpensive but if put off until spring, will cause your now healthy landscape to be not so healthy looking. Listed below are some tips that you as a homeowner can follow to help get your property ready for the winter.
  • Rake up fallen leaves- You may be tempted to skip this chore but it is very important that fallen leaves are raked up and removed from your lawn. Leaving them on your lawn over the winter months may cause your lawn to "suffocate" over the winter.

  • Remove decaying or dying branches- Pruning dead branches off of the bushes and other landscaping around your property is important. This will help to keep trees and shrubs healthy and strong enough to hold up to the ice and snow that falls over the winter.

  • Clean up garden areas- Make it easier on yourself and clean up debris out of your flower beds and garden areas now; this will make it stress-free to do your plantings in the spring.

  • Mulch- After the first hard freeze, it is advised to apply mulch around your plants in your garden areas as this will help to protect the plants over the cold winter months.

  • Create a compost pile- Now is the perfect time to make a compost pile. It will not only serve as an area to get rid of organic debris that you are cleaning up from your yard, but when mixed with the soil in the spring, will help next year's plantings thrive.

  • Remove dead plants- After the first freeze happens, inspect your garden areas and remove any plants that have not made it. This will prevent diseased plants from spreading throughout your garden.

  • Mow your lawn- Mow your lawn one final time but make sure not to cut it too short. Leaving it 1.5-2 inches will ensure that it will be able to survive the winter.
If you find that you do not have the time or just don't have the energy or desire to prepare your lawn and landscape for winter, contact a professional lawn and landscape team. Their experts will be able to make sure that your property is prepared and ready to go for the winter without you having to leave your warm and cozy home!


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/8141748

Friday, December 6, 2013

5 Types of Landscape Stone - Which is Right For Your Next Project?

Landscape stone is a type of ornamental accessory that is used to enhance the overall look and feel of decorative lawn designs. These stones can be used to enhance natural elements around any home and business. Throughout this article, you will be introduced to various styles and methods of application when it comes to these types of stones. If you are searching for methods of employing a unique look and feel to the decoration of your home, using the various types of landscape stones may prove to be exceptionally beneficial!
Types of Landscape Stones
The good thing about this type of stone is that there are many different types available. Seeing that each home has a unique architectural design, and appearance, it is important to have a good selection when it comes to stones that can be used in the landscaping of the home. The following details some examples of stones that you can purchase for ornamental design:
1. Retaining Walls - There are many different types of stones that can be used when it comes to creating retaining walls in the lawn. You may elect to assemble a retaining wall around a small pond, or even a garden. You can choose from stones like Chilton, Lannon, Fond du Lac, Waukesha, Kodiak, and Bay De Noc.
2. Flagstone - Flagstone is a very popular choice when it comes to stones that are used for steps, or simple ornamental design.
3. Boulders - Many times, homeowners elect to implement the use of boulders in the decorative design of their landscaping. Great products in the way of boulders include that of Birchwood, Wisconsin, Granite, and even Honeycomb Western stone.
4. Marble - Many individuals elect to use marble when decorating their landscape. Marble can be used to create signs, around or in garden ponds, and even marble fountains can be purchased in order to bring out the natural appeal of a pond or garden area.
5. Natural Stone - Natural stone is often a choice for small landscaping structures. This is often considered the most economically sound stone when it comes to shopping and improving the home on a budget.
Stone Ideas for Landscaping
There are many ideas that you can choose to implement when it comes to landscape stones. Many homeowners elect to construct small fences created from these stones around the yard. There are many who will create a Zen type garden for the home and use these rocks to bring out the natural appeal and beauty of these products. There are also other ideas that you can implement, such as:
o Gardens
o Sidewalks
o Outdoor Living Areas
o Recreational Areas
o Trails
o Outdoor Cooking Areas
o Ponds
o And, More!
If you want to bring about a change in your landscape design, choosing stone to bring about a change may be the right choice for you. There are many different choices when it comes to colors, textures, and shapes. There are many types of stones available so that you can accurately match it to any type of architecture!


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/1273374

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Sand Vs Gravel - Basic Information For a Valuable Landscaping Project

Landscaping is an important component in home exterior improvement. Enhancing your outdoors is exquisitely valuable because it primarily affects the curb appeal of your property. Curb appeal plays an important role in the decision of potential home buyers in seriously considering the purchase of your house. In the course of landscaping, it is of utmost relevance to carefully choose between sand and gravel in terms of usage in the entirety of your project.
To start with, it is important to note that sand and gravel have certain common features and specifications when it comes to maintenance. This is because both materials seem to belong in the same group as to the manner of keeping or managing your landscape with such materials. For instance, you do not need a large quantity of water in order to maintain the beauty of your landscape with these types of decorations or foundation. Unlike its grass counterparts that you definitely need a reliable and sufficient water supply and system in order to keep your greenery in good condition and shape. Furthermore, landscapes using grass or other types of foliage are totally time consuming because of it requires you to give much of your effort and allocate your time for trimming and watering your lawn or front yard.
In terms of using sand or gravel, you will find that there is a slight difference in the usage of these materials. It actually shows in the effect or overall outcome and result of the landscaping project. Most home owners prefer using these materials for houses which are located in drier or tropical countries or states. This makes this option an environment-friendly alternative because you are basically lessening your usage of the water supply for your home improvement.
Using sand or gravel usually works hand in hand, since you can make use of one material as a supporting feature for the other. It is good to note that most landscapers prefer to use sand and gravel in lawns or projects that require assets such as desert gardens. Indulging into this particular landscape obviously caters for the integration of sand, rock and gravel into creating a remarkable desert rock garden. This option is becoming a popular preference for home owners who want to have a unique home exterior with exquisite style and features. Furthermore, it is a cost efficient alternative in comparison with other landscape ideas and materials such as using grasses and greenery.
Using sand creates an illusion of expansiveness and continuity in your front lawn and it is further enhanced in aesthetic value through incorporating gravel and rocks. This is because creating a pathway gives the spaciousness impact in your front lawn. You may add other features such as plants and flowers to give color and variation in your decorations and style.
Choosing between sand and gravel is quite a tricky and challenging task to use in your landscaping project. Both have the same features and the quality of their result depends on your preference and creativity to maximize your resources. Hence, it is best to develop a clear vision and plan on which to follow in the course of your home exterior upgrade.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/3318894

Saturday, November 30, 2013

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Playground Wood Chips


Raj with Dixon Landscape Materials shows us their very popular playground wood chips, which is made from Cedar and certified for playgrounds. It is also used all around the garden, parks and so on.

Call Dixon Landscape at 707-678-8200 and visit their website at www.dixonlandscape.com

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Step 1: The Game Plan


Instructional video from Park Avenue Turf on putting together a game plan for best installation of your new lawn sod.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Landscape With Boulders



It may sound a bit of a stretch to say; landscape with boulders, but it all depends on how you plan to acquire and position your boulders. Now, you can actually create your own boulders using a process that allows you to make your own fake boulders very inexpensive and the cost to make these fake boulders is one of the perks to this project.
In order to make your own boulders you just need to determine what size boulders and where you want them to be placed. The rest is just following some very easy, step by step plans, that you can acquire online. The process is unique and that makes discovering this method important from the standpoint of cost savings and customizing your project.
Creating your own landscaping rocks and boulders is not only economical but a lot of fun as well. Just imagine having the perfect landscaping design, using rocks and boulders that you didn't have to buy or have moved to your property, that is exciting just thinking about it.
Boulders can actually convert your landscaping project from normal to extraordinary, simply by being able to position the right size boulders in the right position to accent the rest of your lawn. Boulders add so much depth to your landscaping that you will gain rave revues from neighbors and those that happen to drive by your property as well.
If you consider the more elaborate landscaped lawns and public areas, they usually contain boulders to really set their landscape designs apart from the normal hedge or shrubs and a few select plants scattered about. By adding the boulders you can separate certain plants and shrubs that allow you to included more species of plants which adds more variety and attraction to your lawn.
Landscaping with boulders has always been a problem when moving or positioning these large rocks is involved. The cost usually deters the thought of even using them altogether. With modern technology and a few good plans you can now landscape with no limits in sight.
Depending on where live, you may have a certain type of boulder and rock that is native to your area. Some places have limestone rock formations, others have granite or field-stone. Being able to incorporate the native type of boulder formations will allow you to blend your landscaping project with the rocks that are found in your area, making your landscape look natural as well.
Boulders that are light weight and easy to move can allow you to reposition your layout from time to time and this is an added advantage that you won't find using real heavy boulders. This alone is an added value that you get by using fake rocks and boulders.
Not having to use any special tools and forms to make your own fake boulders is a plus that comes with some rock building plans. Free-standing boulders without forms are a great way to make and move your boulders into any position you choose. Rocks are always the icing on the cake, as far as award-winning landscaping designs are concerned. Now you can add rocks to your lawn or backyard and know that you have created your own masterpiece in landscaping.
Before you begin your next landscaping project, consider incorporating rocks and boulders that you can build and place without having to increase your budget. Fake rocks and boulders are the way to go.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/6626573

Friday, November 15, 2013

Winter Landscape Gardening Tips

During the winter months it is very easy to just sit in the warm and not bother with your garden, but this is actually when landscape gardeners recommend that this is a good time to take out those plants that you believe give you problems in one of the following ways;
Difficult to maintain; High maintenance; Causing other smaller plants to become shaded; Overgrown; Needs too much water; Simply bored with the plant.
Any of the above reasons may be a good reason just to dig up the problem plant and dispose of it, during the winter it is much easier to dig up plants whilst they generally have less foliage, unless of course they are evergreens.
Due to the change in climate more landscape gardeners are taking a closer look at watering requirements and if hosepipe bans start to become more frequent in your area you may decide to take a closer look at areas requiring lots of watering. When using water hoses, provided they are not banned at the time, a long heavy use of the sprinkler system say once a week can be far more beneficial than frequent shallow hose watering.
Roots will generally go deeper into the soil if you use infrequent heavy watering programs whereas roots can be shallower into the soil if only a light watering regime is used. Obviously in the winter in the UK even in the area of Sheffield where rain is abundant you can preserve our water systems.
Due to the cold snaps we get in the UK it is best not to cut your grass too short during the winter months maybe leave your grass length about 25-40mm long and in the known shaded areas of your garden maybe 50-60mm long this will also allow the roots to grow deeper.
Most landscape gardeners will tell you one of the most overlooked points during the winter is not clearing leaves and garbage off your lawn, try and get out there and rake up those leaves and put them in your compost bin, ideally once a fortnight or whenever you see an excess of leaves on your lawn, you could also where spike shoes when doing this to help aerate your lawn, although beneficial it is not essential.
Finally Landscape Gardeners will also recommend that the winter period is an excellent time to clear out old mulch that is older than three years old, as this mulch is now probably ineffective at preventing weeds plus fresh mulch will also help preserve water in the soil.



Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/5886163

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Which Sod is Best For Your Lawn

When it comes to lawn turf, everyone wants green lawns, easy maintenance, and less watering. Varieties of turfgrass have unique visual appeal, thickness, maintenance, and growth habits. The most common forms of lawn grass include: Centipede, Bermuda, St. Augustine, and Zoysia. Below are characteristics you should consider before choosing the best turfgrass for your landscape.
BermudaBermuda grass is a great all around grass for landscapes with high traffic. It is normally used for soccer and other sports fields. The grass prefers full sun and has a high tolerance for heat and drought conditions, although consistent watering will retain a bright green hue. There are a few pests and diseases you should be aware of including mole crickets, sod web worms, army worms, and dollar spot.
Centipede: This grass has a higher shade tolerance than Bermuda but lower tolerance compared to St. Augustine and Zoysia. Salt tolerance is fairly low and centipede grass prefers moderately acidic soils. Centipede grows rather slowly in comparison to other grasses, but will overtake a space if not kept in check. Centipede also requires little fertilizer, less mowing, and prefers full sun to moderate shade. This turfgrass does not grow well in high traffic areas, phosphorous or compact soils. TifBlair is one cold-tolerant variety that may be used in cooler climates such as North Carolina and further west.
St. AugustineThis is a warm climate grass that grows best in humid and coastal areas. St. Augustine can tolerate moderately shaded areas with moist-fertile soil. Sod or plugs are the most readily available source for installing this grass. St. Augustine grass grows moderately fast and requires consistent watering for optimal establishment. Bitter-blue and Raleigh varieties have been established to withstand cooler temperatures or clay soils. Grass should be cut at 3.5"-4" height.
Zoysia: A transitional grass that will last throughout yearly warm and cool seasons. Different varieties have a greater cold tolerance than others, Zoysia japonica is one of these. Drought conditions will not affect this grass as much as other types. It also has similar water requirements as Bermuda grass. Deeper roots allow zoysia to collect water from further soil depths. Make sure your yard is graded properly and soils are well-drained before applying pallets of zoysia. Varieties include: Emerald, Belaire, El Toro, and Cashmere zoysia. This grass should not be used in cooler climates as it will spread throughout other gardens and turn brown during the winter.



Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/4477829

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Oak Tree Stepping Stones



Here's a new shipment of concrete steps that are made to look like Oak tree slices, yet will last for many years to come. These are so useful for stepping stones and add interest and natural colors to your garden area.

We carry a great selection of garden supplies in addition to our gravel and dirt! Come check it out.

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Silverstone 3/4" Crushed Decorative Rock at Dixon Landscape...



Raj Hansra of Dixon Landscape Materials shows off their new stocking item. This is Silverstone 3/4" crushed decorative rock and it has become very popular. We think it is so popular because of the beautiful colors with blue, green, gray, streaks of white. It looks good wet or dry and is easy to install.

Call Dixon Landscape Materials at 707-678-8200, and visit their website at www.dixonlandscape.com.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Modern Patio Design



http://www.landscapingnetwork.com Get ideas for modern patio design. See how concrete, pea gravel, and decomposed granite are used on this modern patio design to create a look that ties into the rest of the yard

Friday, October 25, 2013

Relaxing Backyard Makeover


Ahmed gives this backyard a brand-new look with floating decks and more. This video is part of Yard Crashers show hosted by Ahmed Hassan . SHOW DESCRIPTION :You never know what you'll be bringing home from the home improvement store. You go in for grass seed but come home with new patio chairs and a bag of cement. If you're lucky enough, you could also bring home a professional landscape contractor. On DIY Network's Yard Crashers, expert Ahmed Hassan waits at stores looking for the perfect weekend warriors who could definitely use his help. Once he finds his target, Ahmed and his team follow the surprised shoppers home and completely transform their yards.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Outdoor Family Rooms



These homeowners' backyards are transformed into cool outdoor family rooms.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Mulch Is Great For New Plants



At Dixon Landscape Materials we have always sold a lot of Black Mulch and had trouble keeping enough of it in stock, so now we stock 100 yards of it at a time!

Sunday, October 13, 2013

We've Got Stone, Block, Pavers, Retaining Wall Materials In Stock






Come check out the brick, block, paver, wall stone and much more in stock ready to go. What we may not have, we can get very quickly. Sometimes you can even get a special deal on some leftover items. Stop by and check it out.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

At Dixon Landscape Materials, We Have U Haul Concrete!




At Dixon Landscape Materials, we have U Haul Concrete! We installed this system last winter and it is a great benefit for small jobs in and around the area.

It's very expensive to get a full load of concrete and now you can get just enough for some of those smaller jobs and have concrete with the right mix in a hurry. The special trailers keep the concrete mixing so that it doesn't dry out before you get to the job site.

Give us a call at 707-678-8200.

Monday, October 7, 2013

3 Steps to a Beautiful Stone Walkway in Your Yard


How often have you dreamed of having a lovely stone walkway through your yard or garden? Perhaps you've imagined how it will look, but have never had the financial resources to carry out your plans. Stone walkways can not only beautify your yard but also add solidity to walking paths with long-lasting practical use. If you're on a limited budget but still want to create amazingly unique stone paths, consider using concrete stone molds. Outlined below are three simple steps to realizing your dream.
1. Purchase Stone Molds
Instead of buying pre-made manufactured stones, consider buying plaster molds so you can make your own. With concrete molds, you'll buy the materials needed to make stones and then pick and choose from various coloring and mold designs to get the desired look. This enables you to achieve a truly matchless yard decor without spending a fortune on manufactured stones. You can buy one or two molds or a larger batch depending on the number of stones you'll need. Measure how many stones you'll likely need for your path before getting started. Also, determine if you want cobblestone, castle stone molds or another design.
2. Buy Materials
The second step is to buy the materials needed to use your concrete stone molds. Landscape stones can be created using a bag of premix concrete, water and a shovel. Then you'll also buy special coloring, additive and a sealer to create your "footprint design" for each stone. Or, make your stones plain gray if so desired. You'll need vegetable oil to lubricate the stone molds so you can remove the stones easily after hardening.
When you purchase cement molds, make sure the molds come with easy-to-follow instructions. You can order concrete stone molds online and even read the instructions on the Web to see how simple the process is before buying. Some sites offer stone mold kits with everything you need plus 25 or more molds. This makes it a cinch to get started...and you don't have to attend brick masonry class to do it! Also, be sure the molds are of good quality and won't break or crack under pressure when it's time to remove your stones. Some are made of more durable materials to withstand the hardening and pressure.
3. Lay Your Stones
You can create stone paths in your yard as wide or narrow as needed. Then plant bushes or flowers alongside the stone paths to enhance your yard even more. Place a lovely stone path to your front porch or rear patio. Line your garden with stone paths to break it up in sections. This makes it easier to stroll through your yard after heavy rains, without getting your shoes wet.
Once you create a stone path, be sure to enhance your yard with other accessories such as garden fountains, statues, bird houses/baths, bird feeders, hammocks, etc. Your yard will never look the same, and you'll feel a sense of achievement after creating your own charming paths with concrete stone molds.


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/5078590

Friday, October 4, 2013

Different Types of Paving Stones for Landscaping a Property

Ideally, when laying paving stones the design, size and color choices chosen should be able to integrate effortlessly into the existing landscape. And provided you do not let aesthetics interfere with the safety aspects, the design and type of paving used is only limited by your budget and imagination. Irrespective of the type of paving stone used, from a simple to complex job, it pays to take into consideration the rest of a properties landscaping to ensure the overall design fits in perfectly.
Landscaping with a choice of paving stones offers a perfect opportunity to increase the value of a property and increase curb side appeal without spending a great deal of money. Design ideas are almost endless, with a choice to enhance the everyday driveways or walkways to creating attractive features around garden beds, swimming pools, or patio areas.
Paving stones come in a wide variety of choices, with some of the most common consisting of -
Brick - a brick paving stone is known for its high versatility, strength, and durability. A typical brick paver is manufacture with sand, cement, water, and fine aggregates, which is combined together and heated in a kiln to an extremely high temperature to create the finished article.
Concrete - a concrete paving stone offers a multitude of landscaping opportunities and comes with a great choice in relation to design, style, and color options. Easy to install, the concrete slabs are durable, strong, versatile, low-maintenance, and perfect for all climate conditions.
Stone - a naturally sourced stone paving stone is either collected from a rock outcrop or mined from a quarry. As stone pavers do not go through a manufacturing process, as would be seen with the brick and concrete stones, a number of unique qualities feature. Also, because of the steps taken to source this material, the slabs can be quite a bit more expensive than there man-made alternatives. However, due to the quality appearance of the stone pavers these are still extremely popular for a lot of external applications.
Interlocking - the interlocking paving stone is designed to join each connecting stone together to stop the other stones from shifting or moving. Most often the interlocking stones are manufactured in both concrete and cement to give a very hard-wearing and versatile construction. And due to not requiring mortar to lay these stones, they are considered to be the easiest to install. It is often a simple case of laying a sand base and joining each of the slabs together. These interlocking stones are perfect for the main driveways, walkways, or decking areas.



Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/7233332

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Checklist For Patio Building

You have decided to build a patio. There are many things to consider when building a patio or pergola so it is a good idea to have check list on hand to ensure you are tackling the right things at the right time.
1) First on the check list is to make sure you have secured all of the approvals and permissions to build your pergola or patio. Each council has different rules and regulations, and heritage listed houses will be even further limited as to scope. So be sure to get the paperwork in order before you do anything else.
2) Next on the list of things to do is the choice of whether to self build or hire a contractor. There are a number of factors that will influence this decision.
  • Do you have the skills to build your own structure? Or perhaps do you have mates that can you ask to help?
  • Do you have the right tools to build or if not, can they be hired easily and cost effectively?
  • Can you afford to hire a contractor, as this is another option to consider?
3) After you know that you are allowed to build a patio, and who is going to build it, the next step is to establish a budget. What can you afford? Can you afford to hire a company to come and do all the work for you or do you have build it yourself?
A tighter budget might mean buying a kit or going on readily available plans from a library or hardware store, where as a larger budget will mean selective the best option from a catalogue. Your budget will not only influence design, it will also influence material selection. Make sure you keep your budget in mind when making these important decisions.
4) Design, style and layout are the next on the list. How the patio functions and looks is your step when building a patio.
  • Will it be attached to house or free standing?
  • Will it be covered and how? A shade cloth, PVC or a retractable roof cover?
  • Does the style complement your house in the context of your property?
  • Will the patio be appropriate to your lifestyle? Large, small, wrapping around the house?
  • Do you need any special considerations such as ramps, railings or built in cooking equipment?
  • Will you require windows, sliding doors, planter boxes or lattice work?
5) The final stage on your road to patio completion is to decide on the materials you would like to use.
The materials you select will depend greatly on your budget and also the style of your patio. A modern, custom designed affair would most likely suit the more modern materials such as powder coated metals and new plastics and composites. Where as a more traditional structure aside an older house will most likely suit timber and more natural materials. Your budget will also have to be considered when choosing materials for the structure and the roof cover. However, do keep in mind that investing in good quality, durable materials will save you time and money in repairs and maintenance in the long run.
With this basic patio check list, you can be sure that you have covered all the major concerns before you begin building your patio or pergola.



Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/4922448

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Landscaping Tips - Listen to the Wind to Tell If Your Landscape Watering Method Needs Adjusting

If you happen to be like the great majority of homeowners, and have succumbed to the easier routine of setting your landscape watering system to irrigate your plants at regular intervals, yet soon enough find yourself looking at very dry soil and foliage, you need to read on.
There is little doubt in the minds of most homeowners that it is in fact easier to just set the timer on your sprinklers to take care of your landscape watering needs. The foolproof, never fails, irrigation system, right? For the most part, you are perfectly fine by relying on your automated irrigation system, except under the following three conditions.
Excess rain: Often times your landscaping will get a bit of extra help in the form of a deluge of rain water from Mother Nature. If you expect rain in the forecast, your best bet in saving money on your water bill as well as conserving under any drought conditions that may exist, is to turn off your automated irrigation system until the storm passes. Water has become very precious in many parts of the country, and it always helps to due your part. Not only that, too much watering from a rainstorm on top of the landscape irrigation system will not give the soil enough time to drain properly.
Dry weather conditions: The second condition that a homeowner should pay attention to is unusually dry weather conditions compared to normal as a result of not enough rain. Perhaps you are experiencing a drought in your part of the country. Again, every homeowner needs to evaluate their individual landscape watering needs, but should only water as much as is absolutely necessary. Many homeowners unknowingly water way more than their landscaping requires. It could be that they have forgotten what the little information tag said at the nursery regarding the plant they decided to purchase, and have ended up watering that little Rosemary plant several times a week, when it actually requires very little watering at all once established.
Strong wind conditions: Finally, raise an eyebrow to any excessive winds that blow your way, for they too can put an unusual strain on your plants, flowers, and especially the soil they grow in. In the same way that windy conditions can dry out our own skin, they too will suck a lot of the moisture out of your soil. It never hurts to take the reliable three inch soil test, especially during conditions of high winds. Just stick your finger in the soil about three inches, and if the soil is dry, it probably means that plant needs some watering. There are exceptions to the rule though, such as in the case of that little Rosemary plant that is very drought tolerant and in fact, thrives under drier conditions.
Your best bet is to do a little research about the various irrigation requirements of your landscaping, find someone who can do it for you, or buy a more costly moisture sensitive irrigation system that will take your worries away. In any event, just pay attention to the three weather conditions mentioned above for your landscape watering needs, and you will be doing your plants a favor.
Happy watering!



Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/2269702

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Landscape Drainage Planning

Drainage is basically where the water will go and how it will go there. In most situations rain water falls from the eves of the home or building directly onto the ground. This is alright if the ground around the structure slopes away from the building. That would keep water away from the foundation. After that the water will run to the lowest point it can. In a common suburban setting it will run to the front gutter, because city codes insist on a home being higher than the street, and all of the concrete flat work sloping to and connecting with the city street gutter. After the water enters the street gutter it just runs away, because of the slope of the gutter. What were concerned with is getting that rainwater from your roof to the street gutter without causing damage or inconvenience along the way.
Most homes have rain gutters which channel water to certain areas and then deliver the water via down spouts to the ground. This enables us to only have to deal with a few particular spots around the home or building that will have a large amount of water that needs to be dealt with. For the best results a subsurface drains system would be installed and connected directly to the down spouts to catch the rain water and carry it to the designated location for absorption. Surface drain inlets can also be added to drain pipe system to drain low spots in the landscape that would otherwise collect rain water. Sometimes the underground pipes run to a dry well or sump where the water collects and then is disbursed either by absorbing into the ground or by the pumping of the water via pipe to a better location such as the street gutter.
If the water doesn't go directly from the rain gutter into a drain pipe it will flow on the surface of the ground. The ground around the home should slope 6 inches slope away from the structure for the first 10 feet, after that, the ground can slope in a different direction that eventually will get the run off water to the street or a catch basin, away from the building. Next time you see a concrete driveway or sidewalk connecting to a building try to notice how it slopes. If it has been installed by a pro, you will be able to see that it always slopes away from the building to the street. In urban settings it should slope away from the building for at least the first 10-20 feet and after that it should be high in the center or at least slope to one side to prevent standing water on the concrete. The grade of the ground should follow similar grades to provide good drainage away from a building of home.
Once you consider you situation and budget, it's time to call in the professionals. First get a professional rain gutter installation company out to your home. Show them where you think the down spouts should be and then let them tell you what they think would be a good plan for doing that. They may suggest different locations based on the rainwater load that different sections of roof have. Remember that the professional knows best.
Next get the landscape contractor or plumber out to your place and discuss what you have learned from the rain gutter guy. Show them the locations that the downspouts will unload the roof and discuss the drainage from the landscape surface. Let the professional give you a plan and a bid and then get another opinion or two just to get different perspectives. You know every body does it different.
After making the decisions on how to control the landscape drainage and after the installation is complete the only thing to do now is test it out. A garden hose will probably do the trick for this. Now you will be able to rest easy knowing that all the rainwater is under control when it starts to rain really hard.



Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/1961239

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Garden Block Overstock Sale - Take Advantage!


We have found ourselves overstocked in Garden Blocks. So, we are having an Overstock Clearance Sale to move them out.

Regular price per block is $2.29, and
 
Sale Price is now only
 
$1.19 each
 
That is almost 50% off!
 
Buy one block, or a pallet
 
Plus,
 
Buy multiple pallets
and receive and additional
 
$14.40 per pallet
(144 blocks per pallet)
 
Available in Latte and Café colors.
 
While supplies last!

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Garden Rock Wall



We check out the simple rock wall at Out in the Garden Nursery and get some tips for building one ourselves!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Landscaping Tips For Sod Grass and Gardens

Landscape Like A Pro!
Does your home look worn and tired? If your answer is yes, some landscaping may be helpful. A small amount of landscaping can turn an older home into a visually appealing residence. For landscaping tips that can help you, keep reading this article.
Find out about the climate and hardiness zones of the plants you choose. Also think about whether annuals or perennials will work best for you. Be conscious of how the seasons will affect your landscaping. Consider every way that nature will impact a landscaping project before you start.
Remember to aerate your soil. If you loosen or puncture the soil, it will increase air permeability and water penetration. Aerating can be as simple as turning the soil over with a trowel, or in the case of lawns, making small holes in the grass. This can be done with an aerating machine, a garden fork, or even by walking on the grass wearing a pair of spiked golf shoes. This brings oxygen into the roots and promotes healthy new growth.
Use granite for the surfaces in the outdoor kitchen you are installing. There are many cheaper materials available, but they can be damaged by water, temperature fluctuations or having hot items placed upon them.
Don't tackle too large of a landscaping project at one time. It is best to break up an endeavor this large into smaller individual projects that are easier to budget and execute. It can also assist you in changing your design while carrying out in the process of landscaping.
Use fertilizers that are free for the taking. Using chemical free grass clippings or human urine for a nutrient rich and free fertilizer. Twenty parts water with one part urine is an excellent fertilizer for seedlings, or steep the grass clippings in water to make a tea for watering and fertilizing the plants. So don't spend a lot on the garden when the fertilizers can be had for free.
Pick out products that are made well and avoid cheap ones. Home improvement stores may sell inexpensive products, but if their quality is low, you aren't getting a good value. A niche retailer will offer you great advice and high quality products at a reasonable price. Do not fret about spending money on products, because you need quality products to create a quality yard.
By properly timing what you purchase, you could save yourself a bit of money. For instance, winter is the best time to purchase lumber, while shrubs, mulch, and tress should be bought later on in the season. When new plants become available, wait several years before purchasing them so that the price is not so high.
Consider growing wheat grass or cat grass near the plants your cat enjoys eating. Additionally, use your cat's keen sense of smell to your advantage. Citrus fruit peels and mothballs both smell horrible to cats, so put them on the soil near the plants your cat likes to eat.
Include many different plant species when you plan the look of your yard or garden. This will give you greater protection in the case of disease or damaging insects. If you plant the same plants, chances are they'll all be lost. Plant health can often depend on diversity when you are planning your yard.
It can be a wise investment to consult with an experienced landscaper before you embark on any major landscaping project. An experienced landscaper will be able to give you advice and feedback that is priceless because it may save you time and money. It may cost you $75 or so for a one hour consultation, but it may be well worthwhile.
Don't cut your freshly laid sod grass down by the soil when you run the mower. If you leave a bit more height, the sod grass roots will get deeper, making your lawn stronger. The shorter the grass, the shallower the roots, which makes the lawn more likely to develop brown patches.
When you mow your lawn, it is a great idea to leave some of the glass clippings where they fell. This will supply some good nutrients to your lawn as the grass decomposes, and you will not have to add fertilizer to your lawn as much as you would have otherwise.
For some items, you can use a cheaper product. Things such as containers, mulch, and regular perennials are things you want to buy cheaper, as the costly versions are the same. It is crucial you carefully watch over the plants. Many discount big box stores may not have workers who provide the optimum care to their plants.
To keep your lawn looking great when there's a water shortage, set the blades of your lawnmower to their highest height. Doing this will allow your grass to go dormant, keeping it looking fresh with minimal water. Be sure to change your blades back to their normal setting when you're able to water your grass normally.
It can be hard to grow flowers around a large tree you may have in your yard for shade. You may want to consider using ground cover instead. Not only will this make your yard more beautiful, it's simple to keep up with. Consider hosta and sweet woodruff as ground cover.
You home doesn't have to look drab and uninteresting. Use a few tips you have learned here. It can be as beautiful as the homes you see in films. Just apply all that you learned and change the landscape of your property once and for all.



Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/7874713

Friday, September 13, 2013

Japanese Stone Paths



The Japanese have paths that meet specific purposes in the garden. We show you some of the different designs and why they build different types of paths.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Fire Pit For Fall


The round fire pit on this property is surrounded with a seat wall that has an 18 inch back rest. This is a nice addition to outdoor seating areas. Outdoor cushions can be added to make this a very comfortable fire pit area. Learn how to place a fire pit on your property and how it's properly laid out.


At Dixon Landscape Materials, we think it is interesting in this video how they used flagstone as the seat. We have a huge selections of flagstone in many different colors.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Stone Veneer At Dixon Landscape Materials

Copper Classic

Sage Green

Dixon Landscape Materials is now a distributor for a great full line of Stone Veneer products. The samples above are Stone Veneer Panels that measure 6"x24" and are 1" to 1-1/2" thick. They feature an innovative new process of stone installation. Individually hand selected pieces of natural stone are preassembled and trimmed to size to form a stacked stone panel.

The Stone Veneer Panel's unique modular system is designed to install tightly together to create a virtually seamless fit. It provides a streamlined system of installation that is fast and easy to use--saving labor time and reducing wasted material.

This product comes in the Copper Classic, Sage Green, Desert Haze, Jade Pearl, Smoke Black and Beach Sand color combinations.

To see more about this product, go to http://www.mghomeusa.com/.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Bark Binder™ Landscape Mulch Stabilizer


Bark Binder™
Landscape Mulch Stabilizer


Bark Binder™ is:
  • An easy-t-apply and long-lasting liquid which is applied with standard spraying equipment.
  • EPA-compliant and works naturally to bind with mulch and chipped wood fibers.
  • Creates a durable, yet pliable structure for your landscape and is highly resistant to wind, washouts and erosion.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Pavestone Edging Installation


Enhance your outdoor living space with Pavestone beautiful, long-lasting edgers.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Dry Creek Bed


The Living the Country Life brand includes our Living the Country Life magazine, Web site, and broadcast programs on RFD-TV and on our extensive radio network.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Friday, August 23, 2013

Today's Homeowner featuring RumbleStone™


Pavestone and Quikrete team up with host Danny Lipford to create a backyard paradise. This full episode of Today's Homeowner shows you how to use RumbleStone™ to build a gorgeous paved patio complete with a fireplace and custom planters.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Planning Your Landscape Design

If your back yard is a mess or your front lawn needs a makeover, then this article will help you. There are many ways by which you can bring life to your dull lawns. Landscape designing can help you create a garden which will enhance the overall aesthetics of your house. The article will help you in planning the whole operation so that it becomes easier for you to undertake this activity.
A rough idea: After you have made the decision that you want to beautify your lawn, the first thing to do is to prepare a rough sketch or the layout. In the layout you should try to make a rough outline of how do you want your lawn to look. In the sketch you can demarcate areas such as dining spaces, ponds, fountains, sitting area etc. when you prepare the sketch to be imaginative and bold. You can also surf the net for more ideas. When you are satisfied with the rough layout, and then only proceed to the next stage.
Kind of landscape: A garden can be beautified with the help of flowers, grass, rocks, wood, fountains, ponds etc. If you are looking to make the garden more natural, then you can go for more plants and less rocks. But if you think that you don't want to spend time and money on maintenance, then you can go for rocks or a hard cape design. In a horoscope design you can introduce driftwoods, ponds and other rock sculptures.
Access to the garden: Planning the access to the garden is an important aspect. How do you wish to access the garden is something which depends purely upon the landscape? An access plan should be specified in the rough sketch and a pathway can be constructed with the help of pebbles, stones and bricks. These stones come cheap and the pathways can be constructed easily.
Adding that something extra: If you wish for something more, then feel free. There are many ways by which you can make your lawn more interesting. You can take the help of a fountain, rock sculpture or even create a lawn according to a theme. All these things will require more planning and research but all the efforts will be worth it.
Maintenance: If you are really into gardening and have time, then I must suggest that you should maintain your garden yourself. It gives a sense of satisfaction. But if you don't have that much time, then you can hire professionals to do the maintenance job. These professionals have a lot of experience and can provide you with all kinds of solutions.



Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/7503812

Saturday, August 17, 2013

How to Dry Brush Faux Finish Technique - NewLook


Learn more at http://www.GetNewlook.com!

A brief video demonstrating how to faux finish using an 4" Round NewLook Applicator Brush and Designer Series Enhancers.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Pavestone Venetian Stone™


Pavestone's Venetian Stone™ Series gives a distinctive cleft surface texture to pavements. It's modular pattern equalizes the scale of any project and is fitting to most any architectural elements.

The possible applications for pavers are only limited by your imagination. Maximize your outdoor living experience with a design that is all your own. Create a scenic walkway in a beautiful downtown park. A variety of hues and textures allow you to have unlimited possibilities to both compliment and enhance the natural beauty of any surrounding while being friendly to the environment. From palatial outdoor entertainment areas to pool decks with a relaxing spa-like feel, you can count on unsurpassed strength and flexibility. Concrete pavers can withstand the forces of weather, water and traffic. Plus, they are especially designed to withstand freeze-thaw conditions, making them a good choice for cool as well as warm climates. Your design project will be as beautiful years from now as it is the day it is installed.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Why Should You Use NewLook Concrete Stains? - NewLook


Go from boring to beautiful, from ugly to lovely! NewLook Concrete Stains enhance the image of your concrete.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Cobbles, Cobbles, Cobbles. We Have Cobbles!



Dixon Landscape Materials has a large selection and large quantity of various sized cobbles to decorate your landscaping project. Whether commercial or residential, these cobbles can add the perfect touch to your landscape. They are very popular in creating dry river streams too.

Dixon Landscape Materials is located at 150 East H Street, Dixon CA. Call us at 707-678-8200 and visit our website at www.DixonLandscape.com.

Friday, August 2, 2013

Pavestone® RumbleStone™ Tree Ring



Pavestone® RumbleStone™. Rustic building blocks for your outdoor hardscape projects. Simple to complex, large or small, the possibilities for creative expression are as far and wide as that inner child's imagination.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Pavestone® RumbleStone™ Bench Planter



Pavestone® RumbleStone™. Rustic building blocks for your outdoor hardscape projects. Simple to complex, large or small, the possibilities for creative expression are as far and wide as that inner child's imagination.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

How to Keep Your Grass Green This Summer!

The long, hot days of summer are challenging for any lawn. Avoid dry brown grass by following our simple tips to keep your grass looking good!
Don't over-pamper your lawn
If you water your lawn regularly, it will come to depend on it. It's better to water your lawn less frequently, but more thoroughly. This will lead to a stronger root system that is more able to survive long, dry periods. Turf is remarkably tough, so if you live in an area with relatively frequent rain, that might be enough for your lawn.
Going easy on the hose, even if you have a water tank or well, may actually strengthen your grass. Do make the most of your soakings, though - applying a wetting agent can help make sure that every drop goes further. These are easy to apply and will help water penetrate and be absorbed more easily.
When you do water, make the most of it, by watering in the cool of morning or evening, so that the water doesn't evaporate immediately.
Fertilise at the right time
Applying a fertiliser, particularly in spring, at the start of the growing period, can give your grass a good boost in health and strength to help it get through hot weather. Some turfs, such as Sir Walter, have purpose-designed fertilisers that you can use.
Organic fertilisers, such as granulated chicken manure or blood and bone, are ideal, for any type of lawn, or for a granular fertiliser, try Shirley's No 17, or a slow release food such as Scots Lawn Builder.
Mow with care
In summer it's particularly important not to cut your grass too short. Mow regularly, cutting off no more than a third of a blade every time. As a rule of thumb, buffalo lawns should be kept at least 25mm in length throughout summer. This will keep your grass strong and able to fight off weeds.
During particularly hot periods, you may like to leave your grass slightly longer - a great reason not to mow at the height of summer! Longer grass will shade the earth, retaining moisture, protecting its own roots and keeping the light from weeds.
Keep an eye on hard-used - or unused - areas
If you have kids or animals, you'll probably find that they constantly gravitate to the same areas. Keep an eye on 'cricket creases', the area in front of 'goalposts' and the area under swing sets - they may need a little extra fertiliser, or just a break every now and again, to keep the grass in good condition. If you have a trampoline, move it around every now and again so that the grass underneath it has a chance to get its fair share of light and rainfall.
If the worst comes to the worst...
Trust in the ability of your grass to overcome most setbacks. Even if your lawn browns in the hottest part of summer, it should grow back once the weather cools off.



Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/6682173

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

How to Stain Stamped Concrete -- NewLook's Translucent Color Enhancer Stain



How to Stain Stamped Concrete Floors -- http://www.getnewlook.com/Translucent-Enhancer.html

Want to learn how to stain concrete floors? Read the video transcript:

The Translucent Color Enhancer is a water-based, polymer-modified, transparent concrete stain. It is non-acid, non-acrylic and non-epoxy based. [Integral concrete color eat your heart out!]

The Enhancer is used for antiquing stamped, textured concrete surfaces to create a two-toned finish. It can also be used to blend surface blemishes and discolorations.

The Enhancer is a 3-component [transparent concrete stain] kit that is packaged in a variety of sizes, each of which cover a range of square feet depending on surface porosity, moisture content, surface temperature and method of application.

Like all specialty coatings, the Translucent Color Enhancer must be installed on a properly prepared surface. For this project, the above half of a 10x10 slab on grade was stained with a coat of the ORIGINAL Solid Color Stain. The stains and discolorations on the lower half were left alone in order to demonstrate how a different base finish can affect the final appearance of the Enhancer. Visit GetNewLook.com for more information about surface preparation.

Once the surface has been prepped and the Enhancer has been mixed according to instructions, you're ready to begin applying the material.

Begin by spraying the [transparent concrete stain] material in one corner and work your way across the surface. The translucent nature of the Enhancer causes it to work in such a way that wherever there is more product material, you will get a deeper, richer or darker color. Gravity will cause the Enhancer to run off the high areas and puddle in the textured areas of relief where it will dry darker and give the surface the antiqued, two-toned finish desired.

You may choose to apply the enhancer in one very heavy application or apply multiple lighter coats to get the desired depth of color. However, a general rule with applying an enhancer is that the stain should be applied evenly. If this is not taken into consideration, one result may be that you end up with a spotty look from your sprayer.

If you have drip marks or a spotty look from your sprayer you may also lightly mist the wet stain with water to help break up these spots. This has to be done very lightly so that you do not over-dilute the stain and compromise it's bonding properties. A hand squeeze water bottle is best to use so that you can better control the amount of water applied.

Keeping a high amount of pressure in your sprayer will ensure a more consistent and even application. Drips, spots and over-application are less likely to occur. Maintain your sprayer to make sure an even spray is always occurring.

The Enhancer should be applied when it is cool to allow the enhancer time to fall into the low areas of the stamp. In summer months, it is important to budget enough time in the morning to be done before it gets too hot.

It is important to understand that not all stamped surfaces look alike and as such should not be approached in the exact same way. Stamped surfaces that have deep impressions will lend themselves to potentially having more contrast. To create more contrast on surfaces with subtle impressions, you may lightly mist water on the wet concrete stain to help push it off the top areas and into the lower areas of the stamped surface. This allows more of the base color to show through.

If there is too much stain in an area, you may rag it up but it is recommended that you start with a slightly wet rag so that you do not take up too much stain.

Note: the Enhancer must be sealed when cured and dried.