DIY Ideas For Your Christmas Decorations

Bring holiday cheer to your home through these DIY ideas for your Christmas decorations:

Christmas and New Year Baubles and Decorations

Make a warm welcome

One of the best ways to light up the yuletide season is creating a display of paper luminaries. Line these decorations along the porches, driveways and front walks of your house. A unique display gives off a warm welcome.

Put up a “garden theme” greeting

Convey a cozy yuletide welcome with garden-inspired Christmas decorations. Aluminum-made rustic containers on the stairs, porches and doors provides a casual holiday feel especially when filled with red amaryllis berries (or red blooms) and herbs with lighter accents.

Hang paper-made white baskets

Welcome your guests with a dazzling array of moss, juniper, heather and other seasonal paperwhites hanging in the front door.

Hang some vintage ornaments

You don’t have to spend bucks just to reinvent your Christmas decorations. It’s alright to use vintage ornaments every year. Put some greens and reds in your ornaments to add more holiday feel.

Create a Merry Topper in your mailbox

Top off the square mailbox outside your home with a bouquet of dried winter plants. If necessary, fill the mailbox with rosemary, lavender, fir, cedar, flowering cabbages and pansies to resemble a Christmas symbol. Tuck in huge pine cones to add color.

Beautify your pendant lights

Decorate your pendant lights in the living room or kitchen, depending on your ideal motif. However, many home living experts suggests that putting them in the kitchen brings more luck during the holidays.

String greenery and lights

Put up your garland with lights and cover unsightly wires around your house with any greenery material. You can use kale or any ornamental cabbage.

Decorate your display gifts

Add color and impressive designs to your display gifts by attaching ornaments or bells. To come up with a perfect motif, use the same color ribbon in all your display gifts (as well as real gifts) under the Christmas tree.

Use glittering ornaments

Here’s a more stylish and cohesive alternative to mismatched yuletide ornaments: Add some glittering stars or balls in a mixture of finishes in and out of your house.set of Christmas balls

Add holiday cheer to your outdoor areas

Christmas decorations at home won’t be complete without candles, orbs and large growing wreaths placed along porches and patios.

Put some paperwhites in your kitchen

Arrange your shallow bowls and glassware with paperwhites. Additionally, the kitchen bulbs’ shape and size makes the paperwhites a perfect fit for breakfast table or kitchen countertop.

Put up a stunning holiday masterpiece

Make your own elegant holiday masterpiece by decorating your vase with dried red roses and white tallow berries to resemble a birch tree bark. You can add sprigs of green berries and boxwood garland around the base to create a more stunning look.

Re-arrange your old Christmas lanterns

For easy-and-quick Christmas decorations, use flameless candles and re-arrange your old lanterns to create a unique holiday motif.

Another good thing about these 13 Christmas decorations tips is that they are so easy to do even your kids can take part in making them. That makes for a great bonding activity for the whole family.

Here’s a fun video with some DIY Christmas decorating ideas. Have fun!

Bruce Edwards

Tips & Tricks For Putting Up Christmas Lights

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Create your own winter wonderland by following these tips and tricks for putting up Christmas lights:

  1. Start small. For novices when it comes to putting up Christmas lights, light at least two items such as bushes or trees to serve as a “central point” of your decorations.
  2. Know your Christmas lights. There are specific types available for every nook and cranny of your backyard or house. If your focus is on the outdoors, use blinking lights. Outline them properly along the bushes or windows.
  3. Use a strong ladder. As much as possible, seek assistance from someone who can hold the ladder to ensure your safety as you hang the lights. Attach them carefully along the tree’s twist ties, clips or branches.
  4. Check any burned-out lights. Replace them with “test-light” strings before decking the interior walls. Burned-out Christmas lights gradually drain power from the whole light string as the bulbs grow dimmer.
  5. Always consider the location. If passersby can only see the evergreen from your house’s front door, save your lights for decorating along the tree front.
  6. Don’t reuse old Christmas lights. According to experts, old and overused lights can pose an electrical hazard. Buy new lights when the need arises. Otherwise, you can fix your old lights by using high-quality electrical connections such as tapes, parapet clips, shingle tabs or clips.
  7. Do away with “bright lights” overload. Yuletide lights can be fun and dazzling to see, but be careful not to overstress your circuits. In other words, don’t add more than 1000 watts in your lights. If the other lights along your house dim as you turn them on, your circuit is overloaded and this may cause a fire.
  8. Add dimension. Consider “stake lighting” to add those holiday feels exquisitely. Do this by putting in multicolored lights along driveways, paths and outlining walks.
  9. Seek professional help. If you don’t have prior experience in lighting or roofing, the safest way is to get help from a professional. Keep the cords and lights away from any metal. Check any overheated gutters, wires, or iron décor before putting in lights.

Christmas lights

Storing Outdoor Holiday Lights

Because holiday lights are often hung outdoors, here are a few useful tips on how to store them properly:

  • Check any dead or broken bulbs before hanging your lights. For safety purposes, plug them first before checking dead bulbs. Twist them slightly (using a screw) then cover its edges with an electrical tape. Once you’re done with this, you can now hang the lights.
  • If the entire length of light strings is not functioning, repair them or buy a new one.
  • Don’t just twist the light strings; wind them carefully. For indoor lights, you can come up with a simple winder by cutting the opposite sides of your lights in V-shaped form. For outdoor lights, you can make use of commercial plastic winder which is often used for holding longer light strings.
  • Be careful in hanging light strings. Keep in mind that light strings aren’t 100% durable; hence, winding them regularly is important.

Here is a handy video to help you hang your Christmas lights:

Now go have fun hanging your own Christmas lights!

 

Bruce Edwards

Window Shutters Newcastle: What Are They and How Can They Improve The Look in Your Home?

What is a Window Shutter?

A window shutter is a stable and hard covering for windows. This is characterized by a frame made of vertical stiles and horizontal railings. In this frame contain louvers which can be fixed or operable, and can either be horizontal or vertical. There are also solid panels made of fabric or glass and other items can be mounted on the frame. There are many reasons why a shutter is installed besides enhancement of the house’s aesthetics. Protection against harsh weather is a primary reason why a shutter is installed. Today’s weather is very unpredictable. The sun may be very hot in the morning but it may rain heavily during the afternoon. A shutter can protect the room against both kinds of weather. Shutters also protect homeowners against entry by burglars and other intruders.

shutters newcastle

A window shutter includes both the interior ones which are used inside the house or a building and exterior ones which are used outside them. Some structures have both of these window and door covers.

An Interior shutter hinges on either side of the window’s opening. It can be swung inwards to allow the light to enter the room. A shutter that can be operated has slats that can be rotated open or closed to adjust the level of light and the flow of air going into the room, as well as the level of visibility. Other types of shutters don’t have rotatable louvers. A shutter with full height can be constructed with a horizontal divider rail to isolate the upper and lower parts of the shutter.

An exterior shutter is made primarily to control light, ensure privacy, and to protect the house against outside elements. Both fixed and operable slats shed the rainwater and allow transfer of air. It also protects against direct sunlight and flying debris. A solid board shutter is designed to protect against severe levels of weather. There are other types of shutters that don’t have the protective capabilities of traditional ones. Their only purpose is to enhance the aesthetic aspects of the house.

There are specific types of wood used in making exterior window shutters. Newcastle home owners may find shutters made of Spanish cedar, Teak, and Honduran Mahogany. These types of woods have grains that breathe out moisture which is perfect for outside shutters since they are exposed to a lot of water especially during rainy days. The quality of these woods makes them highly resistant to decay and rotting. They are also more durable compared to pine wood. These woods also have tannin which protects against insect infestation.

shutters

A shutter is designed to last a lifetime even with repeated use. Cracked slats won’t be a problem even if there are kids inside the house because the slats can easily be replaced when needed. There are big companies today that manufacture quality and durable shutters for different house and building designs. Most of them use only the best wood fit for such window covers, and offer their products at a very affordable price.

Here is a video showing how plantation shutters work in your home and how easy they are to install:

Installing shutters seems simple. Have fun improving your home!

How To Decorate With Window Blinds

Many houses may look the same at first glance, but as people look at them closer, they’ll see the uniqueness through their decorations both inside and outside. Many houses also reflect the kind of people living in them. Houses that look dim can sometimes mean that musicians own them. Happy families have brighter ambiance inside their house.

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Among the parts of the house that owners prioritize when designing are the windows and their covers. People who want to have more light to enter the house choose larger windows. Large windows help people appreciate the nature surrounding the house, especially if they have a beautiful backyard to complement it. But what about intimate nights where privacy is needed? This is where window blinds and curtains are needed. They are very useful in controlling the temperature of the air that comes inside the house. Depending on the hotness or coldness of the atmosphere outside the house, the curtains can be closed slightly so that only limited air can enter the house during cold days, or opened fully to let all the air in when it’s hot inside the house.

The blinds and curtains of a house can dictate the interior design of a house, office, or any other room. Depending on the design, curtains can make a house look more elegant or make the ambiance of a restaurant either brighter or dimmer. People can relax more in a room if the curtains’ color and design complement surroundings. This is how important these window covers are.

A simple change in the window covers can dramatically change the atmosphere and mood of a house. While rich families change a lot in the interior design of the house, which includes repositioning the furniture, buying added decorations for the wall and others, those with tight budget only need to change their window covers to get that full change they want. And they can do that with less work and cost.

Window blinds and curtains don’t just improve the appearance and functionality of a room; they also keep dust outside and overly nosy people from seeing what’s inside your house. This is very important for parents who have young children who need to be kept away from the prying eyes of prowlers and for those who own expensive furniture and decorations inside the house.

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One thing you should remember when installing a window cover in your house is that its design should always match the house’s interior design. A house, for example, with a classical interior design suggests silky curtains to add elegance to the rooms.

The design of the window covers to be installed in a room should reflect the gender and personality of the person using the room. Girls, for example, usually like curtains with bright and lively colors while mature boys like window blinds more with simple designs matching their mature personality.

There are also various window covers types the owner can choose from depending on what he wants and what the house’s interior design needs. There are hourglass curtains, no sew curtains, and unlined ones. Choosing the right window cover, however, is not enough if you cannot keep your windows clean and kempt. Many materials used in curtains can attract dust and other allergens so it is important to make sure the windows are clean before installing new blinds.

Here is a handy video explaining how you can measure and fit blinds:

Good luck decorating your home with your new blinds!

Bruce Edwards

Shooting With A Compound Bow

The bow and arrow traces its origins to ancient times where it was the combination weapon of choice not only when it came to fighting battles but hunting prey as well. These days, this ancient weapon serves more of a recreational purpose as it is widely used in competition archery although its role in hunting still persists. There are different kinds of bows that can be chosen from these days, some of which are more user-friendly allowing for easy handling. And then there are the options which offer higher target hitting precision and recoil strength. One of the bows that is easy to use but still packs quite a punch is the compound bow.

Hunting with a compound bow

This is a modern designed bow which relies on the pulley system. This particular bow starts off with lightweight but highly durable limbs that are usually made from treated wood or carbon fiber and aluminum. These limbs are stiffer and this is the reason why the bow is able to provide its users with an energy conserving feature. This means that they do not have to exert a lot of effort to deliver an arrow from point A to point B. The compound bow does a majority of the work for the archer.

On average, the bow uses three to four pulley systems that work with the limb as a leverage system. As the archer draws the string back, the pulleys work their magic. They serve the purpose of elongating the reachable distance that the projectile, i.e. the arrow, can traverse when the compound bow is in use.

Apart from the ease of usage and the need for a minimal amount of effort to deliver a long distance shot, this particular arrow offers more accurate or more precise targeting as well because of the speedy recoil that allows for shots to be taken in a relatively short amount of time.

Although the bow is still susceptible to changes in wind speed, direction, and environmental temperature, the quick shooting or speedy arrow delivery system that the overall design is capable of reduces the effects of these external conditions. This is what is responsible for the highly precise shots when the compound bow is used.

compound-bow

There is the reinforced limb not to mention the pulleys and cables but there are other components that come with every compound bow. These are often equipped with additional elements like the sight for example. Just like a gun, the bow and arrow relies on a sight attachment to help the archer when making long distance shots. There are risers that work together with stabilizers that further improve the shooting ability and precision of the bow.

In some cases, this type of bow can be equipped with what is known as a draw weight on both ends of the primary limb. What these weights do is limit the draw length for the bow depending on the user. This means that if a child is about to shoot using the bow, given his strength, he can draw the line outward in a much shorter length but still achieve a strong long distance shot.

Find some shooting tips on the following hunting site: American Hunter

The following video compares to of the Atunga Compound Bows:

Best of luck shooting your own compound bow!

Bruce Edwards

Different Archery Supplies Worth Considering

Archery is a competitive sport that involves the usage of a bow and arrow with the primary objective being precise target shooting. These days, having a great bow is no longer enough as the shooter should also have access to some of the finest archery supplies available.

archery-supplies-arrows

No matter how great of a bow you have, if you do not have the right arrows, all of your shots will not end up in the desired position. There are wooden arrows and then there are those that are made from composite metal materials including aluminum and carbon fiber.

Arrows should be aerodynamic and lightweight but strong enough to handle the elements. Complementary archery supplies that go with these are the arrow heads and fletching. Depending on the usage, the arrow heads can be replaced with special tips that have a better hooking capacity. The fletching refers on the feathers on the end of the arrow shaft which are responsible for directional control. To carry the arrows in, an archer needs an arrow canister or a belt quiver. Find out more about arrows here: Archery Supplies – Arrows

When shooting, the aim is also very important and this is why having sight equipment matters. There are different aiming devices that can be chosen from these days including the more basic two-pin model which conveniently attaches to any type of bow. A more complex version, the fiber optic sight is great for professional shooters. It does not require frequent adjustments and offers a better and more precise line of view.

Stabilizers add weight to the bow enabling the shooter to get a more balanced stance not to mention improved control over the bow and arrow. The release aids help improve the draw and release of the string leading to a more accurate resulting shot. As for the draw strings themselves, there are different types that can be chosen from each with a distinct tautness that can cater to varying experience levels.

Especially for beginners, shooting a bow and arrow is not easy. It can cause minor injuries if the string is drawn the wrong way. To prevent the onset of such injuries, there is the leather finger tab and wrist guard that can protect the shooter from the recoil component of the string. When drawn and released, the string can actually snap to the side and this is where the pain originates as it hits the skin on one’s wrist. This is why the wrist guard and finger tabs are some of the most sought after archery supplies today.

When the archer has finished shooting, the bow should be stored in a protective bag and this is where the bow bag enters the picture. It provides enough cushioning for the bow to be protected during transport. While in use, the archer can rely on the bow rest instead.

archery supplies target

In the sport of archery, the activity will be senseless without a target. These are some of the other important archery supplies that should be taken into account. Aside from the traditional paper bull’s eye targets, standee animal targets are also available.

The following video shows some of the different achery supplies and accessories you can add to your bow: Be sure to get all the right archery supplies to make your shooting and hunting experience so much more efficient! Good luck!

Bruce Edwards

How to Choose an Aged Care Facility

I recently had to put a family member into an aged care facility so I thought I would share some thoughts on the experience and how to approach it…

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Just because you are planning to let an elderly member of your family reside in an aged care facility does not mean that you have nothing else to think of. Remember that the health and welfare of the person should be your number one priority. That said, here are some tips that you have to keep in mind:

  1. First, take note of what the elderly needs. List down his medical history, including allergies, and medical conditions he has suffered from over the years. This will be very helpful as you need to look for an aged care facility that will be able to provide him with his medical needs, especially during times of emergencies. After all, it would be hard to count solely on bringing him to the nearest hospital.
  2. Is he a sociable person? Think about how he would like to be treated. Does he need to see his friends? Is there a particular group of people whom he feels connected to, such as book clubs, exercise clubs, and the like? Or, is he the type of person who values having a lot of “alone time” and who does not want his privacy to be intruded? Look for a facility that will help him see his friends, if he needs that, or a facility who would be able to give him the “alone time” that he needs.
  3. Security. Do not go for places that are located in areas that do not look safe at all. Of course, you should not judge people nor places, but there are times when you have to make use of your senses and your instincts to decide whether you feel like a person will have a good life in your chosen facility or not. Choose an aged care facility with good security, and where a person would really feel safe and cared for.
  4. Kinds of Activities. Of course, no matter how private a person is, he could not just stay in his room the whole time. You have to choose a place where his mind will be stimulated, so that he would feel young and energetic. Choose a place where he could engage in sports, or other fun activities, such as painting, or making various kinds of crafts.
  5. Religion. For some people, religion is very important, and if your elderly is one of those people, then make sure to choose a facility where he would be able to practice his religion.
  6. And, make sure that you get to visit him. Just because the elderly will reside in an aged care facility does not mean that you have to get him out of your life, too. Choose a place where you could visit him, and check about the options, such as if visitors are allowed to stay overnight, or what the visiting hours are, and the like. Just because you are no longer living together does not mean that you no longer love each other and that you will have to forget about him.

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Here is a useful link to the Aged Care Commissioner in Australia.

And this is a YouTube link about understanding Aged Care in Australia and New Zealand.

Choose the best aged care facility for your loved one and make his life all the more worthwhile. Good Luck!

Bruce Edwards

Leaf Guards Are a Must?

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If you find it too cumbersome to constantly rake or take out the fallen leaves off your gutters, it is time to consider installing a leaf guard.  By doing so, you will be able to take care of your gutters properly and protect your home immediately.  Your gutters must be clear of debris at all times.

The truth is that, it is not safe to have that big pile of leaf debris on your gutters, as it can cause sparks of fire especially on dry windy days.  Most often, cigarette butts or embers accidentally thrown into dried leaves create a spark.  It can start a bush fire easily.  Or, if the embers so happen to fall on your gutters that are filled with dried leaves, it can raze down your house too.  Fire, combined with some elements, can spread out rapidly and if not controlled, will consume the whole neighborhood and the forest.  It is essential that you protect your home from this eventuality.

On rainy days, clogged gutters likewise prevent the water from normally flowing down the drain.  Spillovers are likely to happen and therefore can damage the walls and ceilings of your homes.  These gutter guards will protect your gutters from accumulating all sorts of debris, including fallen leaves, birds and vermin dirt, pine needles, lice infestation, etc.  The best thing about a leaf guard is that it eases the flow of rainwater into the spouts.  What you do not want is to retain or hold that water, as it can create rust and corrosion on your gutters.

leaf guard australia

Check out The Leaf Man’s leaf guard and you will find out more information about these guards and the proper maintenance of your gutters.  The leaf guard made by The Leaf Man Australia is compliant with the Building Code of Australia and is certified to have zero flammability by the CSIRO.  More importantly, it complies with the requirements of the BAL (Bushfire Attack Levels) rating of AS 3959-3009 and the NSW Rural Fire Service.   For your information, this quality product is both used in residential and commercial buildings.

If you are building a new home, it would be best to incorporate the leaf guard into the construction of your home.  Whatever season it is, your house is constantly protected.  The leaf gutters can be custom made and designed to compliment your roof and gutter designs.  Likewise, The Leaf Man Australia can also match the colors of your roof.

leaf guard

In case you have a rain water tank, the leaf guard will also keep the quality of your water.  When you have the guard in place, debris (from leaves, bird or vermin droppings and all litter) slide off the gutter instead of getting mixed into water.  This alone is enough reason for you to consider installing one immediately.

Don’t procrastinate or wait until you have bigger problems on your roof.  These things must be taken care of instantly as there is some domino effect of compounding problems once you have leak problems in your home.  The cost and the hassle are not worth it.

Here is a slightly humorous video about leaf guards and the mess they make, enjoy!

I hope you find this helpful!

Bruce Edwards

Can you do your own Gutter Mesh Installation?

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If you’re currently building your new house, it would be a good idea to incorporate gutter mesh protection for your gutters.  In this manner, you will no longer have to worry about clearing the pile of debris off your gutters.  You need not go up to your roof to clean your gutter constantly and pose some risks of physical injuries from falling off your roof or ladder.

If you have an existing house, it is not too late to install gutter mesh protection all around your roof.  Indeed, this is the most effective way of ensuring that your gutter is clear of debris from fallen leaves, pine needles, birds’ nests and vermin droppings.  All of these will be caught and will not block or clog the passageway of your gutters down to the pipes.  When the rains come, the water just easily flows along your gutters and straight down to the pipes.  What you want to avoid is overflowing gutters that can cause severe damage to your home.gutter-mesh-uk

There are other possible risks to damaging your health and home if you keep up with clogged gutters and damaged roofs.  These areas could also become breeding grounds for vermin or mosquitoes that could induce infestation of lice.  Water retained in these areas creates the perfect breeding ground for disease carrying insects.  Moreover, moulds could develop too, which could pose some allergy issues in your household.

The time to act is now! Protect your house and your household. Time is of the essence when it comes to your family and property.

Visit the website  and learn more about gutter mesh made by The Leaf Man Australia.  This particular company manufactures all types of gutter protection to complement your existing gutters.  There is no need to worry that they will stick in an awkward way out of your roof.  All of these can be made to match your existing roof tiles, be it corrugated or flat tile roofs.

The gutter mesh is not just made of stainless steel, but it is made from BlueScope Steel Zinculume coils that are cut and made to match any roof style.  In fact, they can be custom made in scallop form, trim or fold.  Their mesh is powder coated all over to prevent corrosion and is suitable for commercial, residential and industrial applications.

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As you know, there are meshes available in the market and you may be tempted to try and install them by yourself.  However, this is definitely not a DIY project.  It is best to leave them to the experts.  You may end up spending more by doing it yourself and then botching the project eventually.

The Leaf Man Australia has been in the business for 14 years and they have a team of consultants specializing in residential and commercial properties.  Their trained installers are fully insured and certified.  They do not subcontract the work, but supply their own crew.

If you are feeling brave, here is a little video with some step by step instructions on how to install your Gutter Guard! Don’t fall off the roof!

 

I hope you find this helpful!

Bruce Edwards

Why do you need a Gutter Guard?

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If you are homeowner, you must pay attention to all the areas of your house, including the roof.  As your gutters are not as visible as your lawn, it remains an area of the house that is mostly taken for granted.  However, it would be foolish not to mind these things, as the damage could be severe if not corrected immediately.   Proper maintenance and preventive care of your roof is a must, especially the gutter guard.

Just like your lawn that needs to be mowed religiously, your gutters need to be cleaned as often as possible too.  This is especially true if you live in a neighborhood where there are a lot of trees around.  The debris that piles up in your gutters (fallen leaves, pine needles, birds’ nests, vermin dirt, etc.) can give you some unexpected troubles.  You must always have a clear path to allow the water to normally flow along the gutters, down to the spouts.  If you don’t, these areas will not only retain water but will likely cause a leak.  Worse, if there is constant water retention, your gutters will rust and corrode too.

gutter mesh

Cleaning your gutters on a yearly basis is not enough.  Your gutters accumulate dirt on a daily basis and on such a windy day, the leaves could pile up.  Likewise, autumn is when you get a large pile of fallen leaves on your backyard and gutters.  Clogged gutters not only damage your roof and ceilings – they can also produce mould in the process, thereby posing health issues within your home.  On a dry and windy day, the dried leaves may also cause a spark and thus, can be a fire hazard.

Hiring someone to clean your gutters on a regular basis can be costly.  It is too much work if you have to do it yourself also. The most practical solution is to install a gutter guard to ensure proper maintenance of your roof and gutters.    It is made specifically to catch all the leaf debris and all sorts of dirt in your gutters.  This is certainly not something that you can take for granted nor delay.

Once you have installed your gutter guard, you can rest easy at night, especially during inclement weather.   Yes, the sooner you install them, the sooner your home will be protected.   As a practical matter, the total cost of installation will be much less than the cost of your future roof repairs.  It is highly recommended that you hire a professional company to do the job to make sure the installation is properly done.

gutter guard

Should you need additional information about Gutter Guard click here. You will also find some FAQs on the website that will come in handy.  The Leaf Man gutter guard is made out of BlueScope Powder Coated Zinculume Steel, designed to prevent metal to metal reactions and corrosions.  You can call them for a quote and they usually schedule a roof inspection at your convenience.  Thereafter, they will give you a job quote on the installation of your gutter guards.

Here is video I found helpful, it explains loads of what not to do with your gutters!

Best of luck getting your gutters all sorted out!

Bruce Edwards

How to Manage Kikuyu Grass

kenda kikuyu

Kikuyu Grass is considered by some as a decorative type of grass, but for most people, it’s not that great to use for aesthetic purposes because it grows aggressively.

Kikuyu Grass first grew in East Africa before it grew in the inland valleys of Central and Southern California. It’s also commonly found in temperate areas, and was first brought to California’s ditch banks to hopefully reduce erosion. But, since it grew fast, and was hard to control, especially in the 1900’s, it was then branded as a pest.

male sterile kikuyu

How it grows and what it does

This type of grass usually grows during summer, and is able to absorb nutrients from the soil fast, that’s why it grows rapidly. During winter, it might turn dormant, but for tropical countries, it may grow throughout the year, but in a slower motion.

You’ll know that the type of grass in your yard or garden is kikuyu grass when you notice its pointed tips, and see leaf blades that are flat, and when you see hairs growing from the stems. There are also anthers or pollen sacs with white casts and filaments. Pistil is found in the lower portion, and leaf sheaths produce seeds. It generally has a coarse texture which also does not make it good for decorative purposes.

In late spring, it grows fast again, until fall arrives. It grows at least an inch per day and becomes flowery when the weather is humid. Then, it spreads out towards other plants, through its root, and thick, fleshy and hairy stems. It has underground stems, as well, and can produce roots and shoots from its nodes.

What’s dangerous about this is that it makes its way to ornamental and maybe even fruit-bearing plants and trees. When this happens, it gets the nutrients that the plants are supposed to have for themselves, and may invade golf courses, too. Golf courses have to be mowed and weeded when this type of grass is around. It also interferes with irrigation.

kikuyu lawn

Management

Basically, you can control the growth of kikuyu grass by making sure that it does not spread out to other areas. How can you be sure of this? Well, getting a gutter guard is a good start, as it will keep the grass where it’s just supposed to be, and prevent it from making its way to your other plants.

Cultivation, mowing, and having good renovation equipment for your garden such as aerators, sod cutters, rakes, or seeders can also be helpful to ensure that your garden will be rid of this kind of grass, and to be sure that what you’ll be planting in the future will grow healthy and will stand the test of time.

Putting ornamental plants and dense turf grass can also be good because they give shade to the surface of the soil, which means that seedlings and sprigs of the said grass would have a hard time growing.

And, you can also try solarization, especially during July to September, or during summer season. Keep these things in mind and sooner or later, kikuyu grass won’t be a problem anymore.

Here is a short video that will help you with further information on Kikuyu Grass.

Best of luck managing your kikuyu lawn!

Bruce Edwards

How to Choose the Best type of Buffalo Grass

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If you have just recently moved to a new house, you’re probably thinking of ways of how to spruce up your place. The lawn, or the garden, is good places to start. After all, it’s what people will get to see first.

Planting Buffalo Grass is ideal mainly because it gives your house a warm and inviting feel. Plus, you could have instant picnics there, too! Here are some of the best types of Buffalo Grass that you can use at home:

sapphire-buffalo-grass

  • Common. Well, as the name suggests, it’s the regular kind of grass that you’ve probably seen countless times already. It has awesome seeding levels, shade tolerance, low thatching levels, and has nice colors, whether it may be summer or winter.
  • Sapphire. Considered as the most tolerant grass when it comes to the harsh rays of the sun, so you can be sure that it won’t get dried up and damaged just like that. This is also the reason why a lot of people favor this type of grass more than others. It also requires less maintenance, such as mowing or cutting.
  • Matilda. This is a soft-bristled grass that’s one of the newest kinds of grass available in the market. It does not easily get damaged and also has high tolerance for drought. However, it grows fast, so keep in mind that constant trimming might be essential.
  • Palmetto. This is quite popular, especially in Australia, because it has low levels of thatching, and can grow even when it’s not under direct sunlight. It also is known as the grass that has the best winter color. Here is a short video on Palmetto Buffalo that you might find helpful!
  • Shademaster. This first got recognition in the 90’s as a type of buffalo grass that’s soft and nice to sit on. It also has good wear and tear ratings, and is recommended for those who are on a tight budget.
  • Sir Walter. Royal as it sounds, this is also an affordable grass that’s favored by many because it ranks second to Sapphire when it comes to dodging the harsh rays of the sun. Its color is also continuously good throughout the year and has low thatching levels, as well. Less maintenance is needed for this, too.
  • ST-85. Another soft-leafed buffalo grass, this is perfect for those who often have picnics or outdoor activities at home. It has low seeding levels, and stays beautiful no matter what time of the year it is, as well.
  • Synthetic. And of course, if you’d rather make sure that you wouldn’t have to worry about rain or sun tearing the grass apart, go for synthetic ones instead. This might cost more, though, but if you’re willing to spend for it, that’s alright, too.

shademaster-buffalo-grass

Some Tips

Aside from choosing which type of buffalo grass you’d want in your lawn, don’t forget to keep these things in mind:

  • Fertilize at least every two months for good maintenance.
  • Mow regularly, depending on the type of grass that you have. Always make sure that they don’t grow beyond 65 mm.
  • Apply Iron Chelate, or Grass Vitamins at least once a year, so the grass could literally be greener.
  • Get a gutter guard to keep this type of grass safe from weeds and to ensure that it won’t grow away from where it was planted.

If I were to recommend a type of Buffalo Grass for your lawn it would have to be Sapphire Buffalo. Here is a short video explaining t in more detail!

Best of luck in choosing a new lawn for you and your family!

Bruce Edwards

How to Choose the Best Plumbers in Sydney

How to Choose the Best Plumbers in Sydney

plumbers in sydney

There is currently a dearth in skilled plumbers in Australia; hence, the best plumbers in Sydney are a rare find. To date, the South Western Sydney Institute listed a higher demand for skilled plumber for construction and building installation at 4.5 percent higher than labor supply. Competing for the scarce supply, most commercial establishments vie for the best plumbers available in the area offering competitive compensation packages. Most company supplying plumbing services are also keen at charging clients at higher cost as supply is low and demand is high. Nevertheless, choosing the best plumbers in Sydney to do the best job for you should not be compromised.

The best plumbers are easy to spot: they are in demand and their reputation for doing quality jobs is widespread. The best plumbers are known for their contribution to better plumbing services in Sydney. They are usually prestigious by word of mouth and their clients would likely refer them to other potential service user as compliment to the job well done. To find the best plumbers in Sydney, one must have the right information, the appropriate people to contact for such information, and network of acquaintance who may have been users of services provided by the best plumbers in the area.

Most plumbing companies offer services that require extensive skills on plumbing, especially on emergency cases; thus, it is important to note that the best plumbers in the company are found in the group of emergency Sydney plumbers. That is the first hint, though it is solely based on patterns and trends noted among service providers in Sydney. An emergency plumber is keen on details and is called upon because the work is to be done efficiently, sensitive to time and the situation which demands for quick action and decision-those are skills that best plumbers possessed.

plumbing services sydney

Plumbing services in Sydney require employed plumbers to be certified if not licensed. Certification of plumbers range from vocational and technical skills in informal training to formal, intensive training which requires years to complete. Depending on the clients’ level of needs for plumbing services, the right plumbers should respond effectively according to what the job requires. The best plumbers in Sydney have the highest qualification as certified or licensed on various competencies such as general management for contract and plumbing services, design and installation of commercial and industrial water supply system, gas and pipe, temperature regulation and waste disposal system.

The mark of a best plumber lies on how he or she manages simple to complex problems that the customer presents. The problem-solving skills in mechanical and physical aspects of the job is highly developed among the best plumbers in Sydney, owing to the complexities that their training experiences taught them. It pays to know as well, that these skills are present in most emergency Sydney plumber available around, therefore, it is best to test how well a plumber demonstrates problem solving during emergency plumbing scenario.

best plumber in Sydney

Good and extensive knowledge on laws, standards, codes and regulations on plumbing as well as property or building management should accompany the plumbing skills of the best plumbers in Sydney. The technical and practical knowledge possessed by a plumber should be guided by the law and standard that governs the country, and in Sydney, standards are set higher among building constructor in commercial and domestic setting. This calls for a plumber with basic legal and regulation knowledge on the implication of plumbing services offered.

Provided that one has the right information of what the best plumbers in Sydney are made of, the next best thing is to know how to choose them. As mentioned earlier, good, if not the best plumbers in town gained their best practices as emergency plumber, hence, seek these practitioners and determine if the job requirements suits their competencies.

Here are good pointers on how to choose the best plumbers in Sydney after doing the research and finding reliable information on their plumbing skills and competencies:

  1. Customer service is still a valid indicator of how well a plumber conducts himself in this trade. Inquire on the span of time or duration that the plumber has been employed in the company, or how long the company has been in the plumbing business. Most reliable plumbers stay longer in the trade because they handle their clients well and their reputation is good enough as attested to by many.
  2. Although cheap quotation for plumbing services is a tempting offer, be wary of plumbers offering one too easily. Maintain a good sense of judgment by checking on the materials used for installation, equipment recommended for the job, the span of work to be rendered and the availability of the plumbers to render services necessary to accomplish the work done, if something fails. Warranty should be in proper order, regardless of the price tag for the services offered.
  3. The best plumber is concerned with the quality outcome of the job rendered; ask questions that cover how you expect the job to turn out. A written contract should be drawn to establish those expectations from both sides to ensure that you stick to the agreed outcome.

A successful plumbing job lies on the choice of the best plumber suitable for the task. The best plumber in Sydney is as good as how one chooses them.

Article by Bruce Edwards