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Outdoor Kitchen
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8 Ideas For An Outdoor Kitchen

The only thing better than sharing an amazing homemade meal with your family and friends is preparing it outdoors under the summer sky. Whether you live in a climate that is warm or a little on the cooler side, you can still enjoy the luxury of an outdoor kitchen.

Ideas For An Outdoor Kitchen

Being stuck inside on a warm evening while your guests socialize outside is not fun. There is often discussion about bringing the outdoors inside, so why not try bringing the indoors outside? An outdoor kitchen might be exactly the project you have been wanting to accomplish this summer.

Functional Layout and Storage

Functionality is an essential component for building a successful outdoor kitchen. Just as you would design your ideal indoor kitchen in a way to increase flow and productivity, with cupboards and appliances in locations where they make the most sense, you can do the same with your outdoor kitchen. Depending on space, create a U-shaped, L-shaped or rectangular kitchen that will best serve your cooking style.

Work with a designer and/or architect to come up with a layout with both functionality and storage capabilities – you don’t want to run inside every time you need a pot or pan. Think of an outdoor kitchen as a completely separate entity for your indoor one, in need of both cooking and dining ware.

Lighting

A dark kitchen is never easy for a chef to work in and you don’t want to limit your outdoor cooking and entertaining possibilities to daylight hours. Make sure to consider lighting in your new outdoor space. Be creative with it – try fixtures and shapes you would not try indoors. Although your outdoor space is an extension of your indoor design, with open air comes a more flexible aesthetic. What may not work indoors might be a perfect fit in your outdoor kitchen.

Pair Alongside Garden or Pool

If you have a garden or pool in your backyard, consider installing your outdoor kitchen beside them. This will create tasteful cohesion in your yard as well as allow family members and guests to enjoy both spaces simultaneously. Swim in the morning and then prepare lunch at noon without even having to go indoors. Summer is for outdoor living and this is how you capitalize on its warm weather and cloudless, storm-free days – and nights.

Fireplace

Consider installing a fireplace in your outdoor kitchen or adjacent dining area. An outdoor fireplace, whether wood-burning or electric, will provide needed warmth and comfort for cool summer nights. Spark up your fireplace to dine outside with your guests, long into the late hours of the night.

Gourmet Grill

The grill, the mecca of summer cooking and entertaining, should be the focal point of any outdoor kitchen. Although this might seem obvious, allot for an adequate amount of your appliance budget for a grill. A grill is not an afterthought – it is a way of life for outdoor chefs. If possible, find a professional grade one that heats up quickly, like this gas and charcoal grill from Kalamazoo Outdoor Gourmet. You will be happy you went the extra mile in this department when you start cooking in your outdoor kitchen.

Pizza Oven

Fire it up! To all the pizza lovers out there, what is better than a freshly grilled wood-oven pizza? Well, maybe, delicious wood-oven pizza cooked and enjoyed in the comfort of your outdoor kitchen? If you like a good pie, consider designing your outdoor kitchen to include a pizza oven. Not only are they lovely to look at, but they will create endless summer fun for you and your family.

Wine and Beer Fridge

Cool drinks are essential on hot summer days. Make sure your kitchen is equipped with proper refrigeration for both food and beverages. This will save you time from having to run back and forth between your indoor fridge, as well as make beverages easily accessible while entertaining. Also, consider installing a built-in cooler specifically for beer, water and other bottled drinks.

Sink and Dishwasher

Make cleaning up simple with an outdoor sink and dishwasher. Lugging all your dirty pots, pans, glasses and dinnerware inside is a total drag. Reduce cleaning time and hassle by having everything you need to prepare, eat and clean up a meal in your outdoor kitchen. Cooking outdoors becomes a hassle when you have to dirty your indoor kitchen as well just to wash dishes.

If you are interested in the possibilities of equipping your homes with an outdoor kitchen, call Infinity Gardens today at 587-315-3273 or send us an email at [email protected] for more information.

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Landscaping
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10 Ways To Prepare Your Home For Summer

With frequent dry spells, property owners are increasingly seeking custom landscape services to help them make the switch to xeriscape vegetation. But with summer approaching, more preparations are necessary to protect green lawns and young plants that help to beautify your landscape from the rising heat and pests, and to increase the comfort of your outdoor space as you plan on spending more time outside.

10 Summer Landscaping Ideas For Your Home

Here are some tips to prepare your outdoor living space for summer:

1. Provide ample lighting
Increasing your outdoor lighting is necessary to not only promote your safety and that of your guests, but also illuminate the yard from dusk to dawn, especially when entertaining guests. Ensure that all the bulbs are working and that there are no dark spots that could lead to a security breach.

2. Flip the shed
Put shovels, snowblowers, and skis in storage and bring forward your summer supplies, including hoses, lawn mower, sprinklers, fertilizer, and garden tools. Ensure that you have all the supplies you need, well organized and ready for use.

3. Adjust your irrigation controller
You don’t want to suffer the embarrassment of being the only house on your block with brown grass. Adjust the watering frequency as needed to keep your yard and plants healthy and save on water. Plants that have partial shade, as well as those that are well established may need less watering compared to others.

4. Inspect your irrigation system
Check the controller’s battery power backup and replace it if need be. Activate the watering system and check for leaks (soggy ground, standing water, or eroded spots). Also assess the valve operation to ensure they are opening and closing properly with no leaks. Replace missing or damaged sprinkler heads and clear any obstructions that could be blocking the spray.

5. Choose low maintenance plants
Remember to update any annual plants in your garden, or switch to perennials that don’t require replanting every year. Seek help from landscape experts to identify the best plants for your region. Local nurseries are a great source of information about low maintenance plants that will add beauty to your landscape, as well as warm-season grasses, such as Bermuda or Buffalo grass, that require much less water to retain their green colour.

6. Prune your garden
Acacias, ironwoods, palo verdes, and other native trees should be pruned in spring, but never in summer. Removing the leafy growth will expose the inner branches and stem to the scorching sun and necessitate more watering. Over-pruning during summer also increases the risk of severe sunscald.

7. Paint your tree trunks
If you need to prune sun-sensitive trees for access or safety, consider painting their trunks with properly diluted latex paint (1:1 with water). You can use any colour. Keep in mind that any pruning should not remove more than 25 per cent of the canopy in a single growing season, as it increases the risk of sunscald and makes the plants less water efficient.

8. Mow the lawn less
Set the mower blade higher to cut one-third of the blade of grass at a time. Using a lower setting that cuts more of the grass tends to increase the growth rate to compensate. This will not only stress the plant more, since there is less water available, but also increase the mowing frequency. It is a good idea to let the lawn grow taller in summer to shade the lawn and maintain the healthy look. Fertilize the grass in the morning and water it immediately to avoid burning the plants.

9. Apply mulch
Mulch is beneficial to all plants. Applying a 2- to 3-inch layer of mulch on top of the soil will help to insulate it, keeping the roots cooler and more water available in the soil during the dry spells. You can add any type of mulch to your landscape, including organic mulch, such as compost and bark, or inorganic mulch like granite. But since you are applying a thick layer of mulch, leave a small 2- to 3-inch allowance from the plant stem to avoid suffocating the roots.

10. Pest control
The best time to spray garden chemicals is before sunrise or after sunset. Applying insecticides any other time when the temperatures are too high can cause some of the chemicals to burn the plants. In some cases, you can successfully manage insects such as aphids and mites using a strong spray of water to knock them off the plant – they can’t climb back on. Alternatively, you can apply a soapy water solution (1 tsp. per gallon of water) using a trigger spray, or some other organic pest control measure.

Are you satisfied with your space?
Lastly, walk the perimeter of your property line, noting anything that might need extra attention before summer. Seeking professional custom landscape services can help address most of these concerns. You may need awnings and pergolas to cover your patio, extra outdoor furniture or upholstery, or even an outdoor bar.

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Gardening
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Budget Friendly Garden Design Ideas

There is no need to empty your bank account in order to update your garden. Spruce up your backyard with a few easy and budget-friendly design ideas.

Budget-Friendly Garden Upgrades

Plant With Perennials

Although perennials may cost you a little more in the beginning, they return year after year, making them the essential budget-friendly flower choice. You can fill your garden with these beauties and not have to worry about spending money on new plants each spring. Beautiful perennials that are hearty enough to survive the Calgary climate include: Peony, Bearded Iris, Sea Lavender, Blue Flax, Daylily, the Iceland Poppy, and a variety of succulent rosettes and ornamental grasses.

To start, decide on one of two different design approaches for perennial flowers: a single-color floral garden or a combination-colour garden. Whatever you choose, the financial and visual benefits of planting perennials pay well – annually.

Dig Out a DIY Fire Pit

A fire pit is something the entire family can get behind. S’mores after dinner. Sing-alongs at dusk. You might be asking yourself, ‘why didn’t we build a fire pit sooner?’ They are easy to make and will provide endless amusement all summer long. For the project, you will only need four supplies: Stone pavers, bricks or cinder blocks; sand or gravel; a shovel; and, a rake.

Find a suitable place in your backyard for your new fire pit, one that is both convenient and safe. Make sure that it’s in an open area away from the house, low tree limbs or anything else flammable. Clear away debris and shovel out an area of grass for your fire pit. Arrange the pavers, bricks or cinder blocks in your desired shape. Once assembled, add sand or gravel to the pit. Rake the area to create a smooth surface. Add dry wood. Then, rush to the store and buy marshmallows, graham crackers and chocolate.

Create a Pathway

Pavers are an inexpensive design idea that create amazing visual impact. If you have bare earth you would like to cover or unused ground space in your yard, use broken pavers to build a mosaic pattern or whole pavers to create a grid. Place moss between the pavers for added visual impact. This will lend an ethereal vibe to an otherwise unused space. Using both pavers and plant moss means you need less of each, which is also light on your budget.

Build A Graveled Courtyard

Gravel is an inexpensive way to update your garden. Use it to designate a modest courtyard amongst your bushes and flowers to sip refreshments with friends. A gravel floor is almost maintenance-free and completely adaptable, as well as perfect for both relaxing and entertaining. If you like, change the shape or size of the floor with each season. The design is not etched in stone, making the possibilities for your garden inexpensive and numerous.

An Accent Colour

Choose a colour and use it to amplify your garden’s beauty. Paint the colour extensively throughout the space – on doors, fences, pots and garden furniture. Any quality exterior-grade paint that is oil-based or latex-based, in a bucket or spray can, is fine to use in your garden. When painting metal, choose a variety that is rust-resistant.

If you have limited space, painting a few items in the same color creates intensity and serenity. A few colors that look fabulous in gardens include: lavender, magenta, teal, deep purple, lime green, sunny yellow, and reds.

Become a Salvage

Not a Savage. Bring your purging rituals outdoors and upcycle unused household items to use in your garden. Find new use for that old armoire or china cabinet, especially ones with peeling paint. Plus, their drawers make for excellent storage. Adding antique pieces to your garden will not only update its look, but also shed your home of unnecessary clutter.

If you do not have anything you would like to remove from your home, visit a thrift store or flea market. You will find interesting used pieces for far less than you would new – perfect to brave the weather in your garden.

Old and toughened wood also looks striking in a garden. Leftover lumber is easy to convert into a bench or potting table and will feel right at home in your garden.

Updating your garden does not have to be an expensive task. All you need is a little creativity and time. Have fun with the process – that’s what gardens are there for. If you’re still not sure what updates you would like to make, and feel that you need some assistance, Infinity Gardens can help make any garden designs you’d like to accomplish.

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Landscaping
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Common Landscaping Mistakes To Avoid

Springtime tends to ignite the need to get out the shovel and overhaul your yard. The weather is warming up and your leaf-less trees and shrubs look like they may need love and attention. And they do – but, not so fast.

Avoiding Landscaping Mistakes

There are a few landscaping mistakes that are commonly made, yet very preventable.

Not Starting With A Plan

It is easy to walk through your local garden center and end up with a cart filled with beautiful plants. This season, do not just buy aimlessly hoping to find a home for your new additions. Start with a plan. Decide which landscape aesthetic you are hoping to attain – minimalist, romantic, modern, country, etc. – and work from there.

Lack of planning can lead to numerous maintenance headaches. A poor design, or one with too many sharp angles, can leading to constant mowing nightmares. Hiring a landscape architect is often well worth the investment, as they can transform your desires into an achievable rendering, as well as provide plant suggestions that you can pass along to your landscape company.

Skipping Prep Work

You would not build a home on unprepped foundation, so you shouldn’t start executing your new landscape without laying out the groundwork for your plants.

Improving your soil quality is something that you can start way before the landscapers begin work. Test your soil and find out which nutrients it is craving, then make any needed pH level adjustments. To make your soil more acidic, add aluminum sulphate or sulphur. Add ground lime to make your soil more alkaline.

Start a compost pile or bin. Adding organic waste to your soil is essential, as it will help produce healthy, flourishing plants. Create a mixture of wet and dry materials. Wet materials include: coffee grounds, chopped leaves, eggs, grains, manure, weeds, fruits and vegetables. Dry materials include: hay, nutshells, paper, straw, pine needles and more.

Once your compost smells like rich soil, add it to your foundation.

Monochromatic Colour Schemes

While you may favour fuschia to violet, too much of a good thing is never pretty. Instead, go for four-season landscape colour. When choosing plants and trees in spring, consider varieties that provide intoxicating color in winter, like Japanese maples and various ornamental grasses. And do not forget springtime varieties, such as tulips, and summer-blooming flowers, like roses.

You may also choose to include hearty heirloom vegetables, such as Swiss chard, cabbage and kale. They survive cold climates and are not hard on the eyes, either.

A seasonal variety of plants for your landscape is most handsome – and important for resale curb appeal.

Forgetting to Factor Size

The day that tree on your front lawn grows so tall that it hits a power line will be a memorable one. Make sure it doesn’t come to this by planning ahead. Make sure your landscape plan does not include tall trees under electrical lines. Another common mistake made in landscaping is to plant tall shrubs under a window. They end up hiding the view. The easiest way to avoid this is to do a little research or hire a landscaper to help you determine the best locations for your preferred plantlife.

When Weeds Go Wild

Weeds will eat up your gorgeous landscaping, as well as your maintenance budget. They compete with other plants for nutrients and water. They may also shorten the lifespan of pavers and stone by growing in mortar cracks. Make sure you have removed most, if not all, of the weeds in your soil prior to planting. You don’t want your seedlings to have to fight for survival.

It is easier to destroy weeds before there are other plants in your garden beds. Whether you prefer to dig or spray, remove these pesky plants before you get started. You can apply a pre-emergent pesticide about three weeks before seeds germinate.

Your Land Is A Backyard Buffet

Grazing deer might be a fun sight for kids to catch, but your newly planted shrubs will end up sparse. To avoid various wildlife from feasting on your landscape, decorate with deer- and rabbit-resistant plant varieties. Your landscaper or local agricultural extension agent can provide you with a list of edibles that critters in your area dislike. An electric deer fence is also an option.

Although it is tempting to simply plant all your favourite flowers without much foresight, make the most of your landscape and plan before you plant. If you have any questions, consult local professionals – Infinity Gardens offers custom estimates on personalized designs.

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Gardening
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How To Master The Art Of Edible Landscaping

Landscaping doesn’t always have to be a purely aesthetic exercise. Your garden can potentially supplement your food diet and help you to live a healthier lifestyle (not to mention reduce your food bill). Hence the reason why it is good to master the art of edible landscaping. Your garden can have a variety of produce: fruits, herbs and vegetables. Depending on what you plan on growing, you can try different methods and styles. This is a chance for you to be quite creative with your garden.

Edible Landscaping

Vegetable Gardens

Vegetable gardens do not have to be bland; they can be both practical and stylish. You can plant certain vegetables together according to their looks. For example, cabbage and cauliflower go very well together due to their colours. You can plant them in blocks and clusters as opposed to traditional rows. You can also plant them inside containers and boxes.

If you are worried about shade, there are lots of vegetables that grow well without direct exposure to the sun: cabbage, cauliflower, garlic, lettuce, spinach, beans and radishes are all options for you.

You can plant your vegetables in all sorts of spaces. Pole beans, for example, can be planted along arbors and fences.

Fruit Trees

The idea of growing fruit trees might seem a bit impractical if you don’t have a lot of space to work with. But there are now miniature fruit trees commercially available, so it is possible to enjoy fruit even if you don’t have a huge backyard. They can be grown in barrels or pots. Strawberries can be used for edging by just planting them around the flower beds. Strawberries are especially beautiful in spring as they grow white flowers that become russet in fall.

Herbs

Herbs are well known for their medicinal and nutritional benefits, but don’t discount their decorative ability. Herbs now come in a variety of colours other than traditional green and can make good foliage for your garden. Rosemary is a popular herb that can add some flavour to your garden. If you are looking for something that can withstand hot and dry weather then thyme would be a good bet. Not only is it a good plant for groundcover, it also exudes a fragrant smell.

Herbs can be mixed well with flowers and interior decorations. Some examples are basil, tarragon, plants and chives.

With time and practice, you can find out the combination that works best for your garden. For advice or ideas, consult our staff or visit us online for more information. You can find out about new techniques or tools available. There are lots of resources you can utilize to make the most of your gardening project.

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Gardening
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Getting Your Garden Ready For Spring

Spring is just around the corner, and that is good news for garden enthusiasts who want to see beautiful flowers and plants in their backyards instead of snow. But before you jump into the gardening, there are some things you need to do in order to make the most of your garden.

Spring-Ready Garden

Take Stock of Your Tools and Supplies

Make sure that you have adequate supplies for gardening: shovel, hoe, gloves, wheelbarrow and anything else that you know you use or might use to cultivate your garden. Inspect the tools that you do have for any signs of decay or damage. Check metal tools for rust and for wooden tools check for splits and cracks.

Inspect the Garden Bed

The harsh winter weather could easily damage your garden bed, so it is a good idea to repair or replace any damage to the frame. Also check for weeds that might have grown. Weeds can be your garden’s biggest enemy so make sure they are fully uprooted before you begin sowing.

Break up the Ground

The ground would have been frozen solid by the cold winter so you need to loosen it up. This can be hard work but it is important to make sure that your garden has the best environment to grow in. A rototiller would be a good tool for this. Alternatively you can use a hoe, shovel or pick.

Fertilize the Soil

Make sure that your soil is adequately fertilized. You can use commercial fertilizer or compost you might have accumulated. Just spread the compost over the top of the soil.

Shift around Perennials

Spring is a good opportunity to put some variety into your garden by trading plants. Just make sure that whatever plants you trade in are healthy, you don’t want to take the risk of cultivating unhealthy plants as they can ruin your entire garden.

Plant Vegetables Early

Some seeds actually germinate better in cooler weather so make sure you take advantage of the favourable spring conditions. After you sow, prune away any foliage to ensure that the seeds grow successfully.

Protect Your Plants

Spring can still bring on late spates of frost and snow. Prepare your plants for this by covering them in plastic and cloth. Check the weather forecast for any freezing weather and take action early.

Sometimes you might find yourself short of supplies or in need of some advice. If you have a local garden supplier, you can ask them about any new tools or information that can be useful. Our team at Infinity Gardens is available to offer their assistance, guidance and insight.

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Lawn Care
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How To Save Water While Still Maintaining A Healthy Lawn

It can be difficult to maintain a healthy lawn while conserving water. To maintain a healthy lawn, you must keep a good balance between over- and under- watering. It’s also important to think about the environment. Water is a precious resource, and we should all do our part to conserve water. When it comes to being eco-friendly, every little bit helps.

 Healthy Lawn

So, how can we save water, while keeping our lawn healthy and growing?

Choose the Right Irrigation Technique

Common lawn irrigation techniques include:

  • Sprinklers
  • Hand watering
  • Drip Irrigation

Sprinklers are a great, labour saving way to water your lawn, but you’ll want to make sure you never forget to turn the sprinklers off. Sprinklers can become water wasters if left on for too long. Fortunately, technology allows us to put our sprinklers on timers, so they can turn on and off automatically.

You may also choose to have complete control over water flow by watering your garden by hand.

However, the most conservative, and effective way to hydrate your lawn is drip irrigation, which delivers moisture directly to the plants’ roots. Since the water goes right to the roots, there’s less wastage. In fact, drip irrigation uses 70% less water than a regular sprinkler.

Not only does drip irrigation save water, it also saves you valuable time. Once the irrigation system is in place, your yard is automatically watered–you don’t need to do a thing. At Infinity Gardens, our irrigation specialists can help you set up an irrigation system, saving water, and allowing your lawn to flourish!

Water Strategically

If you are watering your lawn using sprinklers, or by hand, be sure to water early in the morning. When it’s really hot out, a lot of water can be lost due to evaporation. By watering early in the summer months, you can buy time for the water to be absorbed into the earth.

Take care in the placement and alignment of your sprinklers, to make sure the sidewalk or driveway isn’t getting as much water as the lawn!

Love the Rain

Rainwater can be your best friend! Not only does it naturally water your lawn, but you can set up a rainwater collection system (a rain barrel, for instance) and continue allowing rain to benefit your lawn even once the showers have passed.

If you have an automatic irrigation system installed (drip irrigation, or sprinklers), make sure it has functioning moisture sensors that shut the system off when it rains.

Maintaining a healthy lawn takes many considerations. Fortunately, there are so many ways to keep a beautiful, yet eco-friendly outdoor space. For more information from the specialists at Infinity Gardens, contact us today!

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outdoor fireplace
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Four Events To Hold Around Your Outdoor Fireplace

An outdoor fireplace is a beautiful and functional addition to your backyard, and a great way to host memorable social events! Here at Infinity Gardens, our journeyman masons will custom build your outdoor fireplace, finishing the job only when you are completely satisfied. Here are a few ways to enjoy your luxurious new fireplace.

Outdoor Fireplace

  1. BBQ

    There’s no better way to enjoy your outdoor fireplace than to hold a BBQ with family and friends. Place a grill over your fire to cook burgers, hot dogs, and more. As the weather gets colder, you can cozy up to the fireplace with blankets to enjoy good food, and good conversation.

    To really step up your outdoors culinary game, combine your outdoor fireplace with an outdoor kitchen. Our talented masons can build anything from a basic barbecue set up to a full kitchen to create the backyard of your dreams.

  2. Go Camping!

    Maybe you can’t get away to the woods this weekend, but with an outdoor fireplace, you can bring the camping life right to your backyard. Maybe your kids are thrilled about the idea of pitching a tent in the backyard, or maybe you want to throw a fun event to reconnect with old friends. Roast marshmallows, make s’mores, and sit around the warm fire late into the night telling stories.

    For families with children, you can use your fireplace to throw camping themed birthday parties! Snacks like trail mix, roasted wieners, s’mores, and hot chocolate are sure to make the little ones happy. Explore the backyard, sing campfire songs, and play games to keep everyone entertained. Rustic decorations can also help everyone get into the camping spirit! Just remember to always exercise caution around fire, especially with young children around.

  3. Have a Quiet Evening

    You don’t need a big social event to enjoy your outdoor fireplace. They are the perfect place to enjoy quality time with your loved ones, whether cooking around the fire with your family, or enjoying a romantic evening. The warmth and glow of the fire brings people closer together, and makes any night special.

  4. Throw a Party!

    Whatever the event, your outdoor fireplace will elevate any party! By arranging chairs, benches, and blankets around the fire, it can be a great gathering place to enjoy conversation, or a quieter retreat from the party.

Whatever you use your outdoor fireplace for, we hope it’s a place where you can laugh, enjoy wonderful conversation, fun, food, and friends, and create lasting memories. For more information about outdoor fireplaces, and our skilled landscapers and tradespeople, contact us today!

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Home Improvement
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Decorating Tips For Small Balconies

Just because your balcony is small doesn’t mean that you should leave it as an empty space.There are lots of things you can do to make it a little more stylish, such as plants, furniture and small decorative touches. Here are a few ideas you can explore:

Decorating Tips For Small Balconies

Small Furniture
Adding small furniture is a smart way to enhance your balcony. It can be just a table and chair. While it may not be ideal for practical use because of its small size, it can certainly still create a homey and cozy feel. Opt for wooden chairs over plastic, and add a small cushion and decorative table cloth for a little more style and personality.

Plants and Flowers
There’s no a better way to decorate your outdoor patio than to add plants and flowers. Try using hanging plants to add some dimension and variety to the space and to bring a softer, more organic feel to the balcony. Another advantage to hanging plants is that they create a little added privacy, as well as shade. You can also make use of the wall of the balcony by having vines and climbing plants run up the walls. Beautifully painted flower pots can also help take your look to the next level.

Artwork
Small statues and paintings can also add some sophistication to your small patio. One or two pieces of stylish art can make a big difference to a small area.

A Stylish Rug
A rug can be another decorative feature of the balcony. There are lots of outdoor designs that are weather resistant and that go well with plants and pots.

Lights
A lamp is a great touch for your patio. It won’t take up much space and it will illuminate the entire space. It will also make a handy addition to the space for anyone hoping to read in the evening. Some lights work better than others, so you should be a little selective about what kind of lamp you use. You can even use candle lights (preferably electric ones) to enhance the patio at night.

Decorative rocks
Rocks can actually be surprisingly decorative to a patio. When they are placed in the right way, they can make a good background. If you want to go further you can have these rocks painted or decorated. They don’t have to be large, of course. You can use small rocks to complement the flowers and plants that are already there.

As more condos are being built and more people are choosing small economical places in the city, it’s more important than ever to get used to small patios. Make the most of your patio by making it your own, settling in, and making it a comfortable place to relax on a sunny afternoon.

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Yard Design
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6 Ways To Bring Luxury To Your Yard

Summer is typically the season for spending a lot of time outdoors. Many people may start to think about making trips abroad or a getaway location, but with a little effort and imagination, you can create a small oasis right in your backyard. A beautiful outdoor space can be a great place to relax with your family, as well as the perfect setting for hosting friends and neighbours for a pleasant afternoon tea time or a lively BBQ party. Here are a few ways you can make your yard a little more luxurious:

Luxury Yard

  1. Music
  2. A little bit of background music can go a long way in enhancing the atmosphere in your backyard. Try soft and soothing music if you’re looking to set a relaxing vibe for you and your guests, or find a quicker beat for a bigger party or special occasion. You can try bringing your regular speakers outside and hooking them up with an extension cord, but there are some fun, outdoor-appropriate options, like wireless speakers that are intentionally shaped like rocks. Consider taking that organic spirit to the next level by playing background noise like running water or birds.

  3. Lighting
  4. Lighting is not only for illuminating your yard at night. If you use it effectively, it brings a certain glow to your yard. Candlelight is one option, but a safer alternative is a lamp that is dimmable or wall mounted lights. If you have a pool, a great idea would be to have floating lights. It doesn’t have to expensive; you can have battery operated lights inside inflated balloons and float them.

  5. Furniture
  6. Furniture is always a must if you are thinking about luxury. These days you have a number of options from wrought iron furniture to weatherproof sectional couches. Whatever your taste, furniture can always bring comfort and luxury to your yard.

  7. Water
  8. Water features are an elegant and tasteful addition to any backyard. The appearance and sound of running water creates a meditative and relaxing atmosphere. A small fountain can have the desired effect, or if you are a little more ambitious, consider installing a full aquarium or fish pond.

  9. Television
  10. If you like watching TV, having a television in your backyard can be a fun touch. And when there’s a big game on, having your friends over to relax in the yard without missing the game is a great party favour. There are a number of water resistant TVs on the market; you can purchase them online or in stores.

  11. Privacy
  12. You can ensure some privacy for your backyard by using fences or garden walls. Plants and hedges are also good ideas, and they will probably blend in better with your backyard depending on if it already has a lawn. Curtains are also a great choice. You can hang them around your yard or even use flowers to do the job.

All these decorative details can really boost your garden, and take it from a standard outdoor space to being a lovely, decadent and relaxing haven. And don’t forget to put your green thumb to work — a wide variety of flowers, shrubs and herbs are crucial to creating a great backyard.

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