NatureMill : Gardening & Lawn Care Resource

9 Garden Structures And Components You Should Consider For Your Landscape Design

9 Garden Structures And Components You Should Consider For Your Landscape Design

A common mistake by those considering what landscapers include when designing a garden is that they think only of the plants such as flowers, shrubs, and trees that might be added to such a design. The truth is, often the landscapers will have been given a remit by their client that the plants are to be kept to a minimum, and that the features and structures are to be given a priority.

This brings us to the fact that landscaped garden designs are not just about what grows in that garden, but also the many other elements that go into creating it such as decking, seating, water features, walls, fences, ponds, and pools. These were but a few of the many structures and features that can be included in a residential landscape design. To give you more detail, here are nine of the most popular of these.

Services Areas: A landscaped garden may still have several practical functions, and this can include bin areas, clothes drying lines, and storage of items such as garden tools, solid fuel and maybe even children’s toys. Ideally, these should have easy access and, where possible, be hidden from the view of the passing public.

Retaining Walls: Retaining walls can serve more than their main function which is to define the boundaries of your garden. They can be made visually appealing based on what materials are used, they can be used for climbing plants, and if strong enough, seating can be mounted on them.

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landscape design

5 Landscaping Design Principles Essential For Residential Garden Designs

Whenever landscapers are employed to design, plan, and create a new residential landscaping project, they should do so by following several principles which should be applied to every landscape gardening design. The fact that these principles exist should not surprise you given that the designing of multiple items follows specific design principles, including homes, websites, fashion, and cars.

Obviously, what is being designed will mean that the principles which apply will differ greatly from other design subjects, and that is why those who design and create such items are highly sought after due to their knowledge, skills, and experience. As for landscaped gardens for residential properties, there are several guidelines that landscapers follow, and outlined below are five of the most important of those design principles.

How The Garden Will Be Used Must Be Considered From The Outset

One of the starting points for a residential landscape garden design is the consideration of how the garden will be used. This will differ from home to home, and it may be heavily influenced by the demographics of the client and their family. For example, a couple with young children may want a garden that is enclosed, and where their children can play safely. Alternatively, an elderly couple may prefer a greater emphasis on colourful flowers and it having several seating areas.

The Design Must Compliment The Residential Property

A mistake that many homeowners make when thinking about their landscaping design is they look at it in isolation. This is wrong because, in almost all instances, the garden should complement their home. This means that the finished landscaped garden should look as though it was designed and created in unison with the home and that each compliments the other. Not only is this more visually appealing it can also increase the value of the property by more.

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Outdoor Gas Heaters

Ideas To Heat Your Landscaped Garden When The Temperature Drops

Whilst landscapers will always prefer that the weather is fine when they are installing a landscaped garden for a client, another weather-based consideration that they and their client might consider when originally planning and designing the garden is how to provide heat there when the temperature plummets.

Given the hours of sunshine and warmth in which most Australian gardens are usually bathed, you might think it unnecessary to think about having to heat them using other means. However, despite highs of over 30 degrees centigrade in cities like Melbourne and Perth in the summer, at night it occasionally dips into single figure temperatures. As for winter, both cities can see night temperatures fall close to freezing.

Admittedly, Perth, Melbourne, or indeed most cities and towns in Australia, are unlikely to see long periods of freezing temperatures or have to deal with snow. Nevertheless,  it can become cold enough to want to have some means of heating a landscaped garden so it can be enjoyed all year round and in the evenings once the sun has gone down. Read on, you will discover several ideas on how to create that heat.

Outdoor Gas Heaters: One of the biggest appeals of gas outdoor heaters is that they can be portable and can thus be used to heat different areas of a garden as required. There is no cleaning up after their use, and it is easy to adjust the heat output based on how cold it is. Options include a gas bottle for portable heaters or connecting fixed heaters to your domestic gas supply.

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A Pool In Your Landscape Design

4 Crucial Considerations When Including A Pool In Your Landscape Design

One of the most significant elements of a new garden that landscapers are asked to include in the design is a pool. Whether it be Olympic sized in a massive garden or a small paddling pool, a pool is a significant undertaking for any landscaper and one which both they and their clients must discuss at length. Bear in mind, that unlike some features in landscaped gardens, a pool cannot easily be moved or replaced.

It is for that reason that we mentioned the client and landscapers discussing the pool in detail. During these discussions, several factors concerning the pool will be decided. These decisions will normally fall under one of four major areas, which we have detailed for you below to hopefully give you a clearer understanding of what you and your landscaper must discuss.

Concept

For many, this is probably the most difficult to answer. They know they want a pool in their new landscaped garden, but are unsure as to why or how they believe it will enhance the overall design. Note there is nothing wrong with sticking to “I simply want a pool”, and not considering its concept any further.

However, the overall design and finished pool will be enhanced if you can conceptualise what you want your pool area to be. If it is going to be for more than simply swimming and paddling then consider whether you see it as an aid to fitness, relaxation, entertaining, or as a centrepiece to the entire landscape design.

Functionality

Following on from considering the conception of your pool, you now start getting into some specifics and in particular how you wish your pool to function. This starts from choosing the location of the pool with considerations such as having it all in direct sunshine, or partly in shade.

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Perfect Paving

How To Choose The Perfect Paving For Your Landscaped Garden

In most landscaping designs, landscapers will include certain elements and features which are the most common, and one of those features which many clients want is paving. Paving provides a solid surface upon which to walk or park the car, and often this is as much for safety and convenience purposes, such as when the client is elderly, as it is for aesthetics.

One of the biggest advantages of paving is that it can provide as many benefits in relation to practical considerations as it does when thinking about the visuals of a landscaped garden. Of course, to maximise those benefits requires careful consideration of the paving that is to be laid, and below we have outlined how you can make the best possible paving choices.

Choosing Paving Types

For most landscaped garden designs you have two main choices as to the type of paving you use, namely composite materials and quarried stone. Both have pros, cons, and different characteristics, so careful consideration has to be given to each.

Quarried stone provides the natural option, and for many, it is the beauty of granite or slate, the two main types, which outweighs any other consideration. They are strong, stable, and offer timeless beauty.

Composite materials, which include precast concrete and brick, are also extremely durable, plus they have fewer maintenance requirements. Whilst they might not have the natural aesthetic beauty of quarried stone, they do provide a much cheaper option for those with budget constraints.

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5 Awesome Benefits Of Using Glass Balustrading For Your Balconies

5 Awesome Benefits Of Using Glass Balustrading For Your Balconies

For anyone living in an apartment who thinks glass balustrading is not meant for them as it is used primarily for stairs and pools, then we have good news for you. You are just as likely to see glass balustrading used for apartments as you are houses, with the main reason being that glass balustrading is ideal for creating the surrounding on a balcony. So, if you own an apartment that has one or more balconies, here are 5 benefits of using glass balustrading to enclose them.

Benefit #1 – Glass Balustrading Is Extremely Safe

We are discussing the fact that glass balustrading is extremely safe first because when it comes to balconies, the safety of anyone who is standing on one must be the highest priority. Glass balustrading is recognised as one of the safest means of enclosing a balcony given that the supports and the glass are robust and strong. Specifics include the fixtures at the base, the glass being toughened, and the glass’s smooth surface making it impossible for children and pets to climb up it.

Benefit #2 – Glass Balustrading Lets In Natural Light

Depending on which side of the building your balcony is and thus where it is concerning the sun during the day, having glass balustrading surrounding it on three sides is going to maximise the amount of natural light that your balcony receives in comparison to solid materials such as metal. This natural light can make the difference between your balcony being an idyllic spot to relax, have a coffee, or read, and it being a dark, dingy, unwelcoming spot that never gets used.

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How To Compost Wood Chips Fast

How To Compost Wood Chips Fast

Turning Wood Into Compost: How To Compost Wood Chips Fast?

Wood and chipped bark have an extremely slow rate of natural decomposition. Depending on the size of the chips, this can take several months. The chemically complex Lignin present in wood provides a physical barrier against enzymatic decomposition by bacteria and fungi. However, there are ways to speed up the process. Whether it is the occasional rotten fence post or sawdust and wood shavings, with the tips in this article, you will be able to compost wood in no time. So let’s dig right in.

The Natural Decomposition Of Wood

Wood is the most abundant organic matter present on earth. As such, the decomposition and decay of wood is an important aspect of the biogeochemical carbon cycle. Fungi are considered the first agents of wood decay. Common species such as wet rot fungus and jelly rot fungus are known for their role in assisting wood decomposition. These fungi help break down the tough lignin present in wood.

Other detritivores such as bacteria and invertebrates such as beetle larvae, woodlice and millipedes also play a critical role in the process.

In contrast to softer organic matter, the decomposition of wood is tougher and takes longer periods of time. Fungi and bacteria rapidly consume available nitrogen while decomposing wood, which upsets the nitrogen-carbon balance of the compost. This further slows down the decomposition processes and lowers the temperature of the compost heap below optimum temperatures. So, how to compost wood chips fast?

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How To Use A Compost Tumbler

How To Use A Compost Tumbler

End Your Backyard Farming Woes By Learning How To Use A Compost Tumbler

Backyard farming using household items is an interesting thing to do. People collect organic wastes, accumulate food scraps, and even buy manure to prepare compost for their backyard farm. However, many of them are still not able to get the desired results. The problem lies with the structuring of the compost pile. If organic matter is not set in layers and turned regularly, the compost will take more time to form. For this reason, using compost tumblers can give better results than conventional compost piles. In this article, let us understand how to use a compost tumbler to prepare high-quality compost.

Types Of Compost Tumblers

With backyard farming becoming popular, manufacturers have started producing different types of compost tumblers. These compost tumblers help in small-scale compost production with limited resources. Three types of compost tumblers are available in the market today.

1. Continuous Compost Tumblers

Continuous compost tumblers are the most suitable for backyard composting. You need to add kitchen waste, yard scraps, and other organic material to the compost tumbler, continuously throughout the year.

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How To Compost Leaves

How To Compost Leaves

5 Simple Steps On How To Compost Leaves: The Complete Guide!

Environmentalists have recommended composting as a sustainable way of life, for many years now. Not only is it extremely beneficial for Mother Nature, but it is a great way of saving money. On top of that, compost is a thousand times better than any chemical fertilizer, to improve the quality of your garden visibly.

Composting also reduces greenhouse gas emissions and infuses the soil with nutrients and minerals. The process includes using a variety of organic materials found in every household, significantly reducing the amount of waste generated by a single home. In our article, we will tell you how to compost leaves, a basic component that makes for excellent compost.

Any person with a respectable garden will have fallen leaves lying on the ground, all year round. While fallen leaves decompose naturally into the soil, they can be collected and put to better use. Dead leaves and twigs are an essential part of any compost; this ensures that no part of your garden goes to waste.

Before we start talking about how to compost leaves, let us take a look at all the substances you can turn into compost. Any compost consists of three major components.

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How Does Compost Work?

How Does Compost Work?

The Science Behind Composting: How Does Compost Work?

Everything organic will inevitably decay at some point of time. This is thanks to the trillions of microorganisms thriving on decaying detritus in every nook and cranny of our environment.

Composting is basically a process that utilizes the inherent abilities of these microorganisms to speed up the process of natural decay. According to the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture), this is achieved by providing an ideal environment for detritus feeding microorganisms to thrive.

If all of this sounds confusing to you, read on as we break down the science behind composting and how every household can use it to pave the way to a more sustainable future.

Why Is Composting Essential?

The United States alone generates approximately 210 million tons of trash (solid waste) each year. Most of this trash gets placed in municipal landfills. These landfills take up a huge amount of space and also release methane, one of the most potent greenhouse gases.

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