We take pride in our lawns it is where have host our annual barbecues and where our children enjoy the sun. We do anything we can to keep them healthy, especially getting rid of those pesky weeds. From dandelions to clover weeds riddle our lawns, but how do we effectively combat weeds? Simple way to combat weeds is to know what type of grass you have. Yes, there are many different types of grass and each one has its own unique way of being taken care of. Once you know what type of grass you have the simplest way to prevent weeds is to mow your lawn. As simple as this is, knowing what type of grass you have will determine the right height to cut the grass.
Grass that is too short can let sunlight into the undergrowth giving nourishment to would be weeds like ivy. While being too tall prevents sunlight to the undergrowth allowing that do not need too much sun to flourish. Now no matter how well you take care of your lawn there will be weeds, these weeds you can simply hand pick. Make sure when you do to get as close to the root as possible before pulling; if you just pluck the weed without the root then it will grow back and multiply creating a sea of weeds. If you have an invasion of weeds knowing what weeds they are will help get ride of them faster. There are two categories of weeds perennials and annual. Annual weeds refer to weeds that only spread by seed like dandelions.
We all love picking them and blowing the white seeds watching them fly around. These types of weeds are the easiest to get ride of before spring comes, the perfect time is right before winter when the grass stops growing for the year, and spray herbicides to prevent the seeds that are already there from growing come spring. If you are patient you can just carefully pick them to get rid of them. Perennial weeds refer to those that multiply by seeds as well as roots. Some people come them creeping or crawling root weeds, these are the hard ones to get rid of. Trying to pick them by hand is difficult because you will start to find the web of roots spreading around the grass.
Keeping your grass mowed at about two inches will stunt the growth of these weeds and the combination of hand picking patches then spraying herbicide will help control the spread. If you start to get patches of dead grass you are in for a lost cause, get your gardening shovel and dig up the spots then reseed with new grass. If you don’t want harmful chemicals in your lawn there are homemade recipes that can help, but will require more work with your hands. Using common house hold ingredients such as salt, vinegar, and dish soap will create a eco friendly killer. Simply mix the ingredients is a container, I use empty water bottles and poke a hole in the cap to create a squirting affect, and go out to spray your weeds on a nice sunny day. Controlling weeds will give you a health green lawn to enjoy and boast to your neighbors.
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During the summer we all fear what our water bill is going to look like from watering our lawns and gardens, but simple tools and tricks will help reduce the amount of water we consume. Reducing the amount of water, we use helps prevent droughts and lessens any impact it may have on the environment. We mow our lawn ideally twice a week, but changing the direction you mow each time will allow the roots of your grass to absorb water in all directions. Mowing in one direction every time will expose one side of the root system to the sun more than the other drying it out. Keeping your soil full of nutrients from fertilizing is key to a healthy lawn, but in hotter season you should reduce the amount of fertilization you do.
Over fertilizing in hot weather will dry out your lawn and unbalance PH levels. I fertilize once a month in the summer and it has been working for me for years. When you do fertilize hold off for a few days before watering this will allow the thirsty roots to absorb more water in less amount of time. Also, if you think you are going to get heavy rain fall then wait to fertilize. The grass will have an abundance of water in the soil to use when utilizing the fertilizer, you laid down for them. When it comes to watering your grass, you should water on a consistent schedule this will ensure that the grass has a stead source of water and will not need excessive watering if it becomes too dry. The optimal time to consistently water your lawn is in the early morning, this is when the morning dew softens the soil letting the grass store water during the hot afternoons.
Not watering after several dry days will benefit the grass by allowing the roots to grow in search of a water source. If you are like me and don’t want to water your grass with the hose, there are a lot of great sprinklers on the market that get the job done efficiently. Utilizing a smart sprinkler give you the ability to set times for the unit to turn on and off on its own. This will reduce the amount of water you consume because setting a strict time will use the same amount of water every time. You also want a unit that will evenly distribute the water so that your whole lawn gets the same amount of water. The Turbo oscillating sprinkler gives you the ability to set water flow, range and width that you want for your lawn. One of the best sprinklers on the market is the Nelson raintrain. This amazing sprinkler not only has the same abilities as the Turbo, but as a smart switch and 360-degree coverage. Watering your lawn doesn’t have to burn a hole in your wallet every summer. Watering smartly will ensure less costs and less water used.
Click Here for Information on How to Water Your Lawn
Learn How to Combat Out of Control Weed Growth
Lawns are the backbone of any memorable moments we have with friends and family during summer. It is easy to turn your lawn into a memorable one. The worst thing we all hate that happens to our lawn is when weeds start to grow. For some this situation is therapeutic. Picking weeds by hand is a time-consuming process, but the reward is very satisfying. Knowing how to pull weeds is easy pick the weed as far down as you can so that you pull the root, preventing it from growing back. When it comes to perennial weeds you will have to pull not only the root that grows into the ground, but also the roots that run around the ground. If hand picking weeds is not your think then you are in luck.
There is a tone of herbicides in the market for all kinds of weeds, but make sure that you buy the right one for the weed you are trying to get rid of. Living in the modern era there are organic herbicides and pesticides for your lawn so that you are not releasing to many chemicals into the environment. Keeping a lawn free of weeds will ensure the growth and health of your grass. Controlling grubs and insects will also keep you and your lawn healthy. Grubs live in the soil eating away at the grass root they are a nuisance to get ride of.
Spraying pesticides in early spring will help control their spread, while spraying again in the summer will ensure that they are gone. Tackling bigger bugs is easy, set up bird houses and feeders to attract our local birds to a feast of seed and pests. Watering your lawn is an essential part of lawn maintains. You should find out what type of grass grows in your yard and water accordingly. A universal rule of watering is to do it in the early morning. For those that sleep in I recommend buying a sprinkler system that you can set a on and off time for. As long as you water, fertilize, weed and pest control your lawn you will have a epic barbecue ready lawn in no time. I've got to to thank our friends at Lawn Care Boise for the helpful summer lawn care information!
More On How To Keep Up with your Lawn Care
How to Properly Water your Lawn During the Summer
When a blizzard hits we have to work extra hard to remove the snow. If you are like be and don’t own a heavy-duty snow blower, removing the snow can take upward of several ours in the cold. There are simple things to do during the blizzard that can help reduce the amount of work and time it will take to clear the snow. The first think is to keep a shovel by your door. This will help you transverse the snow in the morning to get to your blower, or you can start shoveling as soon as you step out your door. To reduce the amount of snow you would have to shovel in the morning going out every hour or two (if the weather is not permitting) shoveling little by little will impact the amount you will have to do in the morning.
I had a storm that hit us in Connecticut that was about 18 inches of snow fall, but going out every two hours to shovel, had me shovel only five inches in the morning. This trick does require a little more effort, but will reduce the amount of snow so that a standard snow blower can get through it. With this little trick salt every other time you go out, this will reduce the amount of ice build up over night. When you go out you don’t have to do heavy shoveling, just plowing it with your shovel will do the trick. Another trick to tackling a lot of snow is when you are going to shovel, shovel in layers.
Do not try to lift ten plus inches of snow, this could injure your back, take the snow in sections. If all you have is a shovel panning how you shovel will reduce the time and stress outside. An easy plan is to use your shovel as a hand plow, and plow a trench on one side of the walk way then shoveling in small sections the other half of the walk way. Other little things to help with shoveling in a storm are throwing the snow with the wind so that it does not fall back into the place you just shoveled, keep your mind off the snow to help you get through shoveling, and have the family help with shoveling. These are some tips and tricks to beating the blizzard.
More Blizzard Snow Removal Tips
How to Keep Up with your Lawn Care During the Summer
In today’s world we rely on technology to help us in our everyday lives and helping us get through winter. Living in the northeast we get our fair share of snow storms losing power for days on end. For most of us we invest in a snow blower to make snow removal easier, but you should always have a backup. Snow blowers make snow removal faster, easier, and safer, but you should always have a shovel.
I know shovels make us use excessive energy and could throw your back out if you shovel too much. Having a shovel will help you dig your way to your snow blower if you have it stored somewhere else or if you want to save your gas in your blower a shovel only requires you to use it. We have a snow blower, but we also have five shovels, one for each of the family. If you have energetic kids like me, having them help with shoveling helps me save time, keep them busy, and a great chance to start a family snow ball fight. Hand plows get to those hard to reach places that blowers can’t get, such as: stairs, patios, and under your car tires. Generic snow shovels are the ones we all dread to use, poor construction and quality hinders the uses ability to effectively plow your snow.
One of our shovels has loose screws allowing the blade and handle to wobble making snow slid back and forth on the blade. Another problem with these generic shovels is the metal strip that helps scrap the snow of the side walk. This metal piece dents and warps effectively allowing the metal bar to catch on cracks in the concrete sidewalks. Today companies have improved the snow shovel to make removal easier on you and your back. Garant makes a shovel that has a duel bar handle, instead of a single straight handle, and molded the blade to look like a flat spoon.
This design allows the user to easily push the snow while in a comfortable position. Another great idea that is made by Aerocart is a mini plow that claps on to your wheelbarrow. The combination of a quality hand plow and wheels makes snow removal on cracked concrete a breeze. This plow can also be used in the off season for your do-it-yourself landscaping jobs. The last recommendation for winter shovels is try to get a steel shovel, not plastic, it will last longer saving money in the longer run for winters to come. Snow blowers rip through snow like a buzz saw, but having a backup will make sure that you can get out and run those errands.
Information on How to Buy the Right Snow Shovel
Learn Important Snow Removal Tips for Blizzards
To make any outdoor job easy and safe proper maintenance of your equipment is essential. Your winter equipment is no exception. Snow blowers help us conquer the blizzards and snowy terrain of our home towns. I have seen to many of our neighbors ask us to plow their snow or ask to borrow our craftsman, due to poor maintenance of theirs. There are simple things to make sure that yours runs smoothly and stays that way for years to come.
First off, for safety of yourself and those around, make sure the blower is off. Though this is simple, one of the most common reasons your snow blower won’t workis that there is no gasoline in it or you need to change the oil. Every time you use your blower or go to maintain it check your oil and gas, and when it is needed change your oil. There is a time when you should change out your spark plug, just like you would a grill or lawn mower. Most brands today that sell quality blowers will tell you to change the spark plug every season or every 100 to 150 hours of use. It is an easy do it your self fix that requires a new spark plug and standard house hold tools. Another simple way to maintain your blower is to ad air to your tires, grease (lubricate) their axles, and to grease other moving parts on your blower. Getting to the motors main issues is the belts. If your blower won’t start or won’t turn over their may be a broken belt.
Some tips for when you replace your belt: try to inspect them before you need to use the blower, replace any seriously damaged belts, and taking pictures of how the belt should be placed helps when reinstalling the new one. This next one reminds me of having tires rotated. The skid plates on most models can be flipped to help extend the life of the part. This component helps prevent immediate contact with the ground. Next you should inspect the chute of the machine so that there isn’t any build up ice or gunk. The chute should also be greased to that it can rotate freely and not have undue stress on the part. If your blower has any exposed hoses or lines always check them before you use them.
One of our blowers had a hole in a hose that had gas running through it, no it did not cause an explosion, but our blower did catch on fire. If there is any issues with your blower that you don’t know how to fix or simply don’t have the time you can always bring it to your local store like Sears, Lowes, Home Depot, or other stores like them to have it serviced and repaired. Proper maintenance of your snow blower will not only extend its life, but keep it running smooth and safe. Most of these things you can do in under a half hour and they will benefit you in the long run.
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How to Buy the Right Snow Shovel
Southbury Women's Club Hosts the Annual Fine Arts Festival
Annual Fall Fine Arts Festival
If you are ever around Southbury in September I would greatly suggest to check out this wonderful event. It is an event for the whole family with free admission.
The Annual Fall Fine Arts Festival is a celebration of art, music and food with a focus on exposing local talent and giving back to the community. During this day-long event, different local artists and vendors get a chance to display and sell their art and skills. Other organizations are invited and allowed to partake and promote their brands. The Southbury Women’s Club is the organization who hosts and orchestrates the event. During the event, they can usually be seen facilitating different portions of it, or selling baked goods at their station. Some other individuals worth mentioning are the sponsors as well as the artists that provide the entertainment.
This event has been going on years, with 2017 marking its 13th anniversary. The best part about this is that it seems to be showing no signs of slowing down. In addition to giving great exposure to local talent, this event also doubles up as a charity event. 100% of proceeds will go to local charities to help those in needs. Not only are you able to enjoy some special handcrafted artisan items, but by doing so you are helping out the community. Pretty neat I say.
The Southbury Women’s Club is a very integral part of the Southbury community. They host many different events and services that affect a lot of individuals daily. Some of the bigger annual events are listed below. Some other services offered range from public education on important issues to raising funds for scholarships and charities.
Learn More About Events in Southbury such as the Annual Fine Arts Festival
Elderly Retirement Center in Southbury, CT
If you are thinking of retiring, Heritage Village is definitely the place to go. Located in Southbury Ct, this community has all a new retiree could dream of. It was opened in 1967 with a vision of better living, and is now home to around 4000 individuals. Ever since its opening in 1967, it has boosted the profile of Southbury. Since then its inhabitants has been instrumental in playing an active role in Southbury affairs, be it politics, education or community service.
Heritage Village contains 1,000 acres of countryside, bodies of water and beautiful New England vistas. Some facilities worth noting are the Golf Club, tennis courts, swimming pools, hiking trails, a fitness center, public library, public garden, and a community lounge. In addition to all these great facilities, there are also shops, restaurants, transportation services, and a hotel in the village center.
One of the biggest focuses here are community. With groups, clubs, and events there should be no reason for someone to get bored. Some examples of activities are: craft shops, art classes, ice skating, badminton, German classes, and bible study. The list of clubs and groups is also just as varied: Music and Theater clubs, language clubs, discussion groups, social groups, support groups, and volunteer opportunities.
Another thing to note about Heritage Village is that it is an age restricted community. Do to this, individuals get to meet and enjoy their time with like-minded people. At the moment, more than 3/4ths of the population is above the age of 65, with the median age being 75. There are two sub communities that do cater to other ages: Heritage Crest and Heritage Circle. Both of these allow individuals of all ages.
With all these things to do, it’s no wonder Heritage Village is one of the top places to retire in the nation. What makes this so surprising is that CT is the third worst state to retire in due to its high cost of living. Heritage village comes in first when all CT towns are put against each other. What makes CT so tricky for living costs is its proximity to the water, as well the increased incomes from the nearby city jobs which in turn increases real estate prices.
Learn More About Heritage Village
Southbury Plaza - Kmart is closing
Sears Holding Corp. the holding company that owns Kmart and Sears has been going through changes recently. The most obvious ones being the closings of hundreds of Kmarts nationwide. In early 2017 it was announced that around 180 Kmarts were going to close. Later in the year, 28 were added to the list of closing stores.
In Connecticut the latest store to be closed is the Southbury store, located in the Southbury plaza on Main St. N. The closing of this store leaves 3 stores left in CT that remain open: Milford, Watertown, and Vernon. Kmart had around 880 stores open last year; that number has now dropped down to around 600. By next year, that number is expected to drop another hundred.
This behavior by Sears Holding Corp. has been happening for several years now. The reasoning behind these cuts can be attributed to the rising online market. This force has been negatively impacting a lot of other brick-and-mortar heavy establishments. One such example is J. C. Penney, who has also had to close a large percentage of stores. This shift in consumer focus has caused the Sears Holding Corp, to report another quarterly operating loss. How will they manage to hold their ground in the face of these new pressures?
This downward cycle has been happening for years now. Sears used to have around 3500 stores in 2010, now that number is around 1050: a 70% decrease in stores. While Sears’s executives are claiming that they can turn this situation around, it doesn’t change the fact that the millions they are saving is nowhere near enough to offset the 4 billion of debt they are in. Not only are they doing badly in revenues, stakeholders are starting to lose faith in them, as their stocks continue to plummet.
At this point bankruptcy is not a question of “if”, but rather a matter of when. In order to help offset some of its expected losses in 2018, Sears has gone ahead and freed some of its real estate in order to make it available for sale. While this will help a good amount, it still doesn’t take care of their continually decreasing revenue.
Click Here for More About The Kmart Southbury Closing
Southbury's Non-Profit Wildlife Preservation - The Land Trust
The Southbury Land trust is a nonprofit organization that strives to preserve farmland and natural resources in Southbury. All donations and fees derived from memberships go towards to maintaining and improving the land and the wildlife in its possession.
The volunteers of this organization make sure to maintain the properties. This can be a difficult endeavor, especially with more than a 1000 acres. On the site, there are 44 properties listed, all in varying sizes. All land trust properties are open to the public, with the exception of those that are dangerous for use, or house endangered fauna/flora. Some of the bigger locations have public trails on them, the maps of which can be found online.
The Land trust acquires land by donations, or by land owners who offer their land in exchange of its preservation. In instances that money is involved, a combination of state and federal grants, individual contributions, and town funding is used to finance acquisitions.
One thing that the Land Trust prides itself in is the impact it is having on the town of Southbury. The amount of preserved land in an area directly corresponds to how much that community cares about its well-being. The Land Trust also goes as far that concern for land and wildlife can be considered a measure for quality of life. Using this definition Southbury would have a very high quality of life. Not to mention that Open space and preserved land does increase the value of properties.
One example of the Land Trust’s concern with the surrounding community is its commitment to educating the future generation of farmers. Southbury’s Training School allows young farmers to practice their skills. This school is led by several farmers who have been farming in this community for more than a dozen generations. The featured farmers of this initiative are: Todd Hanan, Ben Platt, Sara Blersch and Dan Slywka. It is initiatives like these that are run by money collected from the community.
Another example of the Land Trust’s concern with the surrounding community, is its commitment to educate the community on dangerous and or invasive wildlife and flora. On their website they mention the different species that need to be taken seriously, and what to do if exposed.
Learn More about the Southbury Land Trust