Monday, October 26, 2009

No More Container Stains

When you have a potted plant placed on a step or a stoop outside, it can look beautiful but as soon as you remove it you can see the ugly rings that it can leave beneath on your concrete patio or deck; so then you end up having no other choice but to keep a container or something there to hide it even when you no longer want to.

Here are some ways to make sure that your container doesn't leave any stains behind.
  • At our house, we use these cork mats under our pots (similar to coasters you would use for your cups and mugs to not leave water stains behind on your furniture) on the front entryway and although they are meant for indoors, they work just as well as outside.
  • Pot Risers are also great to lift your pot up from the ground. They are invisible feet that are made of recycled tire rubber and are 1 inch squares that stay put under your containers and/or anything else you want to lift off of the surface of your patio or deck. They don't slip or leave marks behind, and they also help provide cushioning on uneven surfaces. Pot Risers can also support up to 1600 pounds!
  • Flower pot pads are great for both protection as well as for absorbing excess water when it detects more moisture than required in your plant's soil. Also, since they absorb extra moisture, this helps with both mildew and mildew odors.
  • Tiles can also be a good buffer for your patios from stains.
  • If your flower container is small, you can use a larger decorative pot to place that container inside; this would create a unique look.

For some, unfortunately, you may have already created a stain on your patio or deck; listed below, I have listed some ways below to get those areas cleaned up. Please note, that depending on how long the stain has been there, it is very possible that some of those stains may never fade.

  • Power washing can help get rid of some of these stains.
  • Stain solver is a great tool to help remove many types of stains on your patio, deck or driveway.
  • Sanders or water based deck strippers can help remove the stain from your deck but will also remove the paint/stain that is already on your deck, so you may have to power wash it and then re-stain your entire deck.
  • Baking soda along with soap can remove stains from your concrete or other type of patio.
  • Pouring any household vinegar on concrete will help remove rust stains.
  • Lemon juice has the same effect on cement.
  • Usually keeping most of the above items on the stain for 15 - 20 minutes should help lift the stain and then scrubbing it with a stiff bristled brush will then help remove the extra debris out. You should always rinse it off with plain water so that it does not set in one spot and create another stain that you were not expecting and which might be even harder to fix.

Have a wonderful week!


Monday, October 19, 2009

Bringing Plants Indoors - Just Got Easier

It's that time of the year that, depending on where you live, you may have to bring some of your plants indoors in order to save them from the effects of this cold and ever-changing weather.

One way to make this transition easier is to get these interesting planters called Lechuza. These planters allow you to do less work in taking care of your houseplants.

Lechuza planters allow you to not worry about how much moisture is in your soil. It has a reservoir in the base of its container so that it can hold enough water to keep your plants hydrated for up to 12 weeks. There is also a water-level indicator in the planter that tells you when it's time to refill the container so that you can be stress free again for another 12 weeks.

Then when summer comes around, you can just move these planters outdoors or transplant your plants out to where they were previously. Another neat feature about these is that they are shatterproof as well as UV resistant, so they won't fade or crack, even after months on a porch that gets full sun exposure.

Continue with maintaining your plant's health and enjoy your week!


Monday, October 12, 2009

Bringing "Fall" Indoors

What exactly does Fall mean to you, how does it make you feel? Leaves changing colors, pine cones, different smells, colors that inspire the Fall season - yellow, brown, orange. Here are some ways to enjoy this season more by bringing the outdoors in.

  • Gather pine cones and put in decorative clear urns, vases or bowls.

  • Gather leaves of different shapes and colors and create a Fall wreath for your door.

  • Add items that have Fall colors or shapes (i.e., leaves) such as throws, tablecloths, cushions, etc. and put them in different areas of your home to add to that warm feeling you are looking for.

  • Plant pretty yellow or orange mums and keep in containers to your home's entryway.

  • Go for a walk and pick up items that you see that are unusual and earthy to put together to create a unique seasonal decoration. Depending on what you find, you can use it to create a garland; put the items at the base of your plants to add some interest to it; or get a rustic basket and put the items in there along with some items that add color to it.

  • Found a unique branch? Make it a Fall tree similar to a Christmas tree. Put it in a large vase or urn and add ornaments to it. Create your own Fall ornaments by adding string or ribbon to pine cones, huge colorful leaves (use a small hole punch), actual bulbs in Fall or seasonal colors or you can create your ornaments with fabric or paper or have your kids create them for you.

  • Add pumpkins or different colored squash and add them to baskets or put in a bowl as you would fruit.
  • Add a scent that makes you think of Fall by burning a candle, spraying a mist, using a diffuser, or scented oil plugins that make you think of this season favorably.

The ideas are endless as you can see.

Enjoy today!


Monday, October 5, 2009

Corner Windows - What to Do?

Corner windows can be a challenge so what are the best window treatments for this area or what can be done to make it more visually appealing?
  • When windows are separated at the corner but are too close to really separate them with two separate window treatments, you can make them appear "connected" by a single drape that goes from one window to the other without stopping. This can also make the room appear larger.

  • Corner windows can be spruced up by adding multi-layered window treatments which can help define each window.

  • Folding screens can be placed in front of the windows to add some visual art to the corner.

  • Sometimes the scale of the window to the room might be off, so you can camouflage this by extending the window treatment beyond the edge of the windows. This will make the window appear larger than it actually is.

  • Shutters are a nice way to dress up corner windows without drapery.

  • Angling a bed in the corner of those two windows makes a visual statement to the room and draws your eyes to it.

  • If you are still researching ideas for those corner windows, don't leave them bare so that everyone can have a peak in to your home; instead, buy some paper blinds until you can figure it out - this applies to other windows in your home as well.

Enjoy your week!


Whatever It Takes