With the ebb and flow of life, sometimes I feel more connected to the blog, and sometimes less connected. In the heart and and the heat of summer, I confess it's one of those less connected times. It's time to indulge in my last summer whims before it's all over. So I plead for patience. And I can't even say I'm weeding the garden with a straight face because I'm not. But wait! Maybe I'm harvesting? Again no. Too much rain, too little crop to harvest. If you need me, I'm probably in the backyard playing bean bag toss with the kids. Maybe even in the kiddie pool. Just give a holler. So today I have a wonderful guest post for you brought to you by my younger sister. Yep. I have one of those and she's sharing her riveting insights on the magnificent burdock plant. Since we all love to garden and grow in my family (not to mention blog)....you'll yearn to learn more at Pretty Simple Ideas. Here goes her story...
The outdoor living space of your home can easily become the favorite spot to gather with friends and family and to make lasting memories. However, in order to do so, it needs to be welcoming and comfortable in how it is set up and in how the space is utilized. Incorporate one or more of the following trends to your yard or patio and watch as it transforms into a fun and beautiful place in which to spend time and that impresses all who visit.
Big shopper? Nope. Me neither. It's usually online shopping or none at all. As much as I love Amazon Prime, it does have a few drawbacks. Not only have I discovered that Amazon doesn't always have the lowest price, but you don't always get what you want. Since I'm a frugal gal, I like to give gifts that I know the recipient will use and enjoy for years. Otherwise...I'm just wasting money and time. Now my family is made up of individuals of varying ages and pursuits. Isn't this true of all our families? So gifts have to be chosen with lots of thought and care so they don't end up in the donation box. Go ahead and explore The Grommet website for yourself. Unique is the understatement of the year. This is why I'm thrilled to feature just one of their stupendous offerings on the blog today. I hope that you win the whopping $100 gift card from them for some serious swag. Oh. And before I forget. If you prefer to shop based on your value system with certain core beliefs in place than The Grommet has you covered. To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and share this post or sign up for our newsletter. For two entries, do both. Let us know that you have entered by telling us about your most recent online purchase. Thanks! Contest ends: October 3rd!
Nothing speaks to me as much as a field full of picking flowers. Flowers sown for the sheer purpose of plucking - then enjoyed indoors some more. In fact, to save money for our wedding, we ended up growing lots of flowers to be picked the morning of as table centerpieces. And save money we did. Stress? Not to much. My hair started graying then methinks. No one should be picking flowers the morning of their wedding. Bad idea. I digress. Some flowers were born and bred to be picked and then cherished in a favorite watering vessel. But no one wants to fight with flowers in order to have a cute bunch to enjoy. So give me thick stems to easily draw up water and big, bold flowers in radiant colors. Prolific and long-blooming flowers win the day each and every time. Here's what I'm hoping you have in your garden now!
Multi-purpose tools are the way to go. You know the ones. The tools that get used year-round so you never resort to storing them in that deep, dark place in the garage....never to be found again. Serving a purpose in every season they don't suffer the fate of the grass seeder or the hula hoops. And I do like to be able to start a fire quick when needed. Whether it's in my fire pit or fireplace, being empowered to get that fire going pronto is wonderful. So we were thrilled when HomeRight sent us an ElectroLight power tool to review and hope you are the lucky winner of this incredible $90 giveaway. To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and share this post or sign up for our newsletter. For two entries, do both. Let us know that you have entered by telling us what lights up your life! Contest ends: September 15th!
I had a blast when I was in London many years ago. Magnificent, magical place. Someday, the hope is that lightening will strike again and I will get to see the city anew twenty plus years down the road. It's fascinating how Londoners are able to grow food in such small spaces! And they make it look so beautiful and luscious. So I'm thrilled today for you to meet my new friend Dan who blogs over at the Urban Turnip as is anchored in, ahem, you guess it...London! He's encouraging me to grow more food in containers. Especially crops like lettuce and ornamental cabbage that look great and taste even better. And don't you appreciate how lettuce can be grown spring all the way into fall? With what I spend on organic lettuce come winter...blah! Besides, edible gardening is some of the more fun you can have with plants so keep reading to glean some of his insights.
Consider this a fair warning. Once you start collecting torches you won't want to stop. They are addicting! And no wonder. What else but a real flame could add such depth of radiance to your space? Not to mention keeping the mosquitoes away in the most charming manner possible. You probably remember us giving away a few poppy torches in blue and red from Desert Steel last summer, but we must say, the white and orange daisy torches are just as sweet and sophisticated. Amazing how Desert Steel is always fashioning new and unique products that captures the eye and the heart. Envision yourself enjoying the ambiance of your backyard by adding one of these garden trophies to your collection when you win! (ARV $70) And I'm practically jumping up and down today because this contest has two winners!! To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and share this post or sign up for our newsletter. For two entries, do both. Let us know that you have entered by telling us which color you'd choose and how you many entries you've earned. Thanks! Contest ends September 7th.
Have you counted them or seen them around your neighborhood? You know. Those ugly, plastic hose reels and hideous plastic hose accessories. It's time. To go. Curbside. Because they are unattractive if nothing else. Besides, Liberty Garden makes such sleek and stylish products. Why not replace the ugly for the innovative? Swell with joy this summer (and not just from the heat!) by replacing or adding a few Liberty Garden Products to your outdoor space. It's time to get organized so your hose isn't sprawling all over your, lawn, patio, or driveway anymore. To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and share this post or sign up for our newsletter. For two entries, do both. Let us know that you entered by telling us about your current hose storage situation in the comment section of this post. And Canada, you are most welcome to enter too! What's the only thing more exciting than new hose accessories? New hose accessories and storage solutions from Liberty Garden Products of course! Contest ends August 31st.
And make sure you enter some of our other awesome current giveaways here!
Community-Supported Agriculture. Food Co-op. They seem so cutting edge. But what are they and should you join one? In the CSA model the consumer is directly linked to the food system by becoming a subscriber to a farm or group of farms. Weekly or bi-weekly you get a box of in-season produce. It starts with farm fresh veggies, fruit, flowers and herbs but can also include eggs, milk and meat. More recently, some co-ops have added organic grains like spelt, pastry flour, rye and hard and soft wheat. It's even possible to stumble across raw cane sugar, natural salt, maple syrup, and organic baked goods made with gluten free/vegan ingredients. The greatest advantage of a CSA share is that by eliminating the middle man you are getting the freshest and healthiest food possible. Produce comes from the farm straight to you. No need for transportation, a distributor, grocery store or even farm market. You already know that I have three huge raised beds which I grow my veggies and herbs in. But with two young kids and a needy newborn, this was the first and only year I even considered joining a CSA. In the end, I decided to grow my own as usual which is outlined below. But that doesn't mean partnering up with a farm co-op isn't the right decision for you. Here's what you should think about.
Growing strawberries has always been at the top of my to-do list. Yet somehow the task eludes me each year. Blame it on space. Although I have three raised beds, the space is always accounted for with vegetables and herbs. In fact, the four rows of garlic alone take up half of one of my beds. And sure, we have a 1/2 acre lot which is humongous for the subdivision in which we live, but still feel cramped when planting. With a young family we need to keep some areas grassy for them to run and play. (Not to mention our new bean bag toss set). So vertical gardening it is! With this 5-Level Cedar Plant Pyramid you'll be growing upward and onward in no time at all. Watch your veggies, herbs, fruit and flowers flourish in a relatively small area. Incorporate right in your garden or on a deck or patio for maximum exposure at arms reach. No wonder we are equally thrilled for you and your chance to win your own 5-Level Cedar Plant Pyramid from Eartheasy (ARV $200) today. To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and share this post or follow us on Pinterest. For two entries, do both. Earn one entry per day by sharing this post! Let us know that you have entered by telling us what you'd plant in this pyramid in the comment section of this blog post! (Scroll down to the bottom). Contest ends August 23rd!
And make sure you enter some of our other awesome current giveaways here!
When Tom and I got married ten years ago, we received a few...ahem..odd wedding presents to say the least! Some of which we couldn't identify. Not even when googled. Angels without faces? Check. Angels lacking any head whatsoever? Check. Lopsided circular vase that spins like a top but plops on the floor unless it's being propped up? Yup. Got one of those too. DVD player that turned out not to be a DVD player at all but an oddly shaped wood bowl that was just wrapped in the old DVD box? Yep. Tom was so thrilled with the imagined DVD player and nearly cried when he saw that hideous bowl. Heh. But I can't mock him too much because I felt the same way. Some of the weirder knickknacks had to be donated immediately (after very heartfelt thank you notes were written). But who's got the room to store junk they won't use or and morally can't re-gift? So I wanted to show you how I enhanced my garden space with one of my underused wedding presents. It's quickly becoming my pride and joy! And before I forget, would you leave me a comment describing the oddest present you ever got just to make us all laugh?
It's time to cave into the pressure and feed the birds. C'mon, all your cool neighbors are indulging in this charming hobby that helps you de-stress. Bird feeding is no longer a pastime of the bored or geeky, nowadays, most gardeners enjoy nourishing their feathered brained friends. Perhaps most exciting of all? You never know what type of bird you'll be able to attract to your yard and garden. It's kind of like having lots of extra pets without the pricey vet bills. So we are over the moon excited that Desert Steel is back better than ever with two stunning bird feeders up for grabs. Yup...that's right...we have two lucky winners today! First place winner scores the stunning heliconia bird feeder ($60 ARV) shown just above. And keep reading to see what our second place winner will receive! How thrilling! To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and share this post or follow us on Pinterest and pin 5 images. For two entries, do both. Let us know that you have entered by telling us what your favorite bird is! Contest ends July 28th.
I love containers gardens. Small-scale gardens. Easy buttons. The little gardens that take a couple of minutes to do and don’t require any heavy physical digging or mental anguish. Just a trowel and the right plants in the right pot. It’s the difference between having a dishwasher and doing that mile high sink of dishes by hand. Bleh. Hand washing is insurmountable. So is the grander of a gigantic formal garden. But a few plants in a pot is easy to achieve. That’s not to say I don’t admire the look of large-scale gardens but I can’t say it’s an attainable goal most of the time. The property alone you’d have to own! Besides, the blow up pool and trampoline do take up a bit of space now. In my dream world I'd have a talented garden staff working on my garden beds and helping me make decisions. Then reality hits. It’s just my husband, me and a 5 and 7-year-old (with a newborn and he’s not much help). So I like tackling smaller projects. This is why I’m obsessed with container gardens. But when you’re working on a smaller scale, it is essential to get the details right. Here are seven ways to nail the small container.
Hammocks are synonymous with the sizzle of summer. What an invention! Relax, recharge, refresh and repeat in a swanky hammock, book and lemonade in hand. But not just any old hammock will do. Not here. Not with us. Today, we're talking the creme de la creme of hammocks because we've partnered up with Nags Head Hammocks for the ultimate hammock experience. Translation: This is the best hammock you'll ever own. I promise. And we are thrilled for you and your chance to win this fabulous hammock from them so you can finally relax from the stresses of life. To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and share this post or sign up for our newsletter. For two entries, do both. Something new for summer. You can earn one entry per day by sharing this post. Let us know that you have entered by telling us the last time you used a hammock! Contest ends July 25.
Toxic plants. They're out there. Some are probably in your garden right now looking so innocent and getting smug about it. Time to panic? Maybe. But probably not. Because while being cautious makes sense, we've also come to realize just how many common plants are considered poisonous. And just like there are degrees in the level of badness in desserts, there are degrees in the level of toxicity in plants. Compare angel food cake or jello with peanut butter pie topped with Cool Whip and Peanut Butter Cups. Big. Whopping. Difference. Not only in total calories but in nutrition. So asking yourself the same types of questions...how bad is truly bad?... makes sense. Let's cut to the chase. While there's lots of plants that many would shake their green thumbs at, these are the plants we would not allow in our homes even for a whole peanut butter pie (with hot fudge on top please).
It's 6 a.m. I jump out bed and head to the basement because I forgot to put the clothes in the dryer the night before. The only pair of jeans that actually fit were wet and I had a doctor's appointment. Barely able to pry open my eyes, I crept down to the basement where our washer and dryer are. Surprise! No, it's not cake and ice cream. It's water. Over a foot of it in our basement. A flood. Ughhh. I don't know about your basement, but we use ours for storage since we don't have an attic, much of it stuffed in cardboard boxes. Actually, it's crammed to the ceiling and our basement is quite large. The discovery sends my horrified self rushing upstairs to wake my husband. Let me tell you, if this has never happened to you, I hope it never does. And if you don't have a sump pump backup plan, then maybe it's time you did. Sump pumps are serious business. So I am thrilled if you are the winner of this incredible backup sump pump from Base Products Corporation valued at $300. To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and share this post or sign up for our newsletter. For two entries, do both. SOMETHING NEW! YOU CAN EARN ONE ENTRY PER DAY JUST BY SHARING THIS POST! Let us know that you have entered by telling us why you want to win. Contest ends July 31, 2017. Thanks!
Being a self-sufficient gardener means looking after your garden and growing, plants, fruits and vegetables in a way that is harmonious with the environment. In an age in which many people are trying to be healthier and have a better impact on the environment they live in, sustainable gardening is an effective way to ensure your family eats organic and fresh as well as reduce your carbon footprint. The road to self-sufficiency is not an easy one, but with some planning, foresight and hard work it is doable and reaps rewards. If you have always dreamed of an off-grid lifestyle, are just starting your homesteading journey or are preparing for an economic collapse, whatever your reason, you can start your own self-sufficient garden today. Here are some helpful tips and advice to get you on your way to help make your journey a successful one.
Solar light fan? Me too. They light up my life. What a fantastic way to get your garden aglow adding beauty, safety, ease and depth to your outdoor living space. You can spend anywhere from just a few bucks at the dollar store to hundreds of dollars at boutiques for solar lights. It depends on where you fall on the purchasing spectrum. As for me, I'm smack dab in the middle of the price range. And I firmly believe one can never have too many solar lights. They look great no matter where you choose to place them whether that's the perimeter of your landscape, in a pot, planter or flower box, and perhaps best of all....a pathway. Hinting warmth and comfort with each step, solar lights make the garden an inviting space. Today, I'm excited for the three (yes...I said three!!!) winners of one of Desert Steels magnificent Daisy Solar Lights valued at $65. To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and share this post or sign up for our newsletter. For two entries, do both. For extra good luck and our eternal gratitude, tag a few friends on Facebook! Let us know that you have entered by telling us where you'd put this solar light and how you many entries you've earned. Thanks. We hope you win! Contest ends June 29th.
If the rabbits don't attack and devour your rhubarb then you might have enough to use in the kitchen for a colorful splash to any dish. I haven't been so lucky. The rabbits have not only discovered my rhubarb stash in the here and now but year after year they seem to remember exactly where it was planted. And don't get me started on what the squirrels and deer did to all my fancy bulbs this past spring. Absolute sob story. Another time! Rhubarb is special because it can be the star of both sweet and savory dishes, something every good cook cherishes. Not to mention the color. Eye-popping bold color means it looks lovely in that pie but is also a welcome addition to your stew. That is if the rabbits don't get to it first. Because a solid and sustainable working home kitchen that crunches out several meals a day requires certain ingredients, many of which can be grown yourself with little effort. Why not explore this must-have growing list to save yourself a little green on healthier food?
If you think you waste too much time on social media, just wait until you discover the Uncommon Goods website. That is, if you haven't already stumbled upon this gem. It never ceases to amaze me how they are constantly revamping themselves with new products seen nowhere else. And yes, you are remembering correctly, we did team up with them in the past. It was that unique succulent wall planter and it's still going strong today in my kitchen. Plant eye candy. Although Uncommon Goods has lots of categories to shop from, I really enjoy perusing their garden themed home decor. My heart just flutters thinking about how to display my spring bulbs each year. So I'm thrilled to showcase the above envelope wall vase from their riveting collection. Tulips, daffodils or hyacinths?! Tough decision. I'm equally happy for you and your chance at winning this stunning porcelain wall vase from Uncommon Goods. To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and comment & share on Facebook or sign up for our newsletter. For two entries, do both. Let us know that you have entered by telling us what flower you'd like to display in this stunning vase! Also remind us how many entries that you have earned.
You probably know by now that Tom is a gym teacher. So bigger is better. And this mantra even applies to tomatoes. He wants the biggest on the block. I'm not sure who he thinks he's competing with since very few people actually grow anything in our suburban neighborhood. Certainly not to the extent that we do. But there it is. He's a Pinterest man. And he's coming up with all sorts of ideas to implement. One of which are these dang fish heads. Gross. I know. But it's an organic fertilizer and tomatoes are heavy feeders that need lots of fertilizer. He's been reading about how fish heads (all leftover fish parts actually) paired with aspirin and a few other amendments will grow the most stupendous tomatoes ever. He also used some leftover PVC tubing from a drain project to make these unique watering tubes that feed our tomatoes using compost. Combining these techniques should grow the biggest and best tomatoes possible. We hope you're game and keep your sense of humor while following us!
Old, young or in-between some truths are timeless. We all love pizza and chocolate. Right? And planting seeds. It's so fun! In fact, just kicking back and thinking about seeds is cathartic. Not to mention browsing a seed catalog with a cup of tea or surfing online with the same intent. But when the seeds actually pop up and sprout? Your heart flutters. Seed planting is an activity that can be done solo or with the whole family. Of course you can buy your seed anywhere from the local garden center to the grocery store or even in bulk at a farmer's market. But it's quality over quantity today as we sift through seed. That's why we are over the moon excited to have partnered with Botanical Interests and for your chance to win a $50 gift card from them to choose your own seed. To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and share this post or sign up for our newsletter. For two entries, do both. SOMETHING NEW FOR SPRING! YOU CAN EARN ONE ENTRY PER DAY JUST BY SHARING THIS POST! Let us know that you have entered by telling us why you like seeds and how many entries you have earned. Thanks!
I'm a frugal gal. And there are few pleasures in life that I deem worthy of a splurge; but stellar shampoo, great chocolate and a few fabulous knives are three of them. At our house, we eat tons of vegetables and I bet you do too. The latest stats suggest that we need to be eating a whopping ten servings of veggies per day for optimal health. Ten! But prep work is real work that takes up serious amounts of time. Use the wrong knife and you'll waste endless hours hacking away at your winter squash in frustration, or worse, put a gash in your finger. You need the right tools for the job. So if you haven't met WÜSTHOF then it's time you did. Confession, I only own two of their knives, a vegetable and a paring knife. They are the only ones I ever lay my hands on when food prepping. Ever. Like the perfect pen in the hand is a WÜSTHOF knife to the touch. Ideal. This is why I'm thrilled to have teamed up with them and for your chance to win one of their stupendous knives (8" Vegetable Knife - 4563-7/20) valued at $170! To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and share this post or sign up for our newsletter. For two entries, do both. SOMETHING NEW FOR SPRING! YOU CAN EARN ONE ENTRY PER DAY JUST BY SHARING THIS POST! Let us know that you have entered by telling us anything about your food prep routine!
White is fresh, crisp and clean. It's revival and newness. It's that clean laundry scent wafting over from your neighbors' house...or maybe that's the bacon smell? Oh well. White is underestimated. Some people even think it's boring. Think plain vanilla ice cream with no hot fudge or sprinkles. But brides wear white and weddings aren't typically boring, especially with all the behind-the-scenes drama going on. But I digress. A good dose of white makes every other plant in your garden pop, like those colored sprinkles on vanilla ice cream. They highlight. That's what we're aiming for. Pinks, blues and yellows next to white plants, what could be more lovely or suggestive of spring? That's why we're talking about specific white plants today that you might want added to your garden. Not sure what the weather is like in your neck of the woods, but here, although chilly, we are seeing bulbs peeking up from the ground like buried treasure. This is my must-have white list for your spring garden.
How often do you look up at a ceiling? I guess you mostly notice one when it's in sad shape. That pretty much summed up our basement ceiling. The ugly and dated 60's paneling was falling down all over the place. The space was in shambles. So in our efforts to revamp the basement, we had to consider it. But it is just a basement after all; a playroom not a showroom. So Tom decided to go for an industrial look. This meant stripping out all the remaining paneling, installing LED lights, and painting the ceiling black! Shocking....sort of. I thought it would look awful. To my relief the opposite happened. It looks awesome! Manually painting the ceiling with all those nooks and crannies? That would be time consuming and time is too valuable. So we linked up with HomeRight who sent us their Power-Flo Pro 2800 Airless Paint Sprayer to test out and are thrilled you can win this fabulous product valued at $300! Because this sprayer was made to paint the outside of your residence now! To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and share this post or sign up for our newsletter. For two entries, do both. SOMETHING NEW FOR SPRING! YOU CAN EARN ONE ENTRY PER DAY JUST BY SHARING THIS POST! Let us know that you have entered by telling us any project you are currently working on and how you many entries you've earned. Thanks!
Hi, I'm Laura and hail from Buffalo, NY. I love sharing my home & garden ideas with you. Thanks for stopping by.
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