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!
Tom gets on these health kicks. That's not a problem but it does influence what we eat around here. Plus having two small kids and a baby on the way makes eating a healthy diet even more of a priority. Enter the smoothie world. Enter Ninja. Like peanut butter and jelly. Batman and Robin. Snoopy and Charlie. You can't have one without the other. No smoothie without a Ninja. It does the job and does the job best. Period. That's why I have used a Ninja for so many years. We love smoothies because you can't mess them up....right? A few berries, a little chocolate protein, yogurt and those delightful frozen bananas. What could possibly go wrong? In fact, there's plenty of nights when I haven't wanted to cook so smoothies it is again for dinner. But it gets even better because a Nutri Ninja can actually make dinner. It can whip up snacks, full meals, desserts, drinks and appetizers just by hitting the button. This is why I've been such a Ninja fan for so many years. Simplicity. You should try one too!
Today, I'm back on my plant platform. What can I say? I need plants. You need plants. Where you live plays a big roll in how soon you can grow outdoors (where are you from by the way...)? We have long and bleak winters here in Buffalo, NY. Holiday decor from Hobby Lobby does help but only up to a point. And I've read over and over again how working with plants increases positive mood, self-esteem, feeling of calm and optimism, and gives a sense of stability. Sounds a lot cheaper than therapy to me. Just like having a cat, NASA studies have indicated that plant people have tested for lower blood pressure and heart rate. Not too shabby. So if you missed part I of my must-have plant series, you'll want to start here. Otherwise, keep reading to learn what other plants you need to get your hands on soon to boost your morale!
How old are you in gardening years? Are you a Baby Boomer gardener? Perhaps a Gen X-er? If you find yourself getting into this post then you just might be a Millennial gardener. But I digress. Because honestly, I think regardless of your age if you're into plants it almost doesn't matter the type. You like them all.....right?! Lately, I find myself getting more and more into succulents and air plants. Low-maintenance and fun to watch grow. How unique they all are. So regardless of your age, make sure you enter this incredible live plant giveaway from LiveTrends Design whom I am a big fan! I've purchased from their collection for many years now at my local Wegmans grocery store but I was thrilled to get this set in the mail. You'll be equally enthused with this 7-piece collection from LiveTrends Design if you win. To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and comment & share on Facebook or sign up for our newsletter. For three entries, do both. Let us know that you have entered by telling us which you prefer...air plants or succulents! Tough call. So let's talk about plant trends today!
When inquiring about the status of a project that I've requested my husband to tackle, it's not often that I find myself uttering "Whaaat...? You're done already? I take that back. I have never said that before. Because it has never happened. Until now. Until NeatHeat came into my life. Within an hour of these beauties arriving on my doorstep they were installed and looking sharp and sophisticated in all three of my bathrooms. Yep. We're talking radiators today. It's March and we're tackling every last project we can before the baby arrives in May! Not to mention the start of gardening season. Our bathroom radiators? Whoa. What an eyesore. We remodeled two out of our three bathrooms and the very last task on the list was those hideous radiators. We didn't know how to deal with them. They were ugly. Rusted. Pathetic. The cost of replacing metal radiators? It would be cheaper to sell our house and move. So Tom started googling and found NeatHeat. The below/after photo's will blow your mind. NeatHeat solved our ugly radiator problem without spending a mint. They can solve yours too! This is how.
You've finally done it! Looking out the window of your house, you can see a gorgeous green expanse of beautiful lawn. Your family loves it, your neighbors are justifiably envious, and your pets appreciate it too. The questions now are "How can I keep my lawn lush organically?" and "How can I break my lawn's dependence on herbicides, pesticides, and synthetic fertilizers?" Well, today is your (and your lawn's) lucky day. By following the four tips recommended today, your chances of maintaining the lawn of your dreams organically will be much increased.
Tom and I have been married for ten years. I was positive that when we took our vows there was something in there about picking up weed piles. It was right after the "till death do us part" bit. Remember? Tom disagrees. I have this bad habit of weeding like a maniac and then leaving huge piles all over the yard. Not only does it look unsightly but it kills the lawn. The worst part is that I never seem to have any intention of picking up and disposing of those weeds. I leave them for Tom. So I'm happy today to introduce you to The Gardener's Hollow Leg, a product that not only solved my weed problem but it so versatile your head will spin. If you collect eggs, pick up kids toys, litter or beach shells; weed, harvest produce and fruit, or all of the above you'll want to enter this giveaway. So leave a comment and like the post on our Facebook page or sign up for our newsletter for your chance to win both the Gardener's Hollow Leg and the Gardener's Hollow Leg Junior! For two entries do both. International readers including all my fun Canadian friends, you are welcome to enter!
What pops into your brain when you think spring? For me it's seeds. Seeds = spring. Well that and the ducks returning from their warmer climates. And Easter chocolate arriving in stores. Not to mention the color lime green. So even though the snow is coming down at a decent pace here, I'm noticing the seed racks cropping up in many stores. It's exciting! But all seed is not equal. At Baker Creek, their seed is untreated, and they only sell non-GMO, open-pollinated varieties. With over 1800 varieties of vegetables, rare flowers and herbs to choose from, the selection is yours! So leave a comment and like the post on our Facebook page for your chance to win the Heirloom Seed Collection from Baker Creek Heirloom seeds! You can also enter by signing up for the Raise Your Garden newsletter. Which of their seeds in the Heirloom Collection would you like to try first? (I put the entire list later in this post). You also get Clyde's Garden Planner - all packaged in a sturdy, resealable, mylar bag for long-lasting storage!
Have you heard? Houseplants are seriously trending for 2017. Savvy interior designers are all giving houseplants two thumbs up this year. But what kind? Which types will actually survive and thrive in your space? We don't have time for fussy plants and neither do you. So today we're giving you the plant rundown to help you reap what you sow. Some listed here are labelled as toxic to humans and/or pets. You'll have to weigh the benefits over possible side effects and do what's best for you. Neither one of my children nor pets have ever munched on my snake plant. Or wanted to for that matter. Play-doh yes. Dog food yes. Snake plant no. So for me the risks are very low. Even my cat never caved into temptation. And c'mon. The Christmas decor has come down and your house is starting to look a little bleak. It needs to be cheered up. The benefits of plants are quite numerous ranging from filtering and freshening the air to relieving stress...not to mention the aesthetic aspect of having living green art in your space. Hooray for houseplants. Here's 13 you don't want to miss out on!
Not much is green and growing in Buffalo, NY this time of year. Although I think our reputation for snow and ice is a bit overstated! So we welcome any opportunity to bring the outdoors in. Plants are soothing and refreshing, but less likely to flourish indoors unless you have a plan. Enter: Plants On Walls. Their felt vertical garden kit allows you to grow plants up your indoor wall during the cold months. As many studies reveal, green spaces reduce stress, and increase self-esteem, positive mood and productivity. And sure, you can use this awesome product outdoors too. Your choice! With all this versatility, I'm thrilled for you and your chance to win a Florafelt vertical garden kit valued at $200 from Plants On Walls. To enter, like the Raise Your Garden Facebook page and comment & share on Facebook or sign up for our newsletter. For three entries, do both. Let us know that you have entered by telling us which plants make you happy!
Depending on where across the country you live, gardening can be a year-round activity or pretty much contained to the spring and summer months. But even if you’re looking out the window right now and see only cold rain or snow, you can begin designing a garden that will burst into bloom as soon as the weather warms up. Start making plans now, and include the kids in the early stages to get them involved and excited. Your local nursery and home improvement stores already have big displays of vegetable and flower seeds, and you can get absolutely lost exploring all of the options available online. Make it a project to plot out your yard and decide where you’re going to put everything.
What's the only thing better than all natural body products made without any harsh chemicals, parabens or dyes? How about a natural skin care line with ingredients like beeswax, honey, olive oil, lavender and aloe that doesn't sting you with the price tag? That's what so great about Beessential. The price point. You get the high-end, made in America quality minus the boutique price. How about $2.99 for a shea butter and beeswax lip balm that's been rated #1 by Total Beauty for three years running? That's what I'm talking about! Reasonable pricing for awesome all-natural products. So I'm buzzing with excitement for your chance to win this lavender themed prize pack from Beessential valued at over $50. Set includes two body creams, one body wash, three beeswax lip balms and a candle. To enter, leave a comment on our Facebook page or sign up for our newsletter. For two entries, do both. Let us know you have entered by telling us the last beauty product you've bought!
We've all killed plants. Especially during the winter. We take our houseplants out in May and bring them back indoors when fall hits, but by November many are dead. Why is this I ask myself? Light and water issues. Although I want to blame pests, insects and diseases; I'm at the root of the problem! I'm still sad over a Mandevilla plant that I bought back from down South only to kill. We can't afford to fly to Florida and so we drive. This allows me to bring back tropical plants. They cost a fraction there of what I'd pay locally in Buffalo, NY. Then I get busy and those plants tend to bite the dust for lack of water. Pathetic Laura! So I've also learned over the years to keep it simple. Know the plants' needs and meet them. Now let's talk about houseplants, how-to water them, the light they need and that last under-discussed factor.....drum roll please.....humidity. Let's kill fewer plants starting today!
Time to push the herb easy button. Because you live in an apartment. Or just have a small space. Maybe gardening is a new venture for you and your first taste must be quick and easy. Then let me introduce you to Click & Grow. They make an amazing indoor growing system that allows you to grow fresh herbs, fresh fruits or flowers with zero effort. What blows my mind is having fresh herbs growing in the privacy of my own home in January. I love cooking with fresh herbs, don't you? This was never a viable option for me before as Buffalo, NY is a really cold place right now. So I can vouch for the Smart Herb Garden! Literally within minutes of arrival on your doorstep you will have this unit up-and-running. 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 what fresh herbs you miss most during the winter! And international readers, you are welcome to enter! Feel the love.
I don't sleep. Much. Ever since having a baby 7 years ago and being forced out of bed 5-6 times a night to nurse...my body revolted against rest. Now that my daughter is older, I just get up that 5-6 times to pee. Makes me wonder. Does anyone out there actually get 8 hours of straight sleep at night? And I want a natural night's sleep. Agree? No meds. Did you know that incorporating just a few plants in your bedroom can put you out at night by creating a more restful environment? Just think how you feel after a good night's sleep. Like you can conquer the world. Right? But visa versa? Uh-huh...you're tossing and turning unable to catch any zzz's with that racing mind. All you can think about is everything you didn't get done the previous day. Awful. Then you wake up miserable and cranky unable to face the day! Well we have five plants to try today to help you gain a a more natural night's sleep. Here's the rundown!
I'm finally committed to 100% organic gardening. And more recently, I've decided it's time to banish all harmful chemicals inside my home too. When you think of how many chemicals your skin is exposed to everyday, it's time to shudder in horror. So I was on the hunt for an organic, holistic and chemical-free company that made products for my face, hair and skin that didn't have those harsh ingredients. The other stipulation? The products have to work. Otherwise, what's the point? So I stumbled upon Made from Earth and they graciously sent me a few products to review. I'm even more excited that they are giving away my favorite product from the lineup, a face serum...yours for the win! (Are you ready to eliminate a few wrinkles and spoil your face, especially around the eyes?!) 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 in the comment section of this post you entered by telling me anything about your skin regimen.
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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