Prepare Your Yard and Garden for Winter
Snow, ice, freezing temperatures and other elements of winter are not far off. You’ve enjoyed your backyard all summer long, but now it’s time to get everything prepped to handle the upcoming cold weather. Preparing your lawn, shrubbery and gardens for the winter months can help ensure you’ll be able to enjoy your landscaping as soon as the temperatures warm next spring. By renting the right equipment to successfully handle those jobs, you’ll save time and free up space for all of your home beautification projects. * Tree trimming and planting - The fall months offer the perfect opportunity to plant and trim trees. If you’re plant- ing, make sure to give the new trees plenty of water in the weeks leading up to the first hard frost. Also, make sure your established trees receive a good supply of water, especially if the end-of-summer weather has been hot and dry. Tree trimming allows you to remove dead branches and limbs, as well as growth that may be blocking your patio,
Room Redos For $100 or Less
Only on TV would a redecorating budget of a couple thousand dollars be considered “shoestring.” In the real world, most of us have a lot less than that to spend on redoing a room. Fortunately, it’s possible to completely
change the look of any room in the house for as little as $100. All you need to do is focus on the design elements that will deliver the most impact for the least cost. Here’s a room-by-room guide for redos that cost $100 - or even less.
A fresh coat of paint is an essential foundation for virtually any room make- over. One gallon will cover most rooms, meaning you can get a good start on your redesign for around $25 - even less if you luck out and find a deal. Decluttering is also another way to
give a room a fresh look. Whether it’s your living room, kitchen or a child’s room, removing excess items like papers and toys can make the room feel open and orderly.
Dining room Your table and chairs are the centerpiece of your dining room. While a new set might not be in the budget, you can easily dress up your old one. Replacing old fabric on dining chair seat cush- ions can give the set a whole new look. Depending on the fabric color and style you choose, you can create looks that range from modern to traditional. Top off the table with a decorative runner in a complimentary pattern and you’ve redone your dining room for less than $100.
Living room Accessories are the way to
achieve a big impact for not much money in the living room. Replace old throw pillows with new, brightly patterned ones. Switch out wall decor with new pieces. Cover up worn wooden floors or shabby carpeting with an elegant area rug. It’s possible to change several accessories and still bring your costs in un- der the $100 mark.
Kids room If your youngster is ready for a new look in his room, rip down that teddy bear border, let him pick a paint color and consider dressing up one wall of the room with a mural. You can find plenty of kids murals for less than $100 online at websites like Decor- Place.com
. Whether he likes a solar system theme or she wants a princess canopy, a wall mural can make redoing a children’s room fast and easy.
Bathroom Get rid of that old, moldy
shower curtain. To create a de- signer look for not much dough, hang a simple, functional vinyl curtain on existing shower rod, then place a pressure rod just outside it. Add attractive, floor- length curtains from the local discount store; they’ll cost a lot less than comparable versions made for bathroom use. Ditch worn, ratty old towels with a matching set of new ones in an appealing pattern or color. Finish up by adding a decorative frame around the existing vanity mirror.
Kitchen It’s easy to spend a bundle on a
kitchen rehab, but it’s just as easy to make small changes that have a big im- pact. Rather than sinking a lot of money into changing countertops or cabinets, consider simple upgrades like new cabinet hardware, a new kitchen faucet and a new light fixture. You can also use a wall mural in the kitchen to dress it up. Whether you’re looking for a rustic theme that would fit with Italian murals or a nature scape that turns a blank wall into a view on another world, you can find a wall mural to fit virtually every decorating theme for as little as $60. You don’t need the budget of a TV home improvement show to make high-impact, appealing changes to your home. You just need $100 and some ingenuity.
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sidewalk and driveway, or hanging over the roof of your house. If the tree is quite large in size, consider renting a tree trimmer to reach the high branches. When you’re done, rent a wood chipper to make mulch for next year’s garden with the branches and limbs you’ve trimmed. A brush cutter can help clear away ground clutter. * Give your lawn some life with lawn aeration and
dethatching. If your lawn is showing signs of runoff and thinning, it can mean the dirt is very compacted, and needs aeration to allow water and nutrients in. Aerator rental is an option to perforate your lawn with small holes, giving the grass a chance to refresh and thicken prior to the winter freeze. This will help give your lawn a beautiful green look next season. Dethatching is another lawn care option to help your
lawn grow thick and lush come spring. Roots, dead stems and clippings often get trapped between the soil and the green vegetation, blocking the soil from receiving water and
nutrients. Stop at your local rental store for a thatcher, which will slice through the dead materials, lifting them up and out of the way. The American Rental Association’s RentalHQ.com
helps you to quickly and easily find the nearest rental store to you. * Prep your gardens - both floral and vegetable - to help minimize the work you’ll have to do in the spring. Remove all the dead plants, and turn over the soil using a rototiller from your local rental store, adding a layer of natural fertilizer like leaf clippings, grass clippings or compost. Don’t make the layer too thick. These materials will help provide some additional nutrients to the soil as they break down over the winter months. Fall is a great time to plant bulbs for early spring flower decorations. Cultivate the soil by churning it up and adding a bit of com- post or other fertilizer. Plant the bulb, water it and mark it so you don’t accidentally dig it up early in the spring while prepar- ing your garden for another season of growing.
Renting lawn and garden equip-
ment washes away the worry of hav- ing to maintain and store it, leaving more room in your basement, garage and garden shed, and affording you more time to enjoy your backyard and peruse gardening catalogs and maga- zines as winter arrives and you dream for the first sign of spring. To get started with your projects
now, visit RentalHQ.com
to find a location in your area to get all of the equipment you’ll need.
September 23 Page 11
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