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Fence Construction and Repair

A new fence can make the home more appealing and can be very resourceful. Installing a fence on or around your residence can keep the animals and kids in the yard with little worry of escape. An old fence can make a yard less appealing, but taking the time to get it repaired can bring it back to life. A yard can look nice with a brand new fence that is built from scratch or one that is already put together. No matter how you need the fence constructed it is important to find the best fence building a business that can do this type of work.

Calgary has a variety of fence building companies. They are highly qualified and skilled in the design and structure of the fencing structure. It is a great idea to find a company that understands what you want to be done with your fence. People who specialize in this type of construction can be very resourceful and knowledgeable for your fencing needs. The company can give suggestions on the best material to use for a new fence or repair. Fence building companies understand what it means to keep kids in and danger out.

An old existing fence can be analyzed and examined to see if it is still safe to use. If not, another fence can be put up in its place. After the examination, the old fence may need a few minor repairs. The fence companies are skilled individuals who know the guidelines and codes to keep any type of fence up to safety regulations. Many of these companies have competitive pricing and offer reliable estimates.

Many of the fence building companies in Calgary have excellent recommendations and customer satisfaction. They are very knowledgeable in what they do and can get the job completed on time. The companies have a great work ethic and are friendly and polite. The companies offer fast and professional service for every project. They ensure that everything is cleaned up and hauled away when the project is completed.

Individuals who had worked with one of these wonderful companies are very pleased with the craftsmanship they have to offer. The weather has not been a concern because many of the companies have worked through all different kinds of weather without hesitation. The fencing building companies are all highly reliable can do excellent work for all types of fencing needs. They are very affordable and take minimal time in completing most jobs.

List of Essential Garden Tools and How to Maintain Them

For most aspects of gardening, tools and equipment of one sort or another are essential. Choice is dictated not only by the size and nature of the garden, but the physical attributes of the gardener. This is especially true when it comes to a choice between manual and motorized equipment. One always tends to start with what might be called basic necessities.

Quick NavigationSpadesForksBarrowsRakesGardening Lines with Reel and PinPicksLawnmowersRotary CultivatorsAdditional ToolsMaintenance of Garden Tools and Equipment

Spades

Spades are for digging, cultivating and moving soil, sand and other growing materials, although a shovel, with its larger surface, is more effective for the latter. To use a spade properly, it is inserted vertically into the soil, a portion of soil removed, and replaced with the soil inverted. This is done with a flicking action. It may be necessary to strip off turf or weeds before ground is dug, cutting this over with a scythe or mower beforehand, if need be.

The first thing to do when you go to buy a spade is find one which looks the right size and pick it up and see if you can handle it easily. The smaller size of spade is a ‘border’ spade and they then get numbered from 1 to 4. Most men of reasonable strength can handle a number 2 or 3, whereas for a lady, a ‘border’ spade or a number 1 is large enough. The quality of space you get depends on the price, the best spades being half bright or chrome finish, which slips through the soil with ease and requires the minimum of maintenance.

Forks

These are for forking over the ground, loosening it up, handling manure and so on. Lighter types of soil can, in fact, be turned over reasonably well with forks, using much the same action as with digging—although an open trench is not necessary. There are digging forks with square prongs, and potato forks with flat prongs on one side and manure forks which have very sharp metal prongs, and are dangerous instruments to have around. The same size formula applies as for spades.

Barrows

A wheelbarrow of one kind or another for transporting weeds and garden rubbish is a must. The popular type has a galvanized metal body with an action roller bearing wheel. Tires can be either solid or pneumatic, the latter being better for use on soft land. The traditional barrow has one wheel and two handles, although there are bogey types of barrows around which can be useful, especially for people who are partly disabled.

Rakes

Many types of rakes are available, ranging from the ordinary metal tooth type to the large aluminum or wooden rake. Another type is the flexible wire rake, handy for raking up leaves, stirring surfaces of lawns. The ‘normal’ type of rake is used for raking land level and preparing it for sowing, and a little experience will show that, while the aluminum lightweight rakes are more expensive to buy. They are easier to work with however, and give an excellent finish, as they do not dig into the soil. They are also easier to maintain and will last well.

Gardening Lines with Reel and Pin

It is almost impossible to sow or plant straight rows of anything without a good line. The reel and pin portions are best made of alloy, which gives them a long life and avoids rusting, whereas the line itself is usually polypropylene or nylon. A simple line can be made with two sticks and a length of string.

Like rakes, there are many different types, from the traditional Dutch and draw-hoes, to the more sophisticated shapes. The modern types of hoes are very light and strong and a pleasure to use. Hoes are used for weeding and taking out seed drills, also the earthing up of plants, such as potatoes.

Picks

Especially for the new garden, some form of pick is a basic item, being ideal for dealing with hard baked land or for levering out of bricks and stones half-buried in the soil.

Other fairly basic items are spirit levels for finding true levels for paths, greenhouses, bases and the like. A saw, preferably of the narrow bladed type, called a pruning saw. A garden riddle of about half inch mesh (10-12mm) for riddling soil, sand, ashes etc.

A plastic watering can and a general purpose pressure spray for applying weed killers are really essential items, the latter especially for cleaning up soil with weed killers or dealing with pests and diseases. Some gardeners like to keep separate sprays for weed killers and pesticides—but if the sprayer is washed out carefully with warm water after use—there is not a great deal of risk. A trowel and a fork, preferably of superior finish, to avoid rapid deterioration, cannot be managed without in any garden.

A garden knife for taking cuttings, pruning, should be in every gardener’s pocket. A pair of secateurs which should be of good quality, as cheaper types tend to deteriorate very quickly, is needed fairly constantly in all gardens. A pair of edging shears for trimming lawn edges and hedge shears for hedge trimming, are required sooner or later. These can vary considerably in design and here again, quality is important, although weight factor should be taken into account, as a heavy pair of shears can be tiring to use. A hose-pipe is also fairly basic in most gardens.

Lawnmowers

A massive range of lawnmowers are available today. First of all, it is necessary to decide on the size and nature of the area of grass to be cut, whether it is to be kept finely mown or left rough. Of vital importance is who will do the cutting, as some of the heavier types of mowers can be difficult to operate by a woman.

The cheapest forms of small lawnmowers of the manual kind are those of side wheel design, where the grass is cut by blades driven from one of the side wheels. The cheaper the mower, the fewer the cuts to the yard of meter, this being dependent on the number of cutting blades and the gearing between the drive wheel and the cylinder. The smaller side wheel mowers have the advantage of being light to handle and they give a perfectly adequate finish and can be ideal for the unbroken lawn of up to about 60-100 square yards.

The weakness of the side wheel machine is in cutting edges, something they cannot effectively do. On the other hand, they are often better for badly sloping land. The roller type of manual machine gives a better finish and usually at about 50-60 cuts m/yd. They are better for good surface lawns and where there are a lot of edges involved, as the roller stops the mower falling over the edge.

Whether or not to buy a powered mower, driven either by electricity or petrol, depends on a number of factors. Large areas of grass almost certainly will demand power mowers. Recent years have seen a tremendous increase in the number of rotary cutters as opposed to those which cut on horizontal plane. The finish they give is excellent, and they are certainly better for rougher grass areas, especially where the land is sloping and where there are a lot of trees planted up in the grass.

Hovercraft types of mowers are especially good for rough, undulating ground, but all rotary type mowers must be used with considerable care, especially the hovercraft types.

Rotary Cultivators

Like lawnmowers, these have been the subject of considerable design and improvement in the last decade. Whether or not the expense of buying one is justified, depends very much on the area of ground to be constantly cultivated each year. It might, in fact, be perfectly adequate to hire a cultivator for initial cultivation of a new garden, or even once a year.

On the other hand, rotary cultivators are excellent for inter-row cultivation between more widely grown crops, such as raspberries, strawberries, soft fruit. It is true to say, however, that modern weed killers can take away much of the effort of cultivating ground purely for weed control. It should be borne in mind that, all rotary cultivators intermix top and lower portions of soil, rather than invert them, which happens when the ground is properly dug.

Additional Tools

As the intensity of gardening increases, so will the need for more specialized tools arise. Such items are: fertilizer distributors (for lawns and pre-sowing or planting vegetables); spikers or aerators for lawns; irrigation equipment for lawns and the garden generally; seed drillers, mobile tool racks, electric hedge cutters (mains and battery type), mechanical edgers for lawns (generally electric), loppers for tall trees. If you have a greenhouse, ‘outside’ tools will suffice, except for one very important tool—a dibber.

Maintenance of Garden Tools and Equipment

Hand tools demand reasonable cleaning after use, storage under cover, and preferably, all metal surfaces coated with oil or grease during long periods of non-use. Leaving tools out of doors for long periods, especially during winter, leads to very rapid deterioration. Mechanical equipment, especially if power driven, must be serviced regularly. Cutting items, lawnmowers, shears and the like, should be sharpened and set professionally before the commencement of each season.

Introduction to Growing Herbs in Containers

Chives make a cheerful addition to a window box or grow just as well in pots by themselves.

The handsome sweet bay growing in a smart tub must surely be the classic example of an herb as a contained plant, and I am sure that someone who is no gardener may think that the plant is never grown in any other way, than confined and carefully groomed. Yet bays will grow high, wide and handsome.

This is the only tree among the herbs, and it is interesting that we see it confined more than any other. You might think that the tree could be the most difficult type of herb to grow in a container. It has, in fact, proved to be the most popular. It is so attractive when grown in this way that it is often chosen for its appearance and not for its use.

This method of growing a bay is international. Surely this should encourage us to try growing other herbs in the same way? If it is possible to grow a tree in a pot, we should be able to grow the shrubby kinds equally well, and if these will grow then surely the herbaceous kinds will tolerate confinement also? And indeed this is so!

For some years, I grew many herbs in containers high on a roof in the center of the city, and in these exceptional conditions, I learnt a great deal about these plants. I found for instance that mint, which is said to prefer a moist soil in a shady spot in a garden, would grow quite well in light soil in a pot. Actually I raised good crops in pots and boxes, although these had to be watered constantly during hot and dry spells—and it can get very hot indeed in a roof garden!

Mint certainly grew lusher in the few pots that stood in the shade, but I proved that you can grow mint in a pot in a hot situation. However, fail to water it properly and you can expect trouble, as a rule in the shape of red spider.

Parsley is also said to prefer moist yet fertile soil, but again I planted parsley in the stone trough on the lower roof, where it confounded all the experts. It grew, flourished, flowered, dropped seed and reproduced itself vigorously in soil, which was constantly drying out and in a place which was windswept and sunbaked.

One would, expect thyme to enjoy a baking since we so often find it growing wild on some exposed and sunny bank. This also grew well up in the sky, and flowered prettily. Even bees, in the heart of the city, found it when it bloomed. Fennel, sage, chives and lavender were other roof garden tenants. These were grown in large containers or in raised beds around the perimeter of the flat roof.

Having begun so well, and so high, I have since had no qualms about growing herbs in containers at ground level. They can look most attractive, and now that there are so many plant containers from which to choose, contained herbs can be designed to suit any setting. Provence pots on paved areas, smart white black-banded tubs in a cottage courtyard, stone, plastic, fiberglass, concrete troughs, bowls and saucers— all have their part to play.

Any good garden container will do. In one farmhouse I visited, all the herbs were grown outside the kitchen in great stone drinking troughs, warm with the sun in summer and so thick that they protected the roots in winter.

Slip mint roots inside a plastic bag to isolate the roots from other plants in the tub.

Let us begin in the place most dedicated to the contained garden, the outside window-sill. Here a window-box can become a prolific little herb garden, sufficient to supply the small family with a succession of fresh herbs. But it needs to be well designed. By this, I mean that plants likely to grow large, sage, rosemary and tarragon for instance, are best planted at the side of the box and the center kept for the smaller plants which are not likely to block out so much light from the room behind.

The box itself must be deep enough to hold adequate soil for plants which are to grow lush and will be cut frequently. It should never be less than six inches. Obviously you should also be concerned with visual effects and a very deep box can be ugly, so try to strike the happy medium.

It is best to decide which herbs you most often use and see if these will be suitable to grow outside your window before you begin planting. Fennel, for instance, would not do, for its roots grow too deep and its stem too tall (although it will grow in any deep container) but basil, chives, thyme, parsley, sage, marjoram, savory and tarragon (which grows tall but is kept short by cutting) will all do well.

If you use a lot of chives, plant a row of these along the front of the box and cut alternate plants to keep them uniform and looking as attractive as possible. Sage likes a really deep container, so if your window-box is shallow find a separate pot or tub for it.

If you want to include mint I suggest that you make a special division for it, so that although it is in the herb community, it is in fact planted separately. This way you isolate its roots which are inclined to wander and become invasive. The same thing goes for balm. A tile slipped down inside the box fitting across it closely will do for this.

Alternatively, slip the mint roots inside a plastic bag or the bag type of plastic pot. In the garden, some people plant mint in a bottomless bucket to keep its wandering roots under control yet providing means for the moisture to rise from the soil. A bag or pot does the same in a window box.
You can also have a window box inside your kitchen and the plants will thrive there so long as the light is good, and there are no domestic gas or oil fumes in the atmosphere. Unlike plants in the open air, those grown indoors are apt to become drawn and generally speaking, they are not so long-lived.

It is best if you arrange the box so that it can be turned constantly thus giving all the plants a spell in full light. This way growth will be more even and the plants less drawn. Many of the plastic plant troughs on sale are light to handle and are quite suitable for herbs.

MoonFlower Open Valentine’s Day, But Order Early!

MoonFlower Florist is normally closed on Sundays, but there are two exceptions. One is Mother’s Day and the other is Valentine’s Day if it happens to fall on a Sunday. And this year, it does!

We’ll be open on Valentine’s Day, Sunday February 14, from 10 am to 4 pm. This will be for personal shopping and pre-order pick-up only.

We expect that our delivery schedule will be full on Valentine’s Day. If you do need delivery, please order by phone to confirm delivery availability. A good option is to order ahead and then just come in and quickly pick-up your flowers at the shop.

Birthday Flower for MARCH is DAFFODIL

The bright yellow daffodil is like a long-awaited friend returning home when it pokes through late winter’s ground. Symbolizing rebirth and new beginnings, particularly when presented in an abundant bouquet, daffodils promise happiness and joy.

New! Silk Flowers and Decor Pieces

MoonFlower Florist is pleased to announce that we have introduced a new collection of silk flowers and decor pieces. These are ideal for adding a unique, permanent splash of beauty to your home or office.

Of course, quality silk flower arrangements do cost more than real flowers. But they can last for years and years. And another great thing about them: zero maintenance.

All of our new silk flower decor pieces are original MoonFlower designs. Some are quite large, up to 4 feet wide by over 4 feet tall. They can fill up an empty space in a hurry, while making a really “wow” impression.