As many families prepare to ramp up their time spent outside, it can be helpful to keep the latest trends in mind while planning for outdoor living spaces. Since many people enjoy spending time in an outdoor living space, it’s fitting that the 2018 furnishing trends address the outdoor lifestyle experience.
Living Lavishly Outdoors with 2018 Trends
(Family Features) As many families prepare to ramp up their time spent outside, it can be helpful to keep the latest trends in mind while planning for outdoor living spaces.
According to research from the International Casual Furnishings Association, many people use outdoor rooms for things they can do indoors – from using cellphones for calls and games to working on computers, watching TV, eating, exercising and, of course, relaxing.
Since 70 percent of survey respondents said they enjoy spending time in an outdoor living space more than inside, it’s fitting that the 2018 furnishing trends address the outdoor lifestyle experience.
“Whether enclosed or open-air, outdoor spaces have come into their own as legitimate rooms in American homes,” said Jackie Hirschhaut, vice president of the American Home Furnishings Alliance and executive director of its outdoor division, the International Casual Furnishings Association. “Today’s outdoor rooms have it all – somewhere to dine, to relax and be entertained – with furnishings that function like they would for any room in the home and with style and flair that distinctly fits outdoors.”
Dining tables and chairs top many people’s outdoor shopping lists this year, followed by lounge chairs, lighting, fire pits, umbrellas and sofas. Leading the list of trends in the dynamic dining category is ultra-comfortable seating and a wide variety of table options.
Extra-large dining tables are popular for entertaining groups and al fresco dining. Yet manufacturers understand not everyone has a large outdoor space, so they also offer selections for small spaces, including dining sets suitable for apartment- and condo-size balconies, as well as sizes in-between.
The research also shows 68 percent of people use outdoor spaces several times a week in seasonally appropriate weather. Comfort, spaciousness and style were the most important factors in encouraging people to spend more time outdoors, which is why deep-seated chairs with high backs for relaxed comfort rank high on wish lists.
Often accompanying these group seating options are fire tables or pits, which continue to increase in popularity, according to the survey.
“We are seeing that fire of some sort for outdoors is topping many consumers’ wish lists again this year,” Hirschhaut said. “You just can’t beat a fire element for creating ambience.”
Much like spaces indoors, outdoor rooms are leaning more toward mixing rather than matching, both in individual pieces and in groups of pieces. To help meet this trend, try looking for pieces that incorporate several different elements such as aluminum, wicker and teak, as well as groups that pair, for example, wicker seating with iron or wood tables.
On the color spectrum, the survey found that after years of brown as a dominant color, shades of gray are increasingly peeking through as a more popular finish.
For more tips and information about creating a stylish outdoor living space, visit icfanet.org.
Photo courtesy of O.W. LeeSOURCE:
International Casual Furnishings Association
If cooler weather has you longing for sunny days outdoors, take heart. Once spring rolls around, you can safely begin the annual cleanup to prepare your yard for months of warm-weather enjoyment. Start by evaluating your lawn with these tips.
Spring into Lawn and Garden Care
(Family Features) If cooler weather has you longing for sunny days outdoors, take heart. Once spring rolls around, you can safely begin the annual cleanup to prepare your yard for months of warm-weather enjoyment.
Start by evaluating your lawn. Look for bald spots where grass has grown sparsely and needs reseeding, or uneven areas that may need to be filled and leveled.
Before you take steps to correct any problems, you’ll need a clean slate. Clear the yard of any leaves, rocks or sticks that may have accumulated then cut the grass as short as you can. Use a thatching rake to remove dead roots and grass. Break up the soil in bare spots to create an environment that will be hospitable to new seed. Add lawn soil to level the surface.
You’ll also need to apply an herbicide to treat weed-infested areas. Allow the weed killer to work for about a week then rake again to remove dead weeds.
Then you’re ready to over-seed or spot seed, depending on your lawn’s needs. Your climate will determine the best grass variety for your yard. Be sure to select and apply a fertilizer that is consistent with your grass type and water thoroughly to promote deep root growth, which can help your lawn withstand extreme conditions as temperatures rise.
Your lawn isn’t the only part of your yard that needs attention during the spring months, though. Your garden and flower beds may need some care before they, too, are ready to burst with new bounty and color.
Begin by clearing your garden and beds of any debris like leaves and other matter that piled up during months of neglect. Gently turn the soil and work in fresh fertilizer.
Before your plants and flowers are in full-growth mode is the ideal time to make repairs. Check edging for any damage, replace rotted woodwork and complete any other maintenance tasks.
As for the plants, prune before the first buds sprout to minimize stress. You can also start indoor seeds, and early spring is the time to divide perennials and plant some hardier vegetables, such as onions and potatoes.
The warmer months may still seem far away, but getting some of your lawn and garden care underway now can make those warmer, sunny days feel closer in no time. Find more seasonal tips for prepping your yard at eLivingToday.com.
Photo courtesy of Getty ImagesSOURCE:
Fertilizing with the right balance of nutrients applied in the right quantities and at the right time of year is a winning combination for a strong, healthy lawn. With these tips and the right strategy, equipment and work ethic, it’s possible to grow the lawn of your dreams.
(Family Features) Before you become green with envy of a neighbor’s lush-looking lawn, remember that beauty is more than just skin deep – even for yards. Fertilizing with the right balance of nutrients applied in the right quantities and at the right time of year is a winning combination for a strong, healthy lawn.
With these tips from Bayer Advanced lawn and garden expert Lance Walheim in your back pocket and the right fertilizer in your spreader, your lawn can become the belle of the block.
When to Fertilize
Application timing depends on the type of grass you have and where you live, and it should coincide with natural growth cycles:
Most new lawns don’t need to be fertilized until 6-8 weeks after planting.
How Often to Fertilize
There are a number of factors to consider about the frequency of fertilizing, including the type of grass, the length of growing season, the type of fertilizer used and the quality of the lawn you want. Generally, you should fertilize every 6-8 weeks, but select fertilizers, like Bayer Advanced Triple Action Lawn Fertilizer, that have slow-release forms of nitrogen can feed lawns for up to 3 months and ensure they are nourished at all three layers – grass, roots and soil.
How Much Fertilizer to Apply
First, decide between wet and dry fertilizer. For most people, dry, granular lawn fertilizers are easiest to apply evenly. Before you buy, determine the square footage of your lawn and check bag labels to determine what’s best for your lawn size, keeping in mind that application rates are based on pounds per 1,000 square feet. Remember, extra fertilizer can be put back in the bag and saved for a future application.
How to Use Fertilizer
The best way to apply dry fertilizer evenly is with a properly operating fertilizer spreader. How much fertilizer you apply depends on the type and model of spreader you use. Each has settings that are adjusted according to fertilizer label recommendations. Avoid fertilizing by hand, as it can be difficult to apply evenly.
Fertilizer spreaders come in two basic types:
With the right strategy, equipment and work ethic, it’s possible to grow the lawn of your dreams. Find more solutions, tips and advice at bayeradvanced.com.
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