In previous article we had discussed about the most important components in fertilizer. In this article we will discussed the different types of fertilizers that available, and the distinctive use and purposes from each type. There are four major options that will greet you in the fertilizer aisle: Granular (slow and fast-release), Liquid, Synthetic and Organic.
This fertilizer types are perhaps the most popular, probably due to their ease in use and duration. Since these are dry, they are much easier to spread. Granular fertilizers can come in a slow time-release formula, which provides fertilization over two to six months.
This is an efficient choice for homeowners, as it will not need another application for months to come. Granular is also available in fast-release, and although applied in the same manner, the nutrients are released quicker and work better in cold weather. This method also costs less. However, grass burn can occur and there will be a greater need for watering.
Liquid fertilizers are just as the name says- in liquid form. These are applied by attaching a hose and nozzle to a spray bottle. The contents of the bottle are usually in concentrated form, thus the need to mix with the water. If you can use a hose, this is an easy method, more so than spreading granular around the yard. Also, since this a liquid, nutrients are available immediately to the roots of your vegetation. Herbicides can also be added or applied during this treatment. But, since the results are immediate, applications will have to be repeated more often than granular, and since liquid is more expensive to begin with, it can be more costly.
Synthetic fertilizers are usually manufactured chemically, hence being called synthetic. These engineered fertilizers offer immediate release of nutrients, and make lawns green. They simply penetrate the soil quicker. However, they are not natural, and many argue that lawns should be treated naturally. An application of synthetic fertilizer needs to be redone more often, as results don’t last as long. They can also burn your lawn if not applied in a proper manner.
Organic fertilizers are made from once living organisms and their bi-products. These are applied to the lawn by spreaders, rakes and even by hand. Since this a totally natural fertilizer, the organics tend to break down slow when releasing nitrogen. They will improve the texture and density of your lawn, especially when added to soil or lakebed sand. There are some drawbacks however, including a foul smell in the case of manures. Also, these soils tend to have more nitrogen than other elements.
In summary, when choosing a fertilizer, you need to consider many things: The current nutrition of your lawn and garden, how much money you want to spend, how much labor you want to invest in application such as initial and repeats, as well as personal preference. But with the spurt in technology, choices keep growing as more combinations are being introduced.
There are several kinds of technical drawings that are used to create plans for a new home. There are site plans that address coding issues, landscaping, location specifics, drainage (land contours), trees, setbacks, and property lines.
Here are some samples of house plans that need to consider;
Floor plan, this is a design plan of the house, the layout of the rooms, and where the windows and doors.
Building sections, this is a cross section of the house. It helps determine any issues, visualize your finished house and floor plans using section marks.
Wall sections, it will show the construction of one exterior wall where sections are indicated with section marks. Exterior Elevations include such features as porches and decks. They also show furniture, window and door locations, eave heights and roofing.
Interior elevations, this will show and plan the lighting layout and ceiling conditions.
Porches, this plan can be enclosed or go all the way around the house. They can also be half-enclosed and half-open. They can be reminders of times past. A huge porch reminds me of my aunt’s farm years ago. Porches are great for extending family time and conversation while still being protected from the weather.
Decisions to be made are the size of each room, the number of rooms and the number of floors to be built. Will there be a basement or a fireplace, and where is the house going to sit on the lot. You could have a front yard or the house could be in the front of the lot with a yard in the back. You could also put it right in the center and have land all around.
Planning for your home can be very exciting. You could be buying new furniture but you might want to consider the color of the carpets or the floors when you are choosing your pieces. A blue couch on a brown carpet does not exactly match. When planning for your home whether you buy or rent should be done carefully. Keep in mind your preferences, your limitations and if you are building, local zoning ordinances.
Every project starts with a plan. So, you need to itemize everything you want and think you can afford, and include a design of rooms to be remodeled. If you are going to require professional help, now is the time to talk to contractors, plumbers, and other tradesmen, and to ask for estimates. Comparison-shopping is a must. If you are an accomplished do-it-yourself (DIY), price materials and tools needed. If you can’t afford to do everything on your list, reassess your prime needs and make a new plan.
Clean Everything in Sight
Cleaning your home and yard is a great improvement project, and if you are remodeling, it will be the final step after the dust has settled. You will need something heavy-duty like tri-sodium phosphate or its equivalent to wash most surfaces inside and outside the house. There are also special cleaners for glass, tile, porcelain, stainless steel, and wood, and for getting rid of unpleasant molds and mildew. Visit your friendly hardware store and read labels. There are cleaners for almost every material and for solving almost every cleaning problem. Make sure rooms are well ventilated whenever you are cleaning, carefully follow directions, and wear gloves and a mask.
Removing clutter is another worthwhile project and requires adequate home storage with a combination of cabinets, shelves and bins, and sufficient strength of mind to discard all junk, no matter how much you love it. You can buy easy-to-assemble shelving and cabinets in a great variety of sizes and materials at affordable prices.
Small, decorative containers can be used to organize and conceal the ongoing accumulations of such items as incoming mail. In the yard, removing clutter means getting rid of dead trees, dead branches, broken slabs and stones in patios and walkways, and tidying up the garden and lawn. When faced with clutter, ruthlessly throw it out, recycle it, hold a garage sale, donate it to the charity of your choice or get rid of it.
Interior painting and exterior painting should be next on your list of preferred home improvement projects. Fresh paint helps make your home look clean, bright, and spacious. When selecting colors for the exterior, you must not forget to do something about that bland front door. Have fun! Fresh, harmonious colors add beauty and personality to your home both inside and out.
There is a common belief that furniture made with veneer is something to avoid, and that solid wood is always better. Veneer is a thin layer of wood material that is glued down to other wooden boards. Many cabinet and furniture makers agree that the qualities of veneer furniture are determined by the board’s thickness, workmanship and environment condition.
Veneer is not a modern invention. Thousands of years ago, fabulous veneer work in ebony and ivory was put into King Tut’s tomb in Egypt. Veneer techniques in the Renaissance became very sophisticated, using tiny pieces of exotic woods and burl grain to create intricate designs or lavish scenes, called marquetry or intarsia work. Much of the finest royal furniture for hundreds of years employed lavish veneer construction, using the finest species of wood and tiny pieces of burl or exotic grain.
Another reason for veneer is “matching,” or making the right and left grain mirror images of each other, like pages of a book. There is also quarter matching and pie-shaped or sunburst matching for dazzling special effects in wood.
Cabinetmakers have always sought boards with especially beautiful grain, like the fork of a mahogany tree for “flame” grain, or the curly “burl” found near the knots of walnut trees. Wide planks of especially beautiful wood are gorgeous, but tend to warp and curl over time.
The technique of veneering allows this beautifully grained wood to be glued to more stable wood with less attractive grain for results that are beautiful and durable. Attractive appearance on curved surfaces is another use of veneer, for example, the curved case of a grand piano is always veneered.
In the 1800′s, veneer was employed to make valuable woods like mahogany or walnut go farther by gluing them to less prized species, like maple or birch. Around 1900, highly prized quarter-sawn or tiger oak was often veneered over regular cut solid oak.
Many examples of veneer work have endured for hundreds of years. Veneer repair requires a skilled woodworker, but can be done. Old veneer was long-lasting, and could be retouched or sanded and refinished over and over again.
Starting about 1970, industrial furniture manufacturers developed the technique of gradually making veneer thinner, and today, hardwood veneers are as thin as 1/54 of an inch! This modern veneer looks like typing paper, it is almost transparent, and can never be sanded, refinished or significantly touched up if damaged.
On most modern furniture and kitchen cupboards, veneer is not glued to natural hardwood, instead it is attached to particle board, which is a mixture of sawdust and glue which is pressed into large sheets. Often the edges are finished with real wood, so the veneer and particle board construction is not visible. On better furniture and cabinets, real wood is used where it shows – legs, raised panels, edges, etc.
Most new furniture is built in this manner, and often advertised as “solid hardwood and veneers,” although it is certainly not what most consumers would mean by “wood.” This construction has some advantages:
Particle board doesn’t warp like real wood unless it gets wet
It conserves valuable hardwood
It is recycles sawdust, which would otherwise be in a landfill.
Most mainstream furniture has been constructed in this manner for some years. New furniture is like a new toaster or TV, it is temporary, never to be repaired or restored, and definitely not an heirloom for the next generation.
There has always been good and bad workmanship in veneered furniture, just as there has been in solid wood furniture. Old veneer that has bubbles, loose edges, missing pieces, and so on is difficult to repair. Old veneer that is in great condition will probably stay in great condition, and can be refinished or restored when it becomes necessary, perhaps far in the future.
Modern veneer is another matter entirely. Ultra-thin veneer has its place in new furniture that is intended to be used and then discarded when worn, rather than restored for future generations.