Landscaping Ideas That Will Boost Your Curb Appeal for Years to Come

The front of a nice home with a pretty yard

With weather this nice, now is the time to get out in the yard and boost your curb appeal with some landscaping projects! Even the most minor improvements to your landscaping can significantly impact the overall appearance of your home. So, get outside to let the sun warm you all the way through, feel the dirt in your fingers, and listen to the sounds of nature in the spring while working through this list. 

Design Plan – If you start from scratch or need a complete redo, the first step is to create a master plan that includes a drawing. But here’s the key to completing that plan – resist the temptation to complete it all at once or in record time. Taking time to target smaller projects that fit into your master plan will be easier for your sanity and wallet. After completing each smaller project, consult your master plan to make sure you are still on track. Also, update your drawing with plant names, placement, and dates planted. To make it easier on yourself, be sure to include greenery in your plan that is suited for your climate and easy to maintain. And always consider the full size of the plant when making plans for spacing. Mixing things up to have a variety of plants that will bloom at different times in the season will create lasting beauty in your yard.

Plant Groupings – Do your research and group plants with similar growing requirements together. Combining plants with similar sunlight, soil, and watering requirements will reduce maintenance for you in the long run. Group these plants and trees into beds or islands that will allow for easy mowing.

Ornamental Grasses – Landscaping elements in this category are anything but boring, thanks to the wide selection of heights, textures, foliage colors, and leaf shapes. Some can reach a height of 8 – 10 ft tall, making them a good choice for added privacy, or they can be used for filling in large, empty spaces in the landscape. These grasses are low maintenance, provide year-round interest, and many types are drought tolerant. So be sure to add some of these landscaping ideas to your design.

Defined Edge – Landscape edging supplies a clear edge between different areas of your yard that makes your lawn look neat and properly maintained. It not only looks great, but it also cuts down on maintenance by reducing the time you need to spend weeding and trimming your yard on a day-to-day basis. Lawn edging also keeps mulch from creeping into the grass and helps ensure that your plants’ root systems are not overtaken by grass and weeds.

Containers – Using containers in your landscaping can give you more options and allow you to express your unique personality outdoors. It is also ideal for those who only have a small space to dedicate to their plants. Just make sure that the size of the plant complements the size of the container, and don’t be afraid to mix and match plants in larger containers for a customized look.

Portable storage containers from Zippy Shell are the perfect solution for home improvement projects of any size. Learn more and receive a free, no-obligation quote by visiting www.zippyshell.com today.

Are the Mosquitoes Ruining Your Summer?

Summer outdoor party

We have all been spending a lot of time outside enjoying the summer weather and fun backyard activities. But we aren’t the only ones! The mosquitoes have been out in droves threatening our peaceful evenings outside. With their constant buzzing and biting, it’s hard to tolerate for too long. Some use pest control companies to treat their yards when it gets bad, but we have a few tips you can try first.

KEEP IT DRY AND TIDY

We can’t control the weather, but we can do our best to limit standing water and active water sources around the home. Mosquitoes love water, and if given the opportunity, will use the available water to lay eggs in. This means a mosquito population that you won’t be able to ignore this summer. Walk around your home and yard looking for any possible water sources that would allow mosquitoes to thrive. This includes toys that hold water, buckets, wheelbarrows, or anything that allows water to accumulate. You should also make sure your gutters stay clear of debris.

NATURAL REPELLANTS

While there are many chemical sprays and DEET repellants available in most stores, there are natural options you can use in your yard or on yourself to help keep the mosquitoes at bay. Citronella candles are great for smaller areas. There are many different types of oils that you can get to make your own repellant sprays. Citronella, lemon-eucalyptus, cedarwood, and lavender are some of the most common oils that are used for DIY mosquito repellant. You can do a quick search on Pinterest to find hundreds of different recipes to fit your needs. A word of caution: not every repellant recipe will be appropriate to use on children or around pets.

AVOID SCENTED LOTIONS AND BODY PRODUCTS

Some people attract more mosquitoes than others. There are a lot of different theories to explain why one person is untouched by mosquitoes, but another ends the evening with 20 bites. Some believe your blood type determines your mosquito magnetism, while others believe it has to do with your hormones. We don’t know if these are true, but we do know that certain scents attract and repel mosquitoes. It has been theorized that mosquitoes are attracted to scented body lotions and products. Try to avoid applying scented products before going to hang out outdoors to keep the mosquitoes away.

WEAR LONG SLEEVES

Sometimes, despite all our best efforts, you will find the mosquitoes are relentless. If this happens in your yard, try wearing lightweight long sleeves and pants. It’s not ideal to wear long sleeves and pants when it is hot outside, but if nothing else works to keep the mosquitoes off, the cloth barrier will give you a needed reprieve from the unwanted bites.

We’d love to hear how you keep the mosquitoes from ruining your time outdoors. Stop by our Facebook page and share with our Zippy Shell community.

If you have a local or long-distance move coming up, give us a call for a free, no-obligation quote. We are standing by to assist you with all your moving or storage needs!!

Summer Lawn Care Tips

lawn care

With Summer just a few days away, it’s time to start thinking about Summer lawn care. The hot and dry weather over these next few months can pose some problems when you are trying to keep your lawn lush and healthy. We have a few tips that will help you make sure your lawn stays beautiful and magazine-worthy through these hot summer months.

WATER, WATER, WATER

One of the hardest parts of taking care of your lawn during summer is making sure it receives enough water. The combination of high temperatures and lack of rain can be extremely damaging to your grass. The general rule of thumb is to make sure your grass is receiving 1-inch of water each week, sometimes even more according to how hot it gets in your area. You can place a flat-bottomed container on a flat area of your yard to keep track of how much water your lawn is really getting each week. Timing is important as well. You generally see people out in the morning watering their lawns because watering in the evening—just as the sun is about to go down—can create the optimal environment for fungal growth.

MOW IT

You should change the height on your mower blades to allow taller grass in the summer. Different types of grasses require different heights, so be sure to adjust accordingly. Generally, warm-season grasses are cut at 2”-3” and cool-season at 3”-4”. Keeping your grass longer during these hot months will give the ground some shade, keeping it from drying out as quickly. It will also encourage root growth and make the grass more tolerant to droughts. Another tip to remember is to not cut too much at once. If your grass has gotten exceptionally long, do not cut more than a third of the blade’s total height. If you cut too much at once, it can stress the grass and leave too thick of a layer of grass clippings. You also want to make sure your mower’s blades are sharp. If the blades are dull, it will tear away at the grass instead of giving it a clean cut.

MINIMIZE WEAR AND TEAR

Just as we use area and walkway rugs to protect high-traffic areas of our indoor flooring, you can do the same for your lawn. If you have high-traffic areas that you are struggling to keep looking healthy, consider installing purposeful walkways. You can install permanent concrete walkways, or simply use stones or pavers. This will also encourage people to stay off the grass if there are designated walkways to use.

HIRE A PRO

If you have not had any success keeping your lawn healthy through the hotter seasons, you may find it helpful to hire a professional company to come out and assess your lawn. Many great companies will offer a free estimate and will not only get your yard looking amazing, they will keep it that way.

Zippy Shell is standing by to help with all your moving and storage needs. We have facilities across the country so you can securely store your things while you move. Give us a call at 888-947-7974 or contact us online.

Summer Gardening Tips for Your Home

table lamp in blue tone beach house living room interior

Before the weather starts to heat up too much, take advantage of this time to care and prep your garden for this summer!

Clear the area

Before you begin planting anything, make sure the area is free of debris and leaves to ensure clean planting soil. You can rake up the soil before planting to freshen it up as well as examine if the area is clear.

Fertilize

Most soil will not contain the nutrients that your garden needs to thrive, so give it an extra boost to grow.

Plant vegetables

Plant veggies such as tomatoes or cucumbers right in your backyard! You save money on vegetables, all while getting fresher ingredients right in your yard. You also are assured that what you are eating is organic and not chemically treated.

Add some color

Planting colorful flowers is a great way to spice up your backyard to give it a beautiful aesthetic. Not only can you use bright bulbs, but also use colorful pots to put your plants. Fun pots are an easy way to add color to your natural green plants.

Don’t forget to water

Even if summer storms are frequent in your area, don’t forget that the heat can take a toll on your plants. Check if your plants need water by sticking your thumb down into the soil at the stem of your plant. If it is dry, add some water to the mulch.

Expect weeds

In almost any garden, weeds will be inevitable. Prepare for weeds by having weed killer at hand so when they do sprout, you can kill them before they destroy your garden.

Bird baths

For some natural pest control, incorporate bird baths or birdhouses into your yard. Birds will help control the pests that frequently attack gardens, all while leaving friendly insects such as spiders or ladybugs alone.