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    Rustic Outdoor Kitchen With European Charm 1

    It is a rare occasion to see an Old-World-inspired decor in midst of America. Julie and Ben Pruet inspired by their trips to Europe have decorated their property in rustic style with a heavy hint of European appeal. Most amazing is their outdoor area with incredible rustic outdoor kitchen and garden terrace.

    Incredible Outdoor Kitchen In Tuscan Style

    Amazing Outdoor Kitchen Various European trips, particularly their long stay in Italy and England have inspired the Pruet couple to make their home entirely in vintage European style. The garden is incredible with its English charm, but the outdoor kitchen that is adjacent to the house is even more charming, and is quite clearly in Tuscan-style. Particularly the kitchen was rather special to this couple:
    The kitchen was my retirement gift to Ben, a space where he could enjoy grilling, and I could share in the experience with him. We love being outdoors on the beautiful days here in Arkansas, and wanted to bring a little of our indoors outside.
    The outdoor kitchen flows from the indoor to the outdoor area, with repetitive terra cotta tiles and earthly colors. The effect of blending into the interior and exterior was achieved with a help of designer Kim Brockinton and decorative painter Andrew Bruckman. All of details of the outdoor kitchen, such as the Western cedar construction materials, Spanish cedar cabinets and island, bronze metal vent hood, copper light fixtures, textured and colored walls, along with aged shutters and arched doors – all infuse the incredible Old World look. As mentioned by Julie Pruet:
    Even though this kitchen was basically for my husband’s use, I wanted it to be a space that would be visually pleasing for us and for entertaining as well. Being an engineer by background, it is all about the functionality for Ben, but for me it was much more than stainless steel appliances and a prep area for cooking.
    The furnishings of the kitchen are rather functional. The couple enjoys spending their time outdoors, and most of the windows in their house have a view of the beautiful garden. As Ben Pruet enjoys cooking, the outdoor kitchen has both charcoal and gas grills for various meals. There is also a gas double burner for sauces and sautéing, an ice caddy for cold drinks, and an under-counter refrigerator. Isn’t amazing how the Pruet couple reconstructed the original charm of Tuscany? [gallery]

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    Best Gardens At Chelsea Flower Show 2

    Chelsea Flower Show is an annual horticultural exhibition held by Royal Horticultural Society on the grounds of the Royal Hospital Chelsea in Chelsea, London. Each year the specialists around the world come to London to present their innovative approaches to landscaping and gardening, with incredible garden designs. Let's explore this year’s incredible gardens that got the attention from the visitors and jury alike.

    Best Gardens At Chelsea Flower Show

    Chelsea Flower Show Alcove Garden By Ishihara Kazauyuki

    3. Alcove Garden

    The Alcove Garden by Japanese designer Ishihara Kazauyuki was very popular among the tourists strolling around the exhibition. No wonder this garden won a Best Artisan Prize, it is so amazing. This garden presented a peaceful landscape with a playhouse and Japanese still life objects that are traditionally found in Japanese gardening. The playhouse had a green roof, another highlight of the event, and a tatami room. There was also a little pond with a waterfall streaming down.

    2. Brewin Dolphin Garden

    Chelsea Flower Show Brewin Dolphin Garden by Robert Myers The Brewin Dolphin Garden was designed by Robert Myers. Being rather contemporary, this garden also won a golden prize with the streamlined perfectness and native British species. The artist also made use of vertical gardening by introducing the peculiar raised boxwood hedge, that we can see in the background of the garden. Another highlight is the inground gardening surrounded by the above-ground pond.

    1. Trailfinders Australian Garden

    Chelsea Flower Show Trailfinders Australian Garden by Phillip Johnson The Trailfinders Australian Garden got the first place at the Chelsea Flower Show, not only because it featured lush greenery - there was an eco-friendly construction amidst it. What appears like a copper flower is in fact an artist retreat that is powered by solar energy. It also has an indoor shower, by the way. The artist behind this green creation, Melbourne designer Phillip Johnson made the retreat to reference the Waratah flower. What he also meant by creating this garden is to display the possibility of sustainable landscaping within an urban setting.

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    silver-and-gray-foliage4

    Do you want to have a unique garden and just love silver color? Why not try to go with just silver? It will make your garden look exotic and amazing, as there are many different plants that are silver in their foliage or blooms. Not sure where to start from? Well, best idea is to start from here.

    Best Silver Plant Gardening Ideas

    Silver Plants Artemisia ludoviciana By Dorling Kindersley

    Valerie Finnis

    This one is a perennial plant with outstanding silver foliage that is good for sunny locations. The plants can produce clusters of creamy flowers in July. This plant is perfect for container gardening along with other perennials. It is hardy to zones 5 to 10, and can tolerate dry climates.

    Lamb Ear

    Silver Plants Stachys Byzantina By Costa Farm This variety of a perennial doesn't produce the flowers, but has dense silver foliage. This plant can be evergreen in mild climates. Most often this perennial is used as a groundcover. Hardy to zones 4 to 8, it needs regular watering and full to partial sun exposure. This plant spreads really fast, so be careful when planting it or it can become invasive.

    Salvia Argentea

    Silver Plants Salvia Argentia By Missouri Botanical Garden Its other name is silver sage, and it is also a perennial with fuzzy silver green leaves. The leaves are arranged in huge rosettes presenting an interest as a groundcover. In summer the plant produces creamy white flowers, however, if you want to enjoy the silver carpet, it is best to remove the flowers.

    Edelweiss

    Silver Plants Leontopodium Alpine By Anne Elliot This is an alpine flower with a silver bloom. It grows in cold conditions, preferring high altitudes. This hardy perennial blooms in late spring through summer, and it is perfect in rather harsh conditions of the mountain climate. If you want to plant edelweiss in your garden, the perennial prefers being planted near the rocks or borders, because that is very close to their natural habitat.

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  • 05/27/13--09:25: Tornado Shelter Types
  • tornado-diy-shelter1

    The tornado, as you may know can be quite a threat taking unpredictable turns, and as it might happen it can be quite dangerous to be anywhere but in the shelter. If you live an area that is prone to regular tornado threats, you might already consider building tornado shelter, however, there are some basic things that you should consider before doing so. So, this post will help in setting out the priorities on building the best tornado shelters.

    Tornado Shelters: Underground VS Above Ground

    Tornado Shelters Tornado Coming The most common type of a tornado shelter in the U.S. is of course the underground type, or basement shelter. However, there is a rising tendency towards the above ground shelter and there are several advantages of building them. As mentioned by Larry Tanner, a leading specialist and a research associate with Texas Tech University’s Wind Science and Engineering School, not everybody has a room for a basement shelter; therefore, a concept of the above-ground tornado shelter is more appealing to some people. Above Ground Tornado Shelter Another attractive feature of the above ground shelter is its access, so that instead of running away into the basement shelter, your above-ground shelter is more reachable, so that you can react easily. Studies show that above-ground shelters are even more efficient in saving people's life during tornadoes. The underground shelters are pretty easy to build, but as anything that is buried in the ground, it collects bugs and dirt. If that fact doesn't bother you, go ahead and hire a manufacturer so he can install the underground shelter in your yard. However, before doing that you should get familiar with Federal Emergency Management Agency booklet that is available on their web page, where they have on display several types of shelters that might be just perfect for you. At last, you should also know that the above ground shelter is usually a space within a room that is secured and more sturdy.

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    Refuge le Nuage 5

    Are you tired of urban landscapes and can't seem to relax in the dusty enclosed environment of a city? Well, Zebra3/Buy-Sellf design company has created a unique outdoor urban retreat that they have entitled: 'Refuge le Nuage' what literally translates as Refuge Cloud. The Refuge cloud is basically an outdoor retreat that can be mounted practically everywhere and it poses as a place where you can enjoy the nature in the small confines of unusually-shaped cabin.

    'Refuge le Nuage' Outdoor Retreat

    Outdoor Cloud Retreat 'Refuge le nuage', Canal Saint Martin, Paris Refuge le Nuage is originally designed by Zebra3/Buy-Sellf for Bruit du Frigo that were commissioned to create the suburban shelters for 2010 panoramas for Le Parc des Coteaux en Biennale. However, the concept is very unique and appealing, so now it is being displayed in various locations all over Paris. The cloud-shaped outdoor cabin is rather big, and the shape of the retreat is inspired by the layout of beds, as each bed is built into a semicircular extrusion that repeats the shape of the cloud. Overall there are seven sleeping spaces located on the two levels of the cloud. The cloud refuge is made entirely from wood. Naturally, the Cloud Retreat can be used as a camping station in the few urban areas that are intended for outdoor activities. It has been displayed for a long time at the part Hermitage, however, in recent years it has visited other various locations, including the rooftop of the hotel, located on the banks of Canal Saint Martin. The structure is entirely eco-friendly, with no electricity or other contemporary luxuries installed. The natural sunlight pours into the retreat by means of diagonal windows. This mobile cloud camping retreat can be rented for a night, so it's not like the structure is purely symbolic and stands as an art installation. After 2 years of public use the mobile retreat was refurbished and relocated to Lormont for the Summer and Fall season of 2012. Now, already famous cloud retreat is about to visit Paris again starting from May 29. So, how do you like an idea? [gallery]

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  • 06/03/13--07:41: Getting Rid Of Roof Moss
  • Removing  Roof Moss 2

    Sometimes an outdoor moss is not a decorating feature but a tiresome and dangerous thing that grows and expands really fast. Usually getting rid of roof moss will require hiring a professional, which means spending a lot of money. However, there is a budget way of removing roof moss, but it will be quite a tiresome activity as you have to climb up the roof and get rid of moss practically by hand.

    Removing Roof Moss

    Removing Roof Moss Green Moss On Roof, Portland If you are still not convinced about why you should remove the roof moss, as it seems so romantic and fairy tale-like, here is something you need to know: roof moss destroys your roof and eventually you will need to replace it all together. The threat is even more real if your roof is made from wood. So, what actions do you need to take in order to remove the roof moss all at once? There are several options so let's review some of them.

    Oxygen Bleach Method

    This method is good because the oxygen bleach doesn't harm the garden plants but affects only moss or roof algae. You need to mix oxygen bleach powder with water following the instruction of the manufacturer. Then you need to apply the solution to the troubled spots on the roof and leave it there for 20 minutes. The last step includes scrubbing the roof and rinsing it to get rid of roof moss.

    Chlorine Bleach Method

    Make a mixture from 4 3/4 quarts hot water, 1 cup chlorine bleach, 1 cup liquid laundry detergent and 1/4 cup trisodium phosphate. Now, some suggest spraying the solution onto the troubled spots, while others indicate that the roof should be thoroughly wetted with it. It is important to know that chlorine bleach can harm other plants, so you need to be really careful about that. Don't let the bleach be on your roof longer than 15 minutes and remove it with water.

    Fungicide Method

    If the mentioned above methods don't help with removing the roof moss, you can use fungicide. When applying the fungicide to the roof, make sure to wear the protective rubber gloves and long pants for skin protection.

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  • 06/04/13--05:31: Cleaning Propane Grill
  • cleaning-of-propane-grill 1

    Thinking about how to spend a weekend productively? Maybe you have a whole list of things to do around the house, and the weekend seems as the most appropriate time to do them all. An easy and evident thing that should be done for the upcoming summer party season is the cleaning and maintenance of the outdoor kitchen appliances, such as a propane grill. Here you will find the instructions on how to clean the propane grill, read carefully.

    Scrubbing Propane Grill

    Cleaning Of Grill Shiny Clean Outdoor Grill If you have an outdoor kitchen or even a small area dedicated to eating or cooking in the outdoors, it is most likely to include a propane grill. As you know, the more you use it the dirtier it becomes from all the grease and spills. Thorough and timely cleaning will help in maintenance of the grill and will make the food tastier. One of the first steps in cleaning of the grill will be the turning off the propane valves. Then you will need to disconnect the propane tank from the grill by disconnecting the burner and removing the tubes from the gas line. Next step is to remove any grids and briquettes by following the user’s manual instructions. Set those aside to the propane tank. In order to protect the exposed gas fixtures located beneath a grill from corrosion, cover them with aluminum foil. Now it is time for an actual cleaning. Make a mixture of one gallon warm water and one-quarter cup of dish soap. Start cleaning the grill with a metal scrub brush and go all the way through with it. When you are done scrubbing away the grease, it is essential to wipe away everything with a soft towel and let it dry. Once the grill is dry you can reconnect the propane tank following the manual instructions. Make sure that the connections are tight so no gas would leak out. Don't forget to clean the briquettes and grids before attaching them to the grill.

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    Wall House By Farm 3

    A family house is something to be cherished and what can host thousands of different memories from childhood. It is a place that an individual likes to visit, however, in some cases when this individual still lives with his or her parents - the sole desire is to move out and be somewhere else. The Wall house designed by Singapore-based architectural company Farm has a unique architectural story to tell and an amazing outdoor area to get inspired from.

    Wall House Outdoor Inspiration

    Wall House Lush Outdoor Area Of Wall House Well of course it is not a terrible story, but rather a story of a compromise when an adult is living with his parents in harmony. The secret to that is the wall that divides the house and creates two distinct blocks. Both of the parts blend in perfectly into the surrounding landscape, they are matching in terms of internal and external design - yet they provide comfort for two different worlds. Both blocks are located on massive property of the family and the separation of the house was an initial request from them. Of course the wall doesn't mean that there are no common areas. There is a single-storey block dedicated entirely for social recreational activities of the family. Another thing that visually and spatially connects the two blocks is an expansive outdoor area, which as we can see is quite impressive on its own. The huge central yard is shaped carefully by the granite walls with few minimalistic plants represented by willows. The willows take their origin from the indoors growing freely into the surrounding outdoors. This is only the area near the front entry, but the rest of the property is entirely surrounded by green. Another feature of this impressive outdoors is the massive pond right in front of the house. In general, the landscape of the area is streamlined, appearing sort of enveloped by the grandiose lush lawn and surrounding trees. The inspiration for this landscape design is coming from the Chinese garden philosophy with distinct shapes and islands of different vision that are overlapping at some point. Aren’t you impressed with the amazing outdoor area of the Wall House? [gallery]

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  • 06/17/13--04:50: Water-Wise Gardening
  • Water-Wise Garden 4

    The current trend for sustainable products pushes us to be environmentally conscious and preserve the resources, especially water. Moreover, water as any supply can cost a fortune, especially in a climate prone to droughts. You might be surprised to find out that during summers almost half of the water is spent on landscaping and that might be a problem if you are on a tight budget. But there is still an option of creating a wonderful garden that uses less water resources. Here you will find the water-wise gardening ideas and tips on creating one.

    Water-Wise Tips For Gardens

    Water-wise gardening Astrid Gaiser Garden

    Soil Preparation

    One of the first essential things in creating a water-wise garden is to prepare the soil by adding organic matter. This can be compost manure or chopped up leaves as these ingredients will improve the water preserving capacity of the soil.

    Water The Roots & Use Free Water

    When you are conscious about the water resources, you should also know that it could be delivered right to the roots. Drip irrigation and soaker hoses make sure that around 90% of water is delivered to the plants, while sprinklers are only about 50% efficient. The area between the plants is dry, therefore, the weeds are also deprived from water so the weed problem is also solved by this type of watering. Another option of watering is to use rainwater, so when it rains collect the water from the roof.

    Plant Consideration

    Well, eventually you might want to reconsider the type of plants that you have in your garden. If you have a large lawn, it should be reduced to a minimum or perhaps opt for groundcovers instead. Choose the plants that are drought-tolerant and preferably native to the area of your garden’s location. This generally proves to be consuming less resources. [gallery]

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    Charming NY Apartment With Private Garden By D. Riccardi 18

    Douglas Riccardi loves his apartment very much. Not because he is an interior designer and everything in his apartment is decorated perfectly in his style, but because he has a secret outdoor retreat right by his flat. Riccardi has a secret garden where he likes to spend his time to relax and forget about the dreads of living in the big city.

    Brooklyn Urban Dwelling With Private Garden

    NY Flat With Garden Wolfgang Weingart Poster As Artwork Inside of this cozy apartment there are really few decorating pieces, as Riccardi confessed that he didn’t want overwhelming and cluttering knick-knacks to take over his apartment. Instead, the apartment is filled with memories that are represented by various decorating pieces. For example above the fireplace we see Wolfgang Weingart poster that his friend Lloyd Miller brought to him in 1983 after his trip to Basel. Right across the fireplace there is sofa that has been borrowed from his sister-in-law Erica Millar and that he never intends to give back. The sofa has been made by the once-famous Beverly Hills decorator William “Billy” Haines and belonged to Erica’s aunt. Right next to the sofa we see rope chairs that date back to 60’s when they were bought by his parents. NY Flat With Garden Living Room With Memorable Furnishings Riccardi seems to deal with troubles like spacing in a very pragmatic way. He needed extra space for placing of the washing machine and a dryer: he found that space under the staircase. He hanged a dividing curtain to hide away the machines, but since the cats’ litter box is also located beneath the stairs, he had made a little doorway for them. He has two adorable cats, by the way, Frankie and Bruno. But that décor is not as exciting as having the private garden right next to his apartment, accessible from the living room. There is a little deck where Riccardo keeps his fig tree:
    I sort of felt that an Italian American living in Brooklyn really needed a fig tree. My grandmother had one (albeit in New Jersey) — but nothing beats fresh hand-picked figs for breakfast.
    Then from that deck there is a little staircase leading towards his ‘green oasis’ with ferns, perennials and a cute small conifer. This garden helps Riccardi to feel miles away from the city, while still being in its limits. So, do you like this cozy Brooklyn apartment with a private garden retreat? [gallery]

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    Water Patio House Expansive Outdoors-28

    Ukranian designer team Drozdov & Partners has recently built an impressive low-rise family residence, the Water Patio. The box-like architecture of the house is complemented by the incredibly lush and extensive outdoor area with a gorgeous infinity pool that continuous the nautical theme of the horizon line.

    Water Patio: Minimalism Indoors Vs Luxury Outdoors

    Water Patio House Extensive Outdoors Of the Water Patio House Located in one the oldest and beautiful cities of Ukraine, Odessa, the Water Patio Project is quite large and contemporary. Even though it can’t boast the height it certainly shows off its charm through an expansive outdoor area. Spanning for about 800 square meters of space, the house has been built for a family that loves to spend the time out in the fresh air and to enjoy great vistas of the sea. The interior of the house seems to accommodate the needs of a contemporary urban dweller, presenting minimum of furnishing with predominantly neutral palette. However, there are some bright highlights, for example in a form of a bright red chair, yet the hues mostly stay in the comfort zone for white and beige tones. The two-story building has several bathrooms and bedrooms, a library and a minimalistic living room for socializing. Not only the palette of the house is neutral, the designer team has chosen the natural neutral materials for furnishing the house. We see comfortable leather sofas, brute timber table and wooden panels on the walls. However, what is even more impressive is the extensive outdoor area of the space. First of all it is the glazing of the first level that allows a thorough and magnificent view on the outdoors. The house is quite alienated from the urban infrastructure, therefore, the risk of trespassers is minimized and the privacy of the owners is safe. There is something almost magical in the way the property is set on the location. It’s main terrace and an entrance is facing beautiful skyline with a sea view. There is a stone pathway that creates an illusion of the pathway that seems to guide you right to the sea. Enjoy the pretty vistas of the house and its outdoors. [gallery]

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    Growing-Tomatoes2

    Tomato, the delicious red fruit that can be used in many various recipes of course demands some extra attention from the gardeners because it can be quite problematic in growing. Tomatoes are not always red, they can be yellow, green and even purple, as there are over 7500 different species. Since the tomatoes are quite delicate in growing, we are going to share some simple tips on growing healthy tomatoes.

    Basics Of Growing Tomatoes

    Tomatoes Delicious Red Tomatoes

    Location Matters

    It is important to select the location where the tomatoes will receive the most sun exposure with a good drainage of the soil. The soil should be rather loose, because heavy clay soil can cause tomatoes to wilt and be sick. You should also be aware that the soil can accommodate the bacteria that cause tomatoes’ disease, so it is a good idea to replant the tomatoes in various places of the garden. If that is not possible, container gardening can become a best option for that. Choose the containers accordingly to their mature size, as some tomato varieties can grow up to 6 feet.

    Choosing Varieties

    It is essential to choose the tomato variety that are well adapted to the climate where you are going to grow them. If you live in area with humid and hot conditions it is best to choose the ‘Solar Set’ variety, as it is created specifically for this. If you live in an area with short-seasons you should opt for a ‘Northern Delight’ variety. It is best to seek advice from the experts, such as county extension agent to choose the best tomato type. It is also important to plant the varieties that are disease-resistant.

    Tomato Care

    It is important to attend to tomatoes as they are quite delicate. Water them sufficiently during the hot seasons. It is important to spread some mulch over the area where tomatoes grow, as this helps to retain the moisture in the soil. Mulch also helps to prevent the soil-borne diseases. Use some support for the tomato plants, as the fruit should be off the ground. The support can be a simple wooden stake that can be inserted near the base of the plant. The leaves will find their way up to the stake themselves, but it is best to use a wire or a cloth to secure it.

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  • 07/30/13--02:21: Amazing Tree Houses
  • amazing-tree-houses-image

    When you were a kid, you ran around the yard, played with the ball, chased your friends, and you were everywhere. But sometimes when you wanted to be alone, just playing with your toys somewhere above others, in the tree, or wanted to be with your close friends, and you really did wish you had an amazing tree house. The tree house that was not the same like everybody else had. I always liked to read a book “Magic Tree House” by Mary Pope Osborne when I was a little girl, and I really wanted to have a tree house in the tree in our yard. The tree house can be a magical hideaway, fort, or a play destination for almost any child, as well as any project for any adult.

    Amazing Tree Houses

    There is still a great wish to accomplish a childhood’s dream. The tree houses can be really amazing and fairytale-like. They seem so easy and fast to build, but you definitelywill need great help from your friends and those who do know how to make one for you. Every time when I see a unique, different, and incredibly-looking tree house, I like to share it, showing others where to get inspiration from in order to build their own. Here are some photographs of amazingly-looking tree houses around the world to get inspired by. Neighborhood Isn’t it interesting to visit your friend in your neighborhood just by crossing a bridge? Night Tree House I would definitely stay in this incredible tree house and enjoyed the night forest sounds and fresh air. Tree House Wow, are you sure this is a tree house?! Yes, it definitely, is! Cherry Blossom It is so great and enjoyable to watch a cherry blossom. Square Square? Isn’t it unique?! Termites It seems like the termites’ home.

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    Under Staircase Green Wall

    How great can it be to be surrounded by the green wall with its gorgeous flowers, to smell their fragrance, to hear the bees buzz, to see pretty butterflies with their beautiful wings, and all this makes for a very relaxing and enjoyable time. Green wall will make your room or yard look even better than it is now. The look of a very green fence around your house is the best thing you could ever have. Green Wall as Joy Green Wall as Joy

    A Green Wall

    A green wall is a wall, either a free-standing or an integrated part of a building that is particularly or completely covered with vegetation and, in some cases, soil or organic growing medium. The concept of green wall dates back to 600 BC with the Hanging Gardens of Babylon. The modern green wall with integrated hydroponics was invented by Stanley Hart White at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 1931-38. A green wall is either a hedge that is entirely composed of plants, such as shrubs, or a wall that is partially or completely covered by plants. Green wall is a key component of living architecture and it will become increasingly important fixtures in our cities in years to come. The technologies provide a good range of options for designers who are interested in using the building envelope to accomplish multiple objectives and to provide new free-standing design features on the exterior and interior of buildings.

    Types of Green Wall

    There are two main categories of green walls: green facades and living walls. Green facades are made up of climbing plants either growing directly on a wall or specially designed supporting structures. The plant shoot system grows up the side of the building while being rooted in the ground. With a living wall the modular panels are often made of stainless steel containers, geotextiles, irrigation systems, a growing medium and vegetation.

    Functions of Green Wall

    The plants reduce overall temperatures of the building, which in turn reduces energy consumption. They may also be the means for water reuse. The plants may purify slightly polluted water by absorbing the dissolved nutrients. Bacteria mineralize the organic components making them available to the plants. Green walls are suitable for cities, as they allow good use of available vertical surface areas. They could also function for urban agriculture or urban gardening. They may be built as works of art and for their beauty. They are sometimes built indoors to help cure sick building syndrome.

    Advantages of Green Wall

    Having created a green wall you will get the benefits in increasing the life span of the waterproofing membrane, cooling exterior and interior, reducing heat off the building, reducing toxins in the air, adding oxygen to the air, adding to the aesthetic value of the property, reducing traffic noise, giving shade, and designing and engineering for any façade. Another significant advantage is the increase infiltration and storage of rainwater through their root systems. They can be complete ecosystems or simpler configurations of plants that thrive and help to decontaminate urban environments. Many green walls are built indoors, but they can also be brought outdoors, such as on the exterior walls of buildings.

    Three Types of Growth Media

    There are three types of growth media used in green walls: lose media, mat media and structural media.

    Loose Media

    Loose medium wall tend to be “soil-on-a-shelf” or “soil-in-a-bag” type systems. Loose medium systems have their soil packed into a shelf or bag, which are then installed onto the wall. These systems require their media to be replaced at least once a year on exteriors and approximately every two years on interiors. Most importantly, because these systems can easily have their medium blown away by wind-driven rain of heavy winds, these should not be used in applications over 8 feet high.

    Mat Media

    Mat type systems tend to be either coir fiber or felt mats. Mat media are quite thin, even in multiple layers and as such cannot support vibrant root systems of mature plants for more than three to five years before the roots overtake the mat and water is not able to wick through the mats. The method of reparation of these systems is to replace large sections of the system at a time by cutting the mat out of the wall and replacing it with new mat. This process compromises the root structures of the neighboring plants on the wall and often kills many surrounding plants in the reparation process.  Mat media are better suited for small installations no more than eight feet in height where repairs are easily completed.

    Structural Media

    Structural media are growth medium “blocks” that are not loose, nor mats, but incorporate the best features of both into a block that can be manufactured into various sizes, shapes and thicknesses. These media have the advantage that they do not break down for 10 to 15 years, can be made to have a higher or lower water holding capacity depending on the plant selection for the wall. Depending on the installation, they do tend to be more expensive to install, but lower cost in maintain.

    Constituent Flora

    Some popular plants include:
    • Actinidia
    • Akebia quinata
    • Aristolochia
    • Campsis
    • Celastrus
    • Clematis
    • Cotoneaster
    • Hedera
    • Heuchera
    • Humulus lupulus
    • Pyracantha
    • Wisteria
    [gallery]

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    A Dolphin

    The swimming pool you have in your yard is a place where you relax, swim, and get pleasure of refreshing water, especially, in a hot sunny day, but to think of it as a place of enjoyment can be even better, if you decided to give your pool a much brighter and inviting appearance and create the best swimming pool then glass mosaic tiles can be a very nice option for swimming pool. Glass mosaic tiles installed in a swimming pool are growing in popularity due to their flexibility and functional qualities. They will not warp or fade and require much less maintenance than previously common ceramic or porcelain tiles. Glass tiles also reflect light in such a way that makes them appear iridescent and sparkling.

    Glass Mosaic Tiles

    Glass Mosaic Symbol Mosaic Symbol Glass tiles are pieces of glass formed into consistent shapes. Mosaic is the art of creating images with an assemblage of small pieces of colored glass, stone, or other materials. It may be a technique of decorative art, an aspect of interior decoration, or of cultural and spiritual significance as in cathedral. Small pieces, mostly roughly square, of stone or glass of different colors, known as tesserae, are used to create a pattern or picture.

    Fascinating Images and Patterns

    If you cover a pool’s bottom and walls by these tiles you can create fascinating patterns. You can either be creative to make your own images, or buy glass tiles with already drawn images.  You can enrich the bottom by a very big turtle, dolphin, by oriental ornaments and by many other original pictures. If you have a swimming pool for the children, you may want to decorate it with the cartoon characters that can really ideally fit for kids.

    Sea Themed Mosaic Images

    Dolphins

    Glass Mosaic Symbol A Friendly Dolphin You would love to see this image on the wall of your swimming pool, imagining it is swimming along with you under the water.

    Sharks

    Come, I Will Get You Come, I Will Get You This can be scary and at the same time funny and attractive to see yourself next to such aggressive animal.

    Fish

    Action of Marlin and Flying Fish Action of Marlins and Flying Fish Would you like to swim with the marlins and flying fish around your swimming pool? I would and with great pleasure.

    Character Mosaic Images

    Mermaid Come Around Come Around! I would get a great impression on swimming along with this mythical character in the swimming pool.

    Flora Mosaic Images

    Enjoy the Sunlight Among the Flowers Enjoy the Sunlight Among the Flowers What a great pleasure to be surrounded by these gorgeous flowers and feel the warmth of the sun. Blue Flowers Blue Flowers Get splashed into this flower themed swimming pool in blues! Palm Trees Palm Trees Are you on the seashore or in the swimming pool? It can be very creative and absorbing to think of the images for the pool.

    Abstract Mosaic Images

    Non Objective Art Non-Objective Art Just even some polka dotted pattern can be a decorative theme for the swimming pool. Non Objective Art Non-Objective Art Get some swirls on the bottom of your swimming pool to create an effect of moving water.

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    Small House by Unemori Architects

    Unemori architects is probably one of the architects who care about the people down the middle. Architects who create or design a luxurious houses or large buildings may have been very much but the architects are willing to take a small value of the project is very rare, maybe they thought it was just a waste of their time alone, but Unemori Architects will prove that it is not absolutely true. They recently completed a project of The Small House, which is a project to build a house that could be occupied by a small family but the only available land area of four by four meters. This project may have never imagined how it might build a house with only the area of land but Unemori Architects will prove that is capable of doing. Small House by Unemori Architects Small House by Unemori Architects

    Unique Design and Interesting “The Small House”

    Japanese studio Unemori Architects has designed the Small House project. This tiny 13 x 13 feet, four stories, contemporary home sits on a 366 square foot lot in Tokyo, Japan. The Small House by Unemori Architects:“The small house which the married couple and their child live stand at the densely populated area in Tokyo. Though the neighboring houses are very close, I aimed to design the house which exceeds the physical narrowness living at the city. I laid out the 4m×4m building that as small as I can at the center of site area 34m2 and made some space for flowing of light and wind around it. And by making the space, it’s possible to avoid setback regulation and it has the 9m high volume like a tower. The inside is simple structure what is separated by the 4 floor boards and is joined by spiral stairway. Especially, by making some extremely thin floor boards (thickness 70mm) , the up and down floor boards got close and connected the whole space of the house without a break. The space of around the house is useful to let light and wind in. The wall of the rooms borders the outside, so I put windows in the best position that harmonizing with its surroundings. And the window is so big against the small room, every time the window opens or closes, the inside view dramatically changes. Especially, at the second and third floor there is a large hinged door each room, if it is opened, the inside of the room is enveloped in light and wind as if you are outside. By making the thin floor boards for connecting with their life and making the large windows that are opened toward the city, I aimed to exceed the segmentation, for example the up stair and the down stair, the inside and the outside, a building and the town, etc. to broaden the whole image of a house. [gallery ids="14811,14812,14813,14814,14815,14816,14817,14818,14819,14820,14821,14822"]

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    Heidelberg Project

    Art can really have a beat of your mood and actions. Especially, if you are in an open-air art environment in the heart of an urban community on Detroit’s east Side. Tyree Guyton, founder and artistic director, uses every day, discarded objects to create a two-block area full of color, symbolism, and intrigue. Now in its 27th year, the Heidelberg Project is recognized around the world as a demonstration of the power of creativity to transform lives. Tyree Guyton's Neoghborhood Project Tyree Guyton's Neoghborhoood Project

    Meet Tyree Guyton

    Tyree Guyton is an artist from Detroit, Michigan, born on August 24, 1955. He is married to Jenenne Whitfield and lives within Detroit city limits. Before becoming an artist, Guyton worked as a firefighter and an autoworker and served in the U. S. Army. Guyton studied art at Marygrove College, Wayne State University, and the Center for Creative Studies. Guyton counts his grandfather, Sam Mackey, and Detroit artist Charles McGee as his greatest influences. Since creating the Heidelberg project with his grandfather in 1986, Guyton has received international recognition as an artist, educator, and community leader. Although he is an honorary director on the Heidelberg project board of directors, in recent years he has concentrated his efforts on his art exhibitions as well as on lecturing and teaching. In 2007, Guyton accepted a position teaching an honors program at the Wayne State University. Tyree Guyton's work has been installed and displayed across the world. Including a feature in 1999 by the United States Department of States in the Art, in Embassies Program with an exhibition in the American Embassy in Quito, Ecuador. Permanent installations of his work have been established in Sydney, Australia, at the Detroit Institute of Arts, and in Mount Vernon, New York. In 1999, Tyree Guyton was the subject of an HBO Films documentary, "Come unto Me: The Faces of Tyree Guyton". This film won numerous honors, including an Emmy Award for editing in 2000 and honorable mention at the Sundance Film Festival for director Nicole Cattell.

    Be a Part of the Official Unofficial Detroit Anthem

    Heidelberg Project Heidelberg Project Are you headed to Heidelberg Street? Stop into the Number House for questions, souvenirs, and smiling faces! Artist, Tyree Guyton has used art to breathe new life into the run down, impoverished Detroit community of McDougall-Hunt.  Since 1986, he began transforming vacant houses with recycled materials, found objects and paint. Other artists and community members have since joined in, making this neighborhood look like one big, crazy art installation.  Videos on the HP Website take you beyond the colorful chaos, to look at the transformative power of art. Inspiring. [gallery ids="14919,14920,14921,14922,14923,14924,14925,14926,14927,14928,14929,14930"]

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    Surrealist Room

    I was amazed and interested in works of Leandro Erlich. His works are very unique and different from what we used to see every day in our life. He makes us think differently and look at the surrounding us things differently, like being in a different world. He seems he lives his own world of sensation and perception. In this post, you will see one of his outdoor works which is Surreal Floating Room Sculptures.

    Surreal Floating Room Sculptures

    Surrealist Room Like a scene from a fantasy movie, a dilapidated room that appears to have been literally ripped out of building remains suspended in midair above Nantes, France. Its walls were torn apart, revealing bricks below the plaster, and wood floors reveal the joists inside. The floating room is accessible via a ladder. The gravity defying surreal installation is the work of Argentinean artist Leandro Erlich. The large-scale piece, called “Monte-meubles – L’ultime déménagement” (literally - The Furniture Lift – The Ultimate Moving Out), was created for the biannual Le Voyage a Nantes, an art festival which turns the entire French city into an art gallery. Surrealist Room Erlich’s piece is held up over 30 feet high by the mock ladder that appeared to lean against one of the typically French-styled windows. Although it can clearly see that the ladder is the only thing supporting the sculpture, the room appears to float on its own accord. Surrealist Room

    Meet Leandro Erlich

    Surrealist Leandro Erlich Leandro Erlich was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina, in 1973. An architect of the uncertain, Erlich creates spaces with fluid and unstable boundaries. Before one tries to make sense of his sculptures and installations, one senses the uncanny. A single change (up is down, inside is out) can be enough to upset the seemingly normal situation, collapsing and exposing our reality as counterfeit. Through this transgression of limits, the artist undermines certain absolutes and the institutions that reinforce them. Internationally known for his captivating, three-dimensional visual illusions, Argentine artist Leandro Erlich has been commissioned by the Barbican to create a new installation in Dalston. Resembling a theatre set, the detailed facade of a Victorian terraced house – recalling those that once stood on the street – lies horizontally on the ground with mirrors positioned overhead. The reflections of visitors give the impression they are standing on, suspended from, or scaling the building vertically. Erlich’s works are included in several private and public collections including the Museum of Modern Art, Buenos Aires; The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; Tate Modern, London; Musée d’Art Moderne, Paris; 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa, Japan; MACRO, Rome; The Israel Museum, Jerusalem; and the Fonds National d’Art Contemporain (FNAC), Paris. Erlich lives and works in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

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    Pumpkin Display

    Pumpkin Display Do you like Halloween? Do you celebrate this holiday? Do you have fun carving pumpkins? Nevertheless, have you ever drawn on the pumpkins and lit then afterwards? Then you can see and be amazed by the works of artist who have drawn and carved different incredibly awesome pictures on the pumpkins and they have created a great display at the Rodger Williams Park Zoo in Providence, Rhode Island.

    Jack-O-Lantern

    Pumpkin Display A jack-o-lantern is a carved pumpkin, turnip or beet, associated chiefly with the holiday of Halloween, and was named after the phenomenon of strange light flickering over peat bogs, called will-0-the-wisp or jack-o'-lantern. In a jack-o'-lantern, the top is cut off to form a lid, and the inside flesh then scooped out; an image, usually a monstrous face, is carved out of the pumpkin's rind to expose the hollow interior. To create the lantern effect, a light source is placed within before the lid is closed. This is traditionally a flame or electric candle, though pumpkin lights featuring various colors and flickering effects are also marketed specifically for this purpose. It is common to see jack-o'-lanterns on doorsteps and otherwise used as decorations during Halloween.

    Rodger Williams Park Zoo Pumpkins

    Pumpkin Display This is a series of unbelievably impressive carved pumpkins on display as part of the Jack-O-Lanterns at the Rodger Williams Park Zoo in Providence, Rhode Island. The Spectacular features over 5,000 carved pumpkins, but apparently only 100 or so are this impressive. You may join your family and friends in this amazing experience, a nighttime display of 5,000 illuminated jack-o-lanterns all along the beautiful wetland trail. Well, the pumpkins are carved into veritable works of art, and presented in themed scenes with music. Pumpkin Display [gallery ids="15272,15277,15276,15271,15275,15270,15274,15273,15269,15268,15266,15267,15265,15264,15263,15262,15261,15260,15259,15258"]

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    Birthday Party

    Children's parties can be a lot more fun than adults’, especially, if it is a birthday party, because you can leave the seriousness of the door and a little fool around with the children. In addition, when it is the end of the celebration, the children get tired and just starting to fall asleep; you can take a nap with them. However, do you know how to get ready for a child’s birthday party? How to make it joyful and unforgettable? Then here you will find some useful information and tips on how to make a good birthday party. Great Birthday Party Great Birthday Party

    Plan Your Party Basics

    • Choose a theme party with your child. It may seem unnecessary, but the choice of the theme evenings greatly simplifies the selection of food, decorations and games. Holidays are very popular with the characters (think about Sponge Bob and Scooby - Doo), but the main theme is also going to work (princesses, cowboys, pirates, fairies, etc.). Allow your child to show imagination, if only his desire to not be completely out of place. Sit down with your child, take a pen and paper and write down all your ideas. Some of the topics are obviously more difficult to implement than others. Walk with the child to the shops, which sell products for children's parties, and see what is available. It is easiest to choose the one that allows your capabilities.
    • Highlight key points. Here are a few questions that you should know the answer: which will host the party? How long will it last? Pass to this day other activities that can distract children from a holiday? What time suits your schedule? Consider the age of your child. The younger the child is, the earlier to start a holiday. You do not have to arrange it for the day, a few hours will be enough. If you do not want to have a party at home, check your spare time and place for the meeting.
    • Make invitations (according to the chosen topic!). Once you have decided on the theme, it is time to work out the details. Check your schedule; make sure there is nothing else on that day is expected. At the prompt, enter the start and end of the holiday, the address that with them to bring guest (e.g., bathing suit, if the holiday is held in the pool) and whether or not the food that parents can plan a day ahead for a child.
    • A good rule is to select the number of guests, the child's age plus one. If the parents of little ones, too, want to join, it is great! You will be lucky to have someone to help to look after the children and clean up.
    • Make your invitations in style theme party. Children are sure to be happy with this. You can give a child the invitation so he gave them to the school, or if the child is small or scattered, hand invitations to invited parents. Your child should not hand out invitations in front of those who are not invited, they can hurt them. Give them to the teacher to give out, or let your child carefully put each invitation on the desk or bag.
    • Buy scenery. For everything from napkins to fixtures, specialty stores with goods for parties are simply irreplaceable. You can immediately get everything in place, or if something is not available, it may be for you to order.
    • Alternatively, you can do the whole job, if you are into that sort of thing. Your child can always help you, if you want to blame someone for bad handwriting. As an option, the other kids can come early and help with decorations, if they like it.

    The Organization of Games and Food

    Party Food Party Food Party Games Party Games
    • Plan a few games. This is the foundation of children's parties, so think about what children can do, invite a professional for entertainment, or use the options available games in the street. Look in the manual, or on the internet, there is a number of agencies that organize a party or place of interest close to home. For young children, leave more space in your plans so that you can control everything.
    • Do not be afraid to focus on one specific topic. For example, if the detectives, then hide "treasures" that they were looking for them. Spend a competition to find something with the tips and the final award.
    • Do not be afraid to make too simple holiday. Nowadays children do not play those games that were popular before. Rather than sit them for a game console, play hide and seek with them, hide and seek, tag of war, etc.
    • For older children, leave a little more time. The older the child, the less structured holiday is. Children will want to do something that is interesting to them , and not just follow the plan . If this happens, do not panic.
    • They can do funny masks, badges, paint T-shirts, the list is endless. This requires a little more forethought, but the fun of these games will have more children. It may be the first occupation of the evening; the children who came early were able to occupy yourself with something before the arrival of the rest. Children who come later can take the materials home, if they wish.
    • Allow guests to take home part of the scenery after the holiday, especially if it is a theme party (e.g., pirates, princesses). This will ease the situation to you with cleaning.

    Arrange the Cake for the Party

    Hello Kitty Birthday Cake Hello Kitty Birthday Cake
    • When it comes to holiday, one thing remains constant, the cake. Do you bake it or buy? One or two? Cupcakes, also not a bad idea, they are now very popular. Whatever you choose, take care of this in advance, go to confectionary, order a cake or purchase the necessary ingredients for baking. Make a meal for a holiday in the chosen theme of the evening!
    • Although it prompts you to logic, one cake is not enough. You need something to feed the children. A simple way, to order a pizza, buy a meal at a fast food restaurant, or a trust company that organizes evening. Sandwiches, fruit and cookies a good choice.
    • If it is a good weather, and you are celebrating a holiday in nature, to make hot dogs or hamburgers. Children love it. Do not forget the bread, ketchup or mustard.
    • If there will be other parents, take care so that they, too, have the food. Most likely, they will not want to eat chicken nuggets and drink Sprite.

    Organize Celebratory Drinks

    Party Drinks Party Drinks
    • Soda, lemonade or juice, it is a standard set. If the event is taking place in nature, take care of the cooling bag, refrigerator for cans of Coke or water. With the cake is always good milk. If it is fall or winter, while the children play in the street, take care of warming drinks.
    • Buy glasses and dishes that are safe for children. Such things can easily break, so do not use expensive Chinese porcelain. Be prepared for the disorder.

    Plan Goodbye

    • Give other parents your phone number to arrange the safe return of all the children home. Parents can call you, if delayed, or if someone else agrees to drive their child home. Make a list to make sure that all guests got safely to their homes.
    • When a child leaves, note it. Allow it all to say goodbye, pick up your bags, crafts, some elements of the scenery, if he wants to, and mentally note that the baby was gone. Do not allow children to disperse without notice.

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