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About Landscaping & Hardscaping In Tennessee.

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What You Should Know About Winterizing Your Outdoor Kitchen

What You Should Know About Winterizing Your Outdoor Kitchen

Having an outdoor kitchen is one of the most enjoyable amenities to have during the spring and summer! They provide an excellent opportunity for entertaining family and friends and help keep your home cooler by preparing and cooking meals outdoors.

However, when winter comes rolling in, it is important to take extra care in preparing your outdoor kitchen for its period of inactivity. Winterizing your outdoor kitchen is about the only maintenance required to keep it in good working order. However, this maintenance is extremely important if you want to avoid costly repairs and replacements for your outdoor kitchen.


Prevent Frozen Water Lines & Damaged Appliances by Shutting off the Water Supply

During the winter, water lines have the potential to freeze up and that can cause damage to both the water lines and the appliances they are hooked up to. First, make sure to locate and completely shut off the water supply that leads to your outdoor kitchen.

Use the indoor shutoff when you cut off the water supply. This way you have no water running in any of the outside water lines.

Major appliances, such as an icemaker or a refrigerator, should be double-checked to ensure all water is drained from the lines as well.


Clean Your Appliances in the Fall

Everything in your outdoor kitchen should be thoroughly cleaned before winter. A fall cleaning allows your appliances to remain clean and be ready to go in spring! Here are some cleaning suggestions for a...

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How Outdoor Lighting Can Help With The Security of Your Home

How Outdoor Lighting Can Help With The Security of Your Home

Home security is a major concern for homeowners and an easy solution is installing the right equipment to protect your house. Before you spend thousands on the latest high-end security equipment, consider beefing up your outdoor lighting system.

Outdoor lighting can account for a very important facet of security for your home. Follow these five tips and protect your family and belongings with just a few lighting changes.


Tip #1: Illuminate entry points.

Never make your entry points seem accessible. Motion lights and lights that brighten when a person is approaching should always be placed near direct access points. Front doors, side doors, garage doors, and windows should be equipped with motion sensors and be lit during active nighttime hours. The more illumination your entry points have, the less likely an intruder is to try to enter your home.


Tip #2: Light dark areas where intruders can easily hide.

There are many areas around your home that can be easy to hide in or crouch around. Consider your landscaping, walkways, paths, and outdoor structures when planning your lighting. It will keep you safe and secure when you are indoors, and pathway lighting is beneficial when you are outdoors in the evening. Security also means safety and your family should feel at ease navigating their surroundings.


Tip #3: Light the perimeter of your property.

What if your home is down a dark, dim-lit street? What if you have a large wooded lot near your home? These ...

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How to Protect Your Pavers from the Winter Weather

How to Protect Your Pavers from the Winter Weather

Paver patios are both a beautiful and unique look for your property. Many options for style, size, and shape can help you create a customized pattern. However, to preserve the longevity of your paver patio or walkway, you have to be prepared to protect it from harsh weather.

The harshest weather can be found from the bitter cold temperatures in the winter. The freeze-to-thaw cycle can really do a number on the positioning and the condition of your pavers.


Using a Seal Coat to Protect Your Pavers

Sealing your pavers is the most effective way of protecting them from the snow, ice, and any other damaging elements throughout the year. Applying a seal coat is relatively simple. A brush is used over the surface and sides of the pavers to apply seal coating. You will need to retreat the pavers periodically when the shine on the pavers vanishes.

The lifespan of your pavers is based on how much care you put into them. Preventative measures taken up front will help make your pavers last for years to come!


Invest in Quality Materials to Avoid Shifting & Cracks in Your Pavers

You should consider investing more money up front on your pavers. Choosing high-quality pavers from the beginning will result in less time and money spent trying to repair or replace pavers down the road.

Make sure to use quality concrete as well during your paver process. Weak concrete can lead to shifts, cracks, and will make your paver surface more susceptible to deicing agents.

...
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Custom Fire Pits vs. Prefabricated Fire Pits

Custom Fire Pits vs. Prefabricated Fire Pits

It is nice to have a gathering spot in your yard where you can congregate with family and friends in the evening. A fire pit provides warmth and a convenient location to relax after a long day. It is the perfect addition to any backyard, but choosing the right type for your home should not be a quick decision.

There are many types of fire pits available, but the choice comes down to a custom fire pit or a prefabricated one. There are pros and cons to both, you just have to find which one fits your lifestyle and budget!


What You Can Expect to Spend

When it comes to the question of what would one expect to spend on a fire pit, the price of a DIY kit from your local big box store can range anywhere from under $100 to around $500. There are some more expensive pre-fabricated models out there. The high-end of the prefabricated models can run homeowners anywhere from $1,000-$4,000. Kits can be found at a store or shipped right to your home.

Custom fire pits are more of an investment. They usually start at around $5,000 for the design and installation process and go up in price from there. This price reflects the time, labor, and design efforts put into the custom piece. In addition, custom fire pits can use a variety of materials and have options such as built-in seating, retaining walls, and other features that make them a focal point for your backyard.

Conclusion: Budget buyers should go for the prefabricated kits. Homeowners looking to add an exterior focal...

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The Most Popular Shrubs & Flowers in Mt. Juliet, TN

The Most Popular Shrubs & Flowers in Mt. Juliet, TN

Tennessee has the advantage of having a beautiful climate all year long that allows for a lot of flowers and shrubs to bloom around the state. Mt. Juliet is a suburb of Nashville, TN, which is north central in relation to the entire state. This area falls into zone 7a, when it comes to plant hardiness.

Zone 7a allows the homeowners and business owners flexibility when planting their annual shrubs and flowers. Because of this, you can expect a variety of shrubs and flowers, both annuals and perennials, to be scattered around the Mt. Juliet area.

Seven months is the approximate length of the growth period available for planting annuals in zone 7a.


Bring Color to Your Yard With Annuals

With the longer growing period in Mt. Juliet, homeowners have the opportunity to plant annuals throughout spring, summer, and fall to change the seasonal color in their yards. Annuals provide some of the prettiest colors in landscaping and also help bring separation to your perennial plants.

Warm Season Annual Blooms

Springtime in Mt. Juliet brings beautiful flowers such as Pansies and Snapdragons. Summertime blooms include flowers such as Cannas and Dahlias. Some other warm season annual blooms that will look great on your property include:

  • Coleus
  • Marigolds
  • Petunias
  • Impatiens
  • Begonia
  • Zinnia

Cool Season Annual Blooms

As summer wanes and autumn settles in, golden hues and lush shades of green are the best choices for your...

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Improve Your Outdoor Entertaining Space With a Seating Wall

Improve Your Outdoor Entertaining Space With a Seating Wall

Outdoor entertaining, whether it is an intimate family gathering or a large party, requires plenty of seating options. Many homes have enough space on a patio for seating a small gathering with a table and a handful of chairs. Without additional seating for guests, homeowners have to bring indoor furniture, like their dining room chairs, outside or have an array of plastic chairs available during larger get-togethers.

The downside? Bringing interior dining chairs onto your patio may result in damage from improper use or the weather. Plastic chairs can be a safety hazard for senior adults and children. Additionally, storing plastic chairs when they are not in use can be a waste of usable space.


Outdoor Seating Wall as a Hard Scaping Option That Adds Seating to Your Entertainment Space in Mt. Juliet, TN

One solution to your outdoor seating problem is to invest in permanent seating, by having a seating wall built. Seating walls are a great way to add practical hardscaping into your landscape design, without sacrificing additional space. They provide beauty and function that adds year-round extra seating to your entertaining space.


Seating walls as additional garden beds or enhancements to outdoor fireplaces and other hardscape elements.

Outdoor seating wall built for a homeowner in Mt. Juliet, that also features a flower bed.

In addition to creating seating, you can make your wall a multi-purpose outdoor piece. Retaining walls are a great option for adding both seating and raised garden beds. Use seating to enhance a garden area by...

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Will an Outdoor Kitchen Provide a Return on Investment (ROI)?

Will an Outdoor Kitchen Provide a Return on Investment (ROI)?

An outdoor kitchen is a feature that so many homeowners want to have added to their property, especially here in Tennessee. There's no denying how an outdoor kitchen can enhance your ability to entertain family and friends, while taking advantage of favorable weather. There is also the improved aesthetics to your home that an outdoor kitchen brings.

However, one question that sometimes bubbles up, particularly if a homeowner is planning to sell their house, is how much value to your home does an outdoor kitchen add, and what is the ROI (Return On Investment)?

Let's explore some of the factors that may go into answering this question.

Straight to the Data - Your Expected ROI

In terms of trying to place an actual number on what a homeowner can expect as an ROI on their outdoor kitchen investment, the range is actually quite wide. Depending on which data reports and surveys you analyze (for example, quickenloans.com), a homeowner can expect a range of 50% to 200% of the original cost of building the outdoor kitchen to be the ROI.

This favorable ROI, along with the enjoyment that one receives from entertaining friends and family with an outdoor kitchen, is why these luxury elements are popular for homeowners in the Mt. Juliet, Lebanon, Green Hill, TN and surrounding areas.

A favorable ROI of 50% to 200% should be expected on a properly designed and constructed outdoor kitchen.

Construction Materials & Appliance...

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What Are the Best, Low Maintenance Perennials for the Mt. Juliet, TN Area

What Are the Best, Low Maintenance Perennials for the Mt. Juliet, TN Area

Perennials are an important aspect of any landscaping bed or garden. While annuals provide seasonal splashes of color, the perennials form the foundation of the garden or landscape bed. Here are five favorite perennials that are common in Mt. Juliet, TN and require the least amount of maintenance.

Hosta

Hosta grows easily and can bring great texture and color to your garden. Because Hosta requires little to no ongoing maintenance, it can be planted in spots where other plants fail to thrive.

Hosta produces lily-like flowers, during the spring season, in hues of lavender, blue, and white. There are different species of Hosta, so choose your plants wisely when you are adding them to your landscaping. Some species of Hosta prefer dry shade and others prefer moist shade, while some can handle full sunlight beating down on them daily.

Hosta can be divided if they grow too rapidly and fill up too much space.

Daylilies

Look around your neighborhood, or even at some local businesses, and you are sure to find daylilies planted somewhere. These common perennials can withstand all types of soil and weather. While they prefer to grow in full sun with well-drained soil, you will find that daylilies grow fine in other conditions as well.

There are a wide variety of daylilies, which in turn provides an expansive color palette to suit most landscaping design concepts. Daylilies benefit from deadheading, spring fertilization, and dividing.

Peonies

...
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Which is Better for You and Your Home: a Fireplace or a Fire Pit?

Which is Better for You and Your Home: a Fireplace or a Fire Pit?

Fire pits and fireplaces add warmth, light, and elegance to your outdoor living space. They can become a focal point for entertaining and a feature that anchors the space. Choosing which of these features are best for you and your home is dependent on your style, purpose, and budget.

Fire Pits

Fire pits are more commonly installed than fireplaces and tend to be more affordable. Additionally, fire pits feature an open design. Other great attributes of fire pits include:

  • Fire pits can sit a larger group of people in a circle, square, or oval, facing one another. This invites conversation and entertainment throughout the evening.
  • It is easier to incorporate built-in seating around a fire pit.
  • Fire pits are small structures that do not block scenery. If your home boasts a beautiful nighttime view, a fire pit is the way to go!

Conversely, fire pits are unable to block the wind and provide less privacy than a fireplace.

Fireplaces

If you are ready to get cozy in a more intimate atmosphere, a fireplace may be ideal for your space! Fireplaces seat smaller groups of people and faces them in the same direction. However, it can provide for a comfortable night with close friends. Additional benefits of fireplaces are:

  • They are great for blocking the wind.
  • A fireplace is a great feature to block unwanted views and create your own outdoor oasis.
  • A fireplace can be more aesthetically pleasing.

It should be noted that fireplaces require a larger...

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Landscape Lighting Techniques & Where They Should be Used

Landscape Lighting Techniques & Where They Should be Used

Highlighting the beauty of your landscape structures can be achieved through a number of different techniques. The various techniques available are, in part, due to the versatility that today's lighting sources have, with regards to where they can be placed. Designed to blend in, modern lighting elements are easily hidden in ground coverings, submerged in water features, or placed into trees. Below are three popular lighting techniques used to accentuate your landscape.

Up Lighting

Up lights are designed to show off the specifics of your landscape, such as unique plants or architectural elements. Up lights also add dimension to walls, fences, or other flat surfaces, add ambient light for walkways, and create dramatic silhouettes with well-placed highlights and shadows.

Up lighting is achieved with many different types of lights, such as spotlights or floodlights. They are usually mounted at ground level (or sometimes even below ground level), with the light turned upward to create the desired effect.

Down Lighting

In contrast to up lights, down lights, as their name implies, are turned to face downward and can be placed above ground in patio covers, stone walls, trees, or house eves. This illuminates large spaces to bathe the ground in light and define specific areas by using an inviting glow.

Downlighting can be used to spotlight a flower bed or waterfall, for example, and can be a very effective way to illuminate a doorway. When placed high up in...

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