Budding and Blooming Spring Curb Appeal

Budding and blooming spring curb appeal lawn and garden enthusiasts know the beauty and the value of curb appeal.

First impressions make lasting impressions.

Curb appeal traditionally is the topic of buying or selling a home conversation, but what about the value of curb appeal between the bookends?

I want the ooh and aah effect of gorgeous curb appeal to impress me, the homeowner, first and foremost.

blooming spring curb appeal

Spring motivates home improvement.

The first day of spring rollout makes it official, and by the look and buzz of things around the neighborhood everything’s coming up roses, azaleas, marigolds, verbena, zinnias, impatiens, begonias, sago palms and hanging baskets of fern.

We’ve got this budding and blooming spring curb appeal covered.

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Heydt Designs

d0114c52-5118-4cea-934c-682d3bf3b070_1000Proven Winners Petunias

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This post contains affiliate links.  When a reader clicks on the affiliate link (like the one above) and makes a purchase on the advertiser’s site, I receive a commission for the sale. 


Consulting the buds and blooms bible aka the LSU Ag Center Bedding Plants for Louisiana Landscapes for plant this, grow that advice confirms we are a go for grow.

succulents-garden-center

Succulents make a lovely showing, and the decorative box Dave the Builder made for me a couple of years ago is the inspiration for a container garden.

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Color leads the way when orchestrating palette and planting.

The Barn Nursery’s Fool Proof Color Guide to Container Gardening gives color combination advice for creating beautiful color combos, height and size suggestions and recommendations for low-maintenance blooms.

You can download your free copy of the guide here.

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Speaking of budding and blooming spring curb appeal gorgeous DIY projects, here’s an idea for an address number wall planter from HGTV.

house numbers

Difficulty is the word that springs to mind when it comes to our efforts to plant and successfully grow hydrangeas.

A planting debate ensued over the recently purchased pink hydrangea.

Hortensiapink

I suspected failure would follow if we prematurely planted the hydrangea under the assumption of the “we had no winter” temperatures of late.

Last week the overnight temperatures dipped into the mid 30s.

I had a feeling.

hydrangea pattern outdoor fabric

This Violet Hydrangea Oilcloth Fabric from Online Fabric Store is marked oh. my. gorgeous! for outdoor pillows.

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Adonis Roman Concrete Chalice Garden Urn  – Christopher Knight Home

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Regardless if you are sprucing up your already in place exterior features or adding new, the budding and blooming spring curb appeal is rooted in the lawn and garden details.

curb appeal stepping stones BHGBetter Homes & Gardens

Painting the front door instantly adds a zip of spring spectacular color. Decorative stepping stones walk the garden path walk of function and curb appeal style.

Outdoor planters have come into their own, stylishly speaking.

The round copper patina cast stone pot and tan wash round rim clay planters from Home Depot deliver on all curb appeal fronts.

curb appeal ideas

Making the spring curb appeal gorgeous gotta have it list is the alligator door knocker by Michael Healy Designs.

Regional designs and decor accessories reflecting regional attributes impress a touch of home.

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Michael Healy Designs

I’m adding these garden themed door knockers to the budding and blooming spring curb appeal gotta have it list.

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Wind & Weather Fish Downspout Statue

Dress up gutter bottoms while steering rain water from the downspout to the lawn with a lawn and garden decorative downspout statue.

new-light

Dave snapped a shot of the new recessed LED retrofit downlight with his cell phone.  The yard and beds show winter wear and are no where near spring ready, but you get the idea.

Looking at the house from the street/curb/sidewalk, the light is not as bright as it appears in the photo.

It is a very pleasing choice of exterior accent lighting.

lamps-on-porchDresser Homes

Lamp(s) on a front porch create such an inviting ambiance.  Isn’t that the idea?

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From season to season, garden statues benefit from a quick cleaning, paint touch up or even a color change.

spring curb appeal

Our side yard factors into the curb appeal equation. In fact, it gets more lawn and garden attention than the front yard.  It has quickly become a bird bathing-bird feeding-bird watching neighborhood attraction.

The DIY chandelier bird feeder sees plenty of visitors, and the fourth generation bird bath (that bird bath is older than I am) is quite the gathering place.  Mama Places In The Home tends to the bird bath water (from the looks of the above photo, somebody needs to get to get to filling it up).

The antics of our winged friends supplies us with hours of bird-watching entertainment.

red -bird-spring

Budding and blooming spring curb appeal goes a long way in making the right first impression.  It announces style lives here.

Love your style!

Tidbits Of All Things House That Make a Home Information

Today I am sharing tidbits of all things house that make a home information.

A design, decorating, dish and detail show and tell resource of information is what drives us here at Places In The Home.

And away we go!

and-away-we-goJackie Gleason

In a recent survey of home decor consumers, the colors blue and purple top the list of color preference when selecting the decorative throw pillows to decorate their humble abode with.

blue-purple-pillows

Consumers tastes and preferences also trend toward patterned throw pillows.

Buster-kittySir Kitty Kat

Fleas drives me crazy.

What a swing in subject matter, but into every household an unwanted guest of the bug species will creep in.

We’ve been fortunate over the many years of our pet ownership to only contend with fleas inside the house once.

That is until last month when I noticed we had company.

Sir Kitty Kat aka the culprit gifted the entire house with fleas.

Flea bombing the house with unwanted chemicals was out of the question, and calling an exterminator would be an option of last resort.

After conducting a quick google search for help, I decided to go with a natural, safe and inexpensive alternative.

borax information

Is 20 Mule Team Borax a detergent booster or is it a miracle flea be gone treatment?

It’s both!

I used 2 boxes of 20 Mule Team Borax over a two week period.

Patience and persistence paid off.

We treated Sir Kitty Kat with a topical flea treatment under our veterinarian’s advisement.

Kitty was scratching to take up residence outdoors for a few days, and admittedly I was happy to oblige him.

I purchased a plastic storage container, a broom, rubber gloves and a box of disposable face masks from the dollar store.

You’ll need two(2) new empty vacuum cleaner bags- one to use during treatment and a fresh new one for after treatment.

Perform a discoloration test by selecting a small area and applying the Borax to rule out the possibility of discoloration.

I only treated the carpet, rugs and floors with the Borax.

I did not use it on fabric or upholstered furniture.

What You Do:

Fill the storage container about 3/4 full per room with 20 Mule Team Borax.

Lightly dust floors, carpets, and rugs with Borax along baseboards, under furniture, in closets.

Use the broom to work the Borax into the carpet.

The Borax dries out the fleas and larvae.

I let the Borax do its thing in the carpet for one week.

Overkill for sure, but we were on a flea killing mission.

Vacuum up the Borax, discard the vacuum bag into a garbage bag and immediately place outside, and pop in a new vacuum bag.

diy_table_runner

I’ve got the hem tape thing down to a science!

I’ve been called a lot of things in my lifetime, but seamstress is not one of them and rightly so.

All those years ago in high school home economics class I aced the cooking part of the semester.

Sewing cooked my goose.

I come from a long line of no-sew seamstresses.

Button detail and hem tape I’ve mastered, but that’s it for my sewing prowess.

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Pincushion curiosity struck while staring at the tomato pincushion that was my mother’s mother’s mother, trying to decide if I really needed the button to be on the pant and not in the drawer.

After consulting with the fountain of information guru that is Google, the what and the why a strawberry is attached to the tomato pincushion mystery was solved.

Emory powder is the filler source for the strawberry.

The powder is an abrasive, and serves as a cleaner of rust and sharpener of pins and needles.

Glad that’s answered.

I was on pins and needles.

crazy-chocolate-cake

Crazy cake is crazy easy and crazy good.

Do you ever look at recipes and projects and wonder if they really are that easy, that tasty and worth the effort?

You now have it on good authority that this easy peasy crazy cake is.

One pan and no eggs- I love this concept.

Crazy Cake

Ingredients

3 cups all-purpose flour

2 cups white sugar

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking soda

½ cup unsweetened cocoa powder

3/4 cup vegetable oil

2 Tablespoons distilled white vinegar

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 cups cold water

Directions

Sift flour, sugar, salt, soda, and cocoa together into a 9 x 13 inch ungreased cake pan.  Make three wells. Pour oil into one well, vinegar into second, and vanilla into third well.  Pour cold water over all, and stir well with fork.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 40 minutes, or until tooth pick inserted comes out clean.

To frost or not to frost.

That is the question only your personal preference can answer.

frosting-caramel

I did not frost the first chocolate crazy cake and it was delicious.

I did frost the second chocolate crazy cake with Duncan Hines Salted Caramel frosting topped off with coarse sea salt, and it was scrumptious.

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Choices and caramel make the world go round.

Tidbits of all things house that make a home information does too.

Love your style!

Summer’s Almost Here Happy Dance: Outdoor Living Entertaining

It the let’s take the all things house that make a home party outside shall we time of year!

Go ahead, take a moment to bask in the sunlight of your summer’s almost here happy dance.

Numbers show the benefits of outdoor living and entertaining ranks high in the areas of energy and well-being.

I love this time of year when the hot summer days and nights meet hot styles and cool looks of the outdoor living entertaining decorative accessories season.

Our Canadian snowbird son will be moving to a new house in a couple of months which means dialing and styling consultations, suggestions, tips and what do you think of this for our outdoor living space is in high demand.

Lucy on the phone

Curb and yard appeal primps and preps the outdoor living entertaining area for the season.

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The outdoor living loyal take outdoor living seriously.  The how we utilize our outdoor living spaces is an interesting fact.

Outdoor Spaces by the Numbers

I don’t know about you, but when it comes to outdoor living decorative accessories, I want comfortable, durable, lasting, and affordable style that stands up to the season.

Patio, porch, terrace, balcony, rooftop and deck accessories must pass the past one season test.

resort stripe outdoor fabricResort Stripe Aruba Outdoor Fabric

Style is important, but if the big ticket items such as outdoor furniture and performance fabrics can’t withstand the elements or normal outdoor living wear and tear, what do you have?

A repeatable, avoidable and unnecessary expense.

Outdoor furniture and accessories made from treated wood, weather-resistant plastic, aluminum and wrought iron products are the preferred material choice in the get the most bang for your buck game.

Cambridge 4pc All Weather Wicker Convo SetCambridge 4pc All Weather Wicker Convo Set

SunGuard UV Protectant for garden decor comes with four star customer reviews.

I have not purchased or used this product, but if it delivers on its promise to protect all types of outdoor decor, furniture and garden accents against fading, peeling and cracking caused by the sun and harsh weather conditions it makes the gotta have it list.

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Outdoor living spaces share a design commonality with their interior living spaces counterpart- essential pops of robust color.

From mosquito repelling lavender, geranium and rosemary plants and garden fragrant blooms, seasonal keep it summer simple sensation eats and outdoor lovin’ decorative accessories, the spring and summer outdoor living entertaining season presents us with a brilliant and bold opportunity to color our world.

decorative outdoor string lights

Threshold™ Tear Drop String Lights

A fire pit tops the millennial homeowner’s gotta have it list for outdoor living function, comfort and style.

According to a Casual Living Millennial Outdoor survey, Millennials, singles and couples consider the most integral outdoor living entertaining products to be the five-piece dining set, grill and chat set.

Rocksprings 30″ Wide LP Square Fire Table

Our son, a millennial homeowner, explains to us, his Southern fried and humidity steamed parents, why a fire pit will be in his outdoor living space future.

“Guys, it’s not Louisiana.  It’s Canada.  We use a fire pit year round.”

Well that explains that.

 S’mores anyone?

smores

How about an artisan wood-fired pizza baked in a blue fish terracotta pizza oven?

blue fish terracotta pizza oven

Blue Fish Terracotta Pizza Oven

Don’t forget to apply sun protection with an SPF of Stylish Parasol Fun.

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Save On Crafts

Place a bundle of these butterfly adorned paper parasols from Save-on-Crafts in a super cute decorative container or basket for sun and heat sensitive guests to use.

Other options include summer soiree parting favors or focal point decorations.

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Style Me Pretty

One of the best pieces of outdoor living entertaining advice I can give is to keep the theme, design, food and drink menu super summer simple!

I’m convinced more and more the move toward the trend of taking purchased prepared foods to the next level via the presentation factor is a gift from the outdoor living entertaining powers that be and your local grocery store and farmers market.

The eyes set the “seen” when it comes to food, and easy always makes the perfect party guest.

deli-sandwich

Add a splash of nostalgia to your outdoor living decor with vintage or vintage inspired accessories.

Galvanized Retro-Themed Beverage Dispenser-Cooler 

Gosh, this vintage tin cooler evokes memories of summers spent in East Tennessee at my paternal grandparent’s house.

Granddaddy stocked the basement with a generous supply of original Coca-Cola (cold cola as they called it) in the small glass bottles.

In fact, when the formula changed to “new Coke” he saved my brother and me a carton of the original Coke.

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1stdibs

I still have mine to this day, and wouldn’t take a million dollars for this priceless memento.

Like a scene straight out of The Andy Griffith Show, we loved sitting out on the front steps sipping ice-cold original formula Coke (cold cola as my Tennessee family members say) watching the fireflies light up the summer night.

Everything’s better with Coke.

And summer.

And memories.

Love your style!

Home and Garden: How Does Your Summer Vegetable Garden Grow?

Have dirt, will garden has taken root with many of us who love to home and garden.

When it comes to vegetables fresh from the vegetable garden ring the ripe for the grilling, roasting, stir-frying, sauteing or steaming dinner bell, how does your summer vegetable garden grow?

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garden-veggiesTraditional Home

Benjamin Moore supplies the green thumb fresh from the garden inspiration.

benjamin-moore-green-thumbBenjamin Moore ~ Green Thumb

 

Ding, ding, ding!

We have a winner for best looking and gotta have it potting bench.

potting-benchCharles Phillips Antiques and Architecturals

I would switch out the galvanized tub, pop in the Premier Copper Products Oval Bucket Vessel Hammered Copper Sink with Handles, plumb it all up, and say hello to my little anything but garden-variety potting bench friend.

garden sinkPremier Copper Products Oval Bucket Vessel Hammered Copper Sink with Handles

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Agrarian Tool Basket

Flour Sack Towel Garden Tea TowelFlour Sack Towel Garden Tea Towel

 

garden-faucetsTorre & Tagus Multi Tap Wall Hook

I sliced into a fresh tomato this afternoon and the freshness jumped off the cutting board.

My “good garden growing, this tomato smells so good” comment brought the tomato lovers running.

tomatoes-garden

In our house the only ingredients needed for the perfect sandwich are two pieces of your bread of choice, Duke’s mayonnaise, fresh home grown tomatoes, a dash of salt and a sprinkle of fine black pepper.

Just add summer.

How Does Your Summer Vegetable Garden Grow

Cucumbers anyone?

how to grow cucumbers

This Vegetable Growing Cheat Sheet from POPSUGAR is a vegetable gardener’s handy dandy where to plant what vegetable garden guide.

Vegetable-Growing-Cheat-Sheet

Container, plot, patio or fresh from the farmer’s market, how does your summer vegetable garden grow?

earth-dayFacebook

Celebrate Earth Day!  #earthday

Love your style!

A Beautiful Good Friday

Beauty is a gift to be appreciated, admired, marveled at, and shared with friends and family.

pink-hydrangeas-gardenCountry Living Magazine ~ Kathryn Kleinman/Jupiter Images

With spring’s arrival, colors on Easter parade, and a holiday weekend of reflection to enjoy, I wish you a beautiful and Good Friday.

Dr. SuessGood Housekeeping

carolyne-flowers-craving-casualStyle at Home

pink-roses-hydrangeaSave On Crafts

lemon-layer-cake-blueberry-lavender-buttercreamLemon Layer Cake with Blueberry Lavender Buttercream

 good Friday

This Chandelier Is For The Birds

The moments of tranquility we’ve enjoyed staring out our kitchen window at the hummingbird feeder waiting for the wonder of nature rank high on “the best things in life are free” meter.

We are experiencing oppressive heat and drought conditions here in the Deep South.  Birds of all kinds of feathers flock to the hummingbird feeder for water on a first come, first gets basis.

I got uncharacteristically quiet the other morning, that glazed look of decor inspiration came over my face, and Dave the Builder knew a wrought iron chandelier bird feeder DIY project was on the horizon.

A couple of years ago I purchased two ornate six light wrought iron chandeliers at auction sans wiring for $20.00 each.

I gave one to a friend as a housewarming gift, and the other one I have kept at the shop in “don’t put a price tag on that one, I might keep it” mode.

I lovingly refer to the shop as my personal climate controlled storage unit but, I digress.

I rang up Dave the Builder and asked him to drop by the shop and bring the fixture home, letting him in on my intentions for the fixture to which he assured me it was doable project.

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I picked up a six pack of mini terracotta planters at Hobby Lobby.  The small drainage hole in the bottom of each planter was the right idea, but not large enough to fit the bolt.

Dave the Builder carefully drilled larger holes to accommodate.

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We both agreed it would be better to leave the terracotta pots in their original finish vs. painting to eliminate any potential harm to the birds.

The modified pots fit perfectly into the candle cups, and we folded the leaves around the pots to further securing them.

You could have heard Dave the Builder all the way to Canada this morning when we had a hungry guest for breakfast.

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Total Costs:

Wrought Iron Chandelier:  $20.00

6pk. Terracotta Mini Planters:  $1.24

Birdwatching enjoyment:  Priceless

 

Love your style!