Designs on College Bowl Games

It is the time of year . Holiday open homes, New Year’s parties, cheer and goodwill. It is also the season of college bowl games leading up to the championship game on Jan. 9, 2012. This year’s slate of games is underway, and alumni are donning their school colors and heading for warm-weather websites to cheer their Ducks, Spartans, Badgers, Buckeyes, Bulldogs, Cardinals, Tigers and more.

Monday, Jan. 2 was a major bowl day. With a slate of six matches, it was the ideal time to watch some gridiron action while recovering from all that New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day revelry. So sit back, relax and enjoy as we preview the matches and have a tour some agent structure from the teams’ home regions.

More: 8 Ingredients of the Fantastic Football Party Room

LLC, RD Architecture

The afternoon of matches starts at noon EST with the Houston Cougars’ passing game challenging the stifling pass defense of the Penn State Nittany Lions.

While Houston is low, horizontal and contemporary, as befits the large open areas of the Lone Star state along with also the Cougars’ pass- oriented offense…

christopher jeffrey architects pllc

Penn State isalso, such as this renovated barn, solid, massive and a mixture of the new and old as is so much of the Keystone state.

Randy Brown

The Capital One Bowl includes the Cornhuskers of Nebraska against the Gamecocks of South Carolina in what should prove to be a Traditional Heartland-vs. -Deep South game.

Though this may not seem like your grandparents Nebraska, the Cornhuskers nevertheless rely on the floor game and robust defense they are famous for. So expect a solid defensive wall from the Huskers because they attempt to maintain the Gamecocks from the red zone.

Frederick + Frederick Architects

Although Steve Spurrier may be best remembered for his”fun-n-gun” Gator teams of the 1990s, this year’s staff is about the running game and a stifling defense. So anticipate that the Gamecocks to maintain Nebraska from the warmth and humidity of the Lowcountry and, even if the Huskers do get into their land, to be somewhat less welcoming and friendly because this home is.

Kenneth Lynch & Associates AIA

It’ll be Georgia vs. Michigan State in the Outback Bowl in what ought to be an exciting game as both teams look to rebound from losses in their conference championship games.

The Bulldogs, like a plantation house Scarlett O’Hara will be proud of, has a good offensive and defensive foundation where their sophomore quarterback can grow.

HUE Projects Architecture + Atelier

Like this lakeshore home in the Upper Midwest, will the 5th ranked Spartans’ defense shut out the Bulldogs?

Richlin Interiors

The Gator Bowl will feature two powerhouse college football teams that have had sub-par seasons this past year. The Meyer/Tebow-less Gators out of Florida will take on the Buckeyes of Ohio State in a duel of unranked teams that just a couple of years back vied for federal supremacy.

Like much of Florida’s mid-century modernism, the Gators are poised to revive their fortunes and bring back that feeling of wonder and joy which abounds from the Sunshine State.

Payne & Payne Builders

And search for ex-Gator coach and Buckeye coach-in-waiting Urban Meyer to bring, such as a home of brick and stone, strength and solidity back to The Ohio State University and Buckeye nation.

SRM Architecture and Interiors

Next up is the “grandaddy of them all,” the Rose Bowl. Started in 1902, the Rose Bowl is the oldest of the bowl games and is preceded by the Tournament of Roses Parade. For much of its history, champions of the Pacific Coast and Big Ten conferences have squared off against each other in a West Coast vs. Midwest battle of titans. This year is the same, with the high-flying Ducks of Oregon pitted against the stifling defense and floor game of the Wisconsin Badgers.

This season’s clubs feature superior floor games and a couple of the country’s best running backs. So our featured homes, such as this one in Oregon, hug the ground…

Bud Dietrich, AIA

… while also being unafraid to put it in the atmosphere like this famous home in Wisconsin.

Rick Hoge

A matchup I am really looking forward to will be Oklahoma State vs. Stanford in the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl. Though Oklahoma State can make the stronger case, both of these teams could easily have been in the championship game. Both feature high-scoring crimes and are directed by a couple of the greatest quarterbacks in the nation.

Like any storybook castle constructed out on the plains, Oklahoma State’s passing duo of Weedan to Blackmon has put up some gaudy numbers.

Malcolm Davis Architecture

On the flip side, Stanford’s quarterback Andrew Luck (Heisman Trophy finalist, likely number-one select in the upcoming NFL draft and, I am pleased to say, structure major) has it all.

Like this home’s bridge and elevation, Luck has the arm strength to zip the ball onto a rope along with his capacity to lift his team has likened him to Super Bowl winning quarterback John Elway.

Though the Cowboys and Cardinal can put pressure on the passer, anticipate both Weedan and Luck to have good games as they attempt to out-duel eachother and make the situation that their staff should have been in the title game.

More: 8 Ingredients of the Fantastic Football Party Room
Winning Chairs for Watching Football

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Readers' Choice: The Laundry Rooms of 2011

There is nothing more depressing than having to get your laundry at a gloomy and dreary room. users appeared to know thats, since all of the most popular photographs from 2011 are mild, bright, and well-organized spaces. ers desired to find spaces that they would want to do their laundry in — rooms with beautiful cabinetry, exceptional storage solutions, beautiful wall colours, and easy-to-implement layout thoughts.

Take a look at the hottest laundry area photographs uploaded in 2011, and tell us which one you like the most!

More Readers’ Choice winners of 2011:
Kitchens | Bedrooms | Baths | Offices | Living Rooms | Bedrooms | Patios | Kids’ Bathrooms

Spinnaker Development

1. While this laundry area is not particularly big, the lengthy countertop delivers a great deal of valuable workspace for sorting and folding. Users loved the mild and calm colours in this area, and the window over the washer and drier

Weaver Custom Homes

2. ers researched this photo for sensible construction suggestions about the best way best to earn a laundry space function efficiently. Users loved the two different counter heights, the sink in this area, and the hanging bar over the sink — which is perfect for those delicates that need to air dry.

Atmosphere Interior Design Inc..

3. All-white cabinetry and bold black appliances create this laundry room look almost glamorous. Users loved the glistening black washer and dryer set, and the way the space was divided into a combined mudroom and laundry for convenience.

Reaume Construction & Design

4. The silvery-gray cupboard color was the main attraction in this modern laundry space. A Caesarstone countertop was chosen for its durability (and it’s easy to wash ). The white cloth choice keeps the space feeling fresh and clean.

Crisp Architects

5. Figuring out where to put the ironing board is one of those eternal home design dilemmas. ers loved the drop-down board in this area, and the window directly over the countertop.

Meredith Heron Design

6. Slate tile provides this laundry area a bold look, and serves as a durable floor surface to the doorway to the outdoors. The glass tile backsplash was just another point of interest for consumers, who loved the subtle flair it added to this long and narrow space.

Kelley & Company Home

7. Even though it’s a little laundry area, there’s a lot to love in this tiny space. Stainless steel shelving and light function with the very simple sink to make the room look almost industrial. Users also loved the glass containers filled with wooden brushes, and the clothes baskets hanging onto the wall for storage.

Visbeen Architects

8. There are almost too many creative layout ideas in this laundry area to record! ers bookmarked this photo for the unique gray cabinetry and orange fittings, but they also loved the smart storage thoughts, the quirky background, and the open shelving over the countertop.

Kingsley Belcher Knauss, ASID

9. Stacked dishwashers and dryers are a smart way to conserve space in a tiny laundry room — particularly when your laundry area must share space with a different room in the house. ers desired to know all about the substances in this area, and the warm burnt sienna wall shade.

10. This turquoise laundry area was among the few colorful laundry areas to make it into the very popular photo list this year. ers loved how bright and light this laundry area seems. Installing the chandelier was an adorable touch that adds just a little bit of glow into the room.

Atmosphere Interior Design Inc..

11. The gray wall color in this area is a bit darker than what the majority of folks would think about for a laundry area, but the vivid white cabinetry and washer-dryer set contrasts beautifully with the dark shade. Users spared this photo because of the space-saving stacked washer and drier, and the exceptional floor material.

Matthies Builders

12. Smartly coordinating one wall space left plenty of space for foot traffic in this joint laundry room and mudroom. Using built-ins to make a sturdy space may give you the choice of customizing a smaller space to fit your needs.

Bud Dietrich, AIA

13. Hiding the ironing board in a streamlined storage space like this gives you more freedom with the rest of your laundry area. This is particularly important in a smaller space, or one that is off of a main living area. Solutions like this will make sure your laundry area stays clean and neat.


14. This ironing board alternative is a little bit more complicated, but just as efficient. ers loved the way the designer customized the ironing board to fold into a cupboard drawer. The beautiful cabinetry and rustic backplash were other factors of attraction for ers too.

Pure Design by Jerry Bussanmas

15. Whenever it’s relatively straightforward in design, there are some simple and easy to implement storage hints in this laundry area that ers were enthused about. The built-in drying rack is a fantastic touch (as sometimes one bar just is not enough), as was the wall cabinetry, which may hold all kinds of odds and ends.

Kaufman Homes, Inc..

16. Natural lighting can make a big difference in a laundry area — particularly when you’re in the middle of a huge load of laundry. users spared this photo to your open and airy feel, as well as the metallic blue color of this washer and drier.

17. Background in a laundry area is not something that you usually find on , but users loved the look of this modern space. This photo was bookmarked to your tall built-in cupboard next to the washer and dyer, and the beautiful countertop.

MainStreet Design Build

18. If you’re trying to join a mud room with a laundry area, it’s almost always a good idea to invest in a sturdy floor material, like the slate tiles in this photo. Stone is hard wearing and durable, which is great for all of the filthy feet that is going to be crossing through this field.

Casa Greer

19. Painting vibrant stripes on your laundry area is a fast and affordable way to earn a dull space feel a great deal less drab. ers also enjoyed the way the storage bins fit exactly the ironing board, and the way the designer set up a dangling bar underneath the wall shelving.

Smith & Vansant Architects PC

20. This laundry includes a smart add-on that users could not get enough . The little tub next to the washer and drier is a superb dog wash, and a drying rack was put above it that dripping water could drain.

Which of these rooms would you want to do your laundry in? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.

Check out photographs of this all-time hottest laundry rooms here

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Guest Picks: Pretty Cake Stands

What is it about cake stands that I find so irresistible? Innately fairly, filled with whimsy, they’re perhaps not the most practical item in your own kitchen, but you do not buy a cake stand for practicality. Cake stands are intended to be frivolous and enjoyable, and they certainly know how to gussy up a sandwich.
— Stephanie from Lick My Spoon


Rustic Wood Cake Stand by Roxy Heart Vintage – $45

Time to go back to nature. I am in love with this rustic”tree slit” cake stand. The manufacturer will also hand-carve and burn off any personal message, initials or dates on the stand.

West Elm

Beehive Cake Stand – $39

I love this beehive lid. It looks like something straight out of Winnie the Pooh.


Woodland Keepers Cake Stand by Patina Vie – $58

What a shabby chic find. It’s a vintage, distressed wood appearance with a touch of gold, which soda of robin’s egg whites is simply lovely.

Modern Serveware – $70

Tea party, anyone? Using upside-down tea cups as the pedestals is an example of great detailing.


5-Tiered Cake Stand in Pink Flowers by Elves n Elements – GBP 150.88

Pretty in pink, this petal-colored, five-tiered, flower-inspired stand could be just the thing to flaunt several cupcakes or sugar cookies.


Eyelet Cake Plates with Ribbons by Jeanette Zeis Ceramics – $330

This tiered stand reminds me of ribbon and lace. Pretty and sweet, it’s the typical prerequisites for a good cake stand.


Janice Minor Cake Stand – $480

This cake stand belongs in a fairy story. I really like the way the twig stand is natural and delicate looking, drawing the eye directly to the yummy cake prize below the glass dome.

Farmhouse Wares

Enamel Cake Stands – $24.95

Vintage white scalloped edges make this miniature cake stand one of my favorites.

Cordelia Dumpling

Small Beaded Edge Cake Stand With Domed Lid – GBP 27

This is a little miniature man. It is just the thing to dress up some mignardises or snacks. The beaded edge is simply adorable.


Petite Treat Mini Pedestal – $14

These pastel, ceramic miniature pedestals make a darling demonstration for cupcakes or alternative doll-size treats.


Milk Glass Cake Stand by The Roche Studio – $110

With its romantic, classic milk glass with hobnail detail and ruffle edging, this is like everything I really like all in one!


Julia Knight Peony Cake Stand – $99

These cake stands have beautifully scalloped edging and are hand-painted using a mix of enamel infused with crushed mother of pearl. I really like the combination of colors too; they’re fresh, modern and feminine, but not overly frilly.


Noir Pedestal Stand – $59

Noir. Sleek. Chic.


Shannon Cake Plate by Delightfully Lovely – $34

These yellow baubles are overly enjoyable.


Kristin Cupcake Tree by Delightfully Lovely – $50

I’ve been on a huge lime green kick lately. This vibrant color would look great against some vanilla buttercream–frosted goodies. I also dig out the playful garland design on this.

Farmhouse Wares

Galvanized Tin Pedestal – $32.99

This galvanized tin base brings a kind of rustic, farmhouse texture to the table. I know this ideabook is all about cake stands, but I’d just as easily slap a cherry pie with this baby.

Fancy Flours

Iron Tree Stand for Cupcakes, 2-Tier – $160

A whimsical tree dessert stand is just what I want. Obviously.

Fancy Flours

Jeweled Vintage French White Cake Stands – $150

Um yes, I’d enjoy my fancy cake stands dripping with stones, please. Merci beaucoup.


Etagere 3 Tiers of Chintz Cake Stand by Sip & Savor – $125

If you were trying to find a reason to throw a backyard party or host large tea with the ladies, this is it. When not in use for delicate yummy bites, I’d use this to hold my jewelry.


Cable Cupcake Stand – $34.95

This is a versatile serving piece for sweets, hors d’oeuvres or even fruit. The elegant wirework reminds me of doilies. I enjoy this.

Next: You are Invited to High Tea

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Geometry Roots Great Garden Design

Geometry might have been a dull subject at college for some people, but it’s had a significant influence on the design of our houses throughout the ages. The use of geometry for a design tool has taken us on an intriguing journey from the ancient gardens of Persia into the parterres of Renaissance Europe and even to our modern gardens.

The contours in our garden greatly influence the way we view and experience it. We use circles, squares, rectangles and triangles, divided and joined to one another, to mesh to formal design. Geometric shapes delineate boundaries, create spaces and channel views.

Here is a choice of gardens which show clear utilization of geometrics in their design, from simple aerodynamic gardens to knot gardens, two-dimensional gardens and modern three-dimensional landscapes.

As rooms require a focus, such as a fireplace or a window, gardens with simple geometric designs also require a point on which the eye may rest. This traditional design comprising a central axis which divides the region has an archway into another garden as its principal focus.

Using a central path with a distant viewpoint is a great way to earn a brief garden look more.

Harold Leidner Landscape Architects

The perfect symmetry of these simple geometric designs allows for the chance to decorate the flat planes created. Renaissance Europe saw the use of parterres and knot gardens where simple — and later more complex — contours were delineated with low-growing citrus plants. Initially, as in this contemporary version of a knot garden, coloured sand was laid between the evergreen “lines”

Watch more about parterre gardens

Deborah Cerbone Associates, Inc..

Later these essentially two-dimensional layouts were “embroidered” with plants, making a richly coloured pattern. This modern take on a knot garden uses a simple mixture of whites and grays to recreate this ordered fashion round the most fundamental of geometric shapes: squares and triangles.

Small knot gardens can be a decorative and practical way to grow culinary customs.

Isler Homes

Perhaps the easiest use of geometry and basic contours in the garden is this very modern take on a French parterre. The general square boundary is bordered with a lineup of trimmed conifers echoing the central squares of evergreen “box” plants. We even have a “viewpoint” in the positioning of the simple, classically designed bench.

Randy Thueme Design Inc. – Landscape Architecture

This very contemporary courtyard garden has its own origins in the past with its officially planted low beds — now using grasses — in a symmetrical design.

Ron Herman Landscape Architect

The easiest two-dimensional design may be the most satisfying. In the 1930s, Dutch designer Mein Ruys was utilizing intriguing new ideas to provide her gardens a framework. She also laid a Mondrian-style grid around the floor to split up the space. She implanted some regions while others bare.

Here we see a contemporary version of this utilizing equal squares of grass, paving and pebbles — an almost maintenance-free design that would be ideal for front garden.

Blakely and Associates Landscape Architects, Inc..

Two-dimensional design is still very important now. The use of form and line here with no plants, generates both curiosity and movement in a satisfying design based on the classical principles of scale and proportion.

Adriana Aristizabal

The evolution of the contemporary three-dimensional design started in the middle of the 20th century when evolution in visual arts propagate throughout architecture and eventually influenced garden design. The use of elevated planted beds and even the positioning and elevation of this chaises seen here show how we have moved on from simple pattern making to making a usable space.

SHKS Architects

The three-dimensional design of this front garden nearly has its own origins in the paintings of this 20th-century artist Mondrian. Its powerful geometric-shape raised beds of varied heights are reinforced by the width of the walls. All is softened, though, by the superbly implemented and understated plantings.

Outer space Landscape Architecture

Modern formal gardens use geometry to define private outdoor spaces, and smaller gardens require clean lines and minimal characteristics to allow for multifunctional uses. Geometrics aid this design. The powerful rectangular shape of this table and seat, for example, reinforce the clean lines.

Blasen Landscape Architecture

Geometry can transform space into a cutting-edge landscape. Here we view the epitome of garden design that is geometric. The combination of lines, right angles and simple shapes functions well, developing a clean, serene and uncluttered appearance.

Ron Herman Landscape Architect

The ultimate display of geometrics is observed here in this checkerboard design by the architect Ron Herman. The inspiration came from moss and rock Zen temple gardens in Kyoto, Japan. The grid design of cubes is surfaced with smooth river pebbles and Helxine (Soleirolia soleirolii), while a vertical accent is offered by slim bamboo.

Keep Your Gardens in Lines

Give Your Small Garden A Few Space

More Ideas for Stylish Outdoor Living

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Crazy for Crimson: 10 Ways to Fall for This Rich Red

Lately, I’ve had crimson on the brain. Perhaps it’s because I reside in Alabama, home of the newly crowned Crimson Tide soccer champs (I can barely step out my front door without being confronted by a crimson flag, hat or T-shirt). But I’ve always loved this saturated hue, which can be one of the prettiest and most versatile reds at the spectrum. Its subtle blue undertones calm it down and give it a hint of gravitas, and it is rather easy to work to a palette. Check out the ways that crimson operates in these 10 great spaces.

I can’t think of a warmer welcome than this crimson front door. The cheerful color complements the front porch’s conservative cottage style perfectly and sets the tone for what’s inside.

Tobi Fairley Interior Design

This space is an inspiring study in detail. The powerful red of this lantern-style pendant and sconces repeats at the ottoman print and pedestal dining table trim.

Vanessa De Vargas

With its vibrant color, sculptural lines and note of whimsy, this birdcage light fixture absolutely leaves the space.

Chris Jovanelly Interior Design

A group of crimson tiles weaves its way around this bathroom such as a ribbon.


Aquamar White Serie

Accent walls are catchy. Red accent partitions are trickier. Here’s one done : This makes a statement without dominating the space. The white tub looks all the more luminous against the wealthy swath of crimson.

Snaidero USA

Lacquered crimson cabinets make a hot, glamorous background for this slick kitchen.

Madson Design

Crimson and earthy greens work beautifully together. If you maintain the tones somewhat dirty, the look will not shout”Christmas”.

Glenvale Kitchens

The Aga cooker is the focus of this kitchen — it attracts the eye like a magnet.

Crimson Design Group

Big color works well in tiny packages. These crimson roses bring a palette of deep browns to life — amazing as a cherry blossom.

Dear Daisy Cottage

Crimson paint unifies this selection of sculptures that are sculptural.

Next: Splashes of Red
Will a Red Bathroom Make You Blush?
Main Colors Bring a Room to Life
Red: Not Only for Fire Engines

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Vegetable Plants You can begin in a Greenhouse

Any number of vegetables, from tomatoes to Swiss chard can be started in a greenhouse from seeds or young plants. For gardeners who are perennially impatient to start spring planting, this really is a fantastic way to occupy itchy fingers ready to work the soil. The most important components to consider include using a sterile soil medium and establishing a starting program, beginning with frost-tolerant vegetables then moving on to cool weather and warm weather plants in succession.

Growing Media

It is universally suggested that greenhouse plants be cultivated in sterile soil or growing media to avoid an assortment of potential diseases. There are lots of commercial soil options available to the hobby greenhouse gardener. If you choose to start plants in native soil, New Mexico State University recommends sterilizing it before planting by fumigation or steam. Native soil culture also needs to be amended with materials such as vegetable compost, treated manure and perlite to promote optimal drainage.

Frost-Tolerant Crops

Start frost-tolerant crops initially, in accordance with the neighborhood climate. In most areas of the country these can be started in January then hardened off and moved into the backyard in February or early March. Commonly recommended frost-tolerant vegetables comprise beets, Brussels sprouts, spinach, parsley, kale, carrots and collard greens. Keep in mindthat these vegetables are frost-tolerant but aren’t tolerant of deep, extended freezes in many cases.

Cool Weather Crops

Cool weather vegetables are available in the greenhouse in February in most areas of the nation. These favor average ambient growing temperatures of 55 to 65 degrees Fahrenheit. Harden then set these plants in the backyard beginning in late February or March. Favorite cool weather plants include broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, lettuce, turnips, radish and mustard greens. These vegetables may endure short periods of temperatures between 28 and 32 degrees once planted, just experiencing spotty leaf harm.

Warm Weather Crops

Warm weather plants can be started in the greenhouse beginning in March in most areas of the nation. Those residing in the coldest regions might prefer to wait until early April. These vegetables aren’t tolerant of frost or freezing temperatures and should just be put out after the danger of these has passed. They prefer average ambient growing temperatures between 70 and 85 levels. These include favorites such as tomatoes, vining beans, cucumbers, legumes, squash, peppers, eggplant, potatoes, peas, corn and melons.

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Watering Systems for Rose Beds

Essential to great growth and plentiful flowers, a rose garden requires careful watering. During active growth, garden roses (Rosa x hybrida) typically require a deep watering once a week to a depth of 5 to 6 inches. One of the most effective strategies to water roses is by hand using a garden hose and a water wand attachment, but this is time-consuming. Rose watering methods can save water and time without affecting rose health. All watering systems require time to set up and maintain.

Soaker Hoses

Efficient, low-cost, low-maintenance and easy to install — soaker hoses have a lot going for them. Water seeps out straight onto the soil through micropores from the hose wall, allowing water to penetrate deeply without flood. Take the soaker hose during the established rose bed at light curves to soak all of root canals or make a loop around the root zone of each rose bush. Hold the hose in place with wire pins meant for landscaping fabric. Do not run more than 100 feet of soaker hose connected together to keep water pressure during the length of the hose. Cover the hoses with mulch to hide them and to help retain soil moisture. You will want to experiment with just how long to let the water rush for water to reach 6 inches into the soil.

Drip Irrigation

Drip irrigation takes the most planning and maintenance, but it might conserve water. These systems utilize 1/2- to 1/4-inch-diameter plastic tubing and emitters for water delivery to each plant. Create a system plan so that you understand exactly what parts to buy. Manufacturers offer different kinds of emitters. Standard emitters discharge 1 to 2 liters of water per hour and require a longer run time. Assess for watering depth with a moisture meter by digging into the soil. For faster watering, utilize microsprayers, which set out 8 to 20 gallons of water per hour. Use several emitters for each rose bush, adding more as the rose rises. Examine the tubing and emitters each week to be sure everything is functioning as it should. In winter, you could have the ability to turn the system off. Most roses grow in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 5 through 10, though this varies depending on cultivar. Install drip systems before or after putting the bed.

Sprinkler Systems

Because roses are often vulnerable to fungal diseases, such as powdery mildew, if their foliage gets wet and stays wet, overhead sprinkler systems are not a great selection for increased beds. Rather, look at flat-head sprinklers which you install at ground level, since they deliver their water straight out above the soil instead of up into the foliage. Water early in the afternoon so any moisture on leaves dries before day. Sprinkler systems are best installed in rose beds before the bushes move in.

Semiautomatic and Automatic Systems

Once you understand how long you have to run your system to acquire the dirt moist to 6 inches down, you may use a controller to automate watering. Programmable timers may turn the water off and on for you. They vary in price and elegance. Reprogram your controller if the weather changes and watering needs are different. Wise controllers automate more fully since they feel conditions from the garden and determine when watering is necessary and for a long time, and shut on and off automatically.

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Privacy Screen Perennials

Good fences may make good neighbors, but living privacy displays take it to a different level. Plants soften the utilitarian appearance of wooden or chain-link fencing, and they offer habitats and food to birds while blocking undesirable views. You can custom-design a perennial privacy screen by choosing a single plant type or a mix of plants.

Add Some Color

A plant privacy screen does not have to be solid green. It is possible to plant flowering perennials which also add color and scent to your backyard. Silverberry (Elaeagnus pungens) contains many benefits in its perennial selection of U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 7 through 9. Fragrant white flowers bloom in fall against a backdrop of grayish-green foliage, and spiny branches discourage interlopers. Silverberry rises rapidly to form a sync display — 36 inches per year — and may reach a height of 20 feet. In USDA zones 5 through 8, Cornelian dogwood (Cornus mas) is awash with fragrant yellow flowers in late winter or early spring. Like silverberry, Cornelian dogwood reaches a height of 20 feet and can form a privacy screen. Although it’s a deciduous plant, it is possible to plant it in front of evergreens to delight in its reddish-brown exfoliating bark in winter.

Feed the Birds

Pacific wax myrtle (Myrica californica), also known as California bayberry, is an evergreen, multitrunked tree in USDA zones 7 through 10. Reaching a height of 25 feet, wax myrtle produces purple berries, which have a white, waxy layer that feed birds, such as robins, finches and flickers, in late fall and early winter. Also reaching a height of 25 feet, toyon (Heteromeles arbutifolia) is widely known as California holly or Christmas berry because of its striking display of crimson berries in winter in USDA zones 9 through 11.

Enjoy the Fragrance

Fragrant foliage enhances the attractiveness of a privacy screen. Bay laurel (Laurus nobilis) has fragrant evergreen leaves at its perennial selection of USDA zones 8 through 10. This Mediterranean native can reach 60 feet tall, however, typically remains under 30 feet. In USDA zones 6 through 9, lavender cotton (Santolina chamaecyparissus) is a shorter tree with fragrant, silvery leaf which reaches only two feet tall and 3 feet wide. If you would like a solid privacy screen, lavender cotton helps fill at the decreased gaps that larger plants may create.

Mix It Up

Rather than planting a soldierlike row of one plant type to produce a privacy screen, design cluster plantings or staggered plantings to make a multidimensional effect. If you would like a privacy screen in just 1 section of the yard to hide a specific eyesore, cluster plants in groups of three, five or another odd number in front of the undesirable view. Multiple cluster plantings can create groves and walkways through the garden when hiding unattractive scenery outside your yard. Staggered plantings feature plants of different heights, textures and colors to make a tiered appearance that accentuates your backyard by breaking up a monochrome design.

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Terra Cotta Pots With Salt Damage

A white crust marring the earthy finish of your terra cotta pots is a indication of deeper problems than a unsightly blemish. Fertilizers include soluble salts that could build up in the soil of potted plants. Over time these incisions leach through the permeable surface of terra cotta pottery, leaving a white crust around the rim, drainage holes or side walls of the grass.

Salt Sources

Fast-acting chemical fertilizers provide nutrients to plants but leave behind water-soluble salts in the soil. Using a slow-release fluid limits the amount of salt in the grass by decreasing the frequency of fluid applications. Tap water in areas with soft water is another common source of salt in terra cotta pots, but typically it only adds modest amounts of salt unless implemented frequently in huge volumes. Using bottled or filtered water eliminates this source of salt.

Salty Sand

Terra cotta pots cradling plants at a sandy, fast-draining dirt are more prone to salt damage. Sandy soils make it possible for the nutrients that they contain to leach from the dirt and in the walls of terra cotta pots more readily. Potting mixtures having a reduced of concentration of sand can hold more nutrients and are less likely to leach salt to the walls of a terra cotta pot. Frequently applying light doses of fluid over a span of weeks adds salt to the soil more quickly than it drains out.

Problems With Salt

Excess levels of salt may harm plants if left unchecked; typical signals of plants suffering from excessive salt include wilting and yellowish or brown discolored leaf that does not perk up following the plant is watered. The first signs of a plant suffering from salt damage are wilting and discoloration during its leaf tips. The damage also goes to the roots; salt-damaged roots often appear dried and shriveled.

Washing Pots

Flushing the dirt with water every four to six months is the simplest way to remove salts and stop them from accumulating in the soil and washing to the walls of a terra cotta pot. The best method to flush the dirt with water would be to take the plant out and remove any catch tray so that water can drain freely. Water the soil steadily until the soil is saturated. Wait 15 minutes for the excess water to drain from the soil and then water it. Water the grass slowly to avoid developing a pool of water on the surface. Soaking terra cotta pots in a solution of 1 part vinegar and 3 parts water helps remove salty buildup.

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Roots of Style: Spanish Eclectic Homes Locate a Place in Sunlight

When you see a clay tile roof in the U.S., you will likely find a palm tree nearby, for Spanish eclectic architecture overlooks large areas of California, Arizona and Florida. The orange and crimson terra-cotta roofing defines the neighborhood architecture, comfortably reflecting the abundant sunshine in these areas.

Stucco is your next most crucial element in this style. Historically it covered adobe brick walls, but it had been adapted to wood-frame construction and has been demonstrated to be remarkably flexible and pliable. Its vinyl quality means that it moves across buildings, as a painter’s canvas does a frame, allowing perceptible and complex details to stand out, complementing the visual texture of the roofing tiles.

Dennis Mayer – Photographer

Spanish eclectic design developed in the early 20th century and falls under the umbrella of Victorian architecture. Spanish, African, Latin American and Native American influences combined to supply a varied and rich palette where the design is built. The previous Spanish colonial and mission styles confirm the eclectic’s base individuality, which can also be referred to as Spanish colonial revival. Spanish colonial architecture is more straightforward, without detail, and assignment style reflects the characteristics of California’s Spanish missions established in the 18th century.

The 1915 San Diego Panama–California Exposition prompted enormous interest in the wealth of Spanish architecture. The fast growing population in California readily adopted the architecture and incorporated the aesthetics to several different construction types. It is popular; the majority of California dwellings are in the design, whether they’re loyal translations or loose interpretations. A lot of Florida still assembles in the tradition, also, and examples can be found around the nation, although most are located in Southern areas. Texan examples often prefer brick veneer over stucco as the primary siding.

Defining Characteristics of Spanish Eclectic Style

Mission-style tiles cover this Los Angeles–region home. Originally there were two roof tile types: Spanish, which comes with an “S” shape, and assignment, which will be a half barrel laid down or up in an alternating sequence. Current roof tiles come in infinite colours and contours, and artificial clay tile is available also.

Shallow gable and hip roofs cover many examples. Towered elements such as this entrance porch contribute to special variations in massing. Note the picture window into the right; this feature is often arched or parabolic in other examples.

Steven Corley Randel, Architect

Envision this California home with no elaborate cast rock relief door surround and spiraled columns put involving the windows. Without these elements it would be an easy side-gabled rectangle. These elements define the design and include enormous attention and charm.

RCDF Studio

This newly remodeled two-story Los Angeles home has excellent curb appeal. The chimney on the left helps balance the two-level elevation on the right side. Deeply inset, little stained glass windows flank the chimney, demonstrating solidity and strength.

Colorful and elaborate tiles announce a certain rectangular entrance, though a cast stone detail draws attention to the focal point window to the right. Wrought iron light fixtures and a balcony rail above the window are other traits of Spanish eclectic design.

Ken Gutmaker Architectural Photography

San Francisco could be renowned for Victorians, but it’s also home to several Spanish eclectic dwellings. Arched windows and spiral columns with just enough tile roofing provide lots of character here.

Note using wrought iron for the plant balcony and using leaded stained glass in the flanking arched windows.

For those not knowledgeable about the city’s architecture, two apartments, because they’re known, comprise the arrangement. A garage space runs the thickness of the home; it might hold three or four automobiles. A slightly smaller flat makes up the middle level, and a bigger flat makes up the top level.

HartmanBaldwin Design/Build

In a different Los Angeles home, an inset scalloped entrance folds to the facade, demonstrating the flexibility of this stucco finish. Other identifying particulars include colorful tiles set to the risers of the steps, clay tile roof vents piercing the stucco just below the gable peaks, and tall casement windows in a dark contrasting shade.


Note the intimate scale achieved with this San Francisco–region home. Small-scale windows, a plant balcony plus a second bigger cantilevered balcony split down the bulk into approachable elements.

An arched inset entrance door is tucked in at the corner of both major elevation masses and is flanked by little windows. Note the spiraled columns between every pair of arched windows.

This stately Pasadena, California, dwelling slightly departs in character from the preceding examples. It lacks arches and intricately detailed bigger elements. It more closely resembles Spanish colonial architecture by its easier articulation. But, Spanish eclectic expresses itself in the Renaissance-inspired entrance surround and asymmetrical front watch. Note the roof vents near the gable peaks, which pierce the solid walls.

EASA Architecture

This Hillsborough, California, home rambles across the landscape similar to the sprawling missions that bear its ancestry. Found here are many elements seen in smaller examples, such as clay tile roof vents at the gable peaks. A roofed chimney leading peeks through at centre, and exposed timber rafter tails underline the tile roof.

Jorge Ulibarri Custom Homes

Recent interpretations of this design, such as this Florida home, additionally sprawl across the landscape with ease. Note using this tower element for its entrance. Garages are tucked into flanking wings. A complex mixture of window shapes, types and sizes contributes to the design as well.

James Glover Interior & Residential Design

In another newer case, a large and comfortable California home, a towered entrance element dominates. Garages placed perpendicular to the front elevation help emphasize the entrance and other defining elements. Deep inset and tall windows include permanence.

Friehauf Architects Inc..

Notice the chimney leading in this San Diego–region home. This detail can be found in many original examples. A towered entrance, wrought iron railings and light fixtures, and also a rambling layout supply the Spanish eclectic character of this house and the entire neighborhood. California still retains this style in high esteem, according to all types of development that continue the aesthetic.

Maybe the adaptability of these materials and also the flexibility of layout elements have contributed to the longevity of this architecture. With infinite variations possible, it’s likely that Spanish eclectic will maintain its existence for several years in the sunny areas of the U.S.

Can you live in a Spanish eclectic house? Please show us a photograph in the Remarks section!

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