Pros and Cons of Backyard Beekeeping

Backyard beekeeping

Do you dream of planting a field of wildflowers in your yard, dotted with several types of fruit trees? Do you have plans to make a strawberry patch, an herb garden, or have lots of flowers in your landscaping?

If you know anything about how plants work, you might also be thinking about bees. For example, how to attract bees to your yard, how to make them stay, or even how to keep them to harvest their honey and wax.

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Locally sourced food

The Important Role Food Safety Plays in Locally Sourced Food

Organic vegetables depicting locally sourced food

Remember when Chipotle had that rash of food-borne-illness outbreaks a few years ago? A few hundred people were exposed to E. coli, salmonella, and norovirus that were traced to Chipotle restaurants in several stores all over the United States.

Since then, the brand that was known for its dedication to sourcing its food locally. It also is using the most natural products available has become more well-known for losing the trust of its clientele.

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Fresh eggs depicting backyard chicken keeping

The Pros and Cons of Backyard Chicken Keeping

Fresh eggs in nest depicting backyard chicken keeping

How does backyard chicken benefit gardening? Stay with me and I’ll explain.

There’s an urban farming movement sweeping the world. For some countries, urban farming has been around and will continue to be around as long as there is a city.

However, in the United States, the rise of factory farming made part-time backyard animal husbandry a thing of the past for a good, long time. Say that five times fast. Part-time backyard animal husbandry!

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Low maintenance garden

How to Create a Low Maintenance Garden

Hostas and mulch depicting How to Create a Low Maintenance Garden

Are you looking for a way to have a low maintenance garden?

Everyone wants beautiful, lush plants to frame their homes. We all love color and texture and variety to see from the windows and when we pull into our driveways at night. And if you love to garden, every plant is enticing, no matter how needy it seems.

The trouble comes when all those plants start to thrive. It’s not only the plants we want to grow which thrive. Weeds thrive. Then you need to deadhead, divide, mulch, water, feed, and trim back your plants. In addition, you need to maintain your grass.

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Beautifully landscape house depicting how gardening adds value

How Gardening Adds Value or Subtracts it From Your Home

Landscape of house depicting how gardening adds value

If you are a gardener or a lover of plants and all things green, right now you are in your happy place. The air is warm, all danger of frost has passed, the sun shines almost every day, and your flowers are blooming.

Your vegetable garden may be coming in too. All of your ornamental pots and window boxes are looking beautiful. You might, right now, be considering what else to plant in your garden or how you can expand it and make it even more amazing.

However, will it add value to your home? Not all of us are able to stay in a forever home, well, forever. Most people will eventually need to sell, even if it is to downsize later in life.

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Plant Hardiness Zones: Top Tips for Home Gardeners

Plant Hardiness Zones: Top Tips for Home Gardeners

Flowering plants depicting plant hardiness zones

You may see references to plant hardiness zones everywhere as a gardener. Planting zones are mentioned on blogs like this one, written on seed packages and plant tags from nurseries, and even on weather stations.

We all think we know what it means. Simply find your area of the country on the key and coordinate with where the tag says to plant, right?

Well, that’s not wrong, but it’s not the full picture of what planting zones are meant to convey. It also doesn’t take into account weather patterns that can be very different within the same plant hardiness zones.

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Rainforest depicting Sustainable Wood Harvesting

Sustainable Wood Harvesting: What You Need To Know

Rainforest depicting sustainable wood harvesting

Are you thinking about building a deck this summer? How about patio furniture? Is there a teak set you’ve been eyeing for a long time? How about a pergola?

Do you know where that furniture comes from? Does all wood pretty much seem the same to you, or do you plan to use sustainable wood? What’s the difference?

There didn’t use to be a difference at all. The trees of our continents seemed like they would never run out. After all, they do grow back, don’t they? Loggers felled millions of trees every year, and it barely made an impression.

However, now it isn’t that simple. We have deforested so much of the world that conservation has become important if we want the human race to survive.

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How to Make Your Garden Deer Proof

How to Make Your Garden Deer Proof

Deer in yard depicting how to deer-proof your garden

Springtime can be the most amazing, and the most frustrating time for home gardeners. All the trees are lush, the grass is growing, the perennials are starting to bloom, and the tender shoots of all your vegetables are starting to sprout and grow.

However, then come the garden pests. Worst of all of them are deer. They can leap most fences and have ravenous after a winter of eating twigs. The males are rapidly growing antlers and the females are gestating or nursing new babies – they are ravenous. And they go for the lush, fertilized, and fast-growing plants around. They head for the plants in your garden.

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Water crisis at Lake Mead

The Water Crisis on Earth: What You Need to Know

Lake Mead depicting the world's water crisis

In the film, The Big Short, the all-star cast and quirky storytelling pulled humor and drama to the forefront. This brought clarity from an industry that is otherwise difficult to understand.

In addition, the subject is one we all want to know more about. What on earth caused the catastrophic 2008 recession? Was there anyone who saw it coming?

The film includes Dr. Michael Burry, CEO of the company he founded, Scion Asset Management. Dr. Burry is depicted in the movie as knowing the financial collapse is coming when everyone around him believes otherwise. He was one of the few men who ended up making money on the economic collapse because of this foresight.

However, the thing that stands out in the last frame of the film is, “Michael Burry is focusing all his trading on one commodity: Water.

Let’s stop for a minute.

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Boxwood evergreen shrubs

Evergreen Shrubs: Pros and Cons – Gardening Tips

Boxwood evergreen shrubs

Evergreen shrubs have traditionally been a homeowner’s staple landscape plant. If you are considering planting shrubs or removing them, there are pros and cons to having this standard outdoor decoration.

Some homeowners consider evergreen shrubs an eyesore. They become overgrown, cover the fronts of houses, block out windows, and can be very hard to shape or remove.

However, taking them out can also have the effect of making your house or property look bare, or leaving you with an ugly stump to stare at or work around.

If you are wondering whether to take out your shrubs or try to make the best of them, here are a few good things to know about evergreen shrubs.

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