Archive for January, 2007

Motion-Activated Sprinkler = Humane Pest Control for Your Garden

Monday, January 29th, 2007

motion-activated sprinkler for pest controlAre you tired of everything from raccoons to deer to dogs trampling on and chewing up your garden? Or maybe you’ve just got an alley cat that likes to “sing” on the fence every night. You can use chemical-based pest control products, but for something more humane this motion-sensing sprinkler might work.

Available for $80 from Amazon, the Contech CRO 101 Scarecrow Motion Activated Sprinkler can detects intruders as small as rabbits and squirrels. When these creatures are spotted, the system turns on, sending a 3-second blast of water from your garden hose at the target. Since it only uses 3 cups of water at a time, it’s not likely to leave your lawn water-soaked. It may just help protect your yard and garden from unwelcome guests though.

Contech Scarecrow Sprinkler

Red Roses Birdbath Adds a Bright Spot to the Yard

Sunday, January 21st, 2007

red roses birdbathIf you’re looking for a birdbath that adds some cheer to your yard as well as giving your feathered visitors a place to hang out, this red roses bath from the Gardeners’ Supply Co. might be just the thing. The colorful European styling comes on a generously sized ceramic bowl that provides room for all the birds in the neighborhood to use at once. A sturdy steel stands means the birdbath should hold up to the elements well, and the product description promises it’s easy to assemble.

The price is $69.95.

Red Roses Birdbath

Curtain-style Mosquito Netting Protects Your Porch from Insects

Sunday, January 14th, 2007

mosquito netting for porches and decksOutdoor living trends continue to grow in popularity as more and more people outfit their decks and patios with outdoor kitchens, fireplaces or fire pits, and comfortable all-weather furniture. But if you live in a climate where mosquitoes and other bugs plague guests and family, the idea of spending quality time in the backyard might not seem that appealing. You can solve this problem by getting mosquito netting to wrap around your outdoor living area.

There are systems out there that make this easy. For example, the Mosquito Curtains Co. makes nets that are easy to slide in and out of place, just like your living room curtains. They hang on a track that makes them a breeze to manipulate. Keep the deck open to the yard if there aren’t any bugs out, but in the heavy mosquito season, simply slide the curtain-netting into place. It’s a smart idea for dealing with those pesky insects.

Floating Planter Perks up Your Pond

Sunday, January 7th, 2007

floating planterWater gardens and ponds are a great way to add visual and audible interest to the yard, but a wide expanse of water can look a little flat if there’s not a fountain or anything exciting to break it up. That’s why floating plants can be a nice touch. Sure, you can do lilies, but you don’t need to be limited by water plants.

This floating planter lets you launch any plant you like adrift on your pond.

“Simply place your favorite plants in our Floating Sundial Planter and place in your pond or pool. The circular ring floats on the surface, making it look as if plants are magically moving on top of the water. You can change plants seasonally for even more variety and visual interest.”

The price is $23, and the floating planter comes with one 6″ center pot and four smaller 3″ pots.


Bamboo Pool Chairs Add Tropical Feel to the Backyard

Thursday, January 4th, 2007

bamboo pool chairA backyard swimming pool is a nice way to relax, but it’s probably not reminiscent of the tropics (unless you actually live in Hawaii or some tropical climate!), not on its own anyway. However, there’s no reason you can’t add a theme that makes you feel like you’re on the islands. Maybe start with a tiki bar and add a few bamboo lounge chairs around the pool.

This bamboo chair is one of several pieces available (other chairs also in bamboo) over at the Asian Ego, a store with lots of eastern-influenced outdoor living accessories and pieces of furniture. If lounging on wood or bamboo doesn’t sound that appealing, you can grab some cushions to make things a little softer. The chairs start at $125.