<![CDATA[blogmatters.net - Blog]]>Mon, 22 Mar 2021 06:08:50 -0700Weebly<![CDATA[Soil isn't just Dirt]]>Fri, 19 Mar 2021 16:22:06 GMThttp://blogmatters.net/blog/soil-isnt-just-dirt
How important is Soil?
 
If you think soil is just the dirt under your feet, we would like you to know that is not true.  Soil is the foundation that all your plant life needs to thrive and grow.  It gets hungry and it will need to be fed so that it can feed your plants, shrubs, and even your trees.  If you maintain healthy soil, it will produce healthy plants.  Plain and simple.
 
If you don’t tend to your soil, it will die.  Just like if you don’t water a plant.  The soil will become barren of nutrients.  This will render it hard and useless.  You may have lost some of the vigor you had when you started your gardening or landscaping project.  You brought in the healthy, new soil and planted items in it.  But over time, you may have lost your focus on keeping the soil optimal.  Keeping it nourished.
 
If we were to emphasize only one thing with this article, it would be the importance of healthy soil.  It is truly at the root of whether your garden will flourish.  It is going to provide much of the nutrients the plants need to survive.  So choosing the right soil is critical.  And this is based on the type of plants you are planning to use.  As well, you need to consider the environment that you live in.
 
Tending Your Soil
 
Soil needs sunlight, air, and water to thrive.  If you have a lot of sunlight, you are going to have to make sure the soil doesn’t dry out.  You may have to water it regularly to keep it moist.  Water when the heat of the day has passed.  This will allow the moisture to be absorbed before it evaporates.  If you have a lot of shade, you may not need to water as much.  You don’t want to overwater it because nutrients will get washed away.  It will really depend on where you live and your climate. 
You will also need to fertilize the soil, to replace nutrients.  Now, there are two types of fertilizer.  Synthetic and Organic.
If you have an organic bed or garden, you are going to have to maintain the organic matter within the soil.  This means that on a regular basis you will need to take the extra effort to introduce more compost to the soil, replacing the depleted organic matter.
 
What is Composting?
 
Composting is the process of mixing green matter, such as grass cuttings, fruits, vegetable peelings, with brown matter such as leaves and twigs.  This decaying matter, when mixed with soil, produces a rich nutrient-high composition. Instead of using synthetic fertilizer, compost provides a natural organic fertilizer.  Any plant or vegetable that is organic, must be fed by organic fertilizer.  If not, it cannot be claimed as organic.  There is a huge market for organic product now.  And consumers are moving towards this as a healthier alternative to non-organic product. 
If you do decide to grow organic plants and vegetables, you need to be aware of the commitment to maintain the organic fertilizer.  This is a key element of organic gardening. If you are going to grow organic produce, you can’t use synthetic fertilizers.
Beside keeping the organic fertilizer going for your organic soil, you are also going to need to mulch it.  Think of this as massaging the soil, turning it over and reshaping it.  This will help you reduce insects and pests that live in the lower parts of the soil. 
 
Whatever type of soil you do choose for your garden or landscaping, remember this is so much more than a pile of dirt.  It is an important source of food for the plants that you will grow.  Taking good care of your soil will result in your soil supporting your plant life so much more.  
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<![CDATA[Bathroom Remodel Tips]]>Thu, 25 Feb 2021 16:52:20 GMThttp://blogmatters.net/blog/bathroom-remodel-tips
Thinking about tackling your bathroom remodel?  There are a few things to ponder on how to remodel.  What kind of material and how to use the space most efficiently.  Often this space is not very large.  If you are remaking a master on suite, then you may have more space to work with.  But if this is more of a utility bathroom (for instance, a basin and toilet) then you will be working on a more confined space.  Either way, many people find that the key is to make it bright and light. 

If you already have windows, providing light to the space, that is great.  Often there are no windows in the bathroom and lighting will need to be installed to brighten the space.  It is a good idea to have ample lighting around the vanity area.  Vanity lighting is available in so many different options.  You can choose ceiling mounted or wall mounted systems.  Track lighting can also be a choice, where you can direct different bulb sockets to different areas in the room. 

For the vanity itself, you can choose from a wide variety of cabinets and sinks.  There are some very contemporary options and still more traditional options.  What you choose depends on your taste and the type of cabinet or vanity should match the functionality you are looking for.  A more upscale vanity might be your choice for the on suite, while traditional might be what you want for the general utility washroom.  Ensure that you are choosing one that will offer necessary storage space.  You don’t want to have to leave out all of your personal items on the cabinet.  Some vanity sets come with the sink and with some the sink is an add-on.  Overall, if you do choose to go with a darker vanity, you should be trying to offset that with light. 

There are many different faucet choices as well.  Depending on the space, you can find more expensive sets or economically priced ones.  And don’t forget a mirror.  There are many framed mirror options that can really add to the overall appearance. 

For the walls, you should remember that the bathroom tends to have moisture.  Keep that in mind when you are selecting what wall covering treatments to use.  Choose paint that is best suited to bathrooms.  Or even wallpaper.  You do not want to have to repaint or repaper the walls due to selecting the wrong material.  Tiling works great in bathrooms and is often a choice homeowner’s go for.  With the wide range of different tiles and patterns, it isn’t hard to find the right one for your project.  While there is more involved when laying tile than simply painting, the end product will usually surpass that of simple wallpaper or paint.  You can use all materials in the space, simply by balancing them off.  Paint can be used for trim and walls.  Wallpaper can be used as an accent feature.  And tile can be used as both accent and functionality.  Match the patterns and colors together to get the full effect.

If you are planning on replacing or creating a shower space, tiling is still your best option.  This is due to the moisture found in that area.  Preparation needs to be done to the walls of the space and then the tiling and grout applied correctly, to keep moisture from sneaking behind the shower enclosure.  Don’t neglect how important that is.  Some will hand this part of their project off to a tile installer.  But you can tackle it yourself.  Just make sure you understand what to do, so that you don’t have moisture or mold issues in the future.

Once you have the foundation of the bathroom all worked out, you can then plan to add accents to the room.  A nice accent piece for the door might be an option.  Nice vanity sets to hold toothbrushes or soap dishes is good to add.  Maybe a floral vase or even colorful pictures on the wall can really give a warm feeling to the space.  Color coordinating hand towels, bath towels, and floor mats can really take your bathroom to the next level.  Follow these simple tips and you can have a bathroom you are proud of.
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<![CDATA[Epoxy Flooring for Seniors Residences]]>Sat, 20 Feb 2021 17:27:42 GMThttp://blogmatters.net/blog/epoxy-flooring-for-seniors-residences
There is an increasing number of senior residences popping up across Canada.  This is due to many of our aging population choosing these community residences to move to during their later years.  To meet the demand, we are seeing many newly constructed residences in many of the larger cities in Canada.
These senior living properties provide a great social environment for our elderly to connect and remain social, without having to travel anywhere.  The management of these locations has kept that in mind and they have planned many different activities based on a wide variety of tastes.  There are gardening groups, book clubs, travel clubs, and even billiards tournaments for any enthusiasts. 
While keeping seniors engaged and active, the management also is aware that their resident’s safety is a priority.  With all the correct safety measures in place for monitoring entrances and ensuring the individual units are secure, there is another area that has not been overlooked.  The flooring. 
You may not think that is a real safety concern.  It is.  Slippery flooring surfaces are definitely a concern for seniors.  A fall can have many complicating issues associated with it.  The construction of these residences have taken that into consideration.  And many are using epoxy flooring whenever possible.  Let’s examine why.

Hygiene
Epoxy flooring is very durable and non-porous.  Mold, mildew, bacteria, and other harmful pathogens do not thrive on this surface.  It simply does not provide an environment for them to grow or spread.  And it is so very easy to maintain and clean. 
Environmentally Friendly
Because of the durability of this kind of flooring, it is environmentally friendly. It takes a great deal to damage these floors.  And the finished product can last for decades.  Yes, decades.  This will not end up in a landfill very often.

Visually Appealing
There are many different colors that epoxy flooring can come in.  And when you add in color flakes, you can get a really stunning finished product.  This can be a great added feature to any area of the residence.  The finish or sparkle of the flooring does not get dull over time.  Simple maintenance of cleaning the flooring will bring back the shine like it was installed yesterday.
 
Safety
The biggest benefit of epoxy flooring for seniors is that it is slip resistant.  During the final stages of curing the floor, a non-slip compound can be applied to the top of the floor.  This will reduce the number of falls or near falls that the residents may have.  Considering the fragility of these residents, this is a huge factor.  It is also temperature resistant, ideal for whatever climate you are in.  It doesn’t overheat in the summer or ice up in the winter.  And there are no toxic fumes produced from epoxy.  Once it is cured, it is one of the safest flooring options out there.

Durability
We mentioned earlier that epoxy flooring is very durable.  There are many different commercial structures that have installed epoxy because of that factor.  You can drop very heavy pieces of equipment on the floor and it will not damage it.  In a senior’s residence, while you may not have heavy equipment concerns, you will have a hard time even scuffing up the surface from moving furniture around.  It is that durable.
 
Maintenance
Maintenance and cleaning of epoxy is so easy.  Simply sweep with a good floor broom and wash with a mop and bucket.  Chemical cleaners do not have any effect on the finish.  Dust and grime don’t collect anywhere because of the non-porous surface.  Routine cleaning will be very easy for the staff and the floors will look like new again.
 
The residents and their visitors will be impressed by how clean the flooring looks.  This will further convince them that the residence is keeping a healthy, safe place for their family members and loved ones.
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