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We are a collection of Blog Writers, providing interesting articles and stories as a collaborate effort. Our topics cover a large range of interests. Please feel free to check back often to see what new articles have been published.

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Soil Isn't 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 SoilSoil 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.

Bathroom Remodeling 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.

Epoxy Flooring for Seniors Homes

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.
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.
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.
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 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.

Window Cleaning in the Sky

Look way up, way up! You will spot a brave soul on the 10th floor of that building. What makes him so brave is that he is not inside the building, he is suspended outside! Yes, Professional Window Cleaning services employ some very brave people. And we had a chat with Capt. Clean Window Cleaning & More the other day about this!The skyscraper is one of the most iconic symbols of an urban city skyline, however they are notoriously difficult to clean.

Considering the rise in urban centers, there will be many skyscrapers that need to be cleaned. However, window cleaning services in Edmonton are always ready to take the climb! Equipped with an array of tools, along with useful cleaning techniques, tips, and tricks, they are able to bring a shine back to the windows of the buildings they are working for.Now, you may be wondering about the processes of high rise window cleaning. There are many people willing to do window cleaning in Edmonton and we want to help answer those questions.EQUIPMENT.The window cleaners in Edmonton use a number of different equipment. There are the typical tools expected with a cleaning job, such as a bucket and scraper. However, due to the height of these skyscrapers, the cleaners use platforms that are able to move up the outside of the building. In doing so, it allows them to stand and clean each pane. Alternatively, there is the Bosun’s chair, which acts as a harness so the cleaner can scale the building via ropes and pulleys. The equipment and style of cleaning largely depends on the building itself.DANGER?This job is not for people who are afraid of heights. Cleaning skyscraper windows can be a terrifying job at points, but window cleaners in Edmonton are brave and confident in their work. They are also knowledgeable of the proper equipment and have the training to handle this type of job. Relying on the safety regulations surrounding window cleaning, they operate within those limits to ensure a professional clean that is done safely.HOW OFTEN?This factor can vary depending on a number of different factors. From the shape and design of the building, how much industrial work is being done nearby, adjacent buildings, to typical weather conditions. Thus, there is not a specified amount of time. However, good window cleaning services in Edmonton will be able to make a proper estimation based on these factors.HOW LONG?This factor is also variable. There are a number of reasons that can affect how long cleaners take on a building. The size of the building is the biggest factor, as skyscrapers with fifty floors take up to a month to clean. Additionally there is also the number of windows and how many cleaners a group may have on site. Smaller buildings may take up to two weeks to clean. There is no quick process, but rest assured that window cleaners in Edmonton will give you proper results for the time used.It is never ideal to leave your windows dirty and unclean, as it can reflect badly on your business. Your building is the first point of reference for your business and to have it standing tall and shining would boost the image of your company.If you are interested in having your building cleaned, trust a professional window cleaning service – like Capt. Clean!

Bed Bug Clues

Nobody really wants to discuss or read about bed bugs. Am I right? Unless you are struggling with the possibility of having them as unwanted guests in your space. Even the pictures of what they look like can give someone the itch and panic. But whether you are squeamish about bed bugs or not, you need to take heed when spring and summer arrive each year. They can invade your cozy space with very little to indicate they are there. Until they are in a big way.
But after chatting with Edmonton Bed Bug exterminators, Professional Pest Management, we were able to pick up some great bits of information that we would be happy to pass onto you, our readers. That is if you are comfortable reading on. We hope you are. So let’s get down to it and show you what we learned!

When you are concerned about possible bed bugs, trying to actually spot them can be a challenge. They are very small and can hide themselves well from the human eye. If you actually know what you are looking for, in terms of a description, you might be better prepared to avoid confusing them with other types of bugs. They are ovular in shape, with visible legs. And they are reddish in colour after they have fed on blood. After they have fed, they tend to be engorged and will be easier to spot at that time. But they will still be very elusive.Professional Bed Bug Exterminators will tell you Bed bugs will leave a few clues behind them that are much more easier to notice. Which is a good thing!The first clue that is usually the sign to start looking for bed bugs is bites. If you or others in your home are discovering new itchy bites, you may have discovered some bed bugs. You might notice the bites in a straight line or zig zag patter on uncovered skin. And they are small, red and itchy. But don’t use these bites as a positive confirmation that they are from bed bugs. They may be but they may also be from other kinds of insects or even certain skin conditions. Take this as a sign that you might have to look for other possible clues.The second clue could very well be small traces of blood left on your bed sheets or pillow cases. Not bright red but more of a rust color, and they will be small in size. You may spot these little droplets anywhere on your bedding and wonder what could cause them. Well, this could be a clue of the existence of bed bugs, unfortunately.Thirdly, you might be able to identify an issue if you are noticing an odor. Yes, bed bugs do give off an odor! It has been described as a kind of musky odor, similar to maybe a damp towel. When you combine the existence of this type of odor with other related signs, that’s a pretty strong indication for bed bugs.And, lastly, the eggs left by bed bugs are visible to the human eye. Small, but visible. They are an off-white color and are usually spotted in crevasses, seams, or cracks. Check around buttons, mattress edging, bedframe and even the box spring.If you have investigated some of these clues mentioned above and have checked off a couple of them, what is your next step? You will need to get a professional to take a look as well.Professional Pest Management specialists are trained in assessing any infestations correctly. And that is your next step.Trying to treat any bed bug situation on your own is probably not your best option. Let the expert exterminators bring in the correct treatment solutions for long lasting results. Ask them about any of your environmental concerns, as they will provide you information about any chemicals or solutions planned so as to put your mind to rest. There are many eco-friendly solutions available, which are just as effective!
Professional Pest Managementcan provide those for you.
And just remember, that you are never alone, when it comes to dealing with this kind of situation. Courteous, confidential, and caring support is just a phone call away!Interested in learning more? Check out these other informative articles about bed bugs.

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Paint That House

Painting the exterior of your house is part of the maintenance required to protect your investment. Not only does it give you excellent curb appeal, being all fresh and looking great, it indicates a high level of ownership pride. Making it stand out in your neighborhood! It also helps to maintain your property value from a real estate point of view. It also adds a level of protection from environmental elements, which we are all aware of.We have reached out to Edmonton’s best painters for some insight on how to get the paint job done correctly. Here is what they would like to share with our readers.

Start with the right toolsExterior painters will use tools that make the job easier and, well, they are just required at times. Safety is really important and we want to stress that. Make sure you have sturdy ladders and scaffolding as needed. Do not take any risks with painting the upper levels of your house without the correct tools. A fall can be extremely dangerous and harmful to you and even others who might be beneath you. You will also need to have the necessary brushes, rollers, and paint on hand.When it comes to choosing the color you want to use, you should take into consideration a couple of factors as well. Are there any restrictions in place for your color choices? And what colors are commonly used by your neighbours? Ideally, you want to blend into the surroundings but still stand out to some extent. If you are in doubt, you can contact a professional painter near you to have them provide a consult and some input into your painting plans.Windows and DoorsTo look professional, you will need to paint the exterior without leaving gaps along the window frames and door jams. Use masking tape to protect those surfaces from getting traces of paint on them. This will keep you from having to do cleanup on those surfaces after the job is done. It may take time to cover these surfaces up at first, but you will save time in the long run. Cleaning paint off of windows afterwards can be more time consuming!Inspect Exterior for RepairsDon’t jump right in with paint and brushes until you have effectively taken a good look at the exterior condition. Are there any areas needing repair or replacement? Get that taken care of first. There is no point in painting a section of the exterior and then having to replace another. You may have difficulty smoothing out the paint between the two sections if you do.Type of PaintNot all paint is created equal. Depending on the intended use, there are quite a few different types of paint available. Obviously, with the exterior of your home, you need to use exterior paint. Interior paint will not stand up to the exposure. You will want to choose a paint type that will last for years and stand up to all of the extreme weather that can come our way. Talking to a painter or paint supplier will give you valuable insight and help you make the right choice.Clean the Exterior before Applying New PaintIt may be necessary to have your exterior cleaned prior to applying new paint. You can have this done by pressure washing. This will remove dirt and debris that may be on the surface. To get a really professional finished result, you do not want to trap any dust, dirt, or grime in the fresh paint. And a clean surface will allow the paint to adhere better as well.We hope that you find some of these tips helpful when planning to paint the exterior of your home. Professional Painters have a lot more insight into all the do’s and don’t’s when it comes to getting professional results. Many are willing to share some excellent advice with you. Simply give them a call and ask any questions you may have about painting your exterior. And if you are looking for them to complete the job for you, they are always willing to give you a quote and take care of that for you!

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