Sunday, 25 June 2017

Francis Bacon: The Essays: Of Gardens







G0D Almighty first planted a garden. And indeed it is the purest of human pleasures. It is the greatest refreshment to the spirits of man; without which, buildings and palaces are but gross handiworks; and a man shall ever see, that when ages grow to civility and elegancy, men come to build stately sooner than to garden finely; as if gardening were the greater perfection. I do hold it, in the royal ordering of gardens, there ought to be gardens, for all the months in the year; in which severally things of beauty may be then in season. For December, and January, and the latter part of November, you must take such things as are green all winter: holly; ivy; bays; juniper; cypress-trees; yew; pine-apple-trees; fir-trees; rosemary; lavender; periwinkle, the white, the purple, and the blue; germander; flags; orangetrees; lemon-trees; and myrtles, if they be stoved; and sweet marjoram, warm set. There followeth, for the latter part of January and February, the mez ereon-tree, which then blossoms; crocus vernus, both the yellow and the grey; primroses, anemones; the early tulippa; hyacinthus orientalis; chamairis; fritellaria. For March, there come violets, specially the single blue, which are the earliest; the yellow daffodil; the daisy; the almond-tree in blossom; the peach-tree in blossom; the cornelian-tree in blossom; sweet-briar. In April follow the double white violet; the wallflower; the stock-gilliflower; the cowslip; flowerdelices, and lilies of all natures; rosemary-flowers; the tulippa; the double peony; the pale daffodil; the French honeysuckle; the cherry-tree in blossom; the damson and plum-trees in blossom; the white thorn in leaf; the lilac-tree. In May and June come pinks of all sorts, specially the blushpink; roses of all kinds, except the musk, which comes later; honeysuckles; strawberries; bugloss; columbine; the French marigold, flos Africanus; cherry-tree in fruit; ribes; figs in fruit; rasps; vineflowers; lavender in fl owers; the sweet satyrian, with the white flower; herba muscaria; lilium convallium; the apple-tree in blossom. In July come gilliflowers of all varieties; musk-roses; the lime-tree in blossom; early pears and plums in fruit; jennetings, codlins. In August come plums of all sorts in fruit; pears; apricocks; berberries; filberds; musk-melons; monks-hoods, of all colors. In September come grapes; apples; poppies of all colors; peaches; melocotones; nectarines; cornelians; wardens; quinces. In October and the beginning of November come services; medlars; bullaces; roses cut or removed to come late; hollyhocks; and such like. These particulars are for the climate of London; but my meaning is perceived, that you may have ver perpetuum, as the place affords.



And because the breath of flowers is far sweeter in the air (where it comes and goes like the warbling of music) than in the hand, therefore nothing is more fit for that delight, than to know what be the flowers and pl ants that do best perfume the air. Roses, damask and red, are fast flowers of their smells; so that you may walk by a whole row of them, and find nothing of their sweetness; yea though it be in a morning's dew. Bays likewise yield no smell as they grow. Rosemary little; nor sweet marjoram. That which above all others yields the sweetest smell in the air is the violet, specially the white double violet, which comes twice a year; about the middle of April, and about Bartholomew-tide. Next to that is the musk-rose. Then the strawberry-leaves dying, which yield a most excellent cordial smell. Then the flower of vines; it is a little dust, like the dust of a bent, which grows upon the cluster in the first coming forth. Then sweet-briar. Then wall-flowers, which are very delightful to be set under a parlor or lower chamber window. Then pinks and gilliflowers, especially the matted pink and clove gilliflower. Then the flowers of the lime-tree. Then the honeysuckles, so they be somewhat afa r off. Of beanflowers I speak not, because they are field flowers. But those which perfume the air most delightfully, not passed by as the rest, but being trodden upon and crushed, are three; that is, burnet, wildthyme, and watermints. Therefore you are to set whole alleys of them, to have the pleasure when you walk or tread.



For gardens (speaking of those which are indeed princelike, as we have done of buildings), the contents ought not well to be under thirty acres of ground; and to be divided into three parts; a green in the entrance; a heath or desert in the going forth; and the main garden in the midst; besides alleys on both sides. And I like well that four acres of ground be assigned to the green; six to the heath; four and four to either side; and twelve to the main garden. The green hath two pleasures: the one, because nothing is more pleasant to the eye than green grass kept finely shorn; the other, because it will give you a fair alley in the midst, by whi ch you may go in front upon a stately hedge, which is to enclose the garden. But because the alley will be long, and, in great heat of the year or day, you ought not to buy the shade in the garden, by going in the sun through the green, therefore you are, of either side the green, to plant a covert alley upon carpenter's work, about twelve foot in height, by which you may go in shade into the garden. As for the making of knots or figures, with divers colored earths, that they may lie under the windows of the house on that side which the garden stands, they be but toys; you may see as good sights, many times, in tarts. The garden is best to be square, encompassed on all the four sides with a stately arched hedge. The arches to be upon pillars of carpenter's work, of some ten foot high, and six foot broad; and the spaces between of the same dimension with the breadth of the arch. Over the arches let there be an entire hedge of some four foot high, framed also upon carpenter's work; an d upon the upper hedge, over every arch, a little turret, with a belly, enough to receive a cage of birds: and over every space between the arches some other little figure, with broad plates of round colored glass gilt, for the sun to play upon. But this hedge I intend to be raised upon a bank, not steep, but gently slope, of some six foot, set all with flowers. Also I understand, that this square of the garden, should not be the whole breadth of the ground, but to leave on either side, ground enough for diversity of side alleys; unto which the two covert alleys of the green, may deliver you. But there must be no alleys with hedges, at either end of this great enclosure; not at the hither end, for letting your prospect upon this fair hedge from the green; nor at the further end, for letting your prospect from the hedge, through the arches upon the heath.



For the ordering of the ground, within the great hedge, I leave it to variety of device; advising nevertheless, th at whatsoever form you cast it into, first, it be not too busy, or full of work. Wherein I, for my part, do not like images cut out in juniper or other garden stuff; they be for children. Little low hedges, round, like welts, with some pretty pyramids, I like well; and in some places, fair columns upon frames of carpenter's work. I would also have the alleys, spacious and fair. You may have closer alleys, upon the side grounds, but none in the main garden. I wish also, in the very middle, a fair mount, with three ascents, and alleys, enough for four to walk abreast; which I would have to be perfect circles, without any bulwarks or embossments; and the whole mount to be thirty foot high; and some fine banqueting-house, with some chimneys neatly cast, and without too much glass.





For fountains, they are a great beauty and refreshmen t; but pools mar all, and make the garden unwholesome, and full of flies and frogs. Fountains I intend to be of two natures: the one that sprinkleth or spouteth water; the other a fair receipt of water, of some thirty or forty foot square, but without fish, or slime, or mud. For the first, the ornaments of images gilt, or of marble, which are in use, do well: but the main matter is so to convey the water, as it never stay, either in the bowls or in the cistern; that the water be never by rest discolored, green or red or the like; or gather any mossiness or putrefaction. Besides that, it is to be cleansed every day by the hand. Also some steps up to it, and some fine pavement about it, doth well. As for the other kind of fountain, which we may call a bathing pool, it may admit much curiosity and beauty; wherewith we will not trouble ourselves: as, that the bottom be finely paved, and with images; the sides likewise; and witha l embellished with colored glass, and such things of lustre; encompassed also with fine rails of low statuas. But the main point is the same which we mentioned in the former kind of fountain; which is, that the water be in perpetual motion, fed by a water higher than the pool, and delivered into it by fair spouts, and then discharged away under ground, by some equality of bores, that it stay little. And for fine devices, of arching water without spilling, and making it rise in several forms (of feathers, drinking glasses, canopies, and the like), they be pretty things to look on, but nothing to health and sweetness.



For the heath, which was the third part of our plot, I wish it to be framed, as much as may be, to a natural wildness. Trees I would have none in it, but some thickets made only of sweet-briar and honeysuckle, and some wild vine amongst; and the ground set with violets, strawberries, and primroses. For these are sweet, and prosper in the shade. And these to be in the heath, here and there, not in any order. I like also little heaps, in the nature of mole-hills (such as are in wild heaths), to be set, some with wild thyme; some with pinks; some with germander, that gives a good flower to the eye; some with periwinkle; some with violets; some with strawberries; some with cowslips; some with daisies; some with red roses; some with lilium convallium; some with sweet-williams red; some with bear's-foot: and the like low flowers, being withal sweet and sightly. Part of which heaps, are to be with standards of little bushes pricked upon their top, and part without. The standards to be roses; juniper; holly; berberries (but here and there, because of the smell of their blossoms); red currants; gooseberries; rosemary; bays; sweetbriar; and such like. But these standards to be kept with cutting, that they grow not out of course.



For the side grounds, you are to fill them with variety of alleys, private, to give a full shade, s ome of them, wheresoever the sun be. You are to frame some of them, likewise, for shelter, that when the wind blows sharp you may walk as in a gallery. And those alleys must be likewise hedged at both ends, to keep out the wind; and these closer alleys must be ever finely gravelled, and no grass, because of going wet. In many of these alleys, likewise, you are to set fruit-trees of Sprinkler System Flower Mound all sorts; as well upon the walls, as in ranges. And this would be generally observed, that the borders wherein you plant your fruit-trees, be fair and large, and low, and not steep; and set with fine flowers, but thin and sparingly, lest they deceive the trees. At the end of both the side grounds, I would have a mount of some pretty height, leaving the wall of the enclosure breast high, to look abroad into the fields.





For the main garden, I do not deny, but there should be some fair alleys ranged on both sides, with fruit-trees; and some pretty tufts of fruittrees, and arbors with seats, set in some decent order; but these to be by no means set too thick; but to leave the main garden so as it be not close, but the air open and free. For as for shade, I would have you rest upon the alleys of the side grounds, there to walk, if you be disposed, in the heat of the year or day; but to make account, that the main garden is for the more temperate parts of the year; and in the heat of summer, for the morning and the evening, or overcast days.



For avi aries, I like them not, except they be of that largeness as they may be turfed, and have living plants and bushes set in them; that the birds may have more scope, and natural nesting, and that no foulness appear in the floor of the aviary. So I have made a platform of a princely garden, partly by precept, partly by drawing, not a model, but some general lines of it; and in this I have spared for no cost. But it is nothing for great princes, that for the most part taking advice with workmen, with no less cost set their things together; and sometimes add statuas and such things for state and magnificence, but nothing to the true http://ambler.temple.edu/about/news/landscape-architecture-and-horticulture-students-gain-ground-philadelphia-flower-show pleasure of a garden.





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https://bacon.thefreelibrary.com/The-Essays/46-1

Sunday, 18 June 2017

Gardens By The Bay Picture | Singapore's Gardens by the Bay

Gardens By The Bay

Singapore hopes to become the garden of the world with its iconic Gardens by the Bay, the latest project to transform Singapore into a city within a garden.



Grant Associate s/Craig Sheppard

Gardens By The Bay

The project cost $810 million to build, really does have the wow factor, taking up the space the size of 177 football fields and housing 80 percent of the world's plant species. This is not your mother's http://www.southernliving.com/home-garden/gardens/10-best-yard-landscaping-ideas garden.

Grant Associates/Craig Sheppard

Gardens By The Bay

The skyline of the city has been altered with 18 giant structures dubbed "supertrees." These vertical gardens are as tall as 55 meters, and are equipped with solar panels and a rainwater catchment system.

Grant Associates/Darren https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5UqSm2OQEnw Chin

Gardens By The Bay

The two conservatories recreate a temperate climate in the heart of the tropics.

Grant Associates/Craig Sheppard

Gardens By The Bay

These conservatories are the world's biggest glass houses, housing more than 10,000 plants, and helping to define Singapore as a garden city.

Grant Associates

Gardens By The Bay

Visitors can walk in the canopy of the supertrees atop a skywalk nearly 150 feet off the ground.

Carrie Halperin/ABC News

Gardens By The Bay

The supertrees, designed by Grant Associates, are embedded with sustainable energy technologies that are in integral part of cooling the conservatories.



Grant Associates

Gardens By The Bay

During the day, the supertrees' large canopies provide shade and shelter. At night, the supertrees come alive with lighting and projected media created.

Grant Associates

Gardens By The Bay

More than 162,900 plants comprising more than 200 species and varieties of bromeliads, orchids, ferns and tropic al flowering climbers will be planted on the 18 supertrees.

Carrie Halperin/ABC News

Gardens By The Bay

Visitors can walk among plants from across the globe without stepping off the island.

Grant Associates/Craig Sheppard

Gardens By The Bay

The internal gardens and landscapes are designed by Grant Associates in collaboration with Wilkinson Eyre Architects.

Grant Associates

Gardens https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5UqSm2OQEnw By The Bay

An illustration of the Gardens by the Bay.

Grant Associates

http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/photos/singapores-gardens-bay-16828787/image-16828792

Thursday, 15 June 2017

A Beginner's Guide to Gardening

The rewards of gardening are great -- fresh air, exercise, beauty and relaxation, to name a few. But designing and planting your very first garden can feel like an overwhelming task. Luckily, gardens are surprisingly forgiving creations, and the best way to learn is by simply diving in. Here are 10 tips to help get a new garden off on the right foot.

1. Get to know your site. Take your time to get familiar with your property before beginning a new garden. Here are a few things you may like to try while you're getting to know your landscape:

Take a leisurely stroll around your property with a notebook and make a rough sketch of the existing planting areas.

Add notes to your garden "map" about which areas get the most sun and which are shaded.

A simple soil test from your local garden center will tell you whether your soil is well-balanced in nutrients and pH.

If you're thinking of growing edibles (vegetables, fruit or herbs), it's a good idea to h ave your soil tested for lead. Most at-home kits aren't reliable indicators of lead in the soil, but you can send your soil samples to the Lead Safe America Foundation for a free lead test. If you find that your soil has an unsafe level of lead, you can still grow edibles in raised beds or pots with new soil.

List which existing plants and features (such as fences or paths) you'd like to keep and which need to be replaced or removed.

Spend time just hanging out in your garden. Let yourself daydream and see if any creative ideas present themselves.

Related: Visualize Your Garden Plans From the Perfect Porch Swing

2. Determine your style and goals. Gather a few images that inspire you and look for a theme. Are you drawn to lush flower-filled gardens or more crisply defined modern outdoor spaces? It helps to pair a few words with the pictures you've chosen, so try to come up with something that evokes the sort of garden you want, even if it's not an "offi cial" style term.

For instance, maybe you'll decide your style is Industrial Zen or Playful Modern or Simplified Cottage. While you're figuring this out, it helps to keep a photo of the exterior of your home at hand -- whatever style you choose should be able to work well with the architectural style of your home as well as your personal preferences.

Once you've named your style, take a moment to jot down the activities and features you imagine enjoying in your landscape. If you have children, you may need a lot of open space for running around. Or perhaps you dream of relaxing in the middle of a big wildflower meadow -- whatever it is, write it down.

3. Start small. Dreaming is wonderful, but when it comes time to begin digging in the earth, it's equally important to stay grounded in reality. The bigger the garden, the more time and energy it will require to maintain. Examine what you want (say, a vegetable https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfNmypOk45k garden) and then scale it down (for example, plant one raised bed rather than six). You can always expand next year!

This holds true for purchasing plants too: It's easy to get seduced by the bountiful plants at the nursery and come home with far too many. Remember, planting takes time, so buy only what you can comfortably get into the ground within the next day or two.

4. Make a plan. Even if you're planting only a single raised vegetable bed or cluster of potted flowers on the patio, having a plan is key. If you're not sure which plants to buy, take a "research" trip to a local nursery (without buying anything!) and snap photos of plants you'd like to consider adding to your garden. Look at the tags and note down when they bloom, as well as sun and water requirements.

Pulling this information together into a sketched-out plan (no artistic skills required) takes extra time initially but will make for a more succes sful garden in the end. Choose plants that bloom in different seasons for year-round color, and be sure to pick plants with similar sun and water requirements to plant together.

5. Pick the right tools for the job (without going overboard). Having the proper tools makes garden chores more pleasant -- but don't think you need to buy out the store on day one. Just a few tools and supplies should keep your garden running smoothly. The basics include:

Gardening gloves. Choose a pair that feels comfortable and protects against thorns.

Shovel. This is essential for preparing sizable garden beds and for digging holes for trees, shrubs and large plants. A shovel with a pointed tip is more versatile than a flat spade.

Trowel and weeding tool (or a Japanese gardener's knife). Use these tools to dig holes for planting and pull weeds out at the root.

Long garden hose and spray nozzle. Select a hose long enough to comfortably reach each of the main areas of your garden.

Hand pruner. Sharp clippers can trim branches and cut back woody plants like rosemary.

Metal rake. Use this to spread mulch and prepare beds for planting.

Leaf rake. Use a flexible plastic or bamboo rake to gather leaves.



RELATED: 5 Tools Every Gardener Should Own

6. Mix up perennials and annuals. A common newbie mistake is to grab too many plants from the "annuals" section at the nursery, making for a garden that https://www.reference.com/home -garden/explore/landscaping dies back within a single year. For longevity and color, go for a mix of perennials (plants that come back year after year) and annuals (plants that bloom and die within a single season).

7. Repeat, repeat, repeat. One great way to give your garden a professionally designed look (with little effort) is to repeat the same plants and hardscaping materials in different places throughout the landscape. Avoid picking one plant of each type, as this tends to appear jumbled -- even in a wild English cottage-style garden, plants look best when repeated or planted in clusters. The same goes for other materials: Choose just a few hardscaping materials for paths, pots, planters and outdoor furniture, and repeat, repeat, repeat.

RELATED: Incorporate Outdoor Rocking Chairs

8. Combine seeds and starts for an affordable mix. Starting an entire garden from seed can save money, but it can also be incredibly frustrating. Purchasing only started pla nts is not only expensive, but it also may limit your choice of what to grow. The best option is usually a combination of the two: Pick up some started seedlings at your local nursery and start some of your own from seed. Good plants to start from seed yourself include lettuce, radishes, beans, sunflowers, marigolds, cosmos and zinnias.

9. Grow what you like. This sounds utterly simple, but it's something even the most experienced gardeners sometimes seem to forget. Why grow squash if it's not really your favorite? Over the years, we've stopped bothering to grow beans and zucchini, instead devoting extra garden space to family favorites like snap peas, radishes, Tuscan kale and mini pumpkins for Halloween.



10. Further your https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfNmypOk45k garden education. Seeking out local wor kshops is a wonderful way to learn more about gardening and connect with other gardeners in your community. Check plant nurseries, community gardens and botanical gardens in your area for free or low-cost workshops on a wide range of topics like container gardening, using native plants, attracting pollinators, creating a waterwise garden and composting.

Gardening is a lifelong learning experience, and even the most seasoned gardeners are learning all the time -- so don't beat yourself up if it seems that there's too much to know. Just begin somewhere and take it one season at a time. The wonderful thing about gardening is that there's usually room for do-overs.

http://www.foxnews.com/real-estate/2017/03/31/beginners-guide-to-gardening.html

Real Lawyers Have Blogs - By Kevin O'Keefe

I'm a small town trial lawyer by trade.

Over seventeen years, I made it to county courthouses in cities the likes of Viroqua, Prairie du Chien, Sparta, Black River Falls, Whitehall and Mauston. Occasionally I made it to courts in Madison, Minneapolis and Chicago.

I don't believe I was ever invited to speak to a legal industry group. And only once was I asked to pen an article for publication.

Not in my wildest dreams could I have envisioned being invited to speak in Europe to an international audience of lawyers, technology executives and in-house counsel.

Two weeks ago that's where I was. In Amsterdam at the Lexpo legal innovation and technology conference presenting on the power of blogging and social media.

Out of the blue last fall I received a call asking if I could speak and what my fee and expenses would be. Amazing, "Could you come to Amsterdam, some place you've never been, we'll pay your way and put you up. You really should bring your wif e as you're already being paid to come to Europe."



Hey, maybe Rob Ameerun, Lexpo's founder and organizer didn't say exactly that, but it sounded just like that to me. It was certainly something that was going to make me a star at home - we hadn't been to Europe since we backpacked and hitchhiked across the Continent on $10 a day thirty-five years ago.

The reason I was in Europe was simple. I blog.

Rob and the person who recommended me to Rob knew of me and my passion for blogging and social media, the subject of my talk, because of my blog p ublication, Real Lawyers Have Blogs.

Wilder to me still was that, as a result of blogging and social media, people from any number of countries at the conference knew who I was. Invites to speak in London and Lithuania followed.

I'm not alone when it comes to American blogging lawyers being invited to Europe this spring.

Veteran law bloggers, Jordan Furlong and Ron Friedmann, joined me as speakers at Lexpo.

Staci Riordan, long https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tx5hfLp3Vqc time fashion law blogger and chair of Nixon Peabody's fashion practice, is featured today in the International Trademark Association (INTA) Daily News for her presentation in Barcelona yesterday on advocating for a brand on social media, as a social media influencer yourself.

From Barcelona Staci is on her way to Tokyo and Seoul to speak. As she tags her Facebook posts, a bit in jest, "#lifeoffashionlawyer."

Staci was not alone in Barcelona. From long time China law blogger, Dan Harris over the weekend:

If you are going to be in Barcelona during INTA 2017, please let us know via an email to firm@harrisbricken.com and we will do our utmost to have one of our lawyers meet up with you there. Four of our lawyers will be there throughout the conference, including two of our lawyers from our Barcelona office, Nadja Vietz and Joaquin Cabrera. In addition to our home-grown talent, Mike Atkins (world famous for his Seattle Trademark Lawyer Blog) and Alison Malsbury (who spoke at INTA last year on cannabis trademarks) will also be attending.

All of the U.S. lawyers Dan mentioned got to Barcelona as a result of blogging. Heck, in addition to a successful international practice, Dan's firm has built perhaps the leading cannabis practice in the country on the back of the Canna Law Blog.

Crazier yet, Dan's letting 10,000 conference attendees from 140 countries know to look up he and his c olleagues while in Barcelona -- via one of the most widely read international legal publications, his firm's China Law Blog.

Then this morning I see the dean of law blogging with his LawSites blog, Bob Ambrogi share on Facebook a picture of his home for the next week. A Danube http://lawyers.findlaw.com/ River https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tx5hfLp3Vqc cruiseboat leaving from Munich.

Bob's known internationally for his expertise on the Internet and legal technology, in large part because of his blogging. As a result he's going to be teaching at a bar association conference cruising the Danube.

I don't share these stories to impress you, but to impress upon you the opportunity that blogging presents you as a lawyer.

Of course you need to have some expertise, blogging is not "fake it till you make it." But blogging puts you on the map, builds a name for you and makes you an attractive speaker for conference organizers to invite. Stars attract an audience.

Know that the lawyers here have built their names with a blog. They're not writing articles published in a section of a law firm website claiming to be a blog.



These lawyers and I sought to go out and connect and engage on the Internet with an independent publication, our blogs, and the use of ancillary social media, including Twitter and Facebook. We built a brand for a blog publication and ourselves.

Sure, prominent lawyers who do not blog will be invited to speak at conferences around the world just as they always have. But small town kids like me wouldn't get there without blogging.

http://kevin.lexblog.com/

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

Gardening is sexy, says celebrity landscaper Durie| Reuters



By Miral Fahmy

| SINGAPORE

SINGAPORE (Reuters Life!) - Landscape artist and environmental activist Jamie Durie is on a mission to make gardening sexy -- and to save the planet one backyard at a time.

"Gardening is no longer a granny sport," the Australian gardening celebrity told Reuters during a recent visit Sprinkler System to Singapore, where he is landscaping a luxury housing compound.

"Gardens are now a reflection of your personality as much as the rug on your floor or the jewellery around your neck. They are a connection to nature, a sanctuary."

A self-confessed frustrated architect who "paints with plants", Durie is a bit of a pin-up boy for gardening.

A qualified horticulturalist, he is the founder of the award-winning PATIO Landscape Architecture Design (www.patio.com.au) and author of five bo oks on landscaping. He was host to popular Australian TV garden makeover show "Backyard Blitz" and currently hosts long-running American gardening and outdoor show, "The Victory Garden", for U.S. network PBS.

Durie also trained with former U.S. vice president and environmentalist Al Gore to become an environmental ambassador.

Q: How can landscaping help the environment?

A: Any plants that you can get into the soil will help absorb carbon dioxide emissions, and yes, it is possible to have urban developments and sustain the environment -- that's where landscaping comes in.

Also, if you take care of your own garden, it encourages others to do the same and then we'll be saving the environment one small backyard at a time. That's why I try and make gardens sexy, an evocative space that provides a destination, not just something that you see from behind your kitchen window.

Q: So, is gardening fashionable now?

A: Certainly! People are becoming mor e creative and they recognize that gardens are as much a part of their decor as their living room. There's also a trend towards going back to nature, towards organic produce because of all the chemicals and hormones and gene splitting... that is more dangerous than actual warfare. Growing organic produce has never been more popular and it will continue to grow. We're in the middle of an organic revolution.

Q: What inspires your designs?

A: Everything. I travel extensively, so I often gain inspiration from the natural landscapes I see. You have to be receptive to your surroundings and keep your eyes open. One of my designs was based on a crack in the pavement. The bigger my library of concepts, the more I've https://www.sprinklr.com/ got to give.

Q: Creating a beautiful garden can be very expensive and also requires space -- luxuries many people don't have.

A: That is true, but I want the homeowners of today to fast- track to what the older generation have achieved after years of working: the nice house with the big garden. See what gardens can do for you! They Sprinkler System Mckinney give you peace and tranquility. My advice would be to look at the value of your property and use that as a benchmark to decide how much to spend on your garden. If you're spending less than 5 percent, that's skimping, you can do better. And if you don't want to do it for you, do it for your kids. Do it for the environment. It's your responsibility.

Q: Do you have any tips for city-dwellers who would love to have a garden but who don't have the time or the space?

A: Go to your local nursery and start taking photos of plants you find attractive. Go to the botanical garden on the weekend and see how plants are arranged. Fall in love with the plants and then take them home. By growing a plant, you're empowering yourself, giving yourself confidenc e, demystifying nature.



Everyone can have a little patch of paradise, there's no excuse not to.

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-gardening-jamiedurie-idUSSP18722020071015

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

10 home design trends to ditch in 2015





P hoto courtesy of Zillow

Brass hardware -- out. Big showers -- in.

47

Home design trends may come and go, but homeowners are always looking for inexpensive, easy ways to increase their property's value. Some of those trends can translate into bigger bucks when it comes time to sell a home, while others can actually drag value down.

Part of figuring out whether to change a https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TbQK4Bl3s_I design element involves predicting what potential buyers might want down the line, while also considering the needs and tastes of the people who live there today. It's a balancing act for almost every homeowner's budget. The risk? That some design decisions make your home look dated before its time.

We talked to three interior design professionals about which trends to resist and where they would https://www.youtube.com/wa tch?v=TbQK4Bl3s_I put their renovation dollars instead. Here are 10 trends they think homeowners should steer clear of in 2015.

http://www.cbsnews.com/media/10-home-design-trends-to-ditch-in-2015/

Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Rapper Vanilla Ice in plea deal over Florida theft charge: lawyer | Reuters

By Barbara Liston

| ORLANDO, Fla.

ORLANDO, Fla. Rapper Vanilla Ice avoided prosecution in Florida on Thursday after agreeing to a plea deal over a grand theft charge, his attorney said.

"He's pretty thrilled. He's never really been in trouble like this before so obviously he was nervous," said defense lawyer Bradford Cohen of Fort Lauderdale.

The rapper, whose real name is Robert Van Winkle, appeared in Palm Beach County Court on Thursday where he agreed to perform 100 hours of community service and pay $1,333 to the estate of a neighbor in Lantana for allegedly stealing furniture and pool equipment, according to the pre-trial intervention deal.

Van Winkle also must acknowledge that he is guilty of the crime, but the charge will be dismissed and he will have no criminal record upon completing terms of the agreement, Cohen said.



The grand the ft charge was a third-degree felony which carried a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $5,000 fine.

The 47-year-old musician turned reality television star, who famously rapped that "anything less than the best is a felony" in his 1990s hit song "Ice Ice Baby," said at the time of his arrest in February that the situation had been "overblown."

The rapper's home currently is under construction and also is the site https://www.bunnings.com.au/our-range/garden/watering-accessories/hose-end-sprinklers/sprinklers of his latest venture, a reality TV show for the DIY Network called "The Vanilla Ice https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uRbW3ayDWVQ Project."

Cohen said Van Winkle is happy to have the charge resolved before the kickoff of season five of his television series.

Van Winkle, who i s also a general contractor, regularly performs https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uRbW3ayDWVQ community service, his lawyer said, including a project two weeks ago to build a swimming pool for a quadriplegic firefighter.

His community service under the plea deal must take place at a Habitat for Humanity project in Palm Beach County.

At the time of his arrest, Van Winkle also was accused of burglary although prosecutors never formally filed that charge.

Van Winkle all along said the incident was a misunderstanding. Cohen said most of the items he was accused of stealing had been left outside the home by squatters who had been vandalizing the unoccupied property.



(Reporting by David Adams; Editing by Leslie Adler and Sandra Maler)

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-rapper-arrest-idUSKBN0MT29520150402