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4 Mistakes People Do When Designing Their Patio with Outdoor Furniture

4 Mistakes People Do When Designing Their Patio with Outdoor Furniture

Some people may think of their patio as an extra space outside of their home. That’s why they don’t bother putting that much thought into redesigning the space.

While it’s not entirely bad, don’t be one of those people and make the same mistakes that they do when designing an outdoor space.

Below are only some of those mistakes that you’d certainly want to avoid to make your patio renovation project a success!

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My Neighbour Has Japanese Knotweed – What Can I Do?

Japanese knotweedJapanese knotweed is an invasive plant species that grows rapidly and dies hard. While the law does not require you to take action if you find Japanese knotweed in your garden, you will get into trouble if you allow the plant to spread into the wild; for this reason, if you do have knotweed growing on your property, it’s a good idea to contact a qualified Japanese knotweed removal specialist who can get it under control.

But what if it’s your next-door neighbour who has a Japanese knotweed problem? We’d suggest referring them to Willow Park tree services experts who will know exactly how to solve the problem.

Well, ideally, your neighbour will act quickly and make sure the plant doesn’t spread onto your property. Unfortunately, not everyone is that proactive, so a certain amount of vigilance may be necessary on your part too.

Here are some tips to bear in mind if your neighbour has Japanese knotweed:

Start by talking to your neighbour. They may not be aware of the invasive weed that’s lurking in their garden—they may not even know what Japanese knotweed is, so be patient and politely suggest that they get in touch with a specialist contractor. It’s always better to resolve issues like this amicably if possible.

Remember, your neighbour is not breaking the law by having Japanese knotweed on their own property. UK law does not even require them to remove or treat the knotweed—only to prevent it from spreading elsewhere.

If your neighbour refuses to take action or acknowledge the issue, you should take the initiative and contact a qualified Japanese knotweed specialist yourself. They will be able to confirm the plant’s presence and can send your neighbour an official letter notifying them of their legal obligation to ensure that the knotweed does not encroach on your property.

Monitor the situation closely to see how it develops. Photographic evidence and regular reports from your knotweed expert will help you to demonstrate (if necessary) that your neighbour did not take sufficient action to prevent their Japanese knotweed from crossing the property boundary.

Japanese knotweed can have a significant impact on your property’s value and may even cause damage to the property itself, so it’s imperative to make sure you’re covered. A neighbour who has permitted Japanese knotweed to spread from their property to yours is legally liable, and you may be able to claim compensation—but only if you can prove what happened. This will be far easier if you have an expert witness to back you up (ideally a qualified professional who specialises in Japanese knotweed control and who has been monitoring the situation from the beginning).

Pets

Wireless vs Wired dog fence. Which is better?

Invisible dog fences are great for pet owners. They can let their dogs play in the grounds without worrying that they will hurt themselves or make a mess. Since the boundary is invisible, it causes no obstacle or hindrance to the rest of the household. However, pet owners are often confused while deciding to buy a dog containment system. They cannot figure out if they should buy a wired or a wireless system. Both have been evaluated and compared below.

Installation

A wired fence is labour-intensive in its installation. Since the wires are buried, mud and dirt need to be dug up. For concrete and gravel surfaces, hardware and manpower are required to cut through the surfaces before placing the wires. This can make the installation expensive. On the other hand, a wireless dog fence does not need any intensive installation. You just need to figure out a centre point to install the transmitter and figure out the boundary size.  

Coverage

Even a basic wired dog fence can help pet owners secure their dogs over tens of acres. The coverage gets higher as the pet containment system improves. However, a wireless dog fence only offers around a few hundred feet of coverage. It will not be possible to supervise dogs over a more extensive territory using this technology.

Wired contained systems can be laid in corners and edges as well as long as the wires are kept rounded. This ensures full coverage of the property. But wireless containment systems only offer coverage along the circumference of a circle and corners are left out.

Durability

The hardware of a wired containment system is weather-resistant. The wiring is buried which protects it from rain, hail and snow. The system remains functional even in bad weather. A wireless system, on the other hand, is susceptible to environmental conditions. The base unit has to be kept in a dry space indoors.

As far as the signals are concerned, a wired system rarely loses signals. If there’s a power breakdown or the wires have been corroded, then the functionality would be affected. But until that happens, it will keep working. On the other hand, a wireless system has sensitive signals that keep on fluctuating. Electronic appliances, nearby trees and harsh weather can disrupt the communication lines of the transmitter

Problem-solving

At times, a dog containment system malfunctions. If the wires have been dug into the ground, it will be difficult to trace the origin of the problem. You cannot dig everywhere the wire was placed. A replacement will require plenty of effort similarly. Meanwhile, a wireless system is portable, and it can be easily opened up to diagnose the problem. It will not exert the owner’s energies and won’t be expensive to repair.

In conclusion, a wired dog fence is operationally very much superior to a wireless dog fence. It is also more durable and transmits signals even in bad weather. However, the installation and repair of a wireless system is cheaper.

Family

Host the Perfect Halloween Garden Party for Kids

Halloween Garden PartyHalloween is fast approaching and more and more people in the UK are celebrating, especially families with young children. For American families, trick or treating plays a huge part in Halloween but parents in UK can be a little more reluctant to let their children take part in the door to door tradition. Instead of trick or treating, parents can avoid stranger danger by hosting their very own outdoor Halloween parties instead. Find out how to host the perfect Halloween garden party for kids with advice from the garden specialists at Artificial Grass Direct.

Step One: Party-Proof the Garden

Children + face paint + copious amounts of sweets = carnage. A Halloween garden party is a lot more forgiving on the home than a house party but there are still steps you can take to ensure easy clean up. Re-home all breakables (including ornaments and potted plants) for the night and cover furniture to protect it from spills. If you have natural grass in your garden, we recommend covering it with blankets or tarp otherwise you could run the risk of little monsters tearing up the turf. If you have artificial grass, this will require less maintenance as it is much more durable and can easily be wiped clean!

It’s important to keep guests warm and dry so double check the weather on party night and consider using a gazebo or similar cover if it looks like it might rain. You can also use a patio heater or fire pit to regulate your garden temperature but make sure to protect your garden and your guests (especially if there are young children attending) from the heat.

Set the Scene

Now you’ve party-proofed your garden you can focus on making it look the part. A quick and easy way to set the scene is to pick up a couple of cheap Halloween themed fairy lights and decorations. You can save money on these by buying at local pound shops and discount stores as opposed to name-brand supermarkets. From fake cobwebs and spider decorations, all the way through to bat bunting and life-size plastic skeletons, these decorations might look a tacky but that’s the spirit of Halloween! You can even go all out and carve a couple of pumpkins, if you have time, as a fun pre-party activity to do with the kids.

Spooky Snacks

Bring the trick or treating tradition to your own back garden by setting up sweetie stations with a variety of treats. You can buy plenty of themed sweets this around time of year including gummy worms and eyeball candy or you can make your own. We recommend cake pops since they are simple to make, fun to decorate, and easy for little ones to hold.

Halloween doesn’t have to be unhealthy, though. If you’re worried about the sugar content of store-bought sweets swap them out for healthy alternatives. A couple of chocolate chips can turn a regular banana into a ghostly ‘Boonana’. Another option is to sandwich apple slices together with peanut butter before adding mini marshmallows to make mutant mouths with terrifying teeth. There are plenty of healthy Halloween snack recipes out there on the internet, a quick search will yield plenty of ideas and inspiration!

Gruesome Games

Finally, no party is complete without a little entertainment. Depending on the age of your audience you can’t go wrong with a good old-fashioned horror story but there are plenty of other options if you’re worried about giving your guests nightmares. Bobbing for apples is a classic Halloween party game (just make sure to supervise at all times) and little kids will enjoy activities such as scavenger hunts or cupcake decorating. You can even host pumpkin carving contests for older children.