Category Archives: Outdoors

How To Use Fence Panels To Frame Your Garden Structures

Although it would be desirable to leave your front and rear garden open to nature’s elements, “an Englishman’s home is his castle,” as the saying goes (and applies equally to most of the inhabitants of the UK) and most people prefer to define the border of their property by erecting garden fencing which is used to frame the structure of your garden.

Most people add fence panels to provide your garden with privacy from your neighbours and also from the prying eyes of potential burglars. Some people use garden fencing to provide some shade and protection so people and plants can sit away from the sun’s rays at those times of the year when it is easy to get sunburnt.

How To Use Fence Panels To Frame Your Garden Structures
How To Use Fence Panels To Frame Your Garden Structures

Framing your garden structure

There are many variations, particularly in the sizes and shapes of rear gardens. While you traditionally consider the three sides of a rear garden to from your border with your neighbours or roads, decorative fencing and fence panels may need to fit different shapes and sizes as land has been sold in differing parcels in the past.

It used to be traditional that neighbours would talk over small 3 foot fence panel or picket fencing in the front or rear garden. That tradition has changed considerably and while you may only be allowed to add a 3 foot set of garden fencing to your front garden, most local authorities allow you to define your garden structure and your property borders with the installation of 2 meter fence panels in your rear garden.

Instead of considering how your garden looks from your neighbour’s point of view, most people choose their garden fencing to provide a garden structure that they can admire from their own house or garden.

Choosing your fence panels

Once you have decided to install 2 m fence panels around your borders to provide your garden structure, you will quickly find that there are many different types of basic and decorative fencing options from your local garden centre or from the many Internet businesses that make and deliver fence panels quickly.

The structure of your garden will be heavily influenced by your choice of garden fencing. Although fence panels are usually delivered, having been treated against disease and rotting and finished in a light brown colour, many people choose to paint the fence panels, sometimes green, to add to the overall influence your garden fencing has on your garden design.

When your fence panels are providing the structure to your garden they also form the different areas where you can grow climbing plants and add trees, bushes and plants in your border areas, to add a variation and act as your visual emphasis.

It is better to buy fence panels direct from a manufacturer because even if a delivery charge is added, the garden fencing will provide a uniform look. If you decide to try make the fence panels yourself, unless you are extremely good at DIY, your fence panels may look quite different from the first one you made to the last one.

You can break up the structure of your garden by replacing some fence panels with either a brick wall or the plain use of bushes and plants. You will need to decide whether your garden needs to be protected, for security reasons, on all sides or if you are able to include a variation of border designs so that the structure of your garden is pleasing on the eye.

Growing Vegetables In A Potting Shed

You can’t have missed the environment movement that has been steadily growing over the last few years. There are vast campaigns suggesting that you walk or bike to work or if you can’t carpool, consider public transport.

Growing Vegetables In A Potting Shed
Growing Vegetables In A Potting Shed

There have been requests that people holiday locally rather than leaving an enormous carbon footprint as you fly back and forth across the globe and although everyone has argued about high petrol prices for a long time, they are at such a peak now, that the cost of transporting food and goods to shops around the country has increased the price of everything substantially. If you haven’t already, you’re probably looking very carefully at your budget and wondering what else you can cut out and not purchase from this week’s shopping list.

You can, however, reduce your grocery weekly costs, by starting to grow plants in a shed at home before you transport them outside in raised beds. Your whole year’s supply of fruit and vegetables can be developed and as a bonus, they will be organically grown. If you’re going to grow your favourite plants and shrubs from seeds and cuttings, rather than paying local garden centre prices, you’re on to a good thing.

Your daily five fruit and vegetables

If you have a suitable Apex shed in your garden, you can turn it into a potting shed quite easily even if you only allow yourself the share of the space with all of your garden tools and equipment.

One of the benefits of starting to grow your own fruit and vegetables in your own potting shed is that you’ll be provide your own five a day fruit and vegetables as recommended by doctors and experts. This healthier lifestyle will not only save you money away from the supermarket, but will provide you with a better vitamin and mineral content for your body. Instead of buying takeaways from your local fast food restaurants, you’ll have the opportunity to eat an organic range of produce and you’ll be reducing your intake of pesticides and herbicides that are used to grow most supermarket fruit and vegetables, some of which have travelled half way around the world just to be available, for you, out of season.

A packet of seeds will set you back a pound or so and if you buy non-hybrid species of your favourite fruits and vegetables, you can use the seeds from your best producing plants to give you a good start the following year.

A potting shed increases your outdoor exercise

Apart from getting outside and taking in more good quality air than you’d receive from sitting in front of your television in a radiator warmed house, you will also be receiving some gentle exercise as you move around your potting shed as you are planting, weeding, most importantly watering and then finally harvesting your plants.

You can encourage all of your children into your Apex shed, not only to help you, but to join in as well so that they can learn the basics of growing organic fruit and vegetables, why it’s important to save money this way and then they can pass on the message to their children and grandchildren.

Growing in a shed is a great way to spend time relaxing and casting away all the stress from the excessive lifestyles we tend to look to these days. If you’re saving some money and getting fresh air and sunshine at the same time, that can only be a bonus for you and your family.

Do I Buy A Glass Or Polycarbonate Greenhouse?

The traditional view is that glass should be used when you are building a greenhouse, but if we all stayed in the past, you wouldn’t be able to take advantage of modern thinking, modern designs and modern technology.

Most people wouldn’t think twice about building a glass greenhouse and not considering the polycarbonate greenhouse variety as a viable option.

Glass Or Polycarbonate Greenhouse
Glass Or Polycarbonate Greenhouse

Following the recent recession, many people have given consideration to growing their own fruit and vegetables in a strong greenhouse, in the garden. No one worries about growing too much, because extras can be sold to neighbours and market gardeners.

As more and more people buy strong greenhouses, you might decide that you should join the environmental movement and take to the Internet to see what kinds of greenhouses are available.

What choices do you have?

The cost of a polycarbonate greenhouse or a glass greenhouse isn’t as much as most people expect and while the cost of a greenhouse does offset the initial advantages of growing your own fruit and vegetables, in the long-run, it will be better to grow your green items in a strong greenhouse rather than take chances with the weather and bugs in an open garden area. The advantage of using a strong greenhouse is that you can weatherproof your growing methods and keep most bugs at bay.

Polycarbonate greenhouses, have come a long way in recent years and many people believe them to be far superior to using glass as an option. The coatings and processes used in making polycarbonate greenhouses make them much more maintenance user-friendly.

Glass can be broken remarkably easily, even by a bird flying into your glass greenhouse. Most polycarbonate greenhouses can’t be smashed or broken using a hammer and brute force.

If children use the garden as a play area then safety and security will become paramount to your way of thinking. Children can easily break glass in a glass greenhouse, even if purely by accident. They can’t all shoot as accurately as David Beckham. There is much less chance of them have an accident with a polycarbonate greenhouse and the heart chilling consequences of broken glass and children, easily avoided.

There are small arguments that polycarbonate greenhouses don’t hold the heat quite as well as glass greenhouses, but with modern technology there is not a lot in it and the differences shouldn’t really affect your overall decision to choose one against the other.

The amount of light that can pass through glass is slightly more than the sun’s rays can beat through a polycarbonate greenhouse, so scientists will always choose glass as the first choice for a strong greenhouse, but the differences are not sufficient to make any particular difference over the long-term.

Polycarbonate used to suffer from the reputation of clouding over the course of time with a slight yellowness. Modern materials don’t have those worries and if you are buying a new polycarbonate greenhouse today you should not even have to ask questions about clouding and yellowness.

The final choice about choosing a traditional glass greenhouse or modern polycarbonate greenhouse may just come down to your own personal thoughts and depending upon whether you want a lighter polycarbonate greenhouse or what many would consider, a stronger greenhouse made of glass, but which will break first?