Spring has sprung early in many parts of the country. Plants and flowers are blooming weeks earlier than expected and many have already started tending their gardens. Now is a great time to add some fun and decorative touches. Here are a few ideas for adding color, whimsy, and function to your garden or backyard area.
- Flutterby Solar Garden Accessories use solar power to give the impression of colorful insects in flight. Direct sunlight on the Flutterby solar panels make the colorful butterfly and dragonflies flit around your flowers and shrubs. Each insect measure 3.1 inches from wing to wing and they come in red, purple, yellow, blue, and green.
- Solar Chameleon Gazing Ball adds a touch of beauty and style to your garden. It has a solar panel hidden discreetly within that gives its dual light settings their bright light. The White Mode features 2 bright white LEDs, and the Chameleon Mode cycles through a spectrum of colors. It comes on automatically during dark periods of the day and offers up to 8 hours of light each night when fully charged. There is no wiring required – only the power of the sun!
“Going Green” is a trend that is gaining momentum every year and has become a lifestyle choice for many Americans. Not only does it allow you to do your part in conserving our precious resources, but it can also save you hundreds of dollars a year in utility costs. Making small changes can yield huge differences. Replacing just one regular light bulb in your home with an energy-efficient light bulb will reduce that outlet’s energy consumption by 75% and save you up to $40 a year! Imagine the difference that you can make if you replace all of the bulbs in your home. Another important energy-saving tip is to make sure that your doors and window are properly sealed. Drafts and broken seals can waste hundreds of dollars a year in heating and cooling cost and waste unnecessary energy. You will also want to make sure that you are using energy-efficient appliances. Seventeen percent of your household energy is spent on large appliance operation (refrigerators, clothes washer and dryers, and dishwashers). If you are not using an EnergyStar certified appliance, consider upgrading. It will save you money in the long run.
Solar power is also a great way to save energy in and around your home. If you are not ready to install solar panels on your roof and rely solely on the sun, you can still implement small uses of solar power around your home. Consider using Chinese Solar Lanterns or Umbrella Solar Lanterns at you next outdoor party instead of traditional lighting sources. Add solar powered path lights to your driveway or sidewalk. Consider investing in solar swimming pool heaters in place of traditional heat sources for your pool.
Green power is here to stay. More and more people are realizing that making these small, but powerful, changes are a necessary step toward protecting our plant AND our pocketbooks. Start making your home energy-efficient today and you reap the benefits for many years to come.
Source: US Department of Energy (http://www.energysavers.gov)
If you spend a lot of time outdoors during the summer, especially in the south, you know that mosquitos and other insects can really put a damper on your fun! The perfect solution to pesky night-time insects is to have a source of light that also repels the little pests! Citronella, which comes from the lemon scented leaves of an Asian tropical grass, has become a popular method of bug repellant and is usually sold in the form of candles, which are a temporary solution and quickly burn away. Why not try a citronella solution that lasts longer and is more visually appealing? Williamsburg Citronella Patio Lanterns are aluminum constructed lanterns that burn citronella liquid paraffin fuel for insect control. Each lamp comes with a fiberglass wick that will last a lifetime and a variety of finishes to choose from. The lanterns also come with planters attached. You can add your favorite flowers or plants and easily make the lanterns a beautiful addition to your garden landscape. You can enjoy beautiful, soft lighting with the added benefit of insect control all year long!
Elegant and unique, Starlight Outdoor Patio Lanterns are made to survive the outside elements. These beautiful ornamental lights create a dramatic, ambient glow in your outdoor living spaces, on the patio, by the pool, or in the garden.
The globes of each Starlight Outdoor Patio Lantern are unique in design, ranging from contemporary to nostalgic. My favorite, the Orion Patio Lanterns, are designed to mimic old street post light globes and bring an old world character to any existing decor. A string of either 50 or 100 mini lights are used to illuminate each lantern. You are sure to find a Starlight Patio Lantern that fits your unique taste and style. Any Shooting Star Lanterns make for stylish indoor accent lighting as well.
If you are looking to add beauty and ambiance to your outdoor patio, lanterns are an excellent choice and can give any space a warm glow that neither overpowers nor disappoints. These lanterns are perfect for creating a warm and inviting atmosphere to any outdoor occasion.
Now is the time to decorate for the holidays, but in doing so, don’t forget to pay attention to the ambiance your outdoor spaces create during this season. From wreaths to holiday lights in the front, we seem to stay busy decorating our outdoors. My question is….. are really doing it for those inside… or for those we don’t even know….Me a Grinch…who me …no way!!!! Seriously, it is time we inspire ourselves to decorate our own outdoor living spaces like decks, patios and backyards to warm the hearts of those who we know and love the most. Try adding some garden torches for light, and an outdoor fireplace for warmth. Add a little a holiday cheer with some simple greenery with holiday colors like poinsettias to bring in the season. Now you can sit back and relax and actually take some time to reflect on the true meaning of the season. And remember what makes a house a home………comfort, joy and the company of those we hold dear!