Pest and Infestations Problems You Should be Aware of as a Homeowner

No one wants to be dealing with a pest problem in their home, but these problems can be relatively common. It’s important that you’re looking out for the signs of them so you can nip the problem in the bud and stop them from becoming more troublesome than they need to be. Here are some examples of the pest and infestation problems you’ll need to be aware of and looking out for as a homeowner. Image Source – CC0 License A Wasp Nest in the Garden If you find a wasp nest in the garden, you should take action to have it removed at the soonest opportunity. This isn’t the kind of thing that you want to have lying around your garden because you never know how aggressive those wasps might be, and it’s best not to take any unnecessary risks. You certainly shouldn’t try to remove it yourself either; trust a professional to do the work. Bug Infestations During Summer Bug infestations are big problems during the summer. The last thing you want us for your home to be overrun by ants when the weather starts to improve. You should think about sealing up the entry points and using techniques to discourage bugs and insects from even getting close to your home in the first place. It’ll save you a whole heap of problems. Rotting Animal Carcasses Anyone who has found a dead animal on their property or in the garden knows how disgusting it can be. Once that carcas starts to rot, the stench is unbearable and you won’t want to go near it. However, that’s going to happen once animals start nesting on your property. You should take steps to have the dead animal removed safely. Bed Bugs Bed bugs are truly disgusting and the thought of these little critters biting away at your skin during the night is enough to make your skin crawl. That’s why you should always carefully check your bed for bed bugs and specks of blood that might indicate that they’ve been biting you while you sleep. They’re famously hard to get rid of, so call in a pro to do the work. Termites Destroying Wooden Structures from the Inside If you have a wood structure, whether it’s a decking area or a shed and you start to see signs of termites, it’s vital to act fast if you want to save that structure. They’ll eat away at it from the inside until there’s simply nothing left to eat away at. And that will mean the structure will eventually fail and start to collapse, which is not what you want. Each of these pest and infestation issues are not much fun to deal with, but if you know the signs and the risks that come with them, you can spot them sooner and be sure to take action. So if you see signs of any of the problems we’ve discussed here, don’t take the risk of ignoring...
Is It Time For A Garden Makeover?

Is It Time For A Garden Makeover?

https://unsplash.com/photos/-rl4m0icZo4 When it comes to anything to do with your home, you may get a little freaked out. After all, who wants to spend hours and hours working on their home when there’s rest to be had instead? Yet, this isn’t always the answer. Because, when you realize that you can totally transform your home in a matter of hours or days or weeks, it can be really exciting. And, not only that, but maybe you love the idea of creating the garden of your dreams too? When the weather is wonderful, much like it is right now, it’s the perfect time to get out into the garden. Not only will you want to enjoy it, but it’s nice to spruce things up and give your garden the makeover it deserves. Tidy Everything Up To begin with, you’ll want to make sure that you can clean everything up. When it comes to creating a garden makeover, you have to start with a blank canvas. So, if you have a lot of overgrown weeds, give the garden a spring clean. When it’s all cleared up, then you can get to work. Spruce The Lawn Next, you’re then going to want to make sure that you are able to shake the lawn up a little. If it’s looking sparse or a bit worse for wear, it’s a great idea to try and treat it. When it’s looking lush and green, it will make a world of difference. Redesign The Landscape And, if you’re really feeling like it, you should definitely consider redoing the landscaping too. Now, this can often seem like such a big job – but it will often be worth it. And it’s safe to say that you have the time to do it now anyway. Consider what kind of look you want to go for and source your supplies, from somewhere such as Edrich Lumber, Inc, then get to work. And, before you know it, your garden will have a completely new lease of life. Add A Little Luxury From here, you may even like the idea of making your garden look and feel a lot more luxurious. When that’s the case, it could be that you want to be able to invest in new furniture for the patio or someplace to sit. It’s nice to really invest in your garden when you know that you want to be able to use it more. So, if you know that you love your garden and you want it to be your little haven, spend a little more. Grow Your Own And finally, you may even want to consider growing your own vegetables too. When it comes to having a garden that you love, it’s important to put it all in place and bring it altogether. Being able to grow your own can just be perfect and something that you can do with your kids. They love to grow fruit and veg and be involved in the process. And it can be so lovely to eat your own produce...
Make Your Fingers Greener By Growing Vegetables

Make Your Fingers Greener By Growing Vegetables

If you have always loved the thought of having your own veggie patch in the garden, there has never been a better time to start growing. We are more conscious than ever of our carbon footprint and yearn to know where our food has come from. We don’t want the guilt of knowing that our tomatoes have come all the way from Portugal or that our cucumbers have taken a long jaunt from New Zealand. Instead, why not set up your own little area out back and have a go at growing your own vegetables? You can have a go at growing whatever takes your fancy. You might be hesitant because you don’t know your daffodil from your daisy or your butternut from your crown, but follow this guide and you can make your fingers more green. Where Will You Grow Them? If you are blessed with a chunky-sized garden, you can plant some seeds straight into the ground. Consider creating some zones so you know what you’ll be planting and where. You might grow some potatoes, some cabbages, and some runner beans. Depending on the plant, you may need some sticks or posts to create support pyramids. If you have a smaller area, consider creating a couple of raised beds. Or you might even want to use large pots or containers if you’re really short of space. You don’t need a huge amount of square footage to yield a decent crop. Starting The Process Seeds need to sprout in little pots. These tend to be plastic and small, and give just enough space to produce a seedling. Jiffy seed kits are great for the beginner as all you need to do is add some warm water to a seed tray to expand some Jiffy pellets, before planting a couple of seeds into each pot section and watching them grow. When they are large enough to handle without risking the integrity of the crop, you can put them into your larger pot, raised bed or vegetable trough. This is the crucial phase for your vegetables. Pests can run rampant and destroy your crop before it’s had a chance. Check out The 3 Best Bug Zappers article and utilize a device that will kill any fly that may be keen to munch away on your seedlings. Sowing Well To sow your seeds, scattering is an approach that many novices take. However, for more uniformity in your planting, use the rows method. Carrots and onions appreciate their own designated space and don’t want to compete with another crop. They need their own space to grow into a fine specimen of a vegetable. If you catch the vegetable growing bug, you will need to begin a crop rotation to ensure that your soil maintains its nutrients. Different vegetables should be grown every year with one in four years being fallow. Edibles are a fantastic way to get into gardening. Even if you don’t have a horticultural bone in your body, you can have fun growing some vegetables and eating the crop that you have matured in your back...
Keeping Your Garden Blooming In Quarantine

Keeping Your Garden Blooming In Quarantine

Spring is in full blossom, and we are rolling towards the summer. This year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, most of us are in lockdown or quarantine. With all unessential travel stopped, this year our summer vacation looks set to become a staycation.  Spending more time at home means you have time to do all the jobs you are usually too busy for, this is especially true in our gardens. But, with many shops forced to close during the pandemic, how can we keep our gardens blooming so we can relax and enjoy the months ahead?  If you are an avid gardener, chances are you have already done most of the prep work and are now in maintenance mode, trimming and replanting as your plants begin to come to life. However, if you haven’t had the time to get the garden of your dreams, it’s not too late to get green-fingered!  Simple croton plus ‘Summer Sunset’ asiatic jasmine for an easy spiller. Most of our local nurseries have adapted to the current situation, and either are operating under strict social distance measures or have taken their services online. This can be daunting to the avid gardener who sees their trip to a nursery as a rite of passage. Choosing plants is a dedicated job, we want to find the best and healthiest looking plants, right?  Online shopping for plants is no different from online grocery shopping. The team at your local nursery put time and effort into ensuring you get the best of their products. With social media complaints are instant and public, so it does the company no favors to send you withered shrubbery. Calloway’s nursery says “We are working hard to ensure our customers can buy online, we are adding products daily. We also accept phone orders for curbside pick-up” Forward thinking businesses are making sure consumers can shop safely and efficiently. If you are worried about delivery services, then contact your local nursery and ask about a pick-up service. That way you can still check your plants before they arrive home.  When buying online, you should also check the customer reviews on websites and check the social media feeds to see if there have been any issues. It pays to read the small print on the website too as there could be notes in the sellers’ policy that you weren’t expecting. Perhaps you didn’t realise you are buying young cuttings because the image used on the site was of a well-established plant. If you do decide to have your plants delivered, don’t forget that courier companies are stretched at the moment. Make sure you allow a few extra days for your new plants to arrive.  It is possible to keep your garden blooming during quarantine so do your research, speak to your local nursery and work out the safest way to buy all the things you need. Then sit back and relax in your beautiful surroundings. It’s a year to appreciate the little...
Are Pothos plants toxic to cats?

Are Pothos plants toxic to cats?

Pothos, Plants, Cats-What you need to know! Pothos plant, also famous by the names of golden pothos, devil’s ivy taro vine and ivy arum, are quite toxic to cats. The leaves and stems of pothos contain calcium oxalate crystals. Such minerals are venomous for cats if they take a bite of the plant. These crystals penetrate the soft tissues in the mouth, throat, and the stomachs of the cats. Pothos plants and cats are, thus, a poisonous combination. The danger of Pothos plants compels the pet owners to be extra cautious with cats when they are around different kinds of plants. Even though cats recover in a short time after getting proper treatment, the effect of the virus is quite detrimental to their health. Just after chewing the plant, the cats start showing symptoms of the contagion caused by the plant. Oral irritation is one of the most prominent ones. The flowerless plant causes irritation to humans after excessive contact, thus, reflecting upon its toxicity. Are Pothos toxic to cats? These plants cause instant discomfort to the cats. Once the cats consume the venomous plants, it causes a burning sensation in their mouths. In order to relieve themselves of this sensation, cats tend to drool, vomit or paw at their mouths. Whilst there is immense irritation, the infection also involves excruciating pain. Thus, the foremost step to be taken after cats chew the plant is taking them to a veterinarian. Symptoms The symptoms of intoxication by the plant are exhibited by the cat immediately after they consume the plant. If you are suspicious that your cat has chewed the plant but are looking for reassurance, you should look for the following symptoms. ● Visible pain in the oral cavity ● Pawing at the mouth ● Extreme drooling ● Less or no appetite ● Vomiting ● Discomfort while swallowing Causes When cats bite, chew, or consume the golden pothos plant, the poisoning process begins. This happens due to the presence of insoluble raphides in the plant. The calcium oxalate crystals cause Pothos plant cats infection. All the crystals are discharged into the mouths of the cats when they bite either their leaves or stems. As the crystals pass along their mouth, throat, and stomach, they penetrate into soft tissues. This, further on, causes swelling of the tissues. Besides causing discomfort, this internal inflammation causes immense pain to the cats. This instigates them to show apparent symptoms. Cats also begin to experience a burning sensation in their bodies, owing to the toxin in the plant. Diagnosis If you have noticed your cat chewing the plant or have been observing the aforementioned symptoms in the cat, you should rush the pet to a vet. Collecting a sample of the plant or taking a picture of the plant the cat has chewed is really significant in the diagnosis process. The symptoms of the cat should be precisely described to the vet as this guides the vet in determining the Pothos plant cat condition. Since there is no method available with the vet to decide the cause, the information you provide plays a major role. The examination commenced with the cat’s oral cavity. If the vet detects the presence of calcium oxalate crystals in the cat’s mouth, the reason will be easily deduced. It will vividly indicate the consumption of a poisonous plant. Still, this identification does not confirm the consumption of pothos plants as there are other plants containing the same toxins. My cat ate a pothos leaf-what to do? If your cat has consumed even a bite of pothos plant and you have been noticing the related symptoms, you should visit the vet as soon as possible. After diagnosing the condition of the cat properly, the vet will begin with the treatment. Firstly they will try to take control of the Pothos plant cat symptoms by making the cat comfortable. This would involve making efforts to diminish the pain experienced by the cat. Discomfort is terminated by thoroughly washing the mouth of the cat, followed by gastric lavage, implying stomach wash. The vet might as well feed the cat some dairy products such as cheese and yogurt which are known to relieve the pain effectively. In order to prevent the airway of the cat from swelling, leading to greater complications, Benadryl can be provided to the cat. Simultaneously, vomiting can be halted through the administration of Kapectolin or Sucralfate which are known for tackling the irritation in the stomach lining. In the case of excessive vomiting, the chances of dehydration increase. This is handled by giving IV fluids to the cat. After due treatment and rest, the cat is bound to feel better. The recovery process is not intricate, although the diet of the cat will need attention for the next few days. Also, preventive measures should be taken involving the removal of all the poisonous plants after consultation from the vet. Care should be taken that cats do not roam around in the neighborhood where there is a potential presence of toxic plants. This article is a guest contribution from Gary Stephen, author of...
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