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Planning Walkways in Your Landscape

Walkways are a great way to enhance the look and safety of the outside of your home, and incorporating them into your landscape design plans is easy. But there are several things you should keep in mind when planning walkways for the outside of your home.

For one thing, take a look at the outside of your home and observe the natural paths that you and your family use on a regular basis. You want to be sure to have your new walkways installed along those paths since those are the ones your family is already used to using. That way, when planning your new landscape design, you don’t have to worry about breaking your family of any bad habits of walking through your flower beds since there will now be a walkway where they are used to walking.

Keep in mind that any curves or steps you have installed in your walkway will probably add to the landscape design and installation costs. If you really have your heart set on some steps or a fancy curve, make sure you budget for that and recognize that this could drive up how much you end up paying. If you are working within a tight budget, keep the walkway as straight as possible.

However, if the walkway needs to slope more than 10% or so, then a curve or some steps will probably be a necessary part of your landscape design. And sometimes steps or curves in a walkway can look a little boring, so you can enhance the look of the walkway by adding flowers or other landscaping elements to the curve or steps. This will make it more pleasant for you and your guests to look at and walk past.

In this day and age, decorative and stamped concrete are more popular than ever. Thanks to advances in technology and methods of installing concrete, you can get pretty creative with decorative concrete these days. You can make your walkways quite interesting and eye-catching if you have them made out of decorative or stamped concrete. But the more intricate the concrete, the more it will cost, so be sure to budget accordingly for that in your landscape design as well.

After your new walkways have been installed, you might want to look into having small shrubs or flowers planted along the edge of the walkways. Just keep in mind that you do not want to plant anything that will grow too tall. Try to keep those plants to around two feet high or shorter so they do not overwhelm the walkway or cause people to feel too crowded. Plus, smaller and less imposing plants will make it easier for you to carry groceries and other items into your home. You won’t have to worry about knocking into the plants and damaging them.

Finally, try to plant a variety of plants and flowers along your walkway, and try to find ones that bloom throughout the year. That way, you and your loved ones always have something pretty to look at when walking in and out of your home.

Log Home Decorating and Maintenance Tips

5 Tips for Decorating Log Homes

1.      Using wooden furniture that is a few shades lighter than the sidings of your home will add light to the interior.
2.      Chandeliers are also a great way to add light and beauty to your log home.
3.      Use pictures that contain imagery from outdoors such as landscapes to keep with the theme of your home.
4.      Rugs with Native American patterns add color without being overpowering or clashing.

5.      Add a little something extra with a vase of flowers such as daisies or cat tails.
 
5 Tips for Exterior Log Home Maintenance:    
 
1.      Checking the Exterior Routinely – Examine the outside of your home for burrow holes, splitting logs, loose caulking, loose chinking, mold and moisture issues, or any siding discoloration. All of which are very important factors in maintaining the investment and beauty of your log home.
2.      Consider The Surrounding Elements – Trees, excessive rain, and wind can cause damage to your home. If you have any of these problems you will also want to check the roof of your home for any wear or damages and replace them immediately.
3.      Clean Regularly – Wood homes need to be washed at minimum once a year will ensure that the home will be in great shape for a long time. Failing to do so can result in quicker deterioration of the home. Dirt is extremely volatile to wood and needs to be removed often.
4.      Refinishing and Maintaining the Beauty of your Log Home – Replace damaged or rotten logs right away to ensure the deterioration does not spread.
5.      Apply the appropriate stain or sealer to your log home every 3-5 years. It is very important to determine what the existing finish is or what stain was previously used on your home originally. This will enable you to determine what the best exterior finish would be when recoating your log home.