Samson Kimani's Blog
In a typical year, you grow a lush vegetable garden that brings endless pleasure to you and fresh food to your table. But this year you plan to put your house on the market. Do you still grow a garden? Or, you live in a townhome or condominium and miss your old gardening days. So what do you do? Grow your garden in pots.
Veggies in pots
- It doesn’t matter if you’re just short on gardening space or plan to move and want to take all your hard work with you, you can grow many vegetables in pots just fine. In fact, many plants don’t really care where you grow them as long as the soil is good and has water and drainage.
- Growing root vegetables such as carrots and parsnips in pots require the pots to be taller than you want your root to grow. Otherwise, your veggie will bend to adjust to fit the container and won’t look as pretty on your table.
- Many plants can grow in hanging pots: think strawberries, small potatoes, grape or cherry tomatoes and even greens such as spinach and butter-head lettuce.
- Vine plants like cucumbers, squashes, and melons require more width, so a shallow but wide bed works best. You can make a tabletop bed or even use a large plastic tub or bin.
- Climbing plants such as tomatoes and bell peppers need a trellis. Most gardening shops carry round trellises that fit right inside your pot.
- Plant your herbs in small pots and hang them on hooks along the patio wall or terrace railing.
If you’re able to work in your garden every day, keep your plants moist with a watering pot. But, if like many people, your commute is long and your days are short, consider using a drip system to help out. You can adapt a regular hose hooked to your spigot with pieces for a standard drip system available at your big box DIY store. Or, find one specially designed for patio gardens. Put a separate sprayer or drip outlet in each pot and adjust it to match the needs of that plant for a bumper crop.
If your patio doesn’t have a spigot, or if your budget doesn’t run to adding a drip system, use inexpensive watering globes or create your own using empty water or soda bottles. Just poke a hole in the lid of the bottle (bigger holes for plants that need more water and smaller for those that require less), poke a tiny hole in the base of the bottle to prevent it forming a vacuum. Then fill it with water and turn it lid-side-down. Place it in the pot with loose dirt or small pebbles so that the holes don’t become clogged. Now you have a drip system.
Moving your plants
When you’re ready to move, take your plants first or last. Move them inside your vehicle so that you can control the light, temperature, and ventilation. If you’re moving a long distance, or crossing state lines, check agriculture regulations. For instance, there are many plants you cannot import to California. Other states, such as Florida and Maine require live plants to be inspected to certify they are free of pests that could damage crops.
Talk to your professional realtor about displaying and protecting your patio garden during open house days.
91 Brownell St, Attleboro, MA 02703
It is no surprise that first impressions matter, and with a home, curb appeal is where it is at. Curb appeal at every budget point is a meaningful discussion to have, because who doesn’t like pretty things?
Here are a few affordable curb appeal ideas that will work for most types of New England homes.
The first thing you will likely think about to enhance curb appeal is adding fresh flowers and greenery. This upgrade can include adding window boxes and planters, which use foliage to bring out critical visual points such as entryways and windows. A hanging planter can be used in place of a standing flower box if space is an issue.
Back and front yard maintenance is also an essential part of home improvement. A large part of that is lawn care. Pull up creeping weeds, rake away leaves and clip your lawn from time to time- preferably at least once a week. To keep your garden a glistening green, be sure to turn your sprinkler on, especially during summer. If you don’t actually have a green thumb, you could opt for artificial turf or shrub beds.
Add a Bit of Door Zest
Rather than a front door that blends in with those of all your neighbors, try one that offers a striking contrast. Cut your expenses by painting the door yourself, as it is not a difficult task (get on YouTube if you’re not a DIY enthusiast). Go for bold colors that contrast tastefully with the home’s exterior theme. There are apps available for virtual color testing as well.
Light it up
Dark entryways are not at all welcoming. For those with a hanging pendant or sconce by the front door, switch it with something more fresh and fun. Clear out all debris and cobwebs around the outdoor fixtures to brighten up that space and give it a clean, inviting ambiance. For additional light sprucing for a walkway, invest in solar-powered lanterns or porch-string lights.
Symmetry is your friend
Symmetrical patterns create focal points, and as such, look pleasing and visually satisfying. Achieve this look by placing matching plants or lanterns on both sides of the front door. The outside of the property can be similarly jazzed up by doing the same on either side of the garage door.
A stylish mailbox is a relatively easy DIY project that can produce a noticeable but understated difference to a house’s curb appeal. Instead of the conventional wall mountable one, install a stand-alone one for a complete front yard makeover.
Begin collecting plants to spruce up your yard whenever you’re near a gardening store, and take those first steps to spruce up your home's curb appeal.
91 Brownell St, Attleboro, MA 02703
Whether you're looking to buy a house or sell one, a helpful saying to keep in mind is the one about recognizing a duck:
"If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck, and looks like a duck, then it's a duck!" As silly as that expression may be, there's a lot of wisdom in its message.
The reason it applies to real estate transactions is that people sometimes tend to overlook, justify, and gloss over potential or actual problems that need to be dealt with (and not ignored). Here are some examples, as they relate to home sellers and buyers:
Selling a home: As a home seller, one of the most important things you can do to make your home more appealing and marketable is staging. Not only is it beneficial to apply a fresh coat of paint where needed, but parts of your home may need to be repaired, upgraded, touched up, or cleaned.
One false assumption home sellers sometimes make it that prospective buyers won't notice or care about broken tiles in the bathroom, peeling paint on the front steps, cracks in the ceiling, or mold in the basement. While there are a lot of factors that help sell a house quickly or cause it to linger on the market for months, sometimes it's the little things that can impact the desirability of a house. If there's an imperfection, flaw, or cosmetic problem in your home that you've been noticing for months or years, there's a good chance prospective buyers will take note of it, too.
Whenever you can affordably correct a cosmetic problem in your home or property, it will usually be to your advantage as a home seller. If the problem looks like it could be a potential deal breaker, there's a chance it will be.
When you need an objective opinion on matters such as home staging, curb appeal, or increasing the marketability of your home, an experienced real estate agent is often your best source for advice and guidance.
Buying a home: There are a lot of factors that need to be evaluated when searching for your ideal home. While optimism is an essential state of mind to cultivate when you're navigating the sometimes bumpy road of house hunting, it's also important to balance that positive attitude with a drop of caution and skepticism. If you get too caught up in the excitement of buying a new house, you might miss red flags along the way that could lead to future problems or expenses.
By hiring a reputable property inspector to check everything in the house from structural integrity to the condition of mechanical systems, you can be alerted to potential safety hazards, possible water damage, malfunctioning electrical circuitry, and dozens of other issues that need to be identified, and hopefully resolved, before you become the new owner of a house.