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Why Natural Refrigerants is More Eco-Friendly Alternative

Refrigerants are substances that are common in air conditioners, HVAC, refrigerators, and freezers. The natural ones are water, ammonia, carbon dioxide, and natural hydrocarbons. They have the potential to become alternatives to synthetic refrigerants like hydrofluorocarbon (HFC), hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC), and chlorofluorocarbon (CFC).

Many companies are concerned with the environmental impacts of synthetic refrigerants, and they found that organic ones are more sustainable in nature. With the current technologies developing today, many believe that the air conditioning sector will switch and convert into natural refrigerants for more eco-friendly systems. This is a must today since the use of HVAC systems is prevalent around the world.

A Background about Refrigerants

Synthetic coolants like HCFCs and CFCs have been around since 1929, and they were used in various ACs and fridges to cool a specific area. However, when they leak out of the older systems, they go to the atmosphere, and they thin out the ozone layer. Hence, they contribute largely to the global warming that everyone feels today.

CFC contains fluorine, carbon, and fluorine. For years, it has contributed significantly to the amount of inorganic chlorine in the earth’s stratosphere, where they are decomposed by ultraviolet radiation. The released chlorine in the environment is becoming active when it comes to the destruction of the ozone layer and the melting of the polar ice caps.

The HCFCs generally have a shorter lifetime while in the atmosphere because there’s added hydrogen in the mix. However, they still contribute to the adverse effects of chlorine elements with their CFC counterparts. The HFC, meanwhile, may not contain any chlorine, but their abilities to absorb the infrared radiation can become a contribution of the greenhouse effect. Learn more about HFC on this site here.

In the year 1987, it’s the Montreal Protocol that had first acknowledged and banned the use of CFCs. Many homeowners are encouraged to get newer appliances, and manufacturers are searching for other ways to give them a coolant that won’t harm the environment.

Many of the brands before are now phased out because amendments are being in place to eliminate HCFCs by 2020 and CFC production in 2010. On the other hand, the negligible impacts of HFC on the ozone layer made them viable candidates and ideal as a replacement. However, know that these too have implications in the world’s global warming, and there are calls for amendments that the use should be cut back by around 80% for the next three decades.

Potential options, as mentioned, were carbon dioxide, water, and other refrigerants as a replacement for HFCs. This industry is growing, and it’s expected that it will become a billion-dollar niche in 2027.

Metrics of Sustainability

The refrigerants are typically measured with their potential in contributing to ozone depletion and global warming. The global warming potential scales or GWP is standardizing the carbon dioxides. The value of a specific refrigerant is multiplied by the heat it would absorb by the same mass of CO2 gases in a given amount of time. The period is usually measured in a century.

It was found out that CFC has over 10,900 potential in global warming while ethane only has 6. You can view the results of HFC, water, and ammonia on many websites that offer these pieces of information in detail.

About the Hydrocarbons

Pure hydrogen compounds are now being moderately used in refrigeration systems. Know that these hydrocarbons are viable options. This is because aside from providing cooling properties, they are efficient in energy use and plentiful. When harnessed and used correctly, it was found out that they have more than 50% energy efficiency compared to synthetic ones. They are very environmentally friendly, and they have lower ranks on the GWP scale.

In the past, the hydrocarbons were primarily seen as a refrigerant in an industrial-scale of cooling. Know more about hydrocarbons on this site: https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/chemical-engineering/hydrocarbon. However, with the current trends today, many start to look for a more environmentally friendly option in the residential setting.  

Some of the hydrocarbons used in many refrigerants include ethylene, methane, propane, pentane, isobutane, and cyclopentane. One of the primary disadvantages of using hydrocarbons is their high flammability. They can cause fire when exposed to extremely high pressures. Before, this same risk was mitigated by turning the hydrocarbons into other forms like HFC and CFC. Still, with the companies decreasing the use of such substances, being too flammable should be fixed.

Today, the use of hydrocarbons as refrigerants is under EPA guidelines. Particular pressurized levels are limited when it comes to hydrocarbons. The level of caution is essential, and for the hydrocarbons to combust, they should be mixed with a correct air proportion. The EPA has guidelines that prevent hydrocarbons from causing sparks and ensure the highest levels of safety for companies and consumers.

Guide for Homeowners: Top Tools for Your Lawn

Are you a new homeowner? While having your own home provides endless possibilities, it also requires some job to do. If you have a lawn to take care of, it becomes your responsibility right away. You have to get outside, plant flowers, bushes, and even trees, use a walk behind string trimmer, cut the grass, and kill the weeds to make it look gorgeous.

Although this is tough work from time to time, it is totally worth your efforts. An attractive lawn adds value to the house, while working outside grants you strong physical and mental health. Consider it as free-of-charge therapy sessions. You choose the way you want to decorate the lawn and can always change the design if you don’t like it.

Tools You Require

If you want to start working outside, you have to take some tools with you. There are some basic tools you may already have, and some specific ones you have to buy. Don’t worry, it is a beneficial investment since you will use these instruments for years.

1. Lawnmower

It is not the cheapest item on the list, but it is an essential one. A lawnmower is a must-have for everyone who has a lawn, no matter whether it is big or small. The grass grows so fast that you risk to run out of money by hiring a professional with his own tools. There are two types of lawnmowers, corded and cordless. Corded lawnmowers are usually powered by electricity and are less mobile. The cordless tools are mobile and powered by gas.

2. String trimmer

The spots you miss with the lawnmower can be taken care of with the string trimmer. It acts more accurately than a lawnmower and is necessary to have for owners of flowerbeds and bushes. You will be able to cut the grass under the trees and near the flowers without cutting them.

3. Leaf rake

Even if you already have a leaf blower, you may need this instrument in your collection. It is pretty affordable, does not require any additional knowledge, and its working speed depends directly on you. This tool is a classic measure against fallen leaves and old grass.

4. Soil rake

Soil rake is different from the leaf rake. It is also a hand tool with a wooden handle and spikes on the end, but it works miracles with airing the soil, evening the garden, and spreading the gravel. Make sure it is made of reliable materials.

5. Lawn spreader

You don’t have to buy a gigantic powerful machine that is attached to the tractor. All you need is a handheld spreader on durable wheels that can hold enough seeds or fertilizers for your lawn. There are lots of options on the market.

6. Snow shovel

If you live in a snowy climate, you have to buy a shovel to dig the snow. It helps to clean the road to your car. Unlike snow cleaning machines, the tool is totally environmentally friendly. Besides, it costs way cheaper.

7. Shovel

The shovel is the instrument you need to have at home. While this instrument is not new and was not significantly digitalized or even improved during the last years, you can still plant a tree, flower, or even grass with its help. The main benefit of this old-fashioned but still classy instrument is that you don’t need any electricity or power source to use it.

8. Knife for soil

You may not even know how much you need it before you decide to plant some flowers or loosen the soil. You will not be able to go through the big territory with it, but it is perfect for small activities. Soil knives can be used for getting rid of the weed with strong roots.

9. Double hand hoe

A hoe is a great option for dry soil. Consider it as a gigantic soil knife. A double hand hoe is a beneficial tool with a digger on one side and a hoe on the other. You will be able to remove weeds from the flowerbeds in no time.

10. Hand pruner

A sharp hand pruner can help to cut slim branches, shrubs, and leaves. It looks like the shears and is incredibly powerful. You will need it for your flowers as well. If you have a grapevine in your yard, this tool will be extremely handy to cut it when the time is right.

11. Lopper

If you don’t want to waste your hand pruner on the tree branches, you can buy a professional lopper. It has large blades and comfortable long handles. You will have to cut the branches once in a while to get rid of unreliable old branches.

12. Hedge shear

This tool is beneficial for hedge owners. If you don’t want to quarrel with your neighbors about the beauty of your hedge, you have to take care of it. This instrument is developed specifically for thick bushes and is simple in use. Make sure you use only sharp shear to avoid dangerous situations.

13. Hose

You can experiment with nozzle attachments using a simple hose. It is necessary for dry regions. You have to water the grass and soil to avoid over-drying. Check out the diameter of the hose and make sure it fits the tap before you order it. If you don’t want to stay outside for a long time, moving from one area to another, you can buy a sprinkler. Just make sure that the sprinkler is attached reliably to the water supply.

14. Gloves

Always wear gloves when you begin to work outside. It is a simple but important measure that provides safety to your hands. There are numerous small injuries you can avoid, including the cuts from the grass or even the wounds from spikes. Gloves cost almost nothing, but in the end, you will be able to work in your yard for as long as you want.

The Right Choice of Tools

Choosing the gardening tools is a simple and fast procedure if you know your demands. The first thing you have to think about is the size of your lawn. The second factor is the size of your budget. After that, think about the way you want to design your yard. Whether it will be a simple lawn with neatly cut grass or a masterpiece decorated with exquisite flowerbeds, you have to use reliable and proper tools for your work.

Use this list of the essential instruments to find out which tools you have to buy in the first place. You don’t need to buy all the instruments at once, since you may not need some of them for some time. Fill your shed with beneficial tools step by step and watch the progress on your own lawn. You don’t have to be a professional gardener or garden designer to achieve advanced results. All you need is to love what you do and to use the proper instruments in your work.

How to Select a Humidifier for Grow Tent or Grow Room

Did you know that keeping the humidity level in a grow room/tent at 40-50% can improve overall plant development? This is only one of the multiple benefits! However, choosing a humidifier for grow tent can be quite tricky as they all look pretty much the same, so let this concise guide by 420growradar.com experts help you make a considered decision.

Types of Humidifiers

First of all, learn how to distinguish one type of humidifier from another:

  1. Ultrasonic – it’s one of the most popular solutions due to an option to produce both cool and warm mist and silent performance. The downsides include a higher price tag and the inability to work with tap water.
  2. Cool mist humidifier – it’s usually the cheapest option with the simplest maintenance, but you should remember that cool mist lowers the temperature inside the grow room or tent.
  3. Warm mist humidifier – this type heats the water and blows hot mist. It can destroy various harmful bacteria and organic compounds but also warms the air inside the room or tent.
  4. Evaporative humidifier – this type blows vapor instead of mist and filters the air stream. This raises maintenance costs as well, though.
  5. Air washer – this is the largest, the most advanced, and the priciest option, but it’s also the most advantageous for large grow rooms where coverage and air purification are more important than cost and maintenance frequency.

Features to Consider

Now that you can define one type from another, pay attention to the following details:

  • Grow room size – this is the most important aspect. Measure the room/ tent area size and look for a humidifier that promises to cover slightly more than that.
  • Cool vs. warm mist – learn about the required temperature regimes of your plants and consider the average temperature outside the room/tent. If it’s cold outside, then warm mist is needed and vice versa.
  • Water clarity – if the water you use contains too much mineral dust, look for evaporative humidifiers and air washers as they can purify the water.
  • Automatic or manual – ultrasonic humidifiers and air washers usually come with automated features, which makes them more autonomous. You can also save by avoiding these features if you don’t need any automation.
  • Filter replacement – some models require monthly filter replacement, while others can keep using a single filter for up to 6 months. Always consider the long-term costs of filter replacement for your particular model and look for alternatives to save up.
  • Cleaning – all humidifiers can suffer from mold, so it’s important to regularly clean them. While this is a rule for every model, you should avoid those items that involve complicated dismantling. You will simply get tired of the need to deal with an “innovative” design. Look for something simple to avoid frustration in the future.
  • Noise – consider buying a humidifier that is claimed to operate silently if the noise level matters to you and the people you live with. The best way to learn about the actual noise levels is to read user and expert reviews.
  • Portability – if you are looking for a large humidifier, you better get the one with wheels to move it around without breaking a sweat. As for the compact models, make sure the tank size-evaporation speed ratio is suitable for your needs.
  • Budget – count maintenance costs, choose the products with the best warranty and don’t get tricked by the brand names.

Humid & Thriving

A thoroughly selected humidifier is a fundamental lifecycle part for the vast majority of plants in grow rooms and tents. The good news is that they are not expensive at all and work surprisingly efficiently even if you get the simplest budget model. If everything is clear, share the humidifier you selected in the comments. If not, you’re welcome to ask. We will help you find the best solution!

The Reasons Why I Use Body Wipes

There is no better feeling than washing away dirt from the skin. It comes with a refreshing feel. It also allows you to feel confident on your skin. The traditional way of removing dirt from the skin is to go under the shower or soak up in the tub.

But now, there are several ways to remove dirt from one’s skin. One of such ways is using body wipes. You can try body wipes by Goodwipes as an excellent alternative to bath and showers. They are great for a quick freshen-up. They are convenient, refreshing and they enable you to smell nice.

My personal experience with body wipes will always make me recommend them. I am always on the move. This makes me sweat a lot. And sweating too long beats up the skin. It hampers its quality. So, I found out about body wipes. And since then, I have come to love and enjoy them.

There are times when I need to freshen up but have little time for it. My shower wipes help me feel rejuvenated and ready. They get rid of sweat, dirt, makeup, and unpleasant odor. They also ensure that my space is sanitized correctly.

Body wipes have sanitizers in them that can be used for other elements. They can be used for cleansing furniture, vases, appliances, and windows. Cool right? Below are the reasons why I use body wipes:

They are Convenient

One of the primary reasons why I enjoy the body wipe is because of its convenience. It is also the primary reason why it is widely popular amongst backpackers. Since they came into existence, several brands of body wipes are now applicable for various purposes.

They are easily accessible and can be found in several convenient locations. You can purchase them online; you can get them at your local grocery store. You can also find them at drug stores because they are sanitizers as well.

Anyone living a fast-paced life will enjoy them. It is an alternative to quick showers and baths. You can find here tips to better enjoy bath and shower time.

They Act as Sanitizers

Did you know that body wipes cab be antibacterial? They are widely used because they help to eradicate germs. I move a lot, just as many people do also. Touching public surfaces will most likely attract germs to the body.

Using body wipes doesn’t just remove sweat from the body; it kills germs. Germs that have been brought upon by our everyday lifestyle.

They are Easy to Use

I enjoy using body wipes because they are not only accessible but also easy to use. They do not come with any instructions. This alone tells you that anyone can use them. Even a 6-month-old child can. Once you find them, take away their seals, and that’s it. You are free to use them on the skin. Make sure to dispose of the item after use properly. Reuse isn’t allowed.

They Act as a Quick Freshen-Up

As I earlier said, they are great for a quick freshen-up. People who are always on the road would enjoy this item. It’s like packing a quick bath in your backpacks.

Imagine being in between flights, and you need to have a quick shower. Or, imagine being at a hectic seminar and need to go to another event in less than five minutes. A skin wipe will provide you that quick, refreshing, and rejuvenating feel. This will give you the confidence to enter into another event without having to worry about your skin.

They are Great for Cleaning House-Hold Equipment

I do not use body wipes for my skin alone. I use them on some of my furniture and appliances at home. And I promise you that other people do so as well.

You can use wipes to clean dirt from your office table and chairs. They can also be used to clean your television or a few other electrical devices. As they wash those surfaces, they also sanitize them, which is a plus. You can find useful suggestions here https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/home/cleaning/g2550/best-cleaning-tips/ on proper home cleaning.

They are Excellent Alternative for Toilet Papers

Moist papers are very much used as alternatives for toilet papers. Most people like the way they feel on the skin. I stick to traditional toiletries.

Nonetheless, I know lots of baby parents and older adults who use moist papers. Soft and delicate skin will be best suited for damp papers. They feel great on the skin and leave a healthy touch on it.

Take Away

I would recommend body wipes for anyone who isn’t familiar with the item. They are great for the skin as well as the surrounding.

How to Choose the Best Lawn Edger for Your Garden

Having a Lawn around your office, home, or business gives it aesthetic value. Basically, a lawn is a refreshing space for leisure, entertainment, and companionship with friends and family. However, getting the best out of your relaxation spot requires routine cleaning and maintenance, and regardless of the kind of turf (natural or artificial), you need an edger to put it in good shape.

Most people confuse a lawn edger with trimmers, but both are different equipment and have different uses. A garden trimmer, as the name implies, is used to trim grass but an edging tool, on the other hand, is used to shape and tidy grass to prevent it from growing into your pathway or driveway. Check out this article from Gardening with Confidence for some of the lawn edgers you can find in the market.

A lawn edger makes it easier to maintain the limits and borders of your garden. As a result, you will be able to do your gardening right knowing that the edges are secured. Also, you will be able to create more beautiful styles and designs in your garden.

 In this article, we will give a quick review of how to get the best garden edger. Please read on as we explain more.

What Are the Features of a Good Lawn Edger?

Garden edging tools have different features that make them unique and you can find some of them below:

  1. High horsepower capacity
  2. Sharp blade and rolling speed.
  3. Flexible and portable carriage. It is usually light and easy to operate.
  4. Less energy consumption levels.
  5. Easy to operate without stress.
  6. A multiplicity of functions. It combines both trimming and edging functions.
 Good garden edging equipment are usually different from the manual and traditional ones and with the recent advancements in technology, they are configured to give your yard a top-notch appearance.

Factors to Consider Before Choosing a Lawn Edger

The following are some factors you should consider before choosing a yard edger:

Quality

One of the most important factors to always consider when choosing an edging tool is the quality as they come in varying qualities. Depending on your choice and budget, you are sure to get a suitable and reliable garden edger that will be able to last for a long time. A lot of notable brands are available in the market today, so it is necessary to always make inquiries and research the quality of any brand you intend to go for.

Usage

Garden tools have different features and peculiarities that make them easy to use. Just like trimmers, a yard edger is a piece of user-friendly equipment that requires less stress. What is important is your ability to control it along the edges to achieve a perfect shape. Before getting one, ensure that you ask an expert to show you how to maneuver with it. You can also check out this video to learn more about the usage of this machine.

Type

Another major factor you should consider is the edger type. It has a variety of options for you to choose from ranging from electric, petrol, gas, and manual types. Each type has its pros and cons that make it different from others. Ensure you go through these pros and cons to determine which one will suit your need.

Cost

As stated earlier, yard edging tools come in different types and at varying costs. The cost is determined by certain factors like size, quality of materials, level of demand, and supply. A high-quality lawn edger will come at a higher cost when compared to one of average quality. Additionally, you should have in mind that a high price does not guarantee the quality of the product, so do not be in a hurry to choose, rather take your time to make a choice.

Warranty

Buying any product without a warranty is a risk that you shouldn’t take. Before choosing an edging tool, check if it has a minimum of 6 months warranty. This gives you the assurance that in case of any malfunctioning, it can easily be repaired or replaced.

Size of Garden

Considering the size of your garden is an important factor to always look out for before choosing a gardening tool. If your garden is a small one, you will just need to go for a small lawn edger and vice-versa. Also, a big yard will require the use of a highly sophisticated edger to make edging faster, easier, and stress-free.

Helpful Tips For Choosing a Lawn Edger

Here are some helpful tips you may need:

  1. Always read and research about any type of edger you intend to go for. This will help you know how the machine operates.
  2. Do not just pick any edging tool. Ensure that it adequately suits your need.
  3. Check out the weight of the edger.
  4. Consider the source of power. The source of power will determine if additional costs for gas, fuel, or electricity will be incurred.
  5. Compare prices from 2-3 outlets or online to ensure that you get the best offers.
  6. Seek recommendations from gardening experts on the reliable options to choose from.

These tips will help you to make the right choice of edging tools. Additionally, if you don’t have a lawn edger and you are looking for other options to help put your garden in shape, you can check here: https://www.wikihow.com/Edge-a-Lawn-Without-an-Edger.

Conclusion

Finding the best lawn edger for your garden is not a difficult task at all and we have discussed some of the factors to look out for before choosing one. From the comfort of your home, office, or business, you can read about different products and types, and make the best choice with just a click on your mobile device. It is also important to always check out reviews and make inquires before finalizing your decision.

Also, do not forget to go through the user manual and product information as this will give you more information about the product and how to handle it. No matter your level of expertise, edging a lawn is not a complex task, and by following some basic instructions, you can create a neat and tidy lawn edge.

6 Key Factors to Consider When Creating Your Dream Garden

Many people dream of having their own garden. It’s a fun and rewarding hobby that results in a beautiful landscape.

As a homeowner, you have the freedom to create a backyard paradise. But, if you’re like most people, you have no idea where to start. It can be daunting trying to figure out what you want and how to make it happen.

Luckily, we’re here to help! Here are 6 key factors to consider when creating your dream garden.

1. The Current Condition of Your Backyard

Before heading to the home improvement store, you should evaluate your current backyard. Determine what you’re working with. Did you just move in and are starting with a blank space? There might be more work involved, but you’ll get to design it exactly how you want. If you want to modify a preexisting garden, it might be a little easier seeing as you have a foundation to work with.  

Once you evaluate your current backyard, determine whether this is a project you can complete yourself. Depending on how ambitious your vision is, you might need professional help. Use tools like this Georgia contractor license search to help you find a qualified landscape contractor. 

2. What Kind of Plants You Want

This might seem obvious, but you should carefully consider what kind of plants you want. They should fit your personal preferences while being suitable for the climate and soil you’re working with.

Many people are content with flowers, bushes, and even a couple of trees. Others might want to dive into fruit or vegetable gardening. Do your research to see how much work each involves and if you will be able to maintain your desired plants.

When you know what kind of plants you want, it will be easier to plan the rest of your landscape. You’ll know where to put plants that require a certain amount of space and sunlight, leaving you free to arrange everything else around them.

3. Focal Points

Focal points help tie your garden together. They bring emphasis to certain areas and provide a more cohesive look. Without focal points, your garden might just look like an overcrowded bunch of plants.

Some of the best focal points for your garden include:

  • Statues
  • Arbours
  • Benches
  • Fountains
  • Pools
  • Birdbaths

Note that certain plants can also serve as focal points. These can include a unique-looking tree, a cluster of plants, a particularly vibrant plant, etc. While focal points are a great addition, be careful not to use too many. Too many focal points can be distracting and cause crowding.

4. Shed

Now that you’re a gardener, you need somewhere to keep all of your tools. Why not build a shed?

A shed will keep you from having to lug tools from your garage. Aside from being convenient, a shed can also be an aesthetic choice. A rustic-looking structure can add a lot of charm to your garden.

5. Free Space

Before completely filling your backyard with plants and focal points, consider how much free space you want.

Do you have kids or pets that need room to run around? Do you want to have an area to host guests? If so, be sure to consider this when planning your landscape.

6. Privacy

Even though you want everyone to see how beautiful your new garden looks, you probably still want some privacy. Add a fence to keep prying eyes at bay and protect your plants. Or, consider adding a hedge for a more natural look.

Bottom Line

While creating your dream garden can be challenging, it’s also very enjoyable! Don’t take it too seriously, and have fun adding your own personal touches.

Moving to A New House? Here’s How to Bring Your Garden with You

Moving to a new house is and should be an exciting time for any person. But for many, the thought of leaving behind the garden they’ve spent so long cultivating and nurturing is enough to make them want to miss out on the move entirely.

This article is for those very people. Today we’re going to share how you can bring your precious garden—or parts of it at least—along with you on your new adventure. Ready to dig in?

In Preparation

Before you go any further, you need to know if you’re even allowed to bring your garden with you. In some cases, you’re legally prohibited to move plants to and from certain states, so be sure to brush up on your legal know-how before uprooting your lemon tree!

Also, in-ground perennials and trees are usually part and parcel of the property. As such, the new buyer is most likely expecting their newly purchased home to come with the big plants that were present when they viewed the property. So you’ll need to express, in writing, your desire to take a certain tree or two with you when you vacate the property. The new owner will be well within their buyer’s rights to either decline your request or demand that you replace the taken plants with plants of a similar size and species.  

The Easy Stuff

If you’ve been building your own tower garden or container garden, you’re in luck because both are easy to move. Generally, it’s recommended to avoid watering them the day before you move them because the moisture makes them MUCH heavier. If you’re moving flowered plants, and don’t want to risk damaging any fragile petals, consider packing them with straw to protect them.

Naturally, pot plants are also easy to take with you to your new home as it’s simply a case of placing the pot in the moving van. A little manpower and elbow grease are all you’ll need to achieve this. If you’re short on either of these, we recommend re-potting your plants into plastic pots—if you don’t thank us, your back will!

The Not-So-Easy Stuff

Sadly, transplanting bigger trees and shrubs like lavender is not as easy as other plants. When roots are exposed to air for extended periods of time, it’s extremely traumatic to the plant to move it. The standard procedure for uprooting trees and shrubs is as follows:

  • Dig around the plant and be careful to keep the root ball intact
  • Carefully uproot the plant
  • Place the plant on a tarp
  • Place the plant in the moving van or truck
  • Place the plant in its new hole (or home!)  

Final Thoughts

Remember, you’re going to be busy sorting out your garden so it’s best to call in some extra help to sort out your actual home. When packing for your move don’t feel as though you have to go at it alone. Enlist the services of your local packing company or put your friends and family members to work. It takes a village, after all.

Flower Gifting Etiquette: Do’s and Don’ts

While most people generally appreciate receiving flowers as a gift, you could unintentionally offend somebody by sending the wrong flowers for the occasion. To keep your foot out of your mouth, follow these rules of flower gifting etiquette.

General Flower Gifting Etiquette

When you’re thinking about sending mixed flower arrangements, there are a few basic flower gifting etiquette rules you should follow to ensure that your present sparks joy.

Consider the Recipient

No matter what the other rules say, you should always consider the recipient. For example, while red roses are the most traditional romantic gift, they won’t mean as much if your partner’s favorite flowers are white lilies. Or, if your recipient loves to garden, they may prefer a plant over cut flowers.

You should also consider the size of the bouquet that would be best for your loved one. While bigger may be better, it could create frustration for somebody who doesn’t have room for a large arrangement. Sometimes a single flower or a small bouquet can make a bigger impact than something that takes up too much space.

Never send sympathy flowers when a family asks for donations in lieu of flowers. While you may not understand why somebody wouldn’t want flowers, you should respect their decision on how to honor the person they lost.

Finally, do some research first before sending flowers to somebody from a different culture. Flower-giving etiquette varies around the world. You don’t want to accidentally send flowers associated with mourning to somebody as a get-well gift, for example.

Choose the Right Flowers for the Occasion

Some colors and types of flowers are associated with certain people or occasions and would be out of place elsewhere. Red roses, for example, are stereotypically seen as romantic flowers and could cause confusion when given to a friend or coworker.

Sympathy flowers are usually white or pastel, so bold colors might look out of place, but those same bold colors might look great in a birthday bouquet. Always consider the occasion before selecting a flower bouquet.

Timing Is Everything

If you’re late to hear about an event or somebody’s passing, it’s OK to still send flowers, as long as they’re accompanied by a note explaining that you only recently heard the news. Without an explanation, late flowers may not be well-received.

If you’re thinking about sending get-well flowers, keep in mind that some hospitals don’t allow flowers, so better timing might be to send flowers to the person’s home the day after they get out of the hospital.

While flowers on a birthday, anniversary, or other special event are nice, flowers given out of the blue might be even more appreciated. Consider sending sympathy flowers a week or two after the funeral, to let the family know they’re still in your thoughts during the difficult grieving period.

Flower Gifting Etiquette by Occasion

Etiquette for flower-giving may vary depending on the occasion, so here are some tips for the most common situations that people give flowers for.

Romantic Flowers

While roses and carnations are traditionally seen as romantic flowers, it’s far more romantic to find out your partner’s favorite type and color of flowers and give those instead. It shows that you listen to them and care about what they really want.

It’s also usually best to send romantic flowers to a private location, like your partner’s home. Many people are uncomfortable with big public displays of affection, so sending romantic flowers to a workplace could make your significant other squirm under the looks from their coworkers.

Get Well Soon Flowers

Always check a hospital’s policy before sending get well soon flowers. Many intensive care units don’t allow flowers, and some hospitals don’t allow flowers in any room. It’s often best to send get well flowers to a person’s home after they return.

Sympathy Flowers

While you might choose next day delivery for sympathy flowers, consider sending them a week or two later, to let the family know you’re still thinking about their loss.

Many people also choose to send sympathy flowers to the funeral home to be displayed during the service. Remember to research the family culture first, as some don’t display flowers during funerals, and be respectful of a family’s wishes when they ask for charitable donations rather than flowers.

Holiday or Birthday Flowers

Every holiday has a different flower theme, and you should consider each person’s taste when selecting birthday flowers.

While pastel tulips are ideal for Easter, they look out of place at Christmas. Likewise, you wouldn’t send a poinsettia for Mother’s Day. Take a few minutes to research your recipient’s favorite flowers or the best flowers for each holiday to avoid a faux pas.

Gifting Etiquette by Culture

Every culture has their own flower gifting etiquette, and explaining all of it would be a whole other article. Instead, here are a few interesting tidbits from around the world:

In Egypt, flowers are only given as a wedding, funeral, or get well gift. Flowers are considered inappropriate for any other situation.

White flowers are considered funeral flowers in Germany, France, and other parts of the world.

On the other hand, purple is the most common flower color for funerals in many Central and South American countries.

Yellow flowers are associated with breakups in Russia and unfaithfulness in France.

Odd numbers of flowers are preferred in many cultures around the world, except for 13, which is considered bad luck in many places. 

What Can You Grow In A Vegan Garden?

For several reasons, the decision to become a vegan is among the best you can make in life. For starters, it is healthier for you and friendlier to the environment. Also, it teaches you to be disciplined since you will need to avoid animal products by all means, which doesn’t usually come easy.  Simply put, going vegan comes with plenty of benefits for you, the animals, and the environment. Now, assuming that you want to create a garden in your backyard, so you can be sure you are consuming chemical-free produce, what can you grow in your garden? Here are some ideas to start you off.

1. Green Beans

Green beans are a delicious vegetable with a crunchy texture. They’re also easy and quick to grow, making them a perfect vegetable for novice gardeners. In the kitchen, you can either sauté or blanch them. They are a nutritious addition to your diet and equally a healthy serving. Green beans have a myriad of health benefits since they are packed with a variety of nutrients that help the body in several ways. This includes high quantities of protein, which, as Rafid Nassir from Vegan Liftz points out, is among the nutrients bodybuilders need most to maximize muscle mass and minimize fat. With a few vegan recipe ideas from around, you can easily include green beans in your plant-based menu. What's more, it also contains scores of fiber and high levels of flavonoids, an antioxidant known for its anti-inflammatory properties. Consuming more of green beans could reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases and strokes. Beans grow best in moderately-rich soil. Once you have planted them, ensure the bean plant is well-watered to aid in the flowering. You can start harvesting as early as when the bean begins to forms.

2. Tomatoes

The tomato is a super vegetable that has surprising benefits to your body. It supports healthy skin, weight loss, and a healthy heart. It’s also very nutritious and makes a good, healthy meal. Tomatoes are a great source of minerals like potassium and magnesium, as well as natural vitamins like vitamins C, A, B1, and B7. You can enjoy this popular veggie either raw as a salad or cook it by sautéing or grilling. Tomatoes are incredibly delicious and versatile for use in the kitchen. One of the few tips for growing tomatoes is to use well-drained soil and choose the sunniest spot in your garden. This is because tomatoes are sun-lovers, so the more the sun, the more the fruit. They make a variety of foods, from the marinara sauces to stews and the delicious thick creamy vegan tomato soup. Allow the tomato to ripen on the vine; it will be much tastier and fresher as you pick it.

3. Green Onions

Green onions are a kind of a garnish that goes with more or less any savory dish. This makes it a must-have in your garden. It is loaded with many essential nutrients, including vitamin A, which is good for vision and helps in creating red blood cells. Green onions barely contain any calories and can, therefore, be added to different salads for that mellower onion flavor. It can also be used in soups or as a potato topping. Green onions are among the easiest veggies to grow since they can be planted either as seed or as a set. Ensure the soil is moist before planting and once the sprouting begins, they can be maintained pretty easily

4. Zucchini

Zucchini is also commonly known as courgette. It can either be enjoyed raw or cooked, and you will still get the same nutritional benefits of minerals and vitamins. To get most of the flavors from zucchini, prepare it by frying or stuffing. It is rich in vitamin C and potassium, which helps in controlling blood pressure by reducing the harmful effects of salt in your body. Zucchini grows best in temperate climates, in full sun, and in warm soil because the seeds do not germinate in cold soil.

Finally, you can do red potatoes in your vegan garden to complete your healthy diet. Red potatoes have vast health benefits. They can be mashed, boiled, or baked; and are rich in healthy carbs, as well as vitamin B6, and higher scores of potassium compared to other fruits and vegetables. They are also gluten-free, making them an essential part of a daily snack. The above are just a few ideas of crops you can grow in your garden to enrich your vegan diet.

How to Identify Good and Bad Bugs in Your Garden

For new gardeners, seeing bugs in their garden can cause panic. Often, they try to destroy and eliminate them. However, this should not always be the case. The first course of action should be to identify the bugs you have in the garden. According to some research, we have close to 10 quintillion insects globally, and a massive percentage of them are beneficial to gardens or do not inflict much damage to crops and plants. In fact, some of them are considered to be beneficial insects.

Beneficial Insects

These good bugs provide various advantages to the garden. They are responsible for making some of the crops healthy enough to produce flowers. As much as 75% of crops rely on bugs to distribute their pollen. Butterflies, moths, bees, and beetles help in the plant pollination process.

Some insects are also responsible for breaking down materials and aerating the soil so the plants can remain healthy. Ladybird beetles and lacewings are often distributed in greenhouses to reduce the number of harmful pests to keep the balance.

Given this information, how do you manage insects and identify whether they are good or bad for your garden?

Getting to Know the Good and the Bad Bugs

Ladybugs and beetles are easy to spot. But, what do you do when you come across a “stranger” bug inside your garden? Here’s how you can identify them:

Observe Its Behavior

When you come across a new insect in your greenhouse, before you do anything, take the time to observe it first. Take a picture if you have a camera available. Observe if the bug is eating. Check what it is eating and if it causes any damage to your plants. If it does, then it is most likely a pest. If you notice that a particular plant has a congregation of insects, then it could mean that the parasite is infesting your garden.

Do Your Research

If you took a picture of the bug, do your research on it. Compare your photos with those that you can find online. Various sites can help you identify if these bugs are indeed pests or beneficial insects. Some of the sites you can visit include the Agricultural Research Service Image Gallery and The Bugwood Insect Images. You can also search for several entomology galleries maintained by universities to help you in insect identification.

Should your research confirm that you have an invasive pest in your garden, contact your local agricultural agent to identify the insect.

Control the Spread

Once you have identified that the insect is bad for the garden, you should find ways to control its spread. It should be done the earliest time possible to ensure that it does not affect the rest of your plants.

There are times when you feel like beneficial pests like wasps are a pest, especially when they have created their home in your garden. Wasps can be territorial and may attack when approached. They should be taken care of by experts like Corpus Christi wasp exterminator so they cannot cause harm to anyone in the garden.

The Bad Bugs

Some of the bad bugs that you should immediately remove from your garden are as follows:

  • Scales
  • Japanese beetles
  • Mexican bean beetles
  • Flea beetles
  • Colorado potato beetles
  • Cutworms
  • Aphids
  • Cabbage maggot
  • Caterpillars
  • Tarnished plant bug

Final Thoughts

Maintaining a garden involves carefully minding the soil and checking for any bugs that may affect plant growth, especially if you plan to have a self-sustaining garden. Removing the bad bugs should be carefully done, so you don’t accidentally kill the good ones that are beneficial for your plants.
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