Day: January 12, 2019

Fire Preventive Coatings

Homeowners in wildfire zone should consider coats, in addition to landscaping, for fire protection. In fact all homeowners can benefit from fire retardant treatment within their homes also. Fire sprinklers are the ultimate home protection but costly. People do not realize just how fast fires travel. Smoke detectors give you time and should always be installed. Your whole family, and pets, can be dead before the fire department even knows you have a fire. Kitchens and electrical fires in walls are the most common sources of fires. Garages with gasoline are not far behind but at least they tend to happen during the day and are caused by a person. Smoking in bed is slow suicide. Your call.

Intumescent coatings are applied chemicals that expand with heat and are non-flammable. I have personally participated in testing Barricade, a proprietary product. My fire department took a sheet of plywood and wrote "Hope VFD" in Barricade and then took a torch to the plywood. The only thing that was not heavily charred was "Hope VFD". It made a believer out of me. This compound is sprayed on with water pressure when a fire is immanent. This compound is applied when a wildfire is imminent. It lasts 8 hours or more and if it dries out, the application of water will rejuvenate it. Burning embers are the main way that wild land fires ignite houses. This product is designed to form a barrier around the whole structure so embers can not get into hidden places.

There are many other paintings that do the same basic thing but are more attuned to interior use. They work by sealing the wood or fabric and preventing decomposition gasses from getting out. These gases are both flammable and toxic and are the cause of most deaths. The coating help turn the surface of the base material into char which is not very flammable.

Intumescent coatings expand to insulate the base material from heat as well as sealing the base material. The greatest amount of flammables in a residential structure (also known as a house) is the carpets, furniture, and window coverings. Most of these are derived from petroleum and behave as if they were petroleum. I have watched a hotel room, that was ignited from crumpled newspaper in a waste basket, being completely engulfed in flame, within 150 seconds. The windows blew out. The gases in the upper part of the room ignited, a condition known as flashover. A blast of 1200 degree heat kills every living thing in the room. Nothing is totally fireproof, but being fire retardant gives you time to get out. There are fabric treatments. I have attached URLs from some supplies but I have no personal experience with them.

One cheap substance that can coat interior wood is sodium silicate, or water glass. It is available from chemical suppliers in quantity. It is non-toxic.

Common boric acid can also be used on fabrics but is more difficult to use than commercial products. …

Outdoor Lighting – Lighten Up Your Home

The benefits of outdoor lighting systems offer increased lighting for safety and security, as well as adding beauty and elegance. It is also a great way to make use of your garden after dark, and highlights your landscaped spots.

There are different kinds of lighting called task lighting, and accent lighting. Task lighting is more inclined towards practicality. It may be used to light your landscape to help you move safely around, when preparing food, or as a safety measure to view level changes and stairs.

Accent lighting on the other hand, highlights your favorite landscape spaces such as sculptures and trees, while drawing attention away from something like a garden shed.

Solar power and electricity are the two power sources you can consider for outdoor lighting. Undoubtedly, solar energy is better for the environment since it is a renewable resource. The solar energy charges the lights during the day, which can then be used after sunset. Furthermore, the fact that there are no ugly looking cables around, make them a popular option. The disadvantage though, is that they are not as bright as electric light; therefore they can not be utilized as spotlights or in places that tend to receive little sunlight.

Electric lighting on the other hand, requires wiring and cables which you can actually install yourself. If you choose a 12V transformer, it must be used for electric lights as it acts as a power board. It is plugged into the power point and the lights are plugged into it.

There are two types of outdoor lighting options which are Halogen and Light Emitting Diode (LED). Halogen lights are meant to be used as landscape lights. However, the yellow light that they produce uses much more energy than LED lights, and they become very hot to touch. LED's emit a purer white light which in fact helps portray the actual color of the landscape. Furthermore, they are a lot cheaper and do not get hot.

There are a variety of creative lighting designs to have you spoiled for choice. Some of the main ones include uplighting, which directs the light upwards to highlight a feature and to some extra light up a bit of the surrounding areas.

Spotlights are bright lights aimed at one particular feature, which could be a sculpture, water feature or tree. Downlights are positioned at a high level and focus downwards. Path lights are mainly used as a safety and security measure, and should be placed at intervals along the pathway.

Surface lights are those that are built into walls, or used to highlight the deck and step surfaces. They assist visibility and security to some extent. Wall lightings are flat panels that are built into the wall which can light up any features on the wall, as well as highlight your boundary, giving added security.

So now there should be no more stumbling around because it's too dark to see, and you can now entertain family and friends in your backyard, even …

European Tapestries – Van Gogh

The Olive Trees – Artist Vincent Van Gogh developed a style of painting while he was incarcerated at the asylum at Saint Remy. Instead of his usual bold strokes and luminous colors, the artist experimented with long swipes to create curving, undulating silhouettes across his canvas. This style is more expressive and more dynamic than its previous style, which is a testament to the artist's inner demons.

Out of this style evolved The Olive Trees is one of his most famous paintings, along with Irises. Against the grain of what sees to be blazing Mediterranean afternoon, olive trees of an intestine green sway, twist and crimp. In the distance are rolling hills of the Alps as well as the sky awash with clouds and moonlight.

The Olive Trees is truly one of Van Gogh's most striking paintings. While he was at the asylum, Van Gogh wrote to his brother Theo about his most recent work. He spoke of a landscape filled with olive trees as well as a study about a starry sky. When the paintings drawn, he sent these to Theo telling him to take note of the olive trees with the clouds and mountains, as well as the light of the moon and the effect of the light. Van Gogh exaggerated the whole general composition of the painting, accentuating colors and outlines of the trees and the mountains. Van Gogh tried to avoid the photographic perfection that other artists tried to perfect. This influenced fellow artist Paul Gauguin. Together, they painted masterpieces that veered away from the conservative perfection of paintings, and instead tried to intensify colors and lines in their paintings.

Like his other works, The Olive Trees has often translated into prints, tapestries, wall hangings and wall d├ęcor. Now, others as well as art collectors or art historians can have access to this beloved work of art. Homeowners with an eye for style and sophistication can simply buy a print or wall hanging of The Olive Trees to add a touch of elegance to their homes.

Tapestries and wall prints are available for ordering and shipping online. They come in various sizes to fit your space requirements. Most of them also offer other materials such as brackets and linings so you can display your tapestry with ease. You can hang this anywhere in your house, whether it be in the privacy of your bedroom or in your living room, for all your guests and friends to admire. …

Comments: Garden Arbor & Pergola Designs

Kitchen Appliances With Professional Appeal

Whether you own your own restaurant or only cook for your family, it is important to have a functioning kitchen.

Old, worn out equipment can be hazardous to your health – possibly undercooking food or malfunctioning and causing injury or property damage. If you are going to replace your old appliances, it makes sense to upgrade with the most advanced technology.

Redoing your cooking area can be a huge task. Knowing what equipment you want, however, makes the job easier. Once you have had a look at everything available, you should be able to decide what items and features best suit your needs.

Without question, an essential kitchen appliance is the stove. These days, stoves and ranges come in such variety, you should be able to find the one you want with the features you need. Technology has given us the electric range in addition to the traditional gas models.

Both kinds have strengths and weaknesses that can influence your decision. Professional kitchens, however, usually employ gas ranges because of the higher heating temperatures and faster cooking times.

The electric stove is not a complete write off, though. A solid surface electric stove does offer you uniformly flat surfaces and multi-sized burners that allow you to use a greater range of sizes in your pots and pans.

Gas stove manufacturers do make stoves with multi sized grates or continuous grates for larger pots and easier movement.

Gas stoves, with their raised heating elements, heat far hotter than electric ones, shaving minutes from your cooking time. Though electric stoves take longer to thoroughly cook food, they are greener than traditional units.

Both types of ranges offer features such as digital panels instead of dials and LCDs for time and temperature. With so many features available, the hard part will be getting your choice to your kitchen.

Another kitchen appliance necessity is your refrigerator. It is, arguably, the most important element in preparing a meal. In this day and age, the refrigerator models you can choose from are nearly endless and full of different features.

Fridges now come with certain tasks in mind, like keeping fresh foods extra cold; keeping fruits and vegetables crisp and fresh; or making the most of storage space with specialized racks for wine bottles, 2-liter bottles, and pizza boxes in your freezer.

If you are thinking about the efficiency of your fridge, there are energy conserving models to suit everyone. These energy saving models are easy on your budget as well, making them worth the initial cost.

In addition to a refrigerator, a restaurant kitchen needs a large walk-in freezer. Keeping your meats and produce fresh will be a major consideration when you are equipping your cooking space. The only limiting factor here is how much space you have to work with.

You don’t have to stop with two major kitchen appliances. If you are remodeling your kitchen area, you should also consider quiet dishwashers, European style hoods for your stoves, professional ice makers, and speed blenders. …

Climbing Roses – A Special Way To Grow A Special Plant

Growing a climbing rose bush can be one of the most satisfying features in a garden. Usually, the rose's long stems are trained to grow vertically up a pole where they cover the ceiling of some structure such as a trellis or pergola. You may have noticed that the flowers appear only at the plant's tips, while the shrub as a whole is green with foliage, but bare of flowers. There is a way however of inducing the mass of the plant to be smothered in blooms, thereby creating a far more spectacular effect.

The trick is to train the branches to grow horizontally, spacing them some 20-30cm from each other to create a kind of a fan shape. When stems grow horizontally or parallel to the ground, the dominance that the leading bud outputs on those below is neutralized, while the buds placed along the branches are activated and start to sprout short stems, upon which develop leaves and then flowers. This procedure is known as the espalier method, and is an excellent way of covering a wall, fence, or even a garden shed.

Climbing roses, while not necessarily being suitable for every situation, should definitely be considered in many circumstances. The large Bordeaux red flowers of the variety "don Juan" for instance, can look breathing against a white stone wall, as can the dark crimson of "Chrysler Imperial," (climbing type) while a gentler effect is achieved by bushes that sport pink , or pale yellow blooms, such as the climbing varieties of "Peace", "Queen Elizabeth", or "Gloire de Dijon".

The drawback of choosing a climbing rose as the solution to a particular design issue is of course the work involved in caring for it. Clearly it is much easier and cheaper to plant some self-clinging vine such as Ivy to do its worst, and of its own accord, ramble wild and smother what ever needs to be covered. The trouble with the latter option is that however tempting it may seem in terms of saving labor and maintenance, expensive damage is liable to be caused to the wall of a building in the long run. A far better alternative, let alone an infinite more beautiful one, is to take the trouble and grow a climbing rose.

To achieve the best results it is advisable to build some support structure, which not only allows for the branches to be trained and tied onto it, but is also strong enough to take the weight of the rose bush when it reaches maturity after a few years . On a stone wall for example, metal pegs can be drilled at suitable intervals, so that wires can be stretched at the afore-mentioned distance of 20-30 cm. This admittedly involves some initial expense both in materials and labor, but the investment should be extremely worthwhile.

Growing a climbing rose as an espalier, not only requires tying and training, but pruning as well. In the winter, the short stems known as spurs, which sprout …