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Top Spring Garden & Landscaping Tips

With winter weather slowly starting to fade, each day brings us a step closer to the warmer weather and extra sunlight of spring. After months being cooped up inside avoiding the frigid temperatures, the long-awaited change of season is almost upon us. As much as we might appreciate the arrival of the spring weather, nothing needs it more than our gardens and yard. The freezing, harsh winter conditions can leave your lawn and plants damaged. Fortunately, with the right tools and techniques, you can have your property looking luscious and healthy once again. Here are a few spring maintenance and clean up tips to get your garden and landscaping looking like new.

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Backyard Dreaming: 5 Ideas to Get You Excited For Spring

It may be bone-chilling cold right now, but spring, with its colourful blooms, pitchers of icy lemonade and—most importantly—delightfully warm weather, is just around the corner. Bust out of the late winter doldrums and dream of your perfect backyard landscape setup instead. Not sure where to begin? Here are 5 fabulous ideas oozing with refreshing recreational charm and expansive grill zones to get you on the path to paradise before the snowflakes finish falling. Spring may be a few months away, but you can start planning your weekend barbecues right now.

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How to Clean Your Artificial Grass and Prepare It for Spring

As the snow melts, it can leave mud and debris behind on your artificial grass, and leave it feeling a little smushed. Before you start entertaining in spring and summer, it’s wise to clean up the lawn. Plus, as you spend more time outside you may end up spilling on your synthetic grass. You need to know how to clean that up too.

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4 Reasons to Plan Your Spring Landscaping Right Now (Infographic)

It might still feel a bit chilly out there right now. And you may not be thinking about your spring landscaping project. Unfortunately, Van Beek’s Garden Supplies can’t help with the cold. But we can help you get ready to start landscaping once the warm weather arrives. In fact, we highly encourage you to plan your spring landscape project right now, even when it’s dark, damp and chilly outside. Here are four reasons why now’s the perfect time to start planning.

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Soil Terms You May Hear Us Use

If you’re new to gardening, you may have come across terms or phrases associated with soil and have wondered “what does that mean, exactly?” Well, wonder no more. We’ve put together a list of some common soil terms you might hear us use when you come and visit us. Check it out – or better yet, feel free to print this page and keep it with you as you work in the garden with soil bags from Van Beek’s Garden Supplies.

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5 Mosquito-Repellent Plants You Can Grow at Home

Summer brings along extra sunshine, warmer temperatures and more time spent outdoors. And mosquitoes. Lots and lots of annoyingly pesky mosquitoes. If you’re like most people, once the mosquitoes come to bite, you pull out the bug spray. And while it can be effective, it could also be harmful to you too. That’s because many commercial insect repellents contain DEET, which poses potential health risks like seizures or hypotension. In fact, in Canada, products with a DEET concentration of over 30% are prohibited for sale. Like many things, going natural is the best choice. The same goes for keeping mosquitoes away. That’s why you can transform your garden into a mosquito-free zone with these 5 plants you can grow yourself.

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Can My Topsoil Get Too Hot?

It’s the summer. It’s hot. You’re sweating (so you take a drink of water). Your grass is baking (so you water it). Your plants are frying (so you water them). And your triple mix soil that you’ve mixed up in your garden is… That’s the question: as the sun beats down, is it possible that your topsoil becomes too hot, thus compromising its ability to help nurture and grow your plants? The short answer is, yes, it is possible for your topsoil to overheat and dry out. When that happens, the vital nutrients and minerals contained within it become weakened and less effective. Now that we’ve established that your black garden soil can become too hot, the next question is how can you tell?

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How to Plant a Vegetable Garden in Canada

Planting and growing your own vegetables is good for: Your body Is there anything healthier than fresh, home-grown vegetables? Plus, planting and working on a vegetable garden is a great source of exercise Your mind You’ll feel peaceful – and proud – as you design and tend to your vegetable garden and watch as seeds turn into delicious vegetables. Your wallet Keep more of your money in your pocket as you avoid going to the grocery store (and saving on the cost of gas, too) and paying high vegetable prices. If you’re new to vegetable gardening, you’re in luck. With some proper planning – before you mix it up in the soil – it isn’t difficult to get started.

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Outdoor Father’s Day Gift Ideas for Dad

Wondering what to get Dad for Father’s Day this year? Not interested in getting him another necktie, bottle of cologne or pack of socks? If Dad enjoys spending time outside in the backyard – or loves working in the garden – then why not get him an outdoor gift that he’ll love and use over-and-over again? After all, Father’s Day falls right near the start of summer. It’s the perfect time to celebrate Dad while enjoying the great weather and beautiful sunshine. Skip the shopping mall this year and visit us at Van Beek’s Garden Supplies. We’re certain to have a Father’s Day gift that’s truly a breath of fresh air.

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Mix It Up in the Garden on Victoria Day

Victoria Day is celebrated in honour of Queen Victoria’s birthday (which was May 24, 1819, by the way). This year, Victoria Day falls on Monday, May 18. A long weekend in the heart of spring, Victoria Day is a great time to enjoy the outdoors; whether you’re firing up the BBQ, going to a fireworks display or working in the garden. Victoria Day is an ideal time to mix it up and focus on your garden’s soil needs. After all, as we explained in our Earth Day blog, soil is a vital and amazing component of your garden which requires ongoing care. So, if you can’t wait to play in the garden during the day (and then enjoy the fireworks at night), here are some Victoria Day soil tips you can apply over the long weekend.

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Mother’s Day Gifts For the Garden

Mother’s Day is fast approaching (Sunday, May 10) and you may be wondering what to get mom this year. If she likes working in the garden; planting flowers, pruning trees and installing decorative landscaping features, then you’re in luck. That’s because there are plenty of Mother’s Day gifts for the garden which are both fun and functional. Actually, you can mix it up this year when it comes to Mother’s Day garden gifts. You can give her something practical, like high-quality triple mix soil to help with her planting. Or you can give her something fancy, like a installing a new pond in the backyard. Looking for something different to give this year? Check out these garden gifts for Mother’s Day.

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Mix it Up on Earth Day. The Difference Between Soil and Dirt

Happy Earth Day, Van Beek’s Garden Supplies blog readers! For this year’s Earth Day celebration, we’re going to look at the difference between dirt and soil. And yes, there are differences. Big ones. One is a living ecosystem full of microorganisms which is vital to helping life on Earth grow and thrive. The other is dirt. Let’s (pardon the pun) dig a little deeper into this subject, shall we?

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How to plan and build your own pond

Every yard needs something that makes it unique. Installing a pond can add an interesting dynamic to your property that highlights the natural beauty of your outdoor space. Taking your pond project step by step allows you to accommodate for filtration, aquatic life and even pumps for water features. Setting a budget helps you determine the size and style that fits your yard.

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How to stop your property from flooding when the snow melts

Here in Ontario, we’re all familiar with cold, snow-heavy winters. Over time the buildup of snow can cover our yards and create massive drifts leaning up against the exterior walls of our homes. While this may help to insulate us from subzero temperatures it can also cause serious flooding as all that snow melts in the early stages of spring. With a little foresight and prevention, you can avoid flooding in your home.

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The 5 Best Choices For Firewood in Ontario

There are many reasons why you might need to start a fire. Regardless if you’re lighting up the wood stove, a fireplace or cooking over the campfire you want to keep those embers burning with the best wood you can use. There are a lot of top-notch firewood options in Ontario but before we start choosing there are a few pointers every fire enthusiast should know to make sure you’re getting properly seasoned wood ready for burning.

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What’s In Triple Mix Soil?

Triple mix soil is a topsoil blend of compost, sandy soil and black loam. This combination is then sterilized to ensure it’s weed-free and nutritionally balanced for fertility and optimal growth.

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Christmas Gifts for the Green Thumb

Have you decided on a Christmas present yet for that special someone in your life? If they are an active gardener, but yard work isn’t your style, it may be hard to know what to buy them this year. Start listening carefully to see if they complain about something that’s broken or not working right or if there is something they wish they had. Lots of gardeners are reluctant to spend money on new tools and garden gear. If you are still at loss, use the following list to get some ideas.

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A Dark December Means Lots of Time to Showcase Your Lights!

When days are short and nights are long, landscape lighting around your home is more valuable than ever. Though outdoor lighting provides safety and security for your home, it can offer much more. By softly accenting the best features of your home and garden, shining a light on accents and focal points, and with add-ons to celebrate the holidays, your home landscape lights will make winter time feel much brighter.

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Your Own Winter Wonderland

The first snow of early winter always looks fresh and pure, covering the landscape with a layer of white and turning the world into a magical wonderland, if only for a brief while. A few weeks later, many people are ready for winter to be over, even though there are still months of snow and slush left. What can you turn to in your home garden to help you get through the long Ontario winter? There are several ways to make a wonderful winter garden that’s interesting enough to carry you through to the first signs of spring.

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Work in the Fall so Your Property is Healthy in the Spring

Cool, sunny days in autumn are among of the best times for outdoor lawn and garden work. Sweater weather means you won’t get too hot or cold; it’s both pleasant and easy to spend all afternoon in the garden. Fortunately, there are lots of fall landscaping chores that will help get your garden ready for cold weather. The most notable benefit of these is they also help prepare your landscape for spring.

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How to Get Your Yard Ready for Winter

An afternoon of work in October will make bringing your property back to life in the spring a whole lot easier. Follow our infographic below and get your property ready like a pro. Or let the pros handle it for you and book your appointment with us today.

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How to Winterize your Garden Pond in 5 Simple Steps

As winter weather begins its annual migration to our region, it’s important to prepare your home and landscape for cold and freezing. At the very least, all mechanical, plumbing and electrical systems need inspection. This includes water features and garden ponds. While a backyard garden fish pond is an enjoyable addition to your landscape that needs little care for most of the year, there are a few guidelines to follow and maintenance tasks needed before freezing weather sets in.

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How to Install Interlocking Paving Stones

Though installing your own interlocking paver walkway or patio may seem like a daunting project, with a little advance planning, it is something the average homeowner can handle. While it is not too difficult, there is actual work involved and it is important to do it correctly. Here are the basic steps to constructing your own paver project.

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Should Natural Stone be Sealed?

Natural stone is one of the most beautiful materials for home landscape projects. Whether it’s a patio, walkway or wall, natural stone creates an elegant, timeless style that goes well with almost any home. Though stone is a durable material that will retain its natural look and appeal over the years, a little bit of maintenance will protect your flagstone pavers and stone walls from accidental damage while increasing their lifespan. Sealing a natural stone surface, while not mandatory, adds a layer of protection and enhancement to your landscape feature.

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