Creating a ‘good’ garden design

submitted by Jon Kontz, General Manager, PLANT at Shady Brook Farm, www.plantdesigngroup.com

What makes a “good” garden design? Is it plant selection? Is it color? Is it layout? It is all these and more.

Good garden design is not achieved by nice colors, cool plants, or clever arrangements. Good design is ultimately measured by the feeling and emotion that a space provokes and the usefulness that it encourages. This leads to designing using plants, stone and their arrangements as the medium to fulfill a design, not as the focus of the design.

Use the host space as a template through which your ideas are filtered to come up with a style that works in that space and that suits you. Once you have parameters for the design, use plants, stone and natural elements to paint a picture.

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Spring planting tips and guidelines

submitted by Wendy Leck, owner, Leck’s Greenhouses and Nursery, Feasterville

As the weather begins to warm up, it is easy to get caught up in the excitement of spring and the start of the planting season. Unfortunately, despite the tease of some warm days, the “frost-free date” for our area is May 15th. It is best to wait until after that date before planting into the ground.

If you need to get a jump on flowers, they need to be brought in at night. Most plants are grown in greenhouses where the temperature is an average of 65 degrees, therefore, drastic drops in outdoor temperatures can shock plants.

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Low inventory and high demand of homes in Bucks County

submitted by Kathleen Layton, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

The trend in our local Bucks County market of low inventory and high demand is continuing. The gap between ready, willing and able buyers and available homes to sell them is continuing to widen.

In many cases where homes are priced properly and in good condition, we’re consistently seeing multiple-offer situations, buyers paying above appraised value and/or asking price, and homes selling in less than 10 days in our local market. Our market cannot move forward without inventory because we cannot place our buyers into homes.

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DIY designing your ‘space’

submitted by Jon Kontz, General Manager, PLANT at Shady Brook Farm

Thinking about redesigning your space this year? Here are a couple questions to keep in mind as you approach the design process.

“How do you hope to use your space?”

The answer to this question will be your pre-eminent consideration throughout the design process. Every decision you make must support the utility of your space. The answer to this question, and the decisions it supports are the ‘science’ of the design process.

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Top eight list of showing “DON’TS” for home sellers

submitted by Kathleen Layton, Berkshire Hathaway Home Services/Fox Roach Realtors Newtown Office

  1. Don’t follow buyers through the house and try to “sell” them on all its wonderful features – get outta Dodge!
  2. Don’t leave out your bowling trophies, stuffed dead animals or plastic encased doll collection complete w/ certificates of authenticity. The goal is for prospective buyers to look at your space, not your stuff.
  3. Don’t dismiss the importance of Staging – it’s a critical step in a successful home sale.
  4. Don’t dismiss the importance of a deep clean – both inside and out. It is probably the single most important factor when showing your home.
  5. Don’t think that just because you can no longer smell it, your house doesn’t stink! Ask a good friend to come over for a “smell test” as unpleasant odors are a deal killer.
  6. Don’t keep up your wedding picture with the bad hair from the 70’s – or worse yet, the glamour shot with the provocative draping on the fake bear rug that hangs in your bedroom.
  7. Don’t make it difficult to show your home! When you refuse a showing and ask that they come at a different time, it often isn’t possible to re-route the entire itinerary, and you’ll be taken off the list.
  8. Don’t think a “lived in” look is going to cut it. Piles of dirty laundry, globs of toothpaste stuck in the sink, toilet seats in the up position and unmade beds are unacceptable.
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Chronic inflammation – What you can do about it

submitted by GNC, Newtown

Inflammation is the precursor for most, if not all, degenerative diseases such as arthritis, cardiovascular disease and even cancer. Recent clinical studies have shown several dietary supplements to be effective in treating chronic or systemic inflammation, and many of these are gaining popularity among health conscious consumers.

Here are some products you should consider given their potent ant-inflammatory properties:

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Adult ADD nixed by neurofeedback

submitted by Dr. Maria DiDonato, D.Ed. Psychologist, Achievement & Wellness Center, www.achievewell.net

Stanley (not his real name) is a businessman who struggled with managing the details of his business. His ideas and his follow-through were not always in balance, resulting in missed opportunities. Even though he was trying to study for an advanced program, his mind was not always in attendance and he was losing valuable time.

It was difficult to keep focused, manage appointments, business contacts, or the details of his paperwork. He felt like he was always playing catch-up. If he was to be successful, he would have to be more mentally efficient.

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Now is the time to prepare your car for winter!

submitted by Jann’s Auto Service

Getting your car ready for winter now can save you a lot of headaches and money later.

Here are some suggestions:

Check the Battery and Lights

Your battery can lose 35% of its power at 32 degrees Fahrenheit. Your battery should be checked for clean, tight connections.

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Protect pets against holiday hazards

submitted by Julie Thorndyke, D.V.M.. Medical Director, VCA Neshaminy Animal Hospital

The holidays are upon us, and by “us” I mean both our human and furry families. I love the holidays, but as a veterinarian, I dread them because of the large number of pets who become ill from things that are largely preventable such as celebrations, decorations, different foods, and highly distracted humans.

The first line of protection is keeping your pet calm and content. If they are shy, noise-phobic, aggressive or reactive dogs, elderly or really young dogs, keep them away from large gatherings, preferably in another room or crate, far from the hubbub with classical music to block noise and with a long-lasting, safe chew toy.

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Veterinary acupuncture is a viable option for your pet

submitted By Dr. Nicole Sczypiorski, D.V.M., Certified Veterinary Acupuncturist, VCA Neshaminy Animal Hospital

Are you looking for a way to improve your pet’s quality of life or enhance therapies and treatments your pet is already receiving? Consider veterinary acupuncture as an option.

Acupuncture is an ancient practice that dates back thousands of years and is still used today. It involves the insertion of specialized needles into very specific points on the body to produce an effect.

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