Month: January 2019

Boost Backyard Chickens Without Ruffling Neighbors' Feathers

A report in the New York Times tells the story of a Brooklyn community which has turned neighbor against neighbor — all because of this Warren-St. Mark’s community backyard decision to temporarily home eight hens. The chicken war between the urban farmers and longtime residents of this area brings up a problem: How can you maintain the peace while raising backyard chickens?

Photographer and chicken keeper Amy Renea says it starts with neighborly acts: advanced notice to neighbors and strategic coop placement go a long way in keeping the peace. She houses her chickens in a far corner lot on her property where neighbors can’t see, smell or hear the chickens when they’re cooped up. The hens roam free when they are released from the coop, and although they generally stick near her property, the cluckers sometimes drift to a neighbor’s lot. “We find the best way to fight any issues is using a giant basket of eggs every once in a while,” Renea says.

Here are additional strategies for keeping things neighborly.

Amy Renea

Keep neighbors informed. Lyanda Haupt, that has been keeping chickens for more than 12 years, sought her out neighbors’ ideas before building a coop in her Seattle lawn. “I told them about what we were planning to do and asked what they thought about it. Once people are informed, they will determine that real safety and health concerns are minimal,” she says.

Leslie Divoll did the specific opposite in her beachfront Florida community. She retains her coop a mystery since the neighbors complain at the drop of a hat, she says.

For Gwen Weerts, consulting neighbors about the left, right and right behind is essential, but she admits that living in the “crunchy” city (her description) of Bellingham, Washington, ensures that more people are supportive of agriculture. “I can see how urban areas without much exposure to small-scale agriculture could have these community flare-ups because of misinformation,” she says.

Check city ordinances. Kathy Siegel, that used to have a coop in Los Angeles, underscores the importance of adhering to city ordinances. “You don’t wish to be in the wrong when your pets’ lives are at stake. In L.A., they have ordinances that say no roosters could be maintained, that limit the hens to five only and dictate clear space minimums between the coop and your neighbor’s home,” says Siegel.

Most chicken keepers will tell you assessing ordinances can prove to be difficult when chickens are involved, since rules concerning chickens may fall under pet, noise or small livestock ordinances. “The Backyard Chickens website has a fantastic choice of city ordinances regarding domesticated fowl. I would check there,” says Weerts.

Amy Renea

Anticipate noise and odor issues. Although Divoll retains her coop a secret from her neighbors, she proposes having only hens in the coop for noise reduction. And if you keep cows or cows, more means more noise and odor; limit a backyard coop to five to make sure less noise. “I’d also strictly adhere to an odor-free practice,” she says. “It is very easy to do. Individuals who don’t pick up their pet’s poop have stinkier lawns compared to people who have chicken coops.”

Amy Renea

Strategize your coop’s location and design. Screen chickens from street perspective and from the perspective of neighbors’ dogs, which might become barking nuisances if they are not utilized to seeing chickens.

“Our neighbor didn’t wish to see that the coop, so we lowered our coop’s roof to them,” says Shannon Demma, that keeps chickens in Santa Cruz, California. “We maintain the coop in a completely enclosed lawn, so from the outside you don’t even know it is there. After watching us chickens, our neighbors now have their very own coops.”

Some chicken keepers purposely assemble coops without windows and lock their chickens in nightly. Haupt says they’re quieter in the dark, and that she doesn’t let them out until after 8% to maintain early-morning clucking from waking the neighbors.

Amy Renea

Know how to manage predators and rodents. Keeping a sterile coop reduces troubles, but occasionally leftover food onto the ground still can encourage mice — nothing which a cat can’t handle. “In an urban setting, I would definitely suggest daily crossing of any spilled or spilled food to avoid rodents,” says Amy Renea.

A high-security coop can defend chickens against predators, like skunks and raccoons. But keeping the area inside and outside the home clean ought to still be a high priority. The effort of keeping up a home is well worth it for these chicken keepers, who state that the cluckers are becoming part of their family. “My children play together; they supply wonderful fresh eggs; they eat our scraps and create compost for our backyard. We feel very blessed to have them,” says Demma.

“I feel like having a flock of hens harkens back to days when most folks had a vegetable patch, evenings were spent collectively on the porch and acquaintances spoke to one another over their fences,” says Weerts. “Chicken possession is an excellent reminder that we ought to go back to this”
Tell us Do you maintain backyard chickens? Please show us your coop and share your experience in the Comments below.

The Scoop on Chicken Coops
Chicken Coops That Rule the Roost

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Get the Scoop

Selecting a new paint is kind of like choosing out a fresh toothpaste — they look the exact same but may massively differ in price. How do you know which one is right for your residence? Although the least expensive option may seem appealing, costlier paints are high quality and also come in much more vibrant colors.

We spoke with three paint professionals to get the scoop on which is the greater value.

Jessica Helgerson Interior Design

Why is some paints better than others?

Each paint has the following ingredients, says Karl Schmitt, vice president of advertising research and design at Sherwin-Williams:
Pigment: The more pigment a paint has, the more it’ll retain its true colour. Binders: These hold the paint together and allow it to stick to several surfaces. Binders help paint resist blistering cracking and peeling. Liquids: High-quality paints have a higher ratio of solids (pigments and binders) to fluids. “The more liquid a paint has, the more it will vanish during the drying procedure, finally producing the demand for additional coats,” says Schmitt. Additives: Different ingredients that give the paint special properties, for example extra durability or mildew resistance.The ingredients of a paint affect colour as well as quality. “Higher-priced paints can occasionally offer more exceptional colors,” states Philip Storey of Redhill Painting. Some lines offer colors that can not be seen in other manufacturers’ palettes or replicated without high quality materials.

Why is a high quality paint?

For those who have used both high quality and not as expensive paints, the gap between the two is apparent. “Some cheaper paints look chalky or even more plastic-like,” says Storey. “Also, how the paint feels, or the’hand’ of the paintcan make a big difference aesthetically.” More expensive paints can be a lot easier to apply, hide imperfections better, last longer, have more vibrant colors and make washing easier — all because of the higher-quality ingredients in each batch.

If you’re looking for a single kind of paint that’s”the top,” it depends on what you’re searching for. The Paint Quality Institute evaluates paint on different qualities according to manufacturer. Some manufacturers are better at concealing flaws, some on flow and leveling, and many others on adhesion. Each manufacturer has its own particular balance of characteristics. If you want to play it safe, pick the top-quality item from the brand you’re interested in.

Still hesitant about paying the extra cash? Purchase samples of several distinct types of paint and see if you can tell the difference. “While a gallon of Fine Paints of Europe paint may cost you $40 a gallon, the policy will be exceptional, and you might have the ability to pay the surface fewer coats and extend the time between expensive future repaints,” says Storey.

Buying a fantastic paint won’t solve all your issues, though. “A fantastic paint job is only as good as the preparation,” says painter Alex Davison. “That will be roughly 60 percent of the work. A quick prep with the ideal paint won’t continue.”

Erica George Dines Photography

Can low-VOC ingredients make a difference in price?

Today, Environmental Protection Agency regulations ensure that paint businesses produce the majority of their product with low-VOC (volatile organic compounds) content. Low-VOC paints used to cost more, but that’s not necessarily true now. Low VOC”is among the several elements in the formula of a paint product, and it’s the overall quality of ingredients and formula of these ingredients which affect the purchase price of the item,” says Schmitt.

Inform us: What would be your favourite paints to utilize? What’s your experience with different brands and price ranges?

How to Paint Interior Walls
How to Use a House Painter

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Best 9 Hardware Styles for Kitchen Cabinets

The flat-panel, or slab-door, style of cabinet is most frequently seen in contemporary or contemporary kitchens. The essence of this style is frequently about minimal embellishment and allowing the natural substances speak for themselves. The wood grain could be the statement, or it could be a straightforward linear pull on a high-gloss white cupboard. Regardless of style, this appearance gets its strength from understatement. So subtle hardware choices can make a large impact in a kitchen using flat-panel cabinets.

Compare more kitchen cupboard styles

LDa Architecture & Interiors

1. Tubular Stainless Steel Bar Pulls

This really is one of the hottest kitchen cabinet hardware styles of the past 10 decades. You will observe these as frequently on vintage Shaker-style cabinets as on contemporary flat-panel ones. They often make the greatest statement when they are run as long as possible about the door or drawer. This style has end caps that are flush, so that you don’t have little pieces that stick out and grab the pocket of your trousers. Anyone who has ripped a pocket while walking through a kitchen knows what I mean.

Atlas Homewares Round 3 Point Pull 128 millimeter CC, Polished Stainless Steel – $17.90

What they do for the kitchen: Insert a contemporary, industrial and fresh appeal. These pulls have a very pragmatic sense, as though they are designed for a science-lab cupboard.

They operate well together: Modern flat-panel or Shaker doors. Be a purist using a sleek glass backsplash or be more diverse and combine them with subway tile and Shaker cabinets.


Stephani Buchman Photography

This is the most famous pub attraction for flat-panel cabinets. The ends stick out beyond where the screw holes attach to the cupboard. Cabinet lines from Italy and Spain kicked off this appearance with their supersleek contemporary kitchen installations more than 10 years ago, and they are still holding their own. It is a design that has stood the test of time.

The Home Depot

Richelieu Hardware Stainless Steel Bar Cabinet Pull – $10.26

Venegas and Company

2. Flat Bar Pulls

These will be the draws for modernists who favor square edges and linear elements. It could look like a ridiculous distinction to a, but in contemporary design, these tiny statements make a large sound.

Hardware Hut

Valli and Valli Forges Cabinet Pull – $39

What they do for the kitchen: Insert a strong linear feel that accentuates strong square and rectangular elements.

They operate well with: Horizontal wood grain, flat long closets and tile backsplashes.

Barker O’Donoghue Master Builders

3. Recessed Pulls

These are superbly functional and pragmatic — almost office-y — pulls. They are a great alternative for a high heeled, high-use kitchen in which you do not want the pulls sticking out and getting in the way.


Vintage Hardware Marella Design Forme Recessed Pull – $39.81

What they do for the kitchen : Give it a commercial and functional feel.

They operate well together: Bypass doors, stained wood doors and glass and metal doors.


4. C- or J-Channel Metal Rail Pulls

These pulls provide another fantastic solution for those who don’t desire their pulls to stick out to the traffic flow. They’re extremely sleek, but be careful of dust and spills getting caught in the stations.

Lisbon Door

What they do for the kitchen: Accentuate linear design by conducting the continuous, complete length of the doors and drawers.

They operate well with: Painted or stained wood flat-panel doorways, minimalist backsplash elements and waterfall countertops.

Venegas and Company

5. C-Channel Integrated Wood Pulls

These pulls are for the purist who does not want to mix a lot of substances in a kitchen. They are not the most pragmatic alternative for high-use kitchens.

What they do for the kitchen : Create a smooth appearance in which metal cabinet hardware does not disrupt the wood surface of the doorways.

They operate well with: whirlpool kitchens without a wall cabinets, kitchens with open shelves and gorgeous wood veneers.

thirdstone inc. [^]

6. Tab Pulls

These pulls are for the minimalist who wants a bit more. They are discreet but still functional. They are sometimes done little on all cabinets or longer, running the full length of the cupboard door or drawer.


Atlas Homewares Successi Collection Small Tab Pull – $5.96

What they do for the kitchen: Insert a nonkitchen-y feel.

They work well together: Wood veneers and high-gloss painted finishes.

Croma Design Inc

Whether they are smaller tabs in silver or longer tabs in black, their appearance completely changes the kitchen. Strong black lines on the tops of all the drawers in this kitchen produce a trendy vintage-modern contrast.


Atlas Homewares Successi Collection Long Tab Pull – $7.09

Lucy McLintic

7. Cutout Flat Bar Pulls

Cutout bar pulls are decorative and easy at precisely the same time, and have almost a ’70s atmosphere in antique brass. I love a pull that adds just a tiny furniture detail and glamour to a contemporary flat-panel door style.


Atlas Homewares 275 Centinel Pull – $10.26

What they do for the kitchen : Insert a decorative and glamorous part into an otherwise easy modern kitchen.

They operate well together: Rift-cut travertine and high-gloss finishes.

kimberly peck architect

8. Wire Pulls

Simple, classic and pragmatic, these are fantastic for those who don’t want their hardware to generate a strong statement.


Linnea LLC 111 tug – $15.99

What they do for the kitchen : Keep it simple and humble. Add a small commercial, no-nonsense feel.

They work well together: Industrial appliances, stainless steel countertops and easy industrial lighting, like pendants using a single exposed bulb.

John Maniscalco Architecture

9. Hidden Touch Latches

Not for those who utilize their kitchens frequently for cooking items heavy on the butter or oil. Fingerprints on the bottoms of your doorways will drive you mad! Nonetheless, it’s very sleek and trendy looking not to have a stick of hardware in sight.

The Home Depot

Liberty Single Touch Latch

What they do for the kitchen : These latches provide the ultimate minimalist choice — no hardware statement or accessorizing in any way.

They work well together: Exotic veneer cabinets for which you do not want anything to compete with the gorgeous wood, and full-height stone backsplashes that fit the countertops to get a restrained palette.

Compare more kitchen cabinet designs | Find your kitchen style

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Your Pool Long Past Labor Day

When the weather begins to cool down, most homeowners believe that they will need to shut down their pool until summer begins to warm up. But today’s pool products and accessories may push your swimming season from early spring through the autumn — and place energy savings in your pocketbook through the summer too.

Consider the investment you have made in your outdoor living area. Products that allow you to enjoy your pool a month or two more every year may provide you a greater return on it.

Grainda Builders, Inc..

Snow-melting cable systems may be set up fairly easily underneath patio areas to stay outdoor areas warm and free from frost and cleaning snow Little Rock. Pricing begins at $10 per square foot for materials only.


Automatic freeze protection may keep your water flowing in freezing temperatures. A Jandy AquaLinks System automatically turns on the water features in your pool when the temperature drops below a certain preset stage.

iAquaLink Smart-Phone App – $1,628.13

Cooler temperatures do mean you are going to need to heat your pool if you want to keep swimming — unless you adore a fantastic icy swim. Smart-phone apps like the iAquaLink allow you to control all elements of your pool and outdoor living room — such as spa and outside lighting — anytime and from anyplace.

If there’s a danger of falling temperatures, you can turn pool gear off or on with a flick of the finger. It is also possible to check the air and pool temperatures.

Jandy Guru Series EE-TI Heat Pump – $8,496.91

This Jandy Guru Series EE-TI heat pump can save as much as 80 percent of the energy that alternate heating systems require in order to heat your pool, extending your swimming season by at least a month or two. These heat pumps only absorb free heat in the air and move it to the water, making the heating procedure efficient and ecofriendly, with lower energy bills as a outcome. While an upfront cost of greater than $8,000 can provide you sticker shock, this may be a worthy investment in the long run if you love to swim and reside at a four-season climate.

AMS Landscape Design Studios, Inc..

An inexpensive out-of-pool alternative is an outdoor heater, which may heat a swim-up pub or other gathering space, or just the region where swimmers get out of the pool. Look into wall-mounted options as well as freestanding units. One alternative, a Danville wall-mounted heater, will run you $260.

Zbranek & Holt Custom Homes

If you’re still in the process of planning your pool, consider including a fire component for all those chillier autumn nights. This fire pit incorporated with the pool design provides not just another entertainment area for the guests and homeowner, however, a warm reprieve for sailors during cooler weather.

Prideaux Design

This customized fire attribute is an ideal example of how to incorporate a fire component close to the pool within an outdoor living room. Putting it between the pool and the outside seating area enables it to benefit equally spaces.

Platinum Poolcare

Fire components like these bowls by Fire By Design are a excellent ready-made alternative for outdoor pool attributes.


Pricing varies, and some of these units may be expensive, so be aware prior to adding one to your wish list. Complete units with electronic ignition, like this one from Fireside Expressions, start at $2,500.

Inform us : Would you like to use your pool in cooler temperatures? Share your cold-weather swimming tips together with us in the Remarks section below.

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