6 Indoor Gardening Tips for Apartment-Dwellers

Your living space shouldn’t define your ability to garden. Flex your green thumb (no matter how small your home may be) with these gardening solutions for apartment-dwellers.

6 Gardening Tips for Apartments

  1. vertical gardenGo vertical. Don’t have space for an indoor vegetable garden? Get inspired by creative vertical gardening ideas and watch your tiny apartment burst into bloom.
  2. Hit the roof. If you’re lucky enough to have rooftop access to your apartment building, you have plenty of useable space for growing light-loving plants, potted trees, and other plants that may have a hard time flourishing indoors.
  3. Hang around. Hanging planters aren’t just for idyllic Southern patios. Hang a few well-placed planters in the kitchen for easy access to herbs and spices. Find brightly decorated pots to incorporate hanging greenery into your living room decor. If you have a balcony, you can take advantage of the roof overhang to give hanging planters better access to unfiltered sunlight.
  4. Short, squat, and in a pot. Container gardening allows apartment-dwellers to cultivate their favorite blooms small-scale. Do you have a balcony or patio that gets at least 6 hours of sunlight? Pot dwarf roses and enjoy!
  5. Hang out the window. What’s an easy way to make your apartment stand out from the crowd? Window boxes! Plant window boxes filled with spring flowers, an herb garden, or strawberries.
  6. Plant wisely. Want a plant that will add life to your apartment without requiring a lot of care? All succulents require to thrive is water every 10 days and 2-4 hours of direct sunlight.

Transform your apartment with fresh, vibrant herbs, succulents, and seasonal flowers. Visit Ace of Gray for plants, fresh tips on apartment gardening, and the materials you’ll need to build a DIY vertical garden.

3 Easy Grow Shrubs for Spring

Is your inner gardener waking up from hibernation? Spring is just weeks away, and there’s no need to hold back your green thumb anymore. Plant these easy grow shrubs for a sensational, stress-free landscape. It’s time to make spring bloom!

Lacecap Hydrangea

If you want to flex your gardening muscles, hydrangeas are our top pick. They’re delicate, voluminous, and thrive in well-drained soil. What’s the fun part? They change colors based on the pH of your soil. Play around with the acidity of your soil to change hydrangeas from pink to blue (or a purply mix of the two). The more aluminum in the soil, the bluer they’ll be! A few pro tips:

  • It’s easier to change hydrangeas from pink to blue than vice versa, so keep that in mind when you purchase your plants
  • White hydrangeas won’t change color no matter how much you amend the soil

yellow daylilyStella D’Oro Daylily

These smiling, sunny flowers make us happy just thinking about them. Add a dose of warmth to the spring landscape by planting them in early to mid spring. Make sure they get full sun to light shade. These lovely lilies love smiling at the sky!

Knockout Rose

Easy to grow, hard to kill, and with a flair for the dramatic, knockout roses are one of the most popular plants for springtime. Just don’t decide “low maintenance” means “no maintenance.” They still need water, fertilizer, and enough sunlight to thrive.

Did your favorite low maintenance spring shrubs make the cut? If not, visit Ace of Gray and share your favorite plants for the spring landscape.

Plan Your Spring Garden Redesign

As winter ends and nature awakens, you might consider improving the look of your yard. One of the main challenges of spring landscaping is having the right vision of what your garden design could look like after the changes are made. Ace of Gray can provide expert advice about outlay, color, type of flowers and shrubs, maintenance, feeding, tools, or anything else that can help create a quality landscape.

Garden Design Tips

bird bath and flowersDo you have a feature in your yard that stands out? A fountain, outdoor fireplace, dining area, or anything else that draws the first glance? Shrubs can be strategically planted around your outdoor entertaining area in patterns that are pleasing to the eye, creating a personal space for your family and guests.

If you wanted to add some color to your landscape, annual flowers are available in every hue imaginable. While perennials are better value for money, adding various annuals each year allows you to find your preferred color through experiment and testing. The most popular annuals are petunias, zinnias, impatiens, and marigold. Some more exotic choices include cleome, lisianthus, Joseph’s coat, or gazania.

Plant arbors, birdbaths or other ornamentals now. When the flowers grow around them, your hardscaping elements will look twice as nice.

5 Spring Landscaping Tips

  1. Always prune hedges and clean up winter debris like dry branches, leaves, and dead plants.
  2. Apply pre-emergents to prevent weeds from developing.
  3. Check the condition of irrigation equipment and tune your lawnmower regularly.
  4. Keep the lawn watered to ensure the healthy growth of new grass.
  5. Mow any cool season grasses like fescue.

The new plants are at gentle stage of beginning of their growth. Applying these tips now can contribute to your garden displaying its full potential throughout the year.

How to Get Involved in National Bird Feeding Month

Attracting winter birds to your yard is a great way to help protect wildlife. It also adds color to a dreary, lifeless landscape. February is the most difficult month for wild birds to find the food and shelter they need. There’s no better time to dust off those bird feeders!

National Bird Feeding Month

February was declared National Bird Feeding Month to help wildlife survive the harshest part of the winter. How can you get involved with backyard birding?

  • bird feederBuild a buffet. Just like people, the way to a bird’s heart is through its stomach. Attract colorful birds to your backyard by putting out winter bird feed like sunflower seeds, cracked corn, fruit, mealworms, and suet. Ace of Gray sells bird feeders, but if you want to get creative, these DIY bird feeders will look as good as they’ll taste.
  • Provide shelter. Animals need protection from the elements, especially in winter. Buy a bird feeder from Ace of Gray or plan a fun weekend project and teach your kids to build their own.
  • Let them splash around. Who wants to take a bath in the bitter cold? Birds! Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean you should drain your birdbath. Not only will birds still splash around, birdbaths are a vital source of water for many winter birds. Keep the water from freezing by putting a handful of pingpong balls in the water. If it’s in the shade, move it to direct sunlight to keep it warm during the day.

National Bird Feeding Month is a great way to teach kids about winter birds, help with wildlife conservation, and add vitality to a dull winter landscape. Visit Ace of Gray for backyard birding supplies.

The Sweetest Valentine’s Day Gifts

Not sure what to get that special someone this year? Valentine’s Day can put a lot of pressure on relationships, no matter how long you’ve been together. But you have an ace in the hole! Ace of Gray has every Valentine’s Day gift you could ask for.

The Valentine’s Classics

woman and heartsDoes your S.O. love the classic romance of Valentine’s Day? So do we! Every year we get creative with well-loved gifts like chocolate, teddy bears, gift baskets, and fresh bouquets from our in-house florist. You can even personalize presents with monograms. And we deliver! Surprise your spouse with their favorite flowers at work or send your daughter a box of candy at school to show her you’ll always be her #1 supporter (and supplier of chocolate).

Tough Lovers

Does your loved one prefer muddy boots to chocolate kisses? We can help! Our gift center isn’t all hearts and roses. We also carry practical gifts that will show the adventurer in your life how much you care. Buy his and hers hiking boots and plan a night of camping just for two, or get your husband that Stihl leaf blower he’s had his eye on. It’s a gift for him and a gift for you. After all, acts of service is one of the 5 Love Languages!

Crafts and Kisses

Sometimes the best gifts are the ones made with care. Do you have a dozen DIY gifts pinned online? Get crafting! Ace of Gray has craft supplies and building materials to make your DIY Valentine’s Day gifts a breeze.

Whether you’re a romantic planner or a last-minute shopper, Ace of Gray has what you need to make this Valentine’s Day a success.

Best practices for winter flowers

flowersNow that winter is here you may be wondering, like many, just how you can take care of your winter flowers. Here are five simple steps you can take to make sure your flowers are healthy and bright during the spring and summer.

Water Is Essential

It’s important to water your plants as usual up until the first frost. This will make sure the roots will have plenty of moisture to make it through the winter. Mid to late August is also the time for one last fertilizing, but only with a half-strength mixture.

Break Out The Pots

Geraniums, Calendulas, and other tender plants should be placed in pots and moved inside. Make sure to place them in a safeguarded area and water then until they can recover from the shock of transplanting. Once you’re ready to take them inside, give them a temporary home in the brightest window you can to acclimate them. It’s best to do this at least a week before you turn the heat on in your home.

A Little Trim Is In Order

Your perennials will inevitably experience some wilting, so after the first frost, trim away the weaker stems. Once your perennials die back and become dormant, you should trim these down to the ground leaving only an inch or so.

Winterize With Winter Mulch

Your perennials will thrive in the warmer months with just a little pampering during the winter. Gather a 2-3 inch mixture composed of garden soil and compost. This should be added around the base of your plants after the first freeze. this should keep them safe during the winter.

Wrap your shrubs, like peonies and roses, with burlap or paper — especially the younger and more tender shrubs. Wrapping them will help protect your shrubs from the blistering winter winds.

Indoor gardening in the winter

Indoor gardening Winter can take its toll – the long nights, cool temperatures, and hours spent inside can make a few months feel like an eternity. When it’s too chilly to step outside, bring nature to you with creative container gardening that’s sure to lift even the darkest of winter spirits.

One of the hardest parts about staying indoors is missing out on fresh air. Even with regular cleaning, stale air can become hazardous to your health and make those winter blues even worse. Luckily, bringing in just a few of these colorful houseplants can help to improve your air quality almost effortlessly. Aloe and Spider Plants are easy to care for and filter out formaldehyde and other dangerous by-products of paints and chemical cleaners. Affordable and low maintenance, houseplants are one of the best ways to ensure your air quality is at its best all year long.

If you’re looking for a trendy way to invite nature into your home, experiment with creating your own succulent pot or terrarium. With hundreds of plants to choose from, you can create attractive indoor gardens that fit any budget and space. Whether you want to nurture orchids or admire bonsai, delicate terrariums bring life and color into your home.

Sick of all that cold and gray? Chase winter away with beautiful blooming houseplants in every color imaginable. These diverse blossoms have all the vibrancy of an outdoor garden but in a convenient indoor package. Horticultural experts at Ace of Grey can help you choose plants best suited to your lifestyle, to ensure your plants are always thriving.

This winter, avoid the blues by bringing nature to you. Colorful houseplants and container gardening help keep your air clean and your home bright, and keep nature beside you all year long

Easy DIY Projects for Your Home

Are you beginning to go stir crazy with the cold weather? Has cabin fever set in? What you need are some DIY projects for the New Year and Ace of Gray has the tools and building materials to help.

Handyman tips and tricksYour first project could be those cedar lined drawers your wife has been after you to make. All it takes are some cedar boards, sandpaper, wood glue, and wood screws. You’ll also need a chop saw and cordless drill. Don’t have those? Don’t worry, Ace of Gray has got you covered.

Ready to look forward to Summer and those backyard cookouts? Why not turn your attentions toward building a cooler cart? Remember the old adage: measure twice, cut once. There’s nothing worse than finishing a project like this one, only to realize that your cooler won’t fit!

Maybe you’ve never had to be the one doing it all before. That’s okay too. Here is a list of 5 home improvement skills that everyone should have.

1. How to hang a picture – You’re no longer hanging posters in your dorm room. You’re in the big leagues now and sticky tack just won’t cut it.

2. How to install a hanging shelf – Make sure that you locate the studs so that your shelf and its contents stay put.

3. How to stain wood – Even the greatest project can stumble at the finish line if it isn’t stained and finished properly.

4. How to reseal a window – A faulty seal on a window can mean higher heating and cooling costs, not to mention water damage to your sills.

5. How to replace a shower head – This one really couldn’t be easier. Just buy a new shower head, unscrew the old one, and replace the Teflon tape before screwing on the new shower head.

Get Organized After the Holidays with Ace of Gray

Get rid of clutter in the New Year!

Thanks to a little teamwork (which means that as the clock counted down to zero and the guests descended on your home, everyone was running around like mad cleaning areas that hadn’t been cleaned in months) your house is now clean. Why not take advantage of this and start organizing as you put away those holiday decorations? Whether you need totes and shelves or whole storage sheds, Ace of Gray has got you covered.

If those cardboard boxes the Christmas ornaments have been stored in all these years have seen better days, why not get some storage totes from Ace of Gray to put them in? Once they are packed neatly away in your sturdy totes you can decide where they go. There are wall shelf kits that can help you carve out a little storage space in a closet, or if you need something a bit more substantial you could use some freestanding shelves to set in your garage or utility room.

When you begin to bring everything back out that you had packed away during the holidays, you can start evaluating just what needs to stay and what needs to go. Your kids are teenagers now, do you really need the toy box out? Get rid of things that you can stand to say goodbye to. This includes some of those decorations that are looking a bit tired or simply no longer work. As you’re taking the lights out of the window, it’s the perfect time to check for crumbling caulk. Ace of Gray has the supplies you need to repair it.

Live up to this New Year’s Resolution. Don’t let all your hard work be in vain. Use some of Ace of Gray’s home accessories, organization materials, and renovation supplies to create your own unique home storage.