Materials to Create Pathways Around Your Home

Archive for January, 2015

Materials to Create Pathways Around Your Home

When it comes to performing landscaping projects around the yard, many homeowners forget that this term can in fact refer to permanent fixtures such as garden pathways and general walkways. Choosing the right type of pathway stone can seem like a challenging process; however, here are a few of the most popular and versatile options that are currently available.


These stones are available in numerous shapes, sizes, and colors making them an extremely versatile choice when walkways need to be constructed anywhere around your home. This enables you to decide whether you would prefer a neatly-designed walkway that runs in a straight line or something a little less traditional, such as a winding pathway. An added advantage of using stones for your pathway is that, when properly cared for, they have been known to last for as long as 50 years without fading or breaking. Additionally, they help prevent slips and falls by providing excellent traction when it is raining or snowing.

Brick Pavers

Similar to flagstone, brick pavers are also able to be purchased in numerous different sizes and colors. However, these are more uniform in shape and generally more traditional, meaning that they are an ideal choice if you prefer to have a more customary appearance to your walkways. In addition, brick pavers are manufactured to be the same size, which means that they are easier to install. Most brick pavers are slip-resistant, making them a great choice for outdoor walkways as well.

Concrete Pavers

This particular paving material is known for being extremely durable. Concrete pavers are resistant to heavy weights, meaning that they can be driven on. These pavers are more affordable than other types of materials, making them a much sought after option for home owners who need to construct pathways or walkways but may also be on a tight budget. Concrete pavers are a non-slip option that are available in a wide range of different colors and designs.


Although many other pavers are durable, there is little else that has been able to withstand the test of time as well as travertine pavers. After all, the Coliseum building that dates back to the ancient Roman Empire, was constructed almost entirely from this material, and many parts of it are still standing tall today. These pavers not only come in a wide variety of size and shape options; they are also available in an extensive range of patterns, making each stone unique and eye-catching. Another advantage of this type of pathway stone is that it is highly affordable. When constructing pathways around your home or through your garden, it is important that the area where they are to be laid is properly prepared and leveled beforehand. This will ensure that your walkways are able to withstand many years of wear and tear.

6 Artificial Grasses that Make a Great Alternative to Regular Grass

Although having a large sweeping lawn can make a home look attractive on the outside, it usually also means that there is a lot of work involved to keep it looking lush. However, by using one of the following types of artificial grass, you can make your lawn look just as attractive – without the hassle associated with regular mowing, weeding, watering, and fertilizing.

1. Emerald Grass

This type of artificial grass is ideal for home owners who have children that enjoy playing outdoors. An added bonus of installing Emerald Grass is the fact that it has been certified as being eco-friendly. Emerald Grass is able to withstand a significant amount of wear and tear and as a result, its projected life span is approximately 20 years.

2. Spring Grass

Spring Grass is an option that is highly durable. It is used mainly for landscaping projects as well as areas that are frequented by pets and children. Spring Grass’ natural appearance means that most people will not be able to tell that it is not real grass. Additionally, Spring Grass has an approximate life expectancy of around 20 years.

3. Olive Stemgrass

Having a pile height of 1 ½ “, this artificial grass option appears just as lush and tranquil as its all-natural counterpart. It is ideally suited to high traffic areas such as commercial and residential landscaping areas, pet areas, and play parks. Also, Olive Stemgrass is able to successfully withstand harsh weather conditions.

4. U-Blade Grass

U-Blade Grass has been hailed as the perfect underfoot solution to use in children’s playground areas at public parks, kindergartens, and schools. It is currently one of the most durable types of artificial grass that is available. U-Blade Grass provides a softer landing if a child should fall accidentally. An added bonus is that the playground area will never need to be closed in order to to cut the lawn.

5. Riviera Monterey Grass

Home owners who select Riviera Monterey Grass will be pleased to know that it is able to provide them with a beautiful lawn that looks perfectly natural, manicured, and green all year round – without the high costs that are associated with hiring a landscaper or lawn care and maintenance company to perform the task each week.

6. W-Blade Grass

This eco-friendly lawn provides a perfect solution for household pet areas, playgrounds, and other areas with high foot-traffic. Like many other forms of artificial grass, the W-Blade option is expected to last approximately 20 years if cared for correctly. Although many people may think that having artificial grass installed will be an expensive option, it will in fact save a lot of money in the long term; with artificial grass, continual upkeep and maintenance will be virtually non-existent. When a home owner invests in artificial grass, they will no longer have to spend their weekends cutting lawns and trimming edges. They will no longer be forced to fork out hundreds of dollars to have someone else take care of their yard.

Rain Bird Irrigation Products – Why They are Some of the Best

People who are looking for a sprinkler or irrigation system often turn to Rain Bird products because of their quality, selection, and price. No matter what your needs are, there is bound to be Rain Bird irrigation products that are perfect for you.

Residential Line

There are numerous products available that are perfect for homeowners. The company’s residential line of products consists of everything from host-end sprinklers to underground systems with multiple heads that are operated on timers. In addition to Rain Bird’s helpful irrigation tips, Grand Materials’ employees have the expertise to make finding the right product easy.

Professional Line

If you are an installation specialist, there are products that will fit your needs as well. Rain Bird has everything from landscape drips to central controls to help you with any project, big or small. Many of the products available in the professional line are more suitable for commercial use, such as the pump stations that may be used for larger ponds or fountains. There is also a wide variety of literature and product manuals available on their website for you to use as reference material when completing projects. Of course, you can contact Grand Materials or their customer service department with any questions you may have as well.

Products for Golf Courses

Golf courses have multiple requirements when it comes to keeping their greens beautiful. They must have well maintained turf, in addition to ensuring that their water features are sparkling clean at all times. Rain Bird has products that can help golf course managers with both of these aspects. The Rain Bird algae control system is designed to keep ponds and other water features from developing unsightly algae that could make a course appear unkempt. They also provide a Dynamic Flo-Manager system that helps keep grass green while saving water simultaneously. The result is a better looking course that, overall, costs less to maintain.

Agricultural Products

A lack of rain doesn’t have to mean the loss of crops. Rain Bird provides multiple systems that are designed to hydrate crops to ensure a bountiful harvest. Some systems may stretch along the ground, and are ideal for watering trees, shrubs, and seedlings. Others might be larger, upright units that are typically placed in the middle of a field to irrigate corn, soybeans, cotton, or other crops. They even have conversion kits available that make it easy to switch from an older, less efficient system to a newer, more modern one.

Product Details

Rain Bird is considered a leader in the field of irrigation, and has been awarded more than 135 patents over the years. All of their products are designed to work efficiently and effectively. Rain Bird products use intelligent technologies to conserve as much water as possible. Their reputation for providing top quality products has led to their products use in thousands of farms, homes, and sports fields across the country and around the world. When it comes to irrigation, Rain Bird is a name that stands out from its competition. When you choose Rain Bird products, you know that you are getting high-quality irrigation supplies that will work efficiently for years to come.

Reasons to Have Outdoor Lighting Installed Around Your Home

One of the best ways to give your home a much needed outdoor makeover is to have a professional landscaping project performed. While this usually includes changing plants, installing rockery features and ponds, and trimming back the bushes and shrubs, there are a few reasons why you should ensure that you use this opportunity to have some quality lighting installed around the outside of your home as well.

The Perfect Finishing Touch

Once your landscaping project has been completed, you will want to be sure that it is visible at night as well as during the day. The easiest way to make this happen is to have outdoor lighting installed at strategic points. These days, there are numerous different styles of lighting fixtures to choose from, which means that there will surely be at least a few options that will blend in with your existing outdoor décor. Some fixtures can even be placed in the garden among your plants. Outdoor lighting is also available in a range of different colors, which will allow you to completely customize the outdoor look of your home.

Entertain in Comfort

If you have an outdoor deck area or a swimming pool, chances are that you will want to host an evening barbecue, a late-night birthday celebration, or even a simple family get-together. Having good outdoor lighting installed not only makes this possible; it allows you to do so in comfort. It is also possible to have waterproof lighting installed in your swimming pool, which will make it easier to keep an eye on children who may be enjoying some time in the water on warm summer evenings. Mosquito-repellent lights can also be installed around decks, pools, and entertainment areas so that you aren’t bothered by these pesky insects during the summer months.

Safety and Security

If anything, you should consider investing in outdoor lighting around your home for security reasons. This will enable you to see if anyone is lurking around your home that does not belong there and it will also make it more difficult for would-be criminals to find a dark hiding spot. When choosing outdoor light fixtures, make sure that they are waterproof, as failure to do so could cause your electricity to trip each time it rains or when dew or moisture work their way into the fixtures. Installation of any outdoor light fixtures or electrical points should always be performed by a qualified professional, who will also be able to advise you regarding which fixtures are suitable for outdoor use. With regards to security, motion-detector lights will not only alert you to the fact that someone has arrived at your home, they will save money on electricity because of the fact that they are used only when needed. Installing lighting doesn’t need to be an overly expensive exercise, as there are now many affordable options available. Once your outdoor lighting has been installed, you will wonder why you didn’t have it done a long time ago.

Low Water Shrubs That Do Great in the Arizona Climate

When performing a landscaping project, it is important to choose plants according to the climate you live in. This will not only ensure that they thrive; it will also enable your garden to look its absolute best year round. Although the Arizona climate can be quite harsh and unforgiving during the summer months, there are still quite a few shrubs and other beautiful plant varieties that can and do perform well in this region.

Numerous Shrubs to Choose From

When purchasing new plants, you will notice that they are usually divided into categories according to the amount of water they require. Some of the best low water shrubs to opt for include Trailing Acacia (Acacia redolens), Trailing Desert Broom (Baccharis hybrid), and the Red Spike Ice Plant (Cephalophyllum), Damianita (Chrysactinia Mexicana), Bush Morning Glory (Convolvulus cneorum), Trailing Dalea (Dalea greggii), Blue Euphorbia (Euphorbia rigida), Trailing Gazania (Gazania rigens), Lantana (Lantana hybrid), Trailing Lantana (Lantana montevidensis), Gray Ice Plant (Malephora crocea), and Yellow Dot (Wedelia trilobata).

Other Options for Low Water Plants

In addition to shrubs, there are other types of plants that are able to survive the Arizona climate with very little water, with the two most common variants being the hardy succulent plants. Popular options in these categories include Smooth Agave (Agave desmettiana), Parry’s Agave (Agave parryi), Twin-flowered Agave (Agave geminiflora), Octopus Agave (Agave vilmoriniana), Dawe’s Aloe (Aloe dawei), Cape Aloe (Aloe ferox), Medicinal Aloe ) Aloe Vera), Banana Yucca (Yucca baccata), Paleleaf Yucca (Yucca pallida), Partridge Breast Aloe (Aloe variegata) and Desert Milkweed (Asclepias subulata).

Getting Started

When arriving home with your new plants, it is important to provide them with a sandy soil, as soil that holds too much water will cause them to die. Most low water plants prefer soil that drains relatively quickly and easily. These plants also enjoy being exposed to at least a few hours of direct sunlight each day. This will help ensure that they not only become established plants, but that they thrive and last for many years in your newly landscaped garden.

Caring for your Low Water Plants

Many new gardeners assume that all plants need to be watered as soon as the soil appears dry. However, this is not the case, as overwatering these plants can actually be detrimental to their health – with root rot being one of the most common ailments. This occurs when the roots of these plants are kept continuously damp. It is usually recommended that these plants be watered every 10 to 14 days at average temperatures. However, in extreme summer heat, they can be given a little bit of water every 5 to 7 days instead. If you are unsure of which plants will perform best in your garden, most landscapers or garden stores will have experts on hand to provide you with free advice. Once these plants have fully established themselves, they can be great additions to your home or yard!

Why Kichler Lighting is the Best for Outdoor Home Lighting

When it comes to selecting outdoor lighting products, many home owners fall into the trap of looking for the least expensive options possible. However, the saying “you get what you pay for” is definitely true regarding outdoor lighting, as the higher quality ones not only look more attractive, they also last much longer and are more able to withstand being exposed to harsh weather conditions such as rain, wind, sleet, ice and snow. This is especially true with LED lights which far outperform incandescent lights. When compared to incandescent lighting, LED lights last for many more years and they provide a crisper, brighter light.

An Extensive Selection to Choose From

Grand Materials and Supply has an extensive selection of Kichler Lighting products. Grand Materials is able to supply you with a multitude of landscape lighting and outdoor light fixtures, ensuring that there is something available to suit virtually any yard area or home exterior. Regardless of whether you’re looking for something basic to provide needed light for a dark pathway or for something more attractive to add some curbside appeal to your home, Grand Materials has you covered. Some of the more exquisite outdoor lighting fixtures that we supply include hanging lanterns, spot and flood lights, ceiling lights, outdoor post lights, along with a wide range of accessories. Grand Materials’ lighting selection allows you to provide as much light on your entertainment area and landscaped garden as you’d like.

Specialty Outdoor Lighting Products

Currently, there are hundreds of outdoor lighting products that Grand Materials offers. This selection of outdoor lighting includes deck rail lighting and stair lights, which enable home owners to entertain outdoors at any time. Each type of outdoor lighting is available in a wide range of sizes, styles and colors, which enables them to blend in perfectly with existing fixtures or landscaping attractions that may already be installed. An added advantage is that these outdoor lights have been carefully designed to ensure that they do not take in water when it rains.

Installing Landscape and Outdoor Lighting Products

Although many people think that it may be a simple task to install landscape lighting or other outdoor fixtures, this is not always the case. When installing these items, it is important to remember that there are certain electrical codes and specifications that need to be adhered to. It is recommended that a qualified electrician perform the installation of any outdoor lighting products. Home owners who are considering having outdoor lighting installed around their properties should know that they do not need to look further than Grand Materials. Their great selection of Kichler lighting will leave customers completely spoiled for choice. Customers will be able to rest assured that they have chosen to use a brand name that is synonymous with high quality and class.