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YOUR HOME   -   EXTERIOR LOOKS
To-do's for a Better Summer Season
July, 2016 - Issue #141
1. Refurbish your Existing Pool
This is the perfect time of year to repair and refurbish your outdated or poorly-functioning pool. In a matter of weeks, thanks to consistently-clear weather and lower seasonal demand, your exterior can be transformed into an oasis you can't wait to show off to friends and family. Repair tile and coping, add a water feature or spa, improve surrounding hardscape design and function, fix dated plaster with a stylish new finish and more.
California Pools & Spas 702-8500

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courtesy of Shutterstock
courtesy of Shutterstock
They did it & so can You
Faith Montana Installed a Water-friendly Landscape

In 2014, Santa Clarita Valley resident Faith Montana designed and installed her own California-friendly landscape after she travelled the Santa Clarita Valley taking photos of inspirational yards. With the help of the internet and local nurseries, she identified the best plants to makeover her yard. For her project, Faith removed 1,400 square feet of grass in her front and backyards, including the grass covering her parkway. She replaced it with a variety of drought-tolerant plants, ground cover, mulch, river rock and flat stones. Faith likes that her updated landscape is like a painter's palette. The colors change when different plants bloom during different seasons. She says it's more interesting and satisfying to work with plants and experiment with different plants in the landscaping than cutting and edging grass. To learn more about Faith's project including the types of materials she used, visit: www.clwa.org/doing-more/faith-m. For more information and more inspirational lawn replacement projects, visit www.clwa.org/conservation/diy-lawn-replacement/im-doing-more.

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courtesy of Shutterstock
courtesy of Shutterstock
2. Replace Grass Lawns with Multi-dimensional Design
Summer tends to be hard on lawns, making this season a grand time to rip out your struggling strands of greenery. But what to replace it with? Since the drought is going nowhere fast, you'd be bright to choose a water-friendly combination of trees, liquid-sipping ornamentals, permeable ground covers and hardscape. Some of the best arbor options bear fruit; if you're going to utilize limited water, you might as well eat the "fruits" of your labor! Fig trees boast beautiful waxy, brilliant-green leaves and produce plenty of organic fruit - plus cooling shade! Deer grass in shades of amber introduce pops of color in your yard, as well as a fair share of texture, height and movement. They're a fab choice for water conservation, too. Fuse these options with a permeable ground cover like pebbles, mulch or gravel that's orientated to assist in natural water percolation to our ground supplies below. Finish the effort with hardscape that unifies each zone of your yard for maximum enjoyment.
NV Landscape 286-8888

3. Revitalize Your Front Door
Paint and close your door in the same day with Modern Masters Front Door Paint. It's guaranteed not to fade! There are 25 colors to choose from to turn boring into beautiful - instantly! These statement shades range from White, Lime Green, Turquoise, Purple and Burgundy. The eye-catching color helps all the elements come together for beautiful curb appeal. Even more helpful: The colors have coordinating names like energetic, cheerful, motivated, comfortable, grounded, sincere, successful and more, so you know what emotion you're imparting with your paint choice. Instantly see your door transformed with Front Door Paint from the App Store; it's free! www.modernmasters.com

4. Enjoy your Patio without Pests
You're dining al fresco, enjoying the fine SCV evening weather, when a fly unceremoniously lands in your glass of vino. Yuck! Protect yourself from flybys, bites and burns with the Executive Screen from Phantom Screens. Fitting most custom and oversized applications, this convenient "there when you need it, gone when you don't" screen can supply complete ventilation, shade from the sun, protection from pests and enhanced privacy. When you choose a motorized version, it's all available at the touch of a button. Select mesh options like "Insect Mesh," which allows the most ventilation and best view while keeping the bugs out. Recommended for both small and large openings, this option blocks up to 40 percent of the sun's harmful UV rays. Phantom Screens of Southern California 799-9226

5. Enjoy your Space more with an Outdoor Fire Pit
Don't spend beautiful evenings inside just because it cools off - heat things up outside! Outdoor fire pits are an ideal enhancement to your outdoor living space. The calm, warm feeling of an outdoor fire pit will create the perfect setting for your family gatherings and entertainment. You can choose between a classic wood-burning pit or a cleaner, gas-burning unit. One of the main advantages of the gas fire pit is that it gives off a great amount of heat. This is crucial for anybody who is going to be using their fire pit as a way of staying warm during the cold months, or for a little bit of added comfort while you entertain year round. A gas fire pit is also very easy to operate. The only thing that you need to do to get started is turn the gas on and light it. This will give you a flame, and that is all there is to it. There is no fire to start or wood to burn. Also, a gas fire pit is very easy to clean up. Unlike a wood fire pit, all you need to do is turn the gas off. You will never have to worry about cleaning out the fire pit or making sure that the flame is completely extinguished before leaving the pit. There are advantages to the wood burning fire pits, as well. Many people love the wood-burning units and the smell in the air you can only achieve burning real wood. Either way, adding a fire pit to your yard will add much comfort and enjoyment year round.
Oasis Garden & Patio 255-9909

6. Keep the Green, not the Grass
Tempted to go grass free, but aren't sold on the desert-style landscaping options that seem to be the only alternative? Don't forget turf! Today's faux grass looks better than the real thing, feels fab under the feet and it's affordable, too, thanks to PACE Financing. There are a wide variety of styles and colors for every budget and the best news is that this pet-and kid-friendly solution requires no chemicals, no mowing and no water!
Turf Exchange 844-600-8873

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They did it & so can You
Rocking Horse Ridge Family Created Stunning Oasis

Thomas Pools' boldest outdoor improvement has been this stunning backyard oasis in Rocking Horse Ridge. Over the course of nine months, they constructed a spacious pool with a rock slide, cave seating hidden in a grotto, an LED lit waterfall, jumping rock and synchronized color-changing lights. The company incorporated a raised spa that spills over a rock ledge, along with built-in barstools that sit beside the granite counter at the palapa bar. You can relax and tune into one of the four TVs, fire up the gas barbecue, bake a snack in the pizza oven or unwind by the crackling fireplace.
Thomas Pools 441-3411

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