With so many different garden and landscaping products for sale, it can be tough to know what is decent and what is rubbish. As a gardening addict, I aim to review as many landscaping and gardening products as I can during the cold fall and winter months.
Amazon used to be a solid source of product reviews but with so many retailers buying fake reviews and people writing reviews on products they never even touched, no-less actually used. It can be quite the shot in the dark finding good quality garden and landscape products.
Landscape Lighting Lies
This last summer I bought some solar landscaping lights that got rave reviews on Amazon. There were over 60 positive reviews and only a handful of negative reviews, most of which were focused on poor quality product packaging vs actual product qualities.
I ordered a 3 pack of these solar landscaping lights and when they arrived I was surprised to see they were absolute rubbish. The lights were made of cheap plastic (silver to look like metal) and the solar panels were of horrible quality as well.
I placed the solar landscaping lights along the rock garden path that leads from my driveway, along the rock landscaping wall and towards the entryway of my home.
They worked very well for about 3 months at which point one died completely and the other 2 began to flicker and grow dim at night. They would hardly make it past dusk before they went dead for the evening.
Turns out the solar panels in these little landscaping lights charge tiny lithium batteries inside the units which power the LED. The problem is the batteries are cheap junk that die quickly, and cannot be replaced. Total bullocks.
Fake Reviews Of Fake Rocks
I also bought some fake rocks to cover some ugly vent pipes I have in my yard. Again, the reviews on Amazon were great, with people raving about how realistic the faux stones are. They are plastic rocks made hollow so things can be hidden underneath.
When I opened the box my jaw dropped. The fake rock covers didn’t look realistic at all. They were downright ugly with wax-like texture that looked more like melted plastic than natural rocks.
OK I’m rambling on a bit now. As I was saying, I intend to use this website as a place for me to post my gardening and landscaping adventures with in-depth product reviews on different front and back yard landscaping and gardening products.
I am new to this whole blogging thing so please bear with me as I learn more about it and get this site up and running.
A Camp Site In My Yard?
My son recently came home from college with the camping bug. As a family we never did much camping, so I can’t say I know much about it but he really wanted to give it a shot in the back yard before heading off on bigger and bolder camping adventures.
Who am I to so no to such a request!?
I let him set up a small camping area in the back yard at the edge of the property near the wooden fence. I figured the fence will protect him from bears!
After spending hours online reading camping tent reviews he bought a 4-person instant pop-up style tent. He asked me to help him set it up in the yard and WOW was I amazed at how fast we pitched it. It was literally like 3 minutes and the tent was totally up and ready for action!
The funny thing is the first night he was out camping in the tent I looked out my bedroom window and I could see the tent glowing like a UFO! He must really be “roughing it” out there in the wilderness I thought to myself!
Turns out he had a little portable solar power generator out in the tent with him. It was powering a little TV and a laptop. Hilarious!
Deer In The Garden? Buy A Crossbow!
I have a HUGE deer and rabbit problem in my yard. They are eating all of my plants, especially in the winter when food is scarce. Where I live it is too populated to be blasting a rifle out the window so last week I went and bought myself a crossbow!
After reading tons of online crossbow reviews I finally took the plunge and bought one of the more basic recurve style crossbows that just have plain limbs without all the fancy wheels and cables. Keep It Simple Stupid!
It’s not very powerful, but it is super accurate! And don’t you worry, I am a bit of a tree-hugger and I don’t intend to kill the critters, I just want to give them a nice wallop in the buttocks to let them know I mean business.
I found these little spring-loaded arrow tips called “Judo Points” that will not penetrate into the animal-like the sharp crossbow broadheads do.
Now I can blaze away at the hungry critters through my kitchen window and put them in their place without actually killing them. It’s like crossbow deer hunting without all the mess and guilt of killing the deer or rabbit afterwards!
Below are some links to some UK and US gardening and landscaping resources:
Landscaping And Gardening Resources
Plants of the United Kingdom – A good guide of landscaping plants and the different varieties that are hardy enough to withstand the seasonal changes.
UK Woodland Trust – Great info here on the natural landscape of the UK and how we can help to preserve it by choosing native plant species in our own front and back yard landscaping areas.
Native Plants Of The UK – great guide for gardeners and landscapers wanting to use native plants, shrubs, bushes and trees in landscaping projects large and small.
USDA – United States Department of Agriculture – Great website for the yanks looking for hardiness zone maps for different types of plants.