Visit the Shaks

  • Shak In Style
  • Shakhammer
  • Love Shak, Baby
  • LoanShak
  • ShakYard
  • WorkShak
  • Shaktronics
  • Shak & Jill
  • Animal Shak
  • Shak & Jill

    Join Jill for savvy Real Estate discussion.
    visit the shak!

    Did you know?

  • Quick test: is it a weed or a plant? If it comes out of the ground easily, it is a valuable plant.
  • read all shaktoids!
    April 26, 2016
    Wipe Out Wasps With This Trick

    My parents live out in the country, and I love their porch and huge yard. However, now that Spring has sprung, the bugs are out. They have a pretty bad wasp problem. My dad does his best to get rid of them; he puts wasp killer in their nests, swats them, etc., which works to a certain extent, but they still seem to come back with a vengeance. Plus, those harsh pesticides aren’t good for his health, and they can get pretty pricey. That’s why I like this post by Crystal at Natural Thrifty. Here is her tip for getting rid of wasps naturally:

    • 2 cups of water
    • 1 teaspoon of peppermint oil
    • 1 teaspoon of dish soap (optional)

    Combine all of these ingredients together into your spray bottle. Wait until the very early morning hours, or late at night when it looks like they’re sleeping, then shake and spray!

    You might need to apply the solution twice, but they will fall to the ground and die within seconds.

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    April 22, 2016
    Friday Fun Video: How To Plant A Tree
    YouTube Preview Image

    Happy Earth Day!

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    April 20, 2016
    Wordless Wednesday: Garden Boardwalk


    Photo from Paul Dracott Garden Design

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    April 18, 2016
    Rain Barrel Tutorial

    Why should you have to pay for water for your garden when it literally falls out of the sky for free? Rainy days are great for our lawns- they keep them lush and hydrated. But what about all the other days? You can waste money by watering your plants yourself, or you can try out this awesome idea by Alina Cheng at Greener By The Week and build your own rain barrel! Collect your own rain water with this tutorial:

    -Get a large plastic garbage can with a matching, dome-shaped lid

    -Cut out a circle in the middle of the top of the lid, place a mesh sink strainer in the hole, use duct tape to create a secure seal.

    -Place the lid upside down on the garbage can

    -Use rubber bands to secure the lid onto the can

    Wait for the rain to come!

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    April 11, 2016
    Easy Veggies To Plant From Seeds

    7553779764_820730c62b_zFor lots of veggies and plants, you have to either get them as seedlings, or start them indoors. However, there are some that you can plant directly in the ground as seeds. This is called “direct sowing,” and saves you a lot of time and effort. For a list of plants that you can direct sow, check out this post by Rachel Arsenault at Grow A Good Life. First, prepare the soil with fertilizer, then plant any of these seeds:











    Photo Credit: Liz West 

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    April 6, 2016
    Wordless Wednesday: Birdbath Fairy Garden


    Photo from Faith Tap

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    April 4, 2016
    What NOT To Plant

    3864918723_8cfa3af66b_zSome plants are beautiful to look at, but poisonous to people and animals. Others are highly invasive, or attract bugs that will damage your lawn. Make sure you do your research before bringing new plants into your yard! Read this article by the Bob Vila Blog for plants that should always be avoided- some are really surprising!:

    -Aloe vera- poisonous if ingested by animals

    -Belladonna- extremely poisonous

    -Bamboo- highly invasive

    -Mimosa tree- invasive

    -Japanese Barberry- harbor black ticks

    Photo Credit: Tim Green 

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    April 1, 2016
    Friday Fun Video: How To Make A Square Foot Garden
    YouTube Preview Image

    What an awesome idea! This is perfect for those who have limited space, or just want to streamline their gardens.

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    March 29, 2016
    Growing Bean Sprouts

    11508852856_8fac89f518_zI love bean sprouts, especially in my lo mein, stir fry, and other Asian foods. They add a satisfying, refreshing crunch to otherwise spicy meals. Plus, they are super easy to grow yourself (how many of us did experiments with bean sprouts in first grade science class?), filled with antioxidants, – and you can grow a LOT of them fast. Starting a bean sprout “garden” is easy. Just check out these tips by Chris Dalziel at Attainable-Sustainable:

    1. Place two tablespoons of bean seeds in your one-quart mason jar with a screened lid.
    2. Fill the jar ½ full with cold water. Let the mung beans soak overnight.
    3. Rinse the mung beans in the morning and turn the jar upside down to drain.
    4. Rinse and drain your bean seeds twice a day for 4 to 6 days. The mung beans are ready to eat when the white sprout is at least 1.5 cm long.

    Photo Credit: Dave Miller 

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati
    March 25, 2016
    Friday Fun Video: Venus Flytrap Tips

    I LOVE venus flytraps. I had one for about two years- he ate so many bugs, especially creepy daddy-long-leg spiders. They’re awesome and actually pretty low maintenance.

    Add to:  Digg  Face Book  stumbleupon  technorati