7 Tips On Hosting The Best Garage/Yard Sale

There are many reasons you may consider having a garage/yard sale. One of the main reasons they’re held, though, is to get rid of old things that people no longer want or need. This could be anything from clothes to old DVDs and CDs. Maybe you just enjoy social gatherings and need an excuse to throw a gathering for the neighbourhood. Well, either way, you’re going to want to make a lasting impression and also increase the number of customers you bring to your sale. This blog will help you get started on your Melbourne driveway garage/yard sale to maximise the number of people you attract and also encourage them to hang around and shop.

1.   Deal in cash only

For starters, you should set up your fundamentals. Dealing with cash only is much easier than trying to get electronic payments going and also keeps things simple and stress-free. Carry around a fanny pack to make it easier to sort and handle the money. This also means you can stay on the go and assist your customers wherever they are during the sale – as opposed to having a stationary register. Staying portable essentially streamlines the whole operation.

 

2.   Price everything as you find it

When you’re looking for stuff you can sell, try to put price tags on them as you find them. That way you don’t have to sort through everything a second time later on. Keep the prices simple – solid dollar prices. You can get little stickers to write the prices on from your local newsagent or two-dollar store and attach them to the item. You can also use this stage to sort the items into categories.

 

3.   Colour coordinate your sale

Pick a theme for your sale! You should try and make sure there is some form of consistency in the layout as people generally enjoy aesthetically pleasing designs and recurring patterns. Whether you go for a monochromatic design or use some colours that may match your Melbourne driveway, the options are almost limitless.

 

4.   Advertise in advance

You should be advertising for your garage/yard sale at least two weeks in advance. Put up colourful signs – or signs that will match the theme you’ve chosen – around your street and around your block with clear instructions and details. Utilise social media as well if you want to bring in a larger audience. But if you’d prefer not to put your address up on social media then just keep it the neighbourhood.

 

5.   Laying it all out

Don’t just put everything out on your lawn or garage, plan where you’re going to put things. Sketch the layout beforehand and make sure there’s room for people to walk around and browse freely. Arrange the clothes on racks by size – cut paper plates and attach them to the rack to use as size dividers. Put bargain bins at the front for the very cheap items. Don’t forget to put up signs explaining what each section is – such as the bargain bin(s). You should also keep in mind that sometimes less is better. If you have an excess of a particular type of item, maybe don’t bring it all out at first. Sometimes limited items sell better than items with plenty of stock.

 

6.   Offer refreshments

Have snacks and drinks handy to encourage people to linger and enjoy the atmosphere or shop around further. This can be anything from doughnuts or just packets of biscuits. You can make some home-made lemonade or iced tea and bake some desserts for a more authentic feeling as well. This is something you may or may not want to do depending on how much you want people to hang around or if you want it to be more of a social gathering.

 

7.   Partner up with another family

If you partner up with another family, then you could potentially double the number of items in your sale. This could also give your potential buyers more of a variety to choose from. The other positive that comes out of this is a shared workload on the day. Sometimes it can be overwhelming to handle everyone – and if you can’t bring along a friend who’s willing to help – having that extra family along for the ride can be good. You can then choose how to divide the profits – whether you’ll split it down the middle or just go by whose items were sold.

 

Thinking of utilising your Melbourne driveway?

A Better Driveway is a Melbourne driveway business that specialises in exposed aggregate, coloured and textured concrete driveways. We use highly trained and experienced contractors that will turn your dream driveway into a reality so you can host your perfect garage/yard sale.

If you would like to get in contact with our Melbourne driveway company, then please give us a call on 03 9308 6112 or fill out the form on our website.

Selecting The Right Garage For Your Melbourne Concrete Driveway

A garage is a feature that carries with it a large number of benefits. Obviously, it can be used to store your car – which gives your driveway a break as well from the pressure of the car. But it’s much more than that. Some people don’t even use their garages to store their cars, but simply as a storage space or external room where they can hang out. For today’s blog, we’re going to show you the different types of garages that you can pick to complement your Melbourne concrete driveway.

Attached garage

The most common type of garage seen is the one that’s attached to your home. This simply means that it is connected to your house in some way. These garages are handy if your concrete driveway in Melbourne leads to the side of your home – or if you’re planning for it to.

These tend to have doorways on the inside that allow you to go from your house to your garage without having to go outside first. If you use these types as storage units then they can be especially handy as you won’t have to travel far when moving stuff around. This type of garage can have as many doors as you like and can also be multi-levelled.

 

Detached garage

The opposite of the attached garage, this is a stand-alone building that can act as a car space, storage room or even as a hang-out area (or all of the above depending on the size). This type of garage works especially well on larger properties where perhaps the driveway leads away from the house. Sometimes the detached garage is still next to the house even – but just not connected.

Something you can do if it is a distance away from your house though is build a covered walkway for the rainier seasons so you can travel from your garage to your home with ease. Adding such a feature also opens up a variety of options for decorations – both with the actual walkway and the surrounds of it. For example, you can border the walkway with a long flower patch or put up some wooden crossed fencing and have vines weave through the openings.

 

Multi-door garages

Garages don’t have to be restricted to a single door. You’re essentially limited by the size of your property as there are garages that exist with more than six doors. The size of the garage door can vary as well depending on what type of vehicle you have. So, if you have two cars you can purchase a garage with one large door or two smaller ones – depending on what you personally prefer.

 

Multi-level garages

These types of garages can be quite technical, especially if you’re installing things like car lifts. They are – as the name suggests – garages with multiple levels. Whether you use both levels for different cars or just use the bottom level for your car and the top as a storage area or hang-out room is up to you, but they can be very useful.

These types of garages are especially suited to the detached sort that stand alone as their own building. If you are going to attach a multi-level garage to your home, then it may go better with a two-storey home.

 

Integrated garages

Whilst you may think this is basically the same as an attached garage, it is actually quite different. An attached garage can be built after the home has been built and just attaches on to the side of the home. An integrated garage is actually part of the house’s structure and will usually have part of the house build above it. For example, the house would be above the garage instead of just the roof of the garage. These can sometimes be limited in their space but also bring the benefits of a seamless looking building.

 

Are you interested in a Melbourne concrete driveway?

The best way to compliment a garage is to have an amazing looking Melbourne concrete driveway accompanying it. This is why A Better Driveway is the perfect company for you. We specialise in top quality exposed aggregate, textured and coloured concrete driveways. Our qualified and experienced contractors will work with you to ensure that your Melbourne concrete driveway is exactly how you envisioned it to be.

If you would like to find out more about our Melbourne concrete driveway services, then please give us a call on (03) 9308 6112 or head to our website and fill out the form to get in touch with us.

Our Guide To Maintaining Your Driveway During Winter

Winters in Melbourne can get pretty cold, and in such cold weather it can be hard to leave your home for social events – let alone actually doing work. But, it’s important to remember that whilst your Melbourne concrete driveway is built to last a long time, it is not invincible. In today’s blog, we’re going to run through some things that you can do to help your Melbourne concrete driveway maintain its durability and survive the harsh winter elements.

Cleaning

Before the colder parts of the season start to settle in you should consider cleaning your driveway of any debris it might’ve gathered. Also, keep an eye out for stains from oil or other types of liquid that could get worse over time if not properly attended to. If the colder parts of the season come around and your driveway is dirty, then there could be some permanent damage when combined with the cold weather. If you live in a particularly icy area, then your driveway may begin to crack – as well as become slippery and dangerous for people to walk on.

 

Check for cracks

Whether it’s from the icy weather specifically or not, you should check for cracks every couple of weeks on your driveway. A simple visual inspection should suffice. Be sure not to store heavy equipment or vehicles on your driveway regularly as it will not be able to handle the pressure over prolonged periods of time.

For winter, however, this is especially important to look out for as if there are cracks in your driveway, then water can get in. If it’s cold enough, the water will freeze overnight in the cracks, forcing them to expand. Be sure to also keep an eye on the spacers between concrete slabs – if this applies to the type of Melbourne concrete driveway you have – as they can be the most vulnerable parts.

 

Resealing

To avoid cracks expanding, you should consider resealing your driveway. No matter what style of concrete you’ve used for your driveway, it will last for a long time. But the sealants will eventually wear off, which is wear the resealing comes in. Do not reseal a driveway during the winter as the cold weather will make it very difficult for the resealing process to be completed.

Try to aim to have your driveway resealed before the winter or – if you can afford to – afterwards. Sealants typically last for around two years – depending on the amount of wear and use the driveway endures in that time. The resealing process can take a few days as it must be thoroughly cleaned first and left to dry for 48-hours before the actual resealing can commence.

 

Do not use harmful chemicals

Chemicals such as de-icers are harmful to driveways because their chemical composition can cause the concrete to destabilise. De-icers – as the name suggests – are chemicals used to remove ice from surfaces. This process has a higher rate of destabilising concrete in a colder climate – which is the most likely time you’d be using de-icers. Magnesium chloride and potassium acetate are two chemicals to watch out for as they will cause scaling and spalling within your concrete driveway.

 

Check your gutters

Gutters become blocked. Whether it’s because of fallen leaves or other things, it’s something that happens. When this occurs, water will overflow off the side and it could end up running down your driveway. If your property has good drainage, then it’ll run right down your driveway and onto the street gutters.

However, what you don’t want to happen is for excess water to pool up over your driveway in a cold climate as this could spell trouble – especially if it freezes over. Even if you do have good drainage you still want as little water on your driveway as possible. Clean your gutters and make sure they’re flowing properly to avoid extra, unwanted water.

 

Are you looking for a concrete driveway in Melbourne?

If you need your Melbourne concrete driveway resealed just before the coldest parts of winter hits – or are simply just looking to install a new driveway – then why not consider A Better Driveway. Here at A Better Driveway, we use professional and fully qualified contractors to ensure your Melbourne concrete driveway is crafted to your liking and to your schedule. Whether you’re after an exposed aggregate, textured or coloured concrete driveway in Melbourne, our contractors will look after you and see that your driveway dreams come true.

If you would like to know more about getting a Melbourne concrete driveway, then please give us a call on (03) 9308 6112 or fill out the form on our website.

How Composting Can Help Your Garden

Composting is a fantastic tool that can not only improve your garden and the food you grow in it – but also helps the environment in a huge way. In today’s blog, we’re going to be having a look at what exactly composting is, as well as the various way it can help improve your garden and your impact on the environment. It’s always fantastic when the garden next to your Melbourne concrete driveway is in tip-top condition.

What is composting?

Composting is the practice of taking decaying organic material and essentially recycling it in a way where it helps soil and plant life to grow. As the organic matter decomposes, it feeds the soil – giving it rich nutrients. Composting speeds up the decomposition of compost because of the conditions that you’ve placed them in. The primary reasoning behind this is due to microorganisms.

Microorganisms need ideal climates to survive in. Things like heat, plenty of oxygen, nutrients and moisture are all necessary for microorganisms to successfully thrive in and do their part in the composting procedure. The two different types of microorganisms are called aerobes and anaerobes.

Aerobes are bacteria that need a minimum of 5% oxygen levels to survive. The aerobes consume the compost and expel chemicals such as magnesium, phosphorus and nitrogen. These are all nutrients that plants need to thrive and survive. Aerobes are the most effective and efficient types of microorganisms when it comes to composting.

Anaerobes, on the other hand, are not so efficient bacteria. These are the types of microorganisms that tend to thrive when there is not enough oxygen for aerobes – as anaerobes do not require oxygen to survive. They actually release chemicals which can be toxic to plants – such as hydrogen sulphide – and gives them a very bad smell.

 

What can be used as compost?

There is a large variety of organic materials that can be used as compost. Some of these include:

  • Tea bags
  • Grass, leaves and branches
  • Hay and straw
  • Eggshells
  • Fruit and vegetables
  • Hair and fur
  • Coffee grounds and coffee filters
  • Sawdust and woodchips

Simply place these on your soil and the composting process will begin. It’s important to have a good mixture of green and brown compost. Green compost – such as vegetables – is high in nitrogen whereas brown compost – such as dead leaves – is high in carbon. A near-perfect balance of these two is essential when composting because if the balance tips in one direction it can ruin the process.

For example, a carbon-rich compost pile will result in a significantly slower decomposition rate. But if your compost pile has too much brown compost, then the increased levels of nitrogen can turn the compost acidic – resulting in a toxic environment that can harm the soil and particular species of microorganisms.

Below are some examples of things that you should not compost:

  • Pet waste
  • Yard trimmings that have been treated by pesticides
  • Dairy products, fats and oils
  • Coal
  • Diseased plants

 

The environmental impact of composting

When you compost, you’re inadvertently sending less garbage to the landfill. In Australia, 3% of our greenhouse emissions are caused by compost in landfills. Because they’re buried under other garbage, they’re not getting enough oxygen and the anaerobes can thrive. These microorganisms end up decomposing the compost in such a way that it actually releases methane gas into our atmosphere – which is one of the most potent greenhouse gasses.

Some of the other environmental benefits include the fact that compost acts as a suppressor for pests and plant diseases. This means you don’t have to waste money on chemical fertilisers – which are also harmful to the environment and your soil/plants because of the chemicals within them. When you use compost, there’s also less chance of runoff occurring. This means that there are fewer bodies of water being contaminated and eroded.

 

Do you need a concrete driveway in Melbourne?

Composting is great for your garden, but to compliment your garden you’ll need a fabulous Melbourne concrete driveway. A Better Driveway can help you with that. We have years of experience and use fully qualified contractors that will work around your schedule to meet your requirements. We specialise in textured, coloured and exposed aggregate Melbourne concrete driveway options.

If you would like to get in touch with us about getting a concrete driveway in Melbourne, then please give us a call on (03) 9308 6112 or send us a message through our website here for a quote.

11 Great Concrete Trends For Your Front Yard

If you’re looking for a fresh new way to upgrade your home, then why not consider concrete? With so many different types of concrete you can have laid down, you can turn your front yard into a grand spectacle without going to the effort of making elaborate gardens. Whether it’s a neutral industrial look you’re after or a more colour-driven fun aesthetic, you’ll be able to achieve it using the various types of concrete that are popular today. Your Melbourne concrete driveway won’t be the only concrete part of your front yard after you’ve seen these fantastic, concrete-driven ideas.

1.    Concrete tiles

Square slabs of concrete evenly spaced, leading towards your doorway is a fantastic idea and one that you can spice up with different types of concrete. For a more stylish effect, instead of having grass surround the raised slabs, try small pebbles and rocks instead.

 

2.    Cinder blocks

You can use cinder blocks instead of bricks to create fences and gardening beds. But you can also use them individually as gardening beds. If you create a raised garden bed where the barrier is made of cinder blocks, you can have some blocks sticking out of the barrier and place plants in them. That way you have a multi-levelled garden with some concrete style.

 

3.    Concrete planters

Whether they’re hanging or floor standing, pots of made of concrete can be great houses for plants and flowers and match your front yard fabulously – whether your yard is concrete-heavy or not.

 

4.    Concrete walls

Fences and walls are a staple way to keep-up privacy in your home. Tall, concrete walls are no exception. These work especially well if the exterior of your house is of a similar look as it’s always wise to match your front fence to the outside of your home. That being said, there are no rules for this, and you can go ahead and have yourself an exposed aggregate wall to match your Melbourne concrete driveway.

 

5.    Statement pieces

Putting concrete statement pieces in your front yard can draw a lot of attention if that’s what you’re going for. These can be things as simple as fountains or even statues of people or objects. Place this in the middle of some grass for a big contrast.

 

6.    Combining concrete

If you’re feeling adventurous, why not combine different types of concrete? You can have a stamped concrete driveway in Melbourne and then border it with some coloured concrete pieces to create a contrast. This sort of thing is only limited by your imagination, especially when it comes to selecting exposed aggregate materials.

7.    Pergola

A pergola is a great statement piece for your front or even backyard. You can build it over the walkway from the front of your house to the porch, or even from your garage to your house – if you have a separate garage building that is a bit of a distance away. These can be completely concrete and either covered or uncovered. If you decide to cover them with a solid roof then, it adds practicality to the structure as well.

 

8.    Body of water

You can dig out some ground and create a little river with some pebbles and maybe some fish inside just before your porch and then build a concrete walkway to act as a bridge. Alternatively, a small lake in the middle or off to the side of your front yard with a concrete feature in the middle.

 

9.    Entirely concrete

This may seem like an obvious one but there’s a lot you can do with just a flat slab of concrete as your driveway. It keeps your front yard looking very minimalistic and low maintenance. Pair this with a concrete fence and it’s a great area for the kids to play in.

 

10. Go for a dessert effect

No grass patches, just concrete, small orange rocks and dirt. You can add some small plants or trees that have a little green on them. This goes particularly well with grey-scale concrete homes.

 

11. Japanese influence

There’s a lot of influence you can take from Japan. Rock gardens, small ponds and even having square or rectangular slabs of concrete placed evenly as walkways but over a body of water with exotic plants surrounding.

 

Looking to build a concrete driveway in Melbourne?

A Better Driveway are Melbourne concrete driveway specialists that offer a range of services and specialise in exposed aggregate, coloured and textured concrete driveways.

If you’re looking for a Melbourne concrete driveway then please get in touch with us by calling (03) 9308 6112 or sending us a message through our website.

Cover Crops: What Are They And Why Are They Important?

If you’re someone who takes their gardening quite seriously, then you know that there is a myriad of problems that can arise from having such a garden. Soil erosion and quality, weeds and pests are all problems that can arise from sustaining a garden. These are also things that can be managed appropriately by planting cover crops. Cover crops are essentially plants that are grown in the off-season before you plant your primary food. Whilst this is typically something that is done on a large-scale farm, there’s no reason why you can’t do it in your backyard beside your exposed aggregate driveway or path.

Soil erosion

One of the key roles of cover crops is to manage soil erosion in the off-season as well as during the season. Cover crops – like the name suggests – actually physically cover the crops and soil below, shielding it from rain and wind. Because it is somewhat shielded from rain, there are fewer raindrops impacting on the soil. This results in fewer soil aggregates breaking off as well as less soil runoff. These factors result in decreased soil erosion since the primary causes of soil erosion are rainfall and runoff.

 

Soil fertility

Another key role and just as important as soil erosion, cover crops actually benefit the fertility of the soil, resulting in a more fruitful garden. Commonly referred to as “green manure” crops, these supply extra nitrogen to the crops which help them to grow as crops and plants are often nitrogen deficient.

They will also improve the physical, chemical and biological properties of the soil, strengthening it overall and creating a more fruitful growing experience for the crops. The roots that the cover crops create will also form a network below the soil which further benefit it and enhance the soils macrofaunal habitat. Just be mindful not to plant them near your exposed aggregate driveway as the roots could affect the foundations of your driveway.

 

Water management

With less rainfall impacting the surface of the garden thanks to the cover crops, the amount of runoff is reduced which will ultimately have a positive impact on the environment as there’s less soil runoff that can travel and contaminate groundwater supplies and other soil. Furthermore, the cover crops’ roots beneath the soil will act as a filtration system. Rather than water impacting the surface of the water, it will filter down directly into the soil. This will increase the water stored in the soil as well as recharge aquifers.

 

Dealing with weeds

Weeds are a blight to all gardens, whether you’re planting crops or flowers. Some people use chemicals to kill weeds, but this can be harmful to the environment as well as any pets you may have. This is another area that cover crops excel in. Whilst they don’t eradicate them completely, cover crops go a long way in reducing the number of weeds that sprout up as well as their density. The general way that most cover crop types do this, is by taking up all the light and growth potential from the weeds like a competition, which the cover crops win. This results in the death of the weeds. Some cover crops even continue to suppress weeds even after they’ve died which is quite impressive. Other ways include altering the soils microbial community to disadvantage the weeds as well as blocking stimuli needed for the weeds seed to germinate.

 

Types of cover crops

There are many different types of cover crops that exist, each with their own unique way of delivering benefits. Here are some common ones:

  • Rye – Rye is fantastic at suppressing weeds, loosening compacted soil and catching excess nitrogen released from the soil.
  • Buckwheat – Because buckwheat grows so quickly it’s ideal for shielding soil against rainfall as well as depriving weeds of sunlight.
  • Clover – This crop cover fixes soil nitrogen and adds fertility to it as well. Yellow clover, in particular, is fantastic for improving soil structure.
  • Sorghum-Sudangrass – It’s tall nature results in added biomass to the soil. It also has a fast-growing and extensive root structure which offers soil erosion protection and weed suppression qualities.
  • Hairy Vetch – Adds a great quantity of nitrogen to the soil and if grown over winter will supply a large amount of fertility as well.

 

Looking for an exposed aggregate driveway in Melbourne?

A Better Driveway are concrete specialists specialising in driveways and paths for a variety of different customers and property types. Our fully qualified and experienced contractors will be able to help you with any one of our services, whether it may be a path for your backyard or an exposed aggregate driveway.

 

If you’re thinking about building an exposed aggregate driveway or would like to know more about our other services then please give us a call on (03) 9308 6112 or contact us through our website.

 

7 Key Tips To Make Your Garden Pet-Friendly

Whether you’re bringing a new pet to your home or just feel like it’s time to do make some general changes for your current pet, there are always ways that you can make your yard more accommodating for them. This is not only for their benefit but also for your plants and landscaping as well – resulting in less maintenance and less stress for you. This list of tips will hopefully help you to transform your yard into a more pet-friendly zone, allowing them to freely enjoy your Melbourne concrete driveway and garden.

1.    Buy big plants

At the end of the day, you can’t predict what your pets will do. Dogs especially have a tendency to dig in gardens and attack most things and your plants are no exception. By purchasing larger plants you’re minimising the chance of your animal successfully destroying them. This could mean they have a large base and the stems and leaves stay high up out of reach or it could simply be a dense plant that is harder to claw or chew through.

 

2.    Fence off the flowerbed

If you’re not sold on big plants and still want to keep your smaller ones – or you’re more worried about your pet digging up the soil around the plant, then why not consider fencing off the flower bed. Not only is this a great deterrent for your pets but it can also look incredibly stylish – and with so many different styles and colours out there, you’ll be able to give your flowerbed a unique look. This may not work if you have a larger dog or a cat, but for the smaller dogs, it will work like a charm. Make sure that the base of the fence is secured under the soil, so the dogs do not attempt to dig underneath it.

 

3.    Pathways

This one applies more so to dogs than cats, but having a pathway is a fantastic idea as dogs love to stick to paths as humans do. This can make them feel more at ease if they have a set path to follow, especially when they see their human using the paths constantly. It’s also nice to split up your garden with some concrete. This can be a separate path to your Melbourne concrete driveway or one that leads off from it.

 

4.    Grass patches

As nice as concrete is, it is essential that there is some area with grass so your pet can do their business when they need to. How large this patch will be is up to you, but pets usually feel more comfortable going to the toilet on grass as opposed to concrete. If it’s a new puppy you’ve brought home, then these patches can be a great help when it comes to toilet training them as well.

 

5.    Home away from home

If you have an outdoor pet, then they’ll need a little home themselves. This can be a dog/cat kennel or a shaded area with a bed and shelter. There are endless possibilities on what you can do but it’s important to remember that they’ll need shelter when it rains and shade when it’s sunny. Make sure they have a water bowl that is filled up and are comfortable. Even if your pet is an indoor one it’s still a good idea to give them their own little outside haven for when they are outside.

 

6.    Use fewer chemicals

You may use garden chemicals on your plants to help kill unwanted weeds and maintain your garden but the last thing you want is your pet becoming too curious. It’s best to cut down on garden chemicals or at the very least be hyper-aware of when you’re using them and wait an appropriate amount of time before letting your pet outside to reduce risk.

 

7.    Poisonous plants

When evaluating your garden, you should check to see if any of the plants you have are hazardous towards your pet as some of them can have some very serious effects on them. Here is a list of plants that are hazardous to dogs and cats.

 

Are you looking for a concrete driveway in Melbourne?

A Better Driveway prides itself in the art of crafting a long-lasting Melbourne concrete driveway. Our experienced contractors can help you with any of the services we offer, including coloured, textured and exposed aggregate concrete.

 

If you would like to know more about the services we offer then please do not hesitate to get in contact with us by calling (03) 9308 6112 or sending us a message through our website.

5 Ways To Sustain Your Coloured Concrete Driveway

If you’ve invested in coloured concrete for your driveway then chances are, you’ll want it to last for as long as possible. The allure of a coloured concrete driveway is in the name, the colour. This is why you’ll want your colours to stay as vibrant as possible for as long as possible and that’s only going to happen if you put in the time to maintain your driveway. Luckily for you, our experienced contractors have put together some easy-to-follow tips on how you can maintain your coloured concrete driveway and keep its charm going for years.

 

1.    Wash regularly

It is crucial you wash your driveway regularly. The first thing you should do however, is sweep it to make sure any leaves or stones are taken away first. It is much easier to deal with dry leaves than it is with wet ones. We suggest a pressure hose to remove any stains – such as grease or oil – or dirt that has become lodged in the driveway. If your driveway is sealed – which it should be – then you won’t have to worry about the high-pressure water damaging it at all. Combining every day cleaning chemicals will improve the effectiveness of the wash as well if you find the stains are not coming out initially.

 

2.    Re-sealing

Generally, concrete sealant lasts for around two years. This, however, depends on multiple factors such as weather and the amount of general wear the driveway sustains from being used. Before a driveway is re-sealed, it must be cleaned thoroughly and then left to dry for 48-hours. Don’t forget to check the weather forecast in advance to ensure no rough weather is in store during the drying period. Apply sealant to the seams and edges of the concrete first with a brush before using a roller to apply it to the rest of your driveway.

Make sure you cover the entire driveway with two thin coats as you don’t want to any thick patches or build-ups in small areas of the driveway. After this is complete you should let it dry and avoid contact with the driveway for a minimum of two days again. Re-sealing your driveway is something that you can do yourself, but it is advised to let a professional do so to guarantee maximum efficiency.

 

3.    Avoid using harmful chemicals

There are particular chemicals that you should not use on your coloured concrete driveway because of the harmful effects they can have. De-icing chemicals, for example, are types that you should stay away from, especially during colder weather. De-icing chemicals such as magnesium chloride and potassium acetate will cause scaling and spalling within your concrete. The last thing you want in your driveway is small cracks to start forming below the surface as that can lead to further destabilisation of the formation.

Other dangerous chemicals to keep an eye out for are ammonium nitrates and sulphates as they will disrupt the concrete on a chemical level causing serious damage. The good news is that these chemicals are not commonly found in your average cleaning products but be sure to double check the ingredients just in case.

 

4.    Prevention tips

If you’re looking at planting a tree or plant, then you should make sure it is a decent distance from your driveway. A minimum of three metres should do. This is because some plants and trees will grow horizontally underneath the soil and could spread to your driveway, leading to damage. If you compelled to plant one of the above in close proximity to your driveway then consider looking into plants whose roots do not spread underground.

 

5.    Take care of your driveway

Your driveway is outside. It braves the harsh and sometimes sporadic weather conditions as well as being driven on constantly. With all the things that it’s made to endure in mind, try to avoid adding to the list of things that it must go through. Sometimes there are circumstances where this is unavoidable, but if you’re conscious about it then it will help maintain the longevity of your coloured concrete driveway.

If you’re using heavy tools in the garden or around the driveway then try to avoid making contact with the concretes surface. A shovel or pair of large garden scissors scraping against the driveway’s surface will not only damage it cosmetically but also the sealant as well.

 

Looking for a coloured concrete driveway?

A Better Driveway is your local source for all your coloured concrete driveway needs. Our experienced and fully qualified contractors will work with you to achieve your ideal driveway as well as offer advice and answer any questions you may have.

 

If you would like to get in contact with us to discuss any of our services, then please give us a call on (03) 9308 6112 or contact us through our website here.

How Do I Keep My Garden Looking Good In Autumn And Winter?

April is around the corner, which means we are well and truly into the season of autumn. And although the onset of autumn and winter means more rain and wind (and less sunshine), it doesn’t mean your garden has to suffer. There are plenty of ways to make sure your garden stays flourishing all throughout the colder months. As experts in the art of residential and commercial hardscaping – particularly including concrete driveways in Melbourne – we thought today we’d share some of these gardening hacks for autumn and winter.

Consider planting new seedlings that thrive in this weather

Just because the weather has changed, it doesn’t mean you can’t continue to plant and grow all kinds of new plants. There are a number of different flowers that thrive in the colder weather, including:

  • Pansies
  • Cyclamen
  • Winter aconite

Don’t be afraid to use autumn to your advantage and plant that veggie garden you’ve always wanted, either. Because of the extra moisture in the soil, this time of year is great to harvest hearty and delicious vegetables such as:

  • Carrots
  • Turnips and radishes
  • Broccoli and cauliflower
  • Peas (particularly snow peas)
  • Onions and garlic
  • Mushrooms
  • Leafy greens (including spinach, kale, bok choy and lettuce)

 

Use mulch to protect your plants

Mulch is great for your garden for a few different reasons. First and foremost, during the autumn and winter months, mulch provides thermal protection for your plants and their roots. This means that your plants will stay healthy despite any fluctuations in temperature (which is especially common in Melbourne).

Another reason to use mulch in autumn and winter is the fact that it helps to retain moisture. Although it might look like your garden is getting plenty to drink during the wetter seasons, don’t be fooled – it can take multiple bouts of rainfall for the water to penetrate the soil deep enough to reach the roots. Therefore, topping up on mulch after watering your garden helps to maintain a level of soil moisture that your plants will love.

Take care when using mulch, however. If it is not tended to regularly, it can build up around stems and trunks, causing collar rot and even fungal infestation.

 

Start planning for spring

Spring might be a while away, but planning which spring-flowering bulbs you’re going to buy ensures you don’t miss out on growing those gorgeous daffodils and tulips. Besides, planting your bulbs in April and May actually creates the best flowering results later in the year due to the added moisture and coolness in the soil.

To grow bulbs successfully, try to plant them in areas that receive the most amount of sunlight possible. They can also grow in light shade. Ensure that the area in which they are being planted has a freely draining soil system. You can start watering your bulbs when you see green shoots starting to appear.

 

Care for your concrete driveway

While concrete driveways, pathways and pavers aren’t literally a part of your garden, keeping them tidy and cared for often goes hand-in-hand with a pristine front lawn and backyard. Sometimes, the pick-me-up your garden requires might not be planting something new; instead, it might be that your concrete has stains and needs some maintenance.

This is particularly common during autumn months, where leaves and debris can often get stuck to concrete, leaving unsightly (and tough-to-remove) stains. In winter, you may also find your concrete gets a lot muddier due to increased rainfall or dirty tires and shoes. You can discover how to protect your driveway, garden and home during autumn using our handy guide.

 

Find out more about concrete driveways in Melbourne

Whether you are looking for information about concrete driveways in Melbourne, or just a new way to spruce up your home or business, A Better Driveway can give you the results you desire. Our exposed aggregate, coloured concrete and textured concrete is versatile, timeless and durable.

All our work comes with a 5-year structural guarantee. We pride ourselves on installing concrete driveways in Melbourne that are as functional, affordable and low-maintenance as they are aesthetically stunning.

Enquire about our concreting services (including concrete driveways in Melbourne) by contacting us on (03) 9308 6112 today.

7 Fun Concrete DIYs To Try This Easter

As experts in residential and commercial hardscaping – particularly when it comes to designing a concrete driveway in Melbourne – we thought we’d mix it up today to bring you some fun Easter DIYs. Whether you have some leftover concrete lying around, or you’re particularly inspired to create some long-lasting crafts, these incredible DIYs are sure to add a touch of class and luxury to any home setting.

 

#1: Easter-themed egg table decorations

Whether you’re looking for a creative DIY paperweight or perhaps just some quirky table decorations, these concrete Easter bunnies (via look-what-i-made.com) are sure to tickle your fancy. The copper detailing is modern yet simplistic, and the bunnies are so easy to make that soon you’ll have a whole collection of them.

 

#2: Rustic egg holders

These textured egg holders (via shelterness.com) are durable and stylish, especially for minimalist kitchens. Like the concrete Easter bunnies, these egg holders are very simple to make! All you’ll need to do is create a mould from a small cardboard box and use an egg to make a shaped impression into the cement. After the concrete sets, you can remove the egg and paint your new egg holder or leave it as is.

 

#3: Egg-shaped concrete candle holders

Candle holders don’t get much more inventive than this. We loved these egg-shaped candle holders with gold paint on the inside. These candle holders aren’t just good for Easter, either – they’ll fit right in with any sci-fi lover’s home décor. They can even be used to decorate the house on Halloween!

 

#4: Minimalist egg tray

You can make this minimalist egg tray in a very similar way to DIY #2 on this list. The best part about this egg tray is that it is not just specific to Easter, and is a long-lasting utensil that you can enjoy using for years to come. Come Eastertime, you can fill this tray up with chocolates (or boiled eggs) and use this tray as your fancy new table centrepiece.

 

#5: Concrete cake stand

For those who enjoy baking at Easter, a cake stand is always useful. These concrete cake stands with changeable bases (via diyfurniturestudio.com) are particularly great for those who like to change things up every so often. Because these cake stands do not have legs embedded into the concrete, it is easy to swap out the supporting leg for one that looks different. This makes the cake stand versatile enough for any kind of event or colour scheme!

 

#6: Fancy concrete eggs (with treats inside!)

Sometimes it’s nice to get creative with simple things. Instead of giving someone a box of chocolates for Easter this year, we loved this DIY treat box in the shape of an Easter egg. This one is not actually made from concrete, but we think you could get extra creative with this idea and make a thin concrete egg that can be cracked open to reveal the goodies inside.

 

#7: Table cloth clips

Easter lunch is all about having loved ones over for a hearty meal and laughter. In fact, it’s likely that you are planning to set up some tables in the backyard, where everyone can sit together. It all goes well until a gust of wind blows the tablecloth up and spills whatever was on it. Luckily for you, there’s a great concrete DIY for that problem!

These easy-to-make table cloth clips (via Pinterest) are cute and handy. They’re also easy to decorate – and if you’re really getting into the Easter spirit, why not shape the concrete like mini eggs?

 

Revamping your concrete driveway in Melbourne?

At A Better Driveway, concrete isn’t just our business – it’s our passion. When you work with us to create the perfect concrete driveway for your Melbourne home, you can trust our 20 years of experience as a registered business. All our work also comes with a 5-year structural guarantee, which ensures all our customers are happy with their new concrete driveways.

To find out more about installing a concrete driveway in Melbourne, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of our friendly team members today.