How much does is cost when you are the victim of garden crime?

Each time there is a crime in your garden it costs over £600

The average home insurance claim for items stolen from the garden has now reached £620, as one in 12 over-50s say they have been affected by the crime.

According to analysis of claims submitted to Saga Home Insurance, the worth of garden items lost through theft or damage is going up.

It is estimated that two-thirds of the UK population keep things ranging from barbeques and garden furniture to gnomes and water features outside of their homes.

In the over-50s this figure rises to eight in ten people and the study found that many of them feel their garden is a place to relax and escape from the world.

Roger Ramsden, Chief Executive of Saga Services, said: “With the average garden insurance claim costing around £620 I would encourage keen gardeners to ensure they have the peace of mind of insurance cover for their precious garden possessions.”

Gardens are particularly important to the over-50s with 13 per cent of them stating their outside space as a reason for not moving house.

beat garden crime.

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Summer gardening tips

Follow these tips to help keep your plants in full health during a hot summer spell.

Don’t over fertilise

The stronger your plant, the better it can withstand the stress of hot temperatures. Make sure you fertilise the soil before planting.

Choose plants that are heat resistant of have an extensive root system

By choosing plants with a hardier root system, your summer garden will get off on the right foot. These type of plants will also need watering less often.

Use shade cloth

This can be used to protect young fragile seedlings, or can be used to give larger plants a break from the heat.

Mulch

Mulch is important for retaining fertility, moisture and nutrients in the soil. Mulch also helps to protect the soil from UV light. Grass, hay and newspaper can all be used as mulch.

Water Butts

I know in the UK some areas haven’t seen rain for a number of weeks, but a water butt is still a good investment. Water butts capture rain water, which you can then use to water your garden. This gives you a cost effective and environmentally friendly way to water your garden.

A metal storage shed – a ‘must-have’ for Allotment Growers

Do you have an allotment?

Over a quarter of a million people in the UK currently hold an allotment plot.  Allotment gardening has always been a popular option for those of you who don’t mind getting their hands dirty in soil and spend time nurturing flowers and vegetable plants, but may not always have the space in their garden.  Apart from providing low cost food, they also provide valuable recreational opportunities involving healthy activity and social contacts.

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How does your garden grow?

Taking on an allotment plot is not all hard work; it can have many advantages, providing fresh home grown vegetables, fruit and flowers for you and your family, free from artificial additives and at a fraction of that you would have expected to pay in a supermarket or greengrocer.

There is also the social side, meeting new friends with similar interests and enabling you to enjoy a healthy outdoor life with gentle exercise and a place to relax and unwind.

Did you know: The first legislative reforms date back to the Enclosures Act of 1845. Today, the Council has a statutory requirement to provide allotments for the public.

Is your allotment secure?

As many allotments are independently or council owned, they will often have different levels of security.  Many allotment sites suffer from vandalism and theft, from minor incidents such as disappearing Fruit and Veg, ranging to major incidents where sheds located on one site have been broken into and vandalism, smashing of glass in greenhouses, breaking tools, dumping rubbish and damaging frames.

Keep your tools under lock and key 

Always try and keep all your gardening tools locked up and out of sight in allotment huts and sheds.  Not only do they provide shelter from the rain for expensive tools, gardening equipment and clothing, they provide much needed security for your allotment.

Secure Storage units for your allotments

If you need a secure storage unit installed in your allotment, you can choose from a range of metal storage sheds from Asgard in various sizes according to your needs.  The Asgard Addition is a popular choice for many gardens and allotments due to its compact size and multi-purpose storage space.  Built from our tough, galvanised (weather proof) steel with an integral metal floor and convenient large double door access this unit features an excellent 3-point locking system.

Asgard Addition storage unit

Asgard Addition storage unit – Great for allotment storage!

Smart and stylish, the Asgard Addition metal shed unit is available in a choice of 3 colours – dark green, ivory and brown enabling you to match the unit to your environment, and ensure your allotment is looking neat and tidy.

Top Tip: We recommend that you check the area available to install your shed before installation, and confirm with the allotment regulations before installation.

Want to grow your own?

Whether you are budding vegetable grower or a seasoned gardener, visit the Allotment diaries website for more ideas on making the most of your allotment.  For a ‘Plot Holders’ Guide’ from the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) click here.

To view our full range of outdoor storage units and unit sizes, visit our website http://www.asgardsss.co.uk for further details.  We also offer free delivery and an installation service is also available for added convenience.

How much is your garden shed worth?

Is your garden full to the brim? You’ll be surprised at how much the items stored in your garden shed are worth.  A study conducted by Net Voucher Codes, found that in the average garden shed £2080 worth of items can be found.

Worryingly this study also revealed that 29% of people don’t put a lock on their sheds.

What is your garden shed worth?

Valuable items in your garden shed

  • The most valuable items found in a garden shed are bikes, with the average family storing £600 worth.
  • On average we have £450 worth of garden tools
  • The average amount of garden furniture we have adds up to £350
  • Lawnmowers in our shed average at £250
  • Children’s toys average at £230

Now that you know the amount of money that is sitting in your garden shed, you should become more careful when it comes to storing your items securely.  Putting a lock on your garden shed is the very least you can do to protect your garden shed from theft. As we know, garden shed theft is a very real problem and these only increase during the summer months.

A garden shed alarm is also another way to protect your stored garden items. A motion sensor shed alarm is available from Asgard, the home of secure steel storage.

Asgard metal garden shed

Asgard metal garden shed

However, if you would like something more substantial, Asgard has a range of metal garden sheds. These are sturdier and more robust than the average wooden garden shed.  Made from tough weatherproof steel, these metal garden sheds are fitted with tough pick resistant locks to help keep thieves out. Find out more about Asgard on their website.

Spring gardening guide

With the May bank holiday just around the corner, it’s safe to say that spring has finally sprung and after many months of bad weather, people are deciding now is the time to get out in the garden. You may be overwhelmed by the state that winter has left your garden in, but here are a few simple tips to help you start the big clear up and allow you to enjoy your garden.

Clear up

To get your garden back on track, start with the big clear up.  Cut back trees and shrubs that have grown too big and cut back any dead plant material. Remove all the weeds you can find, to save you a lot of work later on. Now is a good time to pull out weeds as their roots are still shallow.

Prepare your soil

Get your flower beds ready by digging and preparing the soil. Use a fork to dig the soil, this will allow you to loosen the soil and remove any hidden weeds.  Add some good quality compost or well-rotted manure and your flower beds will be ready for planting.

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Start your spring gardening now

Planting

Decide on the type of plants you want, choose plants that complement one another and grow well together. Get summer flowering bulbs which can be planted in early spring, as these will provide you with a bright summer display.

Bring your lawn back to life

Mow your lawn regularly and apply lawn feed to bring your lawn back to life.

Fix fences and trellis

You may find that the wet and windy weather has had a disastrous effect on your fences and trellis, leaving them looking worse for wear. Repair any damage and in dry weather treat the wood with a preservative.

Before you start any of your spring gardening tasks, check all of your gardening equipment and give them a clean if necessary. Make sure your garden shed is in tip top condition too. If you have a wooden garden shed, these can be prone to leaks and damage during the winter. You may find that after the harsh weather we have had, your shed will need replacing. Don’t risk getting another wooden shed, try a metal garden shed instead. This will save your pocket in the long term as they do not require the same maintenance as a wooden shed and last a lot longer. A full range of metal garden sheds are available from Asgard.

Top Gardening Apps

With smartphones and tablets taking over, there is an app out there for everything! When I did some research into apps for gardening, I didn’t expect to come up with anything. Gardeners don’t need apps is what I thought, but I was wrong. Take a look at these handy apps to help you out in the garden.

Dig My Garden

This app can be used on the iphone and ipod touch, giving a bird’s eye view of your garden, allowing you to see your garden bloom over the seasons. With this app you can create and ‘plant’ your actual garden with hundreds of plants, vegetables, herbs, trees and shrubs to choose from.

Garden Tracker

With this app you can plan your garden plots, plant vegetables and track your gardens progress. Detail is provided on days to harvest, days since watered and days since last fertilised. Garden Tracker comes up pre-loaded with over 50 vegetables, with detailed information such as ideal soil temperature, recommended planting season and more!

Landscaper’s companion

Landscaper’s companion is an interactive plant database, with over 26,000 plants from around the world. This app is more useful for the more experienced gardener. The app provides a short description, size, cultivation advice and pictures.

Vegetables

Vegetable garden guides

This app is a great reference tool, with guides for successful growing of over 90 vegetables. Each vegetable has a section on the growing process, how to grow and disease information.

Garden Pro

Garden Pro provides users with all the necessary information about particular flowers and plants, with a directory of over 7,000 species. Details provided by this app include growing requirements, how to care for the plant and common pests.

With the help of these apps, there’s nothing to stop you from going outside and giving gardening a go!

Cold weather wreaking havoc on UK Garden Centres

The spell of bad weather during March, made March 2013 the coldest in the last 50 years. With so much snow and frosty weather everyone has been affected from farmers to the everyday gardener.  The bad weather has also had an effect on UK Garden Centres, with sales down by as much as 50%.

This is the time of year where people are usually getting their gardens prepared, buying plants, seeds, tools and everything else they need to make their garden bloom.

The recent bad weather has kept people indoors.

The recent bad weather has kept people indoors.

Because of the harsh winter weather leaking into spring, the price of flowers which should already be in full bloom, such as daffodils have increased by up to 50%. April is the most important month of the year in the garden centre calendar as spring is supposed to be in full swing and this is the time when people really start to spend money of things for their gardens, however if the bleak weather continues into April, vital sales will be lost. In the UK, 1 in 3 people are gardeners and spend around £5bn a year on their gardens.

snow and asgard bike storage

Asgard garden sheds can take on the snow!

If you have been put off from going in the garden because of the bad weather, there are still plenty of things that you can do, especially since the snow seems to be behind us. If you haven’t already, start planning what you want to add to your garden, buy seeds and tools so that you have them to hand whenever the weather brightens up. If you’ve discovered that your garden shed didn’t hold up during the harsh weather, make sure you get a new one to store all of your gardening equipment in. Asgard has a range of strong metal garden sheds that are tough enough to see you through many winters like the one we have just had! Made from strong weatherproof steel, these sheds are designed to provide the best protection from the elements. See the full range of metal garden sheds on the Asgard Website.

Data provided by the Guardian.