NOTE: The following giveaway is open to residents of Ontario, Canada only.
Oh the weather outside is frightful…
Okay, not quite yet. But it IS getting cooler – much cooler! – and with winter around the corner, Canadians are doing their best to get their homes ready for the season. The patio furniture is stored; flowers are uprooted from their beds and decorative urns are emptied and stashed away.
Is it just me, or are Canadian homes lacking a certain curb appeal over the winter months?
I know, other than holiday decor, the northern climate doesn’t exactly allow for a host of ornamental options. However, there are a few simple ways to create curb appeal during the cold-weather months, and I’m happy to share them with you today!
1. Start with a Solid Base. Winter lacks a certain greenery, but with earth-savvy planters, you can infuse a little life into an otherwise bare space. Crescendo Urns, made by Multy Home, are a great option – they’re made using Ontario recycled tire rubber that would otherwise have ended up in a landfill.
(You may recall an earlier post, Simple Steps to Mini Garden Success with The Home Depot, where I featured the multi-season slate rubber urn – pictured below.)
Because this planter is designed to withstand the cold weather – with no cracking or fading – it will take you through all seasons seamlessly. You can also find recycled rubber mulch from a variety of Ontario-based manufacturers to fill the base which drains rapidly and efficiently, resists mold, mildew and fungi, and is also non-toxic.
2. Create a Stylishly Safe Path. Still throwing rock salt or sand on your doorsteps to prevent slips and spills? I’ve got a better way – and it’s easier on the eyes, too. Try stair treads; not only are they made from 100% recycled rubber tires, but covering slippery stairs becomes easy-peasy! Simply place these treads on the steps that need an extra grip and voila – picture perfect and safe in winter weather conditions.
Find Envirotile Cobblestone Grey Stair Tread for just $8.99 each at Home Depot. I especially love them if you have porch steps that are worn, cracked or stained – they provide an instant pick-me-up at an affordable price.
3. Go for Fashion and Function. A house becomes a home in subtle ways, and one of the easiest ways to relay an open, welcoming vibe is to lay out the welcome mat – literally. However, Canadians often swap their decorative spring/ summer mats for less pretty – but infinitely more durable – winter mats. I’m here today to show you how to have the best of both worlds!
Decorative mats, made from 100% recycled rubber tires, are available with a heavy duty flocked surface. The fashionable designs fit with most decors, stay in place, are easy to clean and of course, weather resistant.
You can find a variety of entrance mats (for both inside and outside the home) at your favourite retailer of outdoor goods.
Now, if you’ve been paying attention, you’ll have noticed a common theme to these decorative accents: the use of recycled tire rubber! And here’s a great reason to think beyond your own doorstep –
You may recall that I have worked with Ontario Tire Stewardship in the past to build awareness about using recycled rubber to create sustainable development beyond your front porch and what OTS is doing to support green building in Ontario communities.
The amazing news is that once again OTS is giving up to $50,000 through their Community Renewal Fund grant program. Communities looking to build or update larger public spaces can apply for this funding to use towards the purchase and installation of Ontario-manufactured recycled rubber products such as rubber mulch, athletic and arena flooring, roof shakes, sidewalk pavers, and even playground surfacing. Using recycled materials helps the environment while supporting the economy. Check out how some of these dollars have already been put to use: Transforming the Harbourfront Centre’s Natrel Rink with tires.
And, click here for more information on the Community Renewal Fund.
Ready to up your curb appeal this winter? Courtesy of Ontario Tire Stewardship, I’ve got 4 x $25 Home Depot Gift Cards to give away – that’s one x $25 gift card to four lucky readers! Simply fill the form below with your qualifying entries.