July 13, 2020

Urban Gardening: How To Grow Cucumbers


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Cucumber Plant
Cucumber is a vine that roots in the soil and grows up in support frames. It has large leaves that shade the fruits. There are four major varieties of cucumber – slicing, pickling, gherkin, and burpless.

Slicing cucumber is the most common variety that is eaten fresh. It is longer, smoother, uniform in color, and tougher skin.

Pickling cucumbers are cultivated for pickles. It has a less-regular shape, yellow to pale green, and bumpy skin with white or black-spotted spines.

Gherkin cucumbers are also called baby cucumbers. The fruit is about 2.5-12.5 centimeters long with bumpy skin. These are also grown to be pickled.

Burpless cucumbers are sweeter and have thinner skin compared to other varieties. These are easy to digest and do not produce gas which is the reason it was called burpless.

Cucumber have also health benefits.

It is mostly 96% water which makes it good for hydration and a low-calorie fruit (about 45 calories) but it has several vitamins (C and K), and minerals (potassium, manganese, and magnesium).

Cucumbers are also known to possess anti-oxidants like flavonoids and tannins which aids in the prevention of chronic disease while the peel can help constipation and promotes regular bowel movement.

But how to grow cucumber? Let me share with you how I grow cucumbers in our mini-garden.

Cucumber needs well-drained, fertile soil placed where the plants can have enough sunlight. 

Since cucumber seeds are considered large, it can be planted directly into the soil to about 1-inch deep.

After a week, a sprout is already visible.
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Cucumber seedlings
Cucumbers are water-loving. It needs to be watered consistently. Mulching the soil can help retain water.

After a few weeks, large leaves will start to emerge as the plant grows.
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Followed by tendrils. This means that frame or terills must be placed beside the plant for it to climb as it continously grows.
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The tendrills
After a month, it will start bearing tiny, yellow flowers.
Cucumber Flower
Also, tiny fruits start to appear.
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Tiny cucumber fruit
Actually, cucumber bears two types of flowers, the male and female. Female flowers have already the fruits at the base of the petals while a male has not.

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Female flower of cucumber
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Male flower of cucumber
There is a probability that flowers may be all male at the start but after few weeks, female and male flowers will bloom at the same time.

After few days, the fruit is ready for picking by cutting the stem above the fruit. Becareful not to damage the vine. It is best to harvest cucmber before the seeds gets hard.

Once started harvesting, you may be able to collect fruits every other week.
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June 30, 2020

Retiring Luxuriously With Island Living


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As you look toward retirement, you may be looking to benefit from years of hard work and relax in the lap of luxury. There is nothing like island living to truly embrace unwinding. Consider these four island locations that could be the perfect place for you to move to and slow life down.

Hawaii
Hawaii is often considered the perfect tourist destination, but many people choose to settle down on this gorgeous island. There is much to be learned, explored and seen if you move to one of the islands. In choosing the location that works best for you, consider enlisting the help of a residential real estate specialist Honolulu HI to help you find the best fit.

Bali
Bali is another popular tourist destination that offers its residents the beauty of tropical, island living. Surrounded by beautiful beaches and volcanic mountains, Bali is a great destination to retire to. You’ll be left in awe and wonder of the stunning sites as you take in your retirement.

Ireland
Positioned in the Atlantic, Ireland is another great location for your retirement. While far less tropical than the previous two destinations, Ireland is filled with activities to do, sites to see and pints to taste. You will be able to venture out and take all of these in during retirement, so no need to rush.

Whidbey Island
Off the coast of Washington State, Whidbey Island is a beautiful location tucked away from the busyness of the mainland. Filled with amazing foods to try, outdoor activities to participate in and parks to explore, this can be the ideal retirement location.

Island living can be a lifestyle suited for retirement. We can finally truly enjoy the rewards of all of the years of hard work surrounded by the soothing sounds of water. Whether you prefer tropical or more temperate climates, there is an island out there that is perfectly suited to your ideal island lifestyle.

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June 26, 2020

3 Easy Ways To Keep Your Home Looking Great

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If you’ve been spending extra time at home lately and have noticed a few things that could use improvement, you may be wondering how you can keep your home looking great while still maintaining your busy schedule. You’re not alone in wanting to make your house look its best – after all, Americans spent an estimated 394 billion dollars in 2018 on home improvement expenditures – but sometimes, it can seem like a daunting task. Luckily, it doesn’t have to be that way! There are a few simple strategies that can help you easily take your home to the next level.

Try Professional Services
If you’re like most people and have a busy schedule, trying Professional Cleaners could save you a boatload of time and effort. Whether you choose to have someone come in once a week or once a month, knowing that your house will always meet a baseline of cleanliness takes that burden off of you and allows you to focus more on smaller details, like redecorating rooms or starting a backyard garden. Don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it – after all, it takes a village!

Add Accessories
If you’re looking to really shake up the look of your place, you could go out and buy a whole new set of furniture, but that would be both time-consuming and expensive. Instead, adding a few strategic touches to what you already have could be an easy way to work wonders for your home aesthetics. Instead of getting a new side table, for instance, look for a nice lamp for the table you already have. You’d be amazed at the difference details can make!

Paint the Walls
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Finally, sometimes working on the space inside your four walls isn’t the right fix – changing up the walls themselves could make all the difference! If your house is clean and you love your furniture but your wall paint color is outdated, peeling off or just not flowing well with the rest of your d├ęcor, improving the look of your home could be as easy as a new coat of paint. Painting a room red, for instance, draws attention to it and lends it a certain importance. Whatever color you choose, this is a straightforward fix that’s sure to make a big visual impact.

Home improvements are exciting, but can also seem like a lot to handle. Thankfully, making your house look great isn’t as tough as it might seem! With these three simple tips, you’ll be on your way to the house of your dreams in no time.
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June 23, 2020

3 Ways To Improve the Look of Your Teeth

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If you’ve been feeling less than confident about your smile and you’re wondering how to improve the look of your teeth, you’re not alone. In fact, recent studies have shown that over half of Americans aren’t happy with their teeth! Thankfully, besides good oral hygiene habits like brushing and flossing daily, there are a few things you can try to improve your teeth's appearance. Take a look.

Dental Bonding
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If your teeth have damage like chips or cracks, you can get them repaired with dental bonding. This process involves your dentist applying a tooth-colored resin, and often only involves a single office visit. Unlike other types of dental repair, bonding often produces a natural-looking result that can quickly give you your confidence back. The best part is, it’s more accessible than you might think – for instance, you can easiliy get cosmetic dental bonding Happy Valley.

Invisible Aligners
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If your teeth need straightening but you don’t want to get braces, consider getting invisible aligners instead. They get you the same result as braces, but are almost impossible to notice and can easily be removed for eating, drinking or brushing your teeth. Consult an orthodontist if you’re considering this option, as they work best on grown adults and might not be right for everyone.

Professional Whitening
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Finally, if you feel your teeth could simply look a little brighter, try getting professional whitening treatments. While you could use at-home whitening strips, an in-office treatment will have a more noticeable effect and last longer. Keep in mind that depending on the shade of your teeth and your desired results, you may require a few sessions.

The look of your teeth is not only an indicator of oral health, but can impact your happiness and self-confidence. Thankfully, there are a few simple things you can do to improve your teeth’s appearance. Try one of these tips and you can feel confident about your smile.
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June 19, 2020

Top 4 Tips for Throwing an Unforgettable Dance Party

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Summer is here, and with the warmer weather and extra vacation days comes the perfect opportunity to throw a fun party with all your closest friends. For an extra high-energy get-together that could even have hidden health benefits, try hosting a dance party – it’s a great time and can double as a low-impact cardio workout!

If you’re thinking about planning a dance party and aren’t sure what you can do to make it truly memorable, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

Try a Professional Planner
Between the logistics, coordination and small details to organize, planning a dance party can quickly turn into a headache. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed by the planning process, though, you’ll be happy to know you don’t have to go it alone – try hiring a professional planner to ease the burden. These professionals can help make your party a huge success and are more accessible than you might think – for instance, you can easily hire dance party planners New Jersey.

Assemble a Great Playlist 
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The key to any great dance party is the music! If you’re not hiring a DJ for the event, you’ll want to spend some time assembling a playlist of hits that you know will get people out on the floor. Try looking through today’s Top 40 charts, asking friends and family for recommendations or even combing through online playlists for ideas!

Find an Exciting Venue
If you’re planning to have a big gathering, you’ll need a spacious venue where everyone has enough room to bust a move. You could rent out anything from a party hall to a hotel ballroom, depending on your budget, the size of your party and the mood you want to set.

Set Up Party Lighting
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Finally, one of the key aspects that sets dance parties apart from other parties is the unique lighting that sets the tone for high-energy dancing. There are lots of different types of party lighting you could use, from a good old-fashioned disco ball to strobe lights to simple wall uplighting for a classier look. Whichever lights you choose, you’re sure to set the mood for a night of unforgettable fun.

Summer is the perfect time to get your friends and family together, and when it comes to having a good time, nothing beats a dance party. The next time you’re hosting one, keep these four top tips in mind. Your guests are sure to have an unforgettably great time!
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June 17, 2020

Top 3 Dental Care Tips

If you’re like most people, you probably already know the basics of taking care of your teeth – like brushing regularly, visiting the dentist twice a year and avoiding too much sugar – but you may be wondering what more you could be doing to keep those pearly whites in tip-top shape.
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This is one area where being proactive makes all the difference – after all, when it comes to your teeth, untreated issues aren’t always visible right away. In fact, statistics have shown that over a quarter of all American adults have untreated tooth decay, and almost half show some signs of gum disease.

Your teeth are crucial to eating, speaking and so much more, so investing in good oral care is well worth the effort. To learn more about the top three tips for going above and beyond in your dental care, keep reading.

Try Invisible Aligners
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If your teeth could use some straightening out but you dread the thought of having to get braces, invisible aligners could be the perfect choice for you. These aligners straighten your teeth just like braces would, but are almost impossible to see and can be worn all day. Your whole family could opt for this route over the usual braces – for instance, Invisalign Teen can help your high-schooler get a neater smile before heading off to college.

Remember Floss and Mouthwash
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Everyone knows to brush their teeth with toothpaste twice a day, but flossing and using mouthwash are two habits that can sometimes fall through the cracks of a busy day. However, they’re both important for your long-term dental health. Flossing helps get out small particles that your toothbrush won’t catch, for instance, and mouthwash helps to re-mineralize your teeth. Today, they’re both easier than ever to incorporate into your daily routine, with ready-made dental flossers available at the drugstore – no more struggling to reach the teeth in the back!

Wear Protective Sports Gear
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Finally, if you’re athletic and regularly play contact sports like football, you’ll want to be sure to always wear a helmet or mouthpiece when playing to keep your teeth from getting injured. After all, a great routine won’t mean much if your teeth get knocked out during the big game!

Teeth are essential in many daily activities, like talking and eating, so it’s important to invest in keeping them in great shape. Just making a few changes now could make a big difference down the road. With these top dental care tips, your teeth are sure to be in great shape for years to come!
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June 12, 2020

Three Ways to Cool Your Home in the Summer

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If you struggle to keep your home or certain rooms in your home cool during the summer, there are options for relief so you can sleep easier and feel more comfortable at home during the hottest days of summer. Here are three ways to cool your home more effectively.

Ductless Air Conditioners
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If you have a room that does not have ductwork or registers, then there is an option called a Mitsubishi ductless ac install Burlington MA. A mini-split has a small indoor unit that connects to an outdoor unit and provides cooling that can be controlled for a room or multi-rooms. This unit can also be available as a health pump and provide heating and cooling to rooms.

Evaporative Coolers
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If you are living in a relatively dry climate, then instead of utilizing a more expensive and less efficient air-conditioning unit, an evaporative cooler may be just what you need. This type of cooler draws hot dry air into it and utilizes water and a fan to cool and dampen the air. This is similar to the effects of misters that you might utilize in hot weather to instantly feel a lot cooler.

Ceiling Fans
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If your bedroom or another room is hot, then installing or utilizing ceiling fans is a good option. By setting the fan to run counterclockwise as you look up in the summer, it will be pushing cool air straight down which will help better cool you as the air evaporates your perspiration. On the opposite end, the fan should be set to clockwise in the winter to help pull cool air up and creates a warming effect with warm air moving up and down and around the walls.


Living in summer heat with no respite of cool air can make for poor sleeping and miserably hot days. Consider utilizing a ductless mini-split system, an evaporative cooler or ceiling fans to help you better find relief on hot days.
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June 9, 2020

4 Best Ways To Add Curb Appeal to Your Commercial Property


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Looking to attract new customers to your business? If you want to bring customers in, you have to make sure your business has great curb appeal. Here the four best ways to make your commercial property look more attractive for your customers.

1. Update Your Landscaping

In order for your commercial property to stand out from competitors, you need to take steps to update the landscaping. Make sure your property’s lawn looks lush and green by keeping it trimmed and fed with an eco-friendly fertilizer. To soften the look of your property, plant plenty of colorful flower groupings and surround them with fresh mulch. Since maintaining your commercial property’s landscaping requires a significant investment of time and effort, it’s best to leave routine maintenance to a professional Lawn Service Charlotte NC.

2. Repair All Hardscape

Your paved areas, including all driveways, walkways and parking areas, are often a customer’s first point of contact with your business. Make sure your business is ready to welcome new customers by cleaning and repairing all hardscape on your business property. Patch what you can, but it may be necessary to re-pave these areas completely. Use stamped concrete to give these areas some visual interest and variation. Keep all paved surfaces clean and free from debris and your customers will have a safe way to move about your property.

3. Add Outdoor Lighting

Your business property needs adequate outdoor lighting in order to keep your customers and your assets safe. Replace burnt-out light bulbs and add new lighting fixtures where necessary. You’ll want to make sure that your parking lot and walking areas are brightly lit. For aesthetic purposes, you could also install a system of landscape lighting to highlight your business’ plants and vegetation. By installing quality lighting, customers will feel more confident coming to your property after dark.

4. Update Your Signage

Installing new signage is a great way to get your business noticed by potential customers. Consult with a professional design company to help you make a dynamic, eye-catching sign that will communicate exactly what your business stands for and provides to customers. They’ll also help you create a sign that conforms to all local codes. For maximum visibility, upgrade to a lighted sign to attract attention at any time, day or night.

Keeping your commercial property in excellent condition will signal to customers that your business is reputable and successful. By following these tips, you’ll surely attract more customers.

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June 4, 2020

Few Things For Kids To Do During Community Quarantine


During the community quarantine, either ECQ, MECQ, or GCQ, kids are still advised to stay at home for their safety. However, they may get bored staying at home for long period of time.

How to kill their boredom?

There are several ways to keep your kids busy during the community quarantine. 

Here are some of the things we did at home to make our Little Matthew busy.

Drawing
Eversince Matthew learn how to handle pen, he loves to draw.

You can level up their artistic skills through digital drawing. This will let use their creativity while enjoying their gadget time.

Instead of paper and pencil, stylus or mouse is used to draw with a computer or tablet. All you need is to have the software needed and an extra storage. Check the Rakuten site for examples of hard drives that will be dedicated to the digital drawing finished products.

Cooking or Baking
We encourage him to work in the kitchen too. Easy dishes like scrambled eggs or their favorite meal can be a good start for them.

For baking, simple cookies or chocolate crinkles may be a fun-filled activity for them.

Of course, you need to remind that they can only cook if you are with them to avoid unnecessary incidents.

Gardening
Like once said by Senator Cynthia Villar, this is the best time to introduce agriculture to our kids. We can do this by urban gardening.

Letting them doing the simple soil cultivation or watering will help a lot. You can explain the importance of gardening.

It is also the best time for them to gain more knowledge about plants. How they grow, what they need, and other things about plants.

Crafts and DIYs
Since we are into DIYs and other crafting, influencing Matthew with these passions is a good option. 

We teach him how to crochet. This will not only let them gain new skills but also help them increase their patience and creativity. Crocheting also helps stimulate brain.


You can also introduce them into the Rhinestone Art.

Doing Household Chores
Letting kids help in household chores is another way to divert their attention. The simple sweeping of the floor, removing dust from picture frames, of just doing the vacuum of carpets and sofa will do.


There are still other ways to keep your kids busy during the community quarantine. Can you share other ideas?
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What To Think About Before Moving

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Moving can be a long process that can either be desired or dreaded. Some move because their job relocates them, while others are forced to leave their home because of unforeseen circumstances. Whatever the reason for moving, there are some things you should think about before you leave. Here are some of the most important ones to consider.

Your Community
Before choosing a location for where you want to live, you should take some time and research the community you will be in. If you have kids, checking out the school system is a must. Look up something like early childhood education Buford GA to see what the value of the system is. If you like to be involved in community projects or other events, you can see what areas have the best ones for you.

Your Housing
Once you move, you’ll need a place to live. It can be hard trying to find something when you have to look from hundreds of miles away. You should consider hiring a real estate agent that will able to help you find the perfect place for you. They can help you locate the places that fit in your budget and are in good locations. Being new to the area, you might not know where you should purchase a home.

Your Finances
Moving will incur a lot of expenses by itself, but moving to a whole new place can turn your budget upside down. Prices vary from state to state and even city to city. This includes things like your utilities, groceries, and home goods. Before you move, make sure your finances and bank account will be able to handle the changes you may incur.

When you decide to move somewhere new, you should think about it as a chance for new beginnings, no matter the circumstances. The best way to start fresh is by thinking about some of these things before you leave.
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May 29, 2020

Benefits of Pre-K Programs

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Families with young children are eager to set their little ones up for bright and happy futures. Data shows that children who attend pre-kindergarten programs experience greater success in academics, and gain life skills that help them well into adulthood. Research-based programs can provide the type of pre-K Tampa children need.

Academic Readiness
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Children who attend pre-k programs are generally better prepared for learning. They demonstrate significant gains in print awareness, math and vocabulary, all of which build the foundation for future success in school.

Closing the Gaps
While all children can benefit from pre-k, it is especially beneficial to disadvantaged students and to English language learners. These children gain exposure to literacy-rich environments, a diverse group of friends, and opportunities to engage in music, visual arts, and creative play. This helps close the learning gaps between them and their economically advantaged peers. 

Social Skill Development
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Students in pre-k programs have opportunities to share and cooperate with others. They learn to resolve conflicts and express their feelings in age-appropriate ways under the guidance of trained and qualified teachers. Social-emotional skill development is essential for future success in school and for building healthy and lasting friendships.

Long-Term Success
Studies show that the long-term benefits of preschool and pre-k programs go far beyond academics. Children who attend pre-k are more likely to finish high school and tend to have better employment prospects as adults. They are less likely to commit violent crimes than peers who did not attend pre-k, and they experience greater economic stability.

A well-rounded, nurturing pre-k program benefits children from all backgrounds, both in the short term and in the future. Early exposure to academics and peer groups sets them up for greater success in reading and math, and in life. it is a worthwhile investment of time for parents and their children.
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May 27, 2020

3 Tips for Your Business Trip to Anchorage, Alaska

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There are a few states that upon arrival you feel you've landed in a different country. Alaska is one of them. If you are on business and visiting Alaska for the first time, here are some tips to help you through your journey.

Purchase Commercial Insurance
Driving in Alaska is not like driving in the continental United States. Alaska has permafrost forests and glaciers because it is cold. It also has hazardous road conditions. You'll want to rent a car to get around, so be sure you purchase commercial auto insurance Anchorage AK to protect you from risk. You never know what type of road conditions you may encounter during your travels.

Prepare for Harsh Temperatures
Prior to your trip, you'll want to pack wisely, especially if you are traveling in winter. While the summers can be cool, and you'll want to at least pack a light jacket, the winters are long, and in some areas are even considered arctic in climate. If you don't have a heavy-duty winter coat, gloves, scarf and hat, now is the time to purchase all three. After spending any amount of time in the outdoors, you'll be glad you did.

Bring Extra Cash
Alaska is perhaps the most mysterious state in the union. You'll get to watch the sun set over the glaciers during the evening, and if you're lucky you'll get to watch the Aurora Borealis dance through the sky after dusk. There is no doubt you'll want to remember your trip. Anchorage offers many small coffee shops with souvenirs, as well as art galleries with paintings and trinkets created by locals.

You may be visiting Alaska on business, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't enjoy this adventure that for many people is once in a lifetime. Once you've made arrangements to travel safely and dress warm, be sure to have a little fun, too.
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What Are the Benefits of Short-Term Loans?


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Economic times and tough and many individuals and families are wondering how they are going to make ends meet. One option that people might not have thought about is a short-term loan. Applying for short term loans Mississippi can cover the cost of numerous unexpected expenses. Furthermore, short-term loans are often much easier to qualify for than a typical loan. With this in mind, for what purposes can people use short-term loans?

Cover an Unexpected Medical Expense
A large percentage of people who have to file for bankruptcy do so because of unexpected medical expenses. Few people plan on getting sick and while health insurance can cover the cost of some of these medical expenses, issues such as co-insurance, deductibles, and lifetime maximums can saddle someone with a tremendous amount of debt. To prevent this from happening, individuals can apply for short-term loans and use them to cover the cost of these medical expenses. This could cover the cost of a hospitalization, a surgical procedure, or even a stay in the intensive care unit (ICU).

Help Pay for the Cost of a Major Repair
In addition, short-term loans can be used to cover the cost of a repair. Machines break from time to time and this can place people in a serious bind. This could include a home repair or a car repair. Those who are looking for ways to cover the cost of these repairs can apply for a short-term loan.

Apply for Short-Term Loans Today
These are only a few of the many ways that someone could use short-term loans. While applying for a typical loan from a bank or credit union can be slow and arduous, the application process for short-term loans is much easier. Therefore, anyone who needs cash quickly should consider applying for short-term loans.
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Urban Gardening - Another Update

Remember that I started building our small urban vegetable garden at home just before the Enhanced Community Quarantine took effect.

Since then, I harvested lots of veggies like string beans, tomatoes, and eggplants. Here is a short update on our urban garden.

Eggplants
Before, I only have two pots of eggplants.

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Eggplants in large pails.
I added four more pots and now they are matured and started flowering. Growing eggplants is simple using indirect seeding.  
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Eggplants' flower
 Lettuce

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Lettuce: Ready to harvest.
After several tries, I finally succeed in growing lettuce
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Harvested lettuce.
Instead of harvesting by pulling the entire plant, I do pruning matured leaves and let it grow continuously until next harvest. I already harvested 3 times.
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Lettuce after prunning

Okra
There are pots of okra plants.
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Okra plants
They are starting to bear flower. After a few weeks, I will be picking the fruits from them.
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Okra: Starting to bloom.
Ampalaya
The ampalaya is getting better now and starting bearing fruits. 
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Ampalaya, continuously growing.
Aside from the fruits, leaves were also collected.

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Ampalaya: Waiting to be harvested. 
Aside from using it in ginisang munggo, pruning the leaves makes the plant healthier and bear more fruits.

Corn
I had difficulty in growing corn. Once the sprout comes out of the soil, something is burrowing it getting the cotyledon.

Instead of growing it directly, I used the indirect seeding method. After two months, I noticed flowers on one of them. The ears will soon appear on the stem.

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Corn's flower
I planted more corn and they are starting to grow.
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Corn
Tomatoes
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Tomatoes
Tomatoes do not last long and need to be replaced. Before the first batch started to wilt, I started germinating seeds collected from the kitchen and now they are growing in soil mixed with papers.

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Tomatoes growing in soil mixed with paper.
I am also germinating cherry tomatoes. Once ready for transplanting, they will be joining with the other tomatoes too.

Bell Peppers
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Bell peppers
Like the tomatoes, bell peppers are already transplanted and started to grow healthy on soil mixed with paper.
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1 week after transplanting bell peppers.
Squash
There are only two squash in the garden and they are crawling on the floor.
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Squash with kankong growing using old tires.

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Cucumber
The cucumber is already growing in the old tires.
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Cucumber seedlings.
Sweet Potato or Kamote and Kangkong
Growing these plants is easy. 
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Sweet potato or kamote.
Just insert the cutting into the soil and sprouts will be observed growing after a few days.  
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Kankong in old tires.
I am collecting the taps every week and cook it directly in the kitchen.

Calamansi and Lemon
I have one calamansi and two lemons grown in a large pail separately.
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Lemon
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Calamansi with corn.
These are all grafted and hopefully bear fruits soon.

By the way, here is my new garden buddy.
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That’s all for now and I will keep updating about urban gardening.
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