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8 Steps to Plant the Perfect Spring Garden

As important as the right plants are, they can’t do ALL the work!
A great garden requires preparation and maintenance.
Here is a checklist of the 8 steps you should take to prepare your garden for a successful season:

1. Get your shed in order.
Go over your tools. Sharpen blades, oil hinges, and think about expanding or upgrading your collection. The right tools will make the whole season much easier! Also take this opportunity to replenish your supplies.

2. Clear out weeds, mulch, and debris.
Do a spring cleaning of the area, removing anything in the way until you are back to the bare soil. Dead organic matter can go on the compost pile to break down. Well-composted mulch or organic matter can stay right where it is to be incorporated into the soil, but "fresh" mulch needs to be raked away to expose the soil.

Your main concern is any weeds that might still be alive. You don’t want to leave any living weeds around, or they might come back and try to compete with your garden plants!

3. Prune.
Many trees or shrubs can use a good pruning this time of year, especially those that bloom on new wood. Whenever you prune your plants, it is a good practice to add a little fertilizer to the soil to ensure that the plant has the nutrients on hand to heal its wounds quickly.

4. Prepare the soil.
Once the frost has lifted and the soil is workable, start preparing your garden beds. In winter, soil tends to become compacted, so the first thing you want to do is loosen it back up by tilling or turning it. Using a tiller or a sharp spade, work the soil to a depth of 12 to 14 inches to loosen it up. Next add compost and amendments. If your existing soil is particularly poor, the easiest option might just be to rise above it with a raised garden bed.

5. Set up new planters and garden beds.
It is easy to get excited by the beautiful new varieties you come across in catalogs and end up ordering more plants than you have places to put them! Now is the time of year to build garden beds, install shepherd’s hooks or window boxes, and order new pots to ensure that you have enough of a venue to showcase all your gorgeous new plants.

6. Divide perennials like Daylilies.
Some perennials tend to crowd each other out, causing their performance to deteriorate year over year. Plan your space and make sure there is proper space for everything.

7. Early Planting.
Get the first wave of planting done. Many plants can be started indoors this time of year for planting out in spring, and particularly hardy vegetables (onions, potatoes, artichokes, and some lettuces) are ready to be planted now. Look at the plant information for whatever you intend to plant.

8. Apply mulch.
Last but not least, apply a thick layer of mulch wherever you can. Mulch is much more effective at keeping weeds from becoming established if you can get it in place before the weeds start sprouting. You might still be waiting to plant out in lots of areas, or you might have seeds germinating that you don’t want to bury in mulch. Just don’t wait too long to mulch an area, or the weeds will beat you there!

Happy gardening!

Idaho Softball Season!

April is here, the snow is melting, and the sun is shining! For this small mountain town EVERYONE knows what this means: SOFTBALL SEASON!!!

Every year a fantastic group of volunteers donate their time and energy to create a fun, educational softball season for the youth in Garden Valley. Kindergarten through 5th grade kids participate in co-ed slow pitch softball, which has traditionally been offered through GV Little League. This year middle schoolers also get to participate, which is an exciting addition to the program! 6th-8th grade girls will be playing fastpitch softball, and 6th-8th grade boys will be playing hard pitch baseball. The organizers and volunteers worked tirelessly to expand the program, and this is the year it starts!

12 coaches are in charge of 3 pee-wee teams, 2 minors teams, 3 majors teams, 1 baseball team, and 1 fastpitch softball team. Our umpires are volunteers as well, and we could not do any of this without them! This year there are 120 participants, so it is sure to be a great season! Our community is incredibly grateful to have such a turnout.

If you would like to know what the game schedule so you can come cheer on the kids give our office a call and ask to speak with Lisa: she will help you with that!

One of our Garden Valley Properties agents, Lisa Willey, is coaching a team for her 3rd year. Garden Valley Properties is proud to be sponsoring a team as well. If you would like to know the game schedule so you can come cheer on the kids give our office a call and ask to speak with Lisa: she will help you with that!

Contact us at 208-462-4620!

Is a Real Estate Bubble Coming?

According to an article in the wall street journal world-wide house prices are rising due to pandemic-related stimulus, low-interest rates, and changes in buyer behavior.

Although some fear another 2006 bubble, in most countries, economic policy has been manipulated to  keep interest rates low in order to assist recovery.  Efforts to increase interest rates and tighten lending policy have had little influence as housing demand continues to outpace supply.

Unlike in the big recession, Buyers have good credit, pandemic generated savings, more cash to put down and lending policies are tighter.   Loan portfolios are stronger.

Quarantine requirements, home offices, and classrooms have led folks to revisit their housing needs.  Families can often be more flexible to live outside of metro areas.  As Covid cases start to lessen and vaccinations increase, consumers are more optimistic and after a year of reduced spending, they have cash in hand.

Hot markets may stable out naturally, especially in Idaho, where out-of-state buyers are fast approaching a saturation level in their equity compared to prices in Idaho.

You may have observed that land listings have been selling in days. However, in recent weeks as prices have risen, some of those listings are starting to sit a little longer.  The 2020 double digit price increases are expected to soften to single digit increases as interest rates begin to rise.

Lead HousingWire economist Logan Mohtasham, on the RESource  (here is a link to his interview  https://www.facebook.com/watch/?v=173996237650184) predicts a very strong housing market over the next 3-4 years.

He believes, between low-interest rates and demographics there will be no shortage of demand in the coming years. As the age group, 27-33 are the up and coming generation to need housing, representing 32.5 million Americans
"The recession is over"  there is no economic evidence that we will be facing damaging inflation rates.  According to Logan, an increase in interest rates is to be expected since the dramatically low rates were influenced by unnatural market conditions (pandemic).  A slight rise in interest would work toward stabilizing the housing market which would be good for everyone.

10 years ago, the average homeowner stayed in their home for 6-7 years.  That has increased to 10 years.  Between the increasing longevity and the fact that builders cannot keep pace with demand, supply is expected to remain diminished.

"Emerging technologies and the demographics are only two of the factors supporting a strong economy.  Americans have been saving more strongly in the past year and now that the economy is opening up those folks will start spending."

Want to know the latest trusted source information on real estate? Garden Valley Properties has its pulse on the market - We can help !

Spring Cleaning- The Best Way to Tackle a Cluttered Room

As you get ready to start the decluttering process, it helps to have a system in place that you can use as you clean and reorganize. The super simple, straightforward option is the “Four-Box Method” — using four boxes or storage bins, you can streamline your decluttering job. Here’s a breakdown of how just four boxes can make tackling a cluttered room a breeze.
Box 1: Trash
Any items you want to get rid of that aren’t worth donating or selling go here. Pro tip: to save yourself a step, go ahead and use a Trash Bag instead of a box so you can take your trash straight to the dump after cleaning up.
Box 2: Give Away/Sell
Next, designate a box for items that are still in OK condition, but that your household could do without — like old books or toys, for example. Whether you want to give these things away to family/friends, donate them to Payette Forward, or sell them in a yard sale or on a local buy, sell, trade Facebook page to make a little extra money is totally up to you.
Box 3: Storage
This box is for things that you can’t or don’t want to get rid of, but that you aren’t in need of on a day-to-day basis (think things like seasonal decorations). It’s also a good idea to make an inventory of items that you’re putting in storage as you go — that way, you won’t be left wondering what exactly is taking up space in your garage or attic down the line.
Box 4: Put Away
Lastly, have a box ready to place any items that need to be kept in your house, but relocated to their proper place. If you want to get really organized, you can have a few smaller boxes — one each for places like your bathroom, kitchen, or bedrooms — and sort misplaced items into their “homes” to save yourself the hassle later.
Want one last decluttering pro tip? If you have the need for it, you can add a fifth box to this method: one for items that can be repaired/replaced rather than tossed out or donated, like a watch that needs a new battery.


In addition to being in the heart of some of Idaho's most beautiful mountains, Garden Valley is home to an abundant wildlife - this includes all kinds of birds, bears, cougar, deer, and even ELK.

Whether you like view wildlife or enjoy hunting, Garden Valley has plenty of elk to offer. Did you know elk are also known as Wapiti, a Native American word that means light colored deer?

They are one of the largest species within the deer family and one of the largest terrestrial mammals in North America. Did you also know at one time Garden Valley had a famous elk name Elvis! Enjoy this little video to learn more about one of our local wild celebrities!

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