5 Salads to Try for National Salad Month

May is National Salad Month — with all of our gardens starting to supply our fruits and vegetables and Memorial Day barbecues to plan, it couldn’t come at a better time! We have a few favorites to serve at home to the family or put together for a spectacular cookout. Here are 5 salads to try for National Salad Month.corn salad

Summer Corn Salad Everyone loves corn in the summer, so we had to include a favorite corn salad. Aside from the corn, avocados and tomatoes, this one includes ingredients you probably already have in your pantry: dried basil, dried parsley and Dijon vinaigrette (which you can whip up yourself or buy ready-made). Check out Everyday Mom’s Meals for the instructions.

quinoa-saladSouthwestern Quinoa Salad Quinoa is all the rage these days — it makes sense because it’s a supergrain. It’s not quite like rice, but it’s a good substitute considering all of the health benefits: high in protein, iron, potassium and fiber. Not only is it healthy, it’s also tasty making it a great addition to your summer salads. Our favorite is the Southwestern Quinoa Salad from Kalyn’s Kitchen. Black beans, bell peppers and a light citrus dressing makes a satisfying salad you can serve as a side to your grilled kabab or as a cool meal to take with you to work.

orzo-saladMediterranean Orzo Salad Orzo is a fun addition to salad — particularly if you have young, picky eaters in your family! This salad from Iowa Girl Eats is a simple one, but it’s simply delicious! Cherry tomatoes and parsley brightens the flavors while capers and olives give it a bit of saltiness — to balance it all out, the dressing has a little bit of honey for sweetness. If you want to add a little more freshness, seed and dice a cucumber or green pepper to throw in. Anyway you mix it up, you’re going to love it.

bbq-chicken-saladBBQ Ranch Chopped Chicken Salad Of course we have to include a salad that’s not just a side, but a whole meal! This one comes from Chew Out Loud — and this lady should be proud because this salad is amazing! Barbecue sauce, ranch dressing, cheese? In a salad? Yes, please! As long as you have your grill ready, good romaine lettuce and the right beans and corn, you can add something sensational to your summer menu.

Ramen-SaladCrunchy Asian Ramen Noodle Salad We’re always on a culinary adventure here at LTD, so we have to include a salad outside our comfort food zone. Under that category you’ll find the Crunchy Asian Ramen Noodle Salad from Gimme Some Oven. This isn’t quite like how you ate ramen in college — but it’s as easy to make! All you need is a coleslaw mix, toasted sesame seeds, almonds and ramen, a few extra vegetables to make it green, toss it with dressing and you have a potluck salad everyone will envy.

Now that it’s salad season we can start getting excited about all the fun summer activities we’ve been waiting for since the first snowfall. Check back with LTD for more ideas to make this summer memorable.  




Wildflower Week: Best Places to View Wildflowers

wildflowersApril showers bring May flowers and it’s about time! The second week in May also happens to be National Wildflower Week. We certainly love curating a charming garden to enjoy all summer, but it’s fun to see how Mother Nature has designed her own garden in the wild. Because it’s the wild, you’ll have to plan a trip to witness the colorful flowers at their peak, but sometimes, it’s just a short drive away. Just so you don’t miss out on nature’s glory, here are some of the best places to view wildflowers around the country.

Northeast Monongahela National Forest near Richwood, West Virginia is the home to the Cranberry Glades Botanical Area. What makes this area so unique is that it’s made up of bogs where you can see unusual wildflowers. There are boardwalks for visitors to walk on and experience the bogs and view the wildflowers without disturbing them. Guided tours are available on weekends throughout the summer.wildflowers

Southeast In the Juniper Springs in Ocala National Forest in Florida, your wildflower experience will likely be a wet experience. In a seven-mile canoe ride you can see dozens of wildflower species that grow along the Juniper Creek — which remains a comfortable 72℉. It’s the wildflower tour for adventurers and those who like to get a little wet!

Midwest A good hike on Ohio’s Wildcat Hollow Trail in the Wayne National Forest takes you through open meadows to see spring beauties and wild geraniums against hillsides and through the forest. Even if you don’t want to get out of the car, you can still view plenty of the colorful flowers from the roadside.

Northwest In Washington, the Tiffany Botanical Area is where you can see sub-alpine flowers like the Indian paintbrush and columbine under the branches of evergreens on a rigorous hike. It’s within the Okanogan National Forest which is hundreds of thousands of acres with dazzling landscapes, so even if you’re not into wildflowers, you’ll find something in the natural wonders of the Pacific Northwest that you’ll enjoy.

wildflowersSouthwest Mills Canyon is where you want to go to see wildflowers in the Southwest, but be prepared — it’s far from civilization in the vast grasslands of New Mexico, but worth the worry if you get there after the rainy season in the late summer. There are more than 400 species of flowers to see, but the climate can be tricky — the best time for viewing is during the hottest time of the year, so it’s best to view them in the mornings and evenings to avoid the hot, mid-day sun.

At LTD we love all of what nature brings us in the summer months! Whether you’re going on a road trip to view wildflowers in their natural habitat or you’re creating your own flower heaven at home, look to LTD Commodities for inspiration and products to make your summer more colorful.

April’s Pinteresting Picks

May is here and there is a lot happening in the weeks to come! Memorial day, weddings and summer! Our Pinterest followers are getting ready for quality outdoor time and spectacular life events. Here are April’s Pinteresting Picks. wedding-photo-frames

Wedding Wishes Cherish a memory of your special day with an elegant Wedding Photo Frame. The silver-gilded and beveled frame comes with a decorative mat. The Now and Then frames create a 2-photo collage with a childhood photo and either a current photo or one from your wedding. Holds two 4″ x 6″ pictures. Happily Ever After features a heartwarming sentiment and a place for a 5″ x 7″ photo of the happy couple. Each frame has a clear acetate panel to protect the pictures.

nfl-garden-mosaicGardening Goals Let everyone know which NFL team you root for with this Mosaic Garden Stone. Use this garden stone as part of a pathway, or as an accent in your landscaping to demonstrate your team pride. Makes a great gift for a true fan!

rail-planterDecor Desire Add some color to your yard and porch with a Rail Planter. The weatherproof plastic planter fits over round or square railings and wood or chain-link fences, up to 2-1/4″ wide. It’s built with a reservoir to hold water for less frequent tending. Two plastic spacers fit into the bottom opening to stabilize and secure the planter onto the railing or fence.

solar-garden-postsElegant Enhancements Put an elegant finishing touch on your home with a Solar Garden Post. This classic accent features a teardrop shape enhanced with scrollwork. The lantern at the top is solar-powered, so it needs no time-consuming installation. Glows with constant white light for up to 8 hours on a full charge. On/off switch. A metal ring near the bottom of the Solar Post with Planter holds a 6″ pot.

extension-cord-sealPractical Gadgets Protect outdoor electrical connections for a holiday display or at a job site with a Set of 2 Extension Cord Safety Seals. The case snaps around the point where the cords come together, and a rubber seal keeps out rain, snow and mud. An internal locking safety mechanism holds cords securely together. These cases are a simple solution that will prevent shorting out and eliminate the chore of reconnecting cords that have been accidentally pulled apart.

6 Trees to Plant in Your Garden



When we start planning our gardens, our brains take us to all the flowers that decorate our yards and vegetables that fill out our summer menus. The one thing we sometimes overlook are trees to add a little more color and shade for your backyard oasis. Here are 6 trees to plant in your garden.

Whitebeam Whitebeams grow to be about 40 feet tall and are decorated with white blossoms and bright red berries. Not only are whitebeams beautiful, but they work well in gardens because they are very adaptable and can tolerate heat and wind and different types of soil.

Adirondack Crabapple Crabapple trees add a splash of color to any yard or garden, but the Adirondack crabapple is lovely for gardens because they only grow to be about 18 feet high. The delicate white flowers make it a jewel in anyone’s garden crown, but it’s also a very practical tree as it is disease resistant and drought tolerant.

Weeping Birch The weeping birch doesn’t have colorful fruit or blossoms, but its loose, limp branches bring character to a yard. They only reach heights of about 15 feet, so you can almost predict how much shade you’ll get where you plant you weeping birch. The weeping birch needs a lot of sunshine and does well in acid soils.


Judas Tree

Judas Tree If there were a tree to illustrate love, it would be the Judas Tree. They’re small with a maximum height of 40 feet so it does well by the garden, but they also decorate the garden with its bright pink blossoms shaped like hearts. To keep Judas Trees lovable, plant them in well-drained soil with full sun or partial shade. One bonus for the Judas Tree is that it’s generally pest-free.

Carolina Silverbell Silverbells are a little bit bigger — they grow to be about 33 feet tall, but the height doesn’t dwarf the impact of their blossoms for which they are named. The tender petals of the white flowers face down like bells. What makes them great for a yard or garden is they are pest-resistant. To keep Carolina silverbells happy, plant them in moist, well-drained acid soil and full sun.


Japanese Maple

Japanese Maple The Japanese maple is popular for gardens because they only grow to be about six feet high, but they are also unique looking. The leaves aren’t like regular maple trees — they’re wispy and almost feather-like. Some varieties produce green leaves but others can have deep-red leaves even in the summer. To keep them thriving, plant Japanese maples in a spot with full sun and sandy, well-drained soil.

It’s time to bloom! There are so many plants and accessories to add to your garden — it’s hard to put a limit on your ideas! But LTD Commodities can help you put your gardening ideas into action. From ideas on how to plan a vegetables to products to keep your herbs thriving, shop LTD for everything to get your garden growing.

5 Tips to Save Money as a Maid of Honor

bridesmaidsIt’s the start of wedding season — and if you’ve been given the privilege of taking on the duties of maid of honor, you have a lot of work ahead of you. The work also includes a sizable amount of money to make every step leading up to your friend or relative’s big day. But there are ways to get around going into debt and still make every event special. Here are 5 tips to save money as a maid of honor.

Budget Expectations Let your bride and the bridal party know your budget expectations before planning starts. This may not cut off over-spending before it starts, but it may put everyone on the same page as you coordinate all of your different obligations. If it helps, set aside the money you can use for all of the wedding planning in one account and only withdraw from that account for your wedding expenses. This makes tracking costs easier.

bridesmaidsBook Travel Wisely As soon as you know the dates of the biggest events, start looking into airfares. Fares fluctuate, but there are websites like Kayak that can tell you if you should book now because fares will go up or if you should wait because the fares are expected to go down.

Share The Load As the maid of honor, you’re responsible for making sure things get done, but that doesn’t mean you have to do and pay for everything yourself. Recruit the other bridesmaids to help you decorate, put together menus and coordinate gifts for the shower and bachelorette party. The other ladies will likely want to help out to make all of the events spectacular.

DIY Put on your craft hat and start clipping, gluing and bedazzling. Turn your bachelorette party and bridal shower into a big DIY project. That sash and tiara your bride is wearing for her bachelorette party and all of the favors and food for the shower can be handmade — it’ll save you cash and it will make your efforts all the more appreciated.bridesmaids

Say No The bride is your best friend/sister/cousin and you want her to celebrate exactly the way she wants to, but how she wants to celebrate may not be what you can afford. You’re allowed to say no to things you can’t afford. But when you do say no, be prepared to offer a reasonable alternative to what your bride wants to do.

You’re going to be part of someone’s most memorable day — it doesn’t have to be expensive to be extraordinary. LTD Commodities has gifts and ideas for every occasion — from bridal showers to Christmas dinner, LTD has products priced for fun.

Gardening Gadgets You Didn’t Know You Needed

It may not feel like it yet, but it’s spring and we’re moving forward as if it’s warm out! Our gardens are almost ready to go, but they’re going to need upkeep all summer long. To maintain the lush green leaves and violet and pink flower petals, we need a few gadgets — some you might not know about! Here are 5 gardening gadgets you didn’t know you needed.Gardening-stool

Wonder Wheels Wheels make the garden green! Maybe not all wheels, but the ones on the Garden Scooter do! Sit comfortably while tending to your flowers and glide along to weed around your vegetables and say goodbye to the aches and pains from kneeling and squatting!

watering-stakesWorry-Free Watering Save your two-liter soda bottles to keep the soil around your plants moist even when you’re not around to water! The Set of 8 Sunflower Watering Stakes adds a little color and a lot of ease to keeping your plants healthy in the summer heat. Fill a plastic bottle with water, and screw it into the flower on the stake’s top. Then, push the spike into the soil to slowly release water into the ground to keep your flowers and veggies green and thriving. Fun and functional to keep your plants looking good.

Squirrel-FeederFun Feedings Need a little backyard entertainment while improving the lives of your furry friends? This Squirrel-A-Whirl Feeder spins with the squirrels’ weight, letting the little acrobats have some fun while grabbing a bite to eat. Attach corncobs, fruit or peanut butter to the 3 dowels. Keep a snack on hand with the Bag of Corn, which includes 12 ears.

Hose-guidesGarden Guidance Garden guidance comes in the shape of frogs, owls or birds at LTD! These little guys protect delicate plants in your yard as Solar Lighted Hose Guides. Drag your hose through the lawn without worrying about damaging your flowers and veggies. That’s just during the day — at night these charming critters sit atop the stake to guard your lawn with a little light powered by the sun! Light shines through cutouts on the creature’s tummy.

Garden-matEffortless Flowers Need an instant flower garden? Here’s your answer to bringing a garden to life with just the roll of a mat with the 3-Pk. Roll-Out Flower Gardens! Each flower mat is pre-seeded with over 1,000 premium wildflower seeds of many varieties. The mat is 100% biodegradable and can be cut to fit window boxes, pots and various-sized flower beds. Blooms germinate in 10-20 days and grow to be 6″-24″ high.

7 Interesting Rules and Traditions of the Masters

golfPeople from all over the country are flocking to Augusta, Georgia to witness one of the most prestigious sports tournaments in the nation. The Masters golf tournament begins this week at Augusta National Golf Club. The tournament has been around for nearly a century and most of the rituals and practices have remained unchanged in that time. Some of those customs are a bit quirky — so quirky, we have to share them. Here are 7 interesting rules and traditions of the Masters.

No Electronics This is one of the newer rules, but it’s strictly enforced. No cell phones, tablets, walkie-talkies or anything that makes noise or buzzes is allowed on the course. Cameras are allowed on the grounds, but only during practice rounds. But that doesn’t mean the Masters hasn’t adapted with the times — it does have its own smartphone app.

golfPrim & Proper Reporting Sportscasters who are selected must stick to strict reporting of the tournament — no sugar-coating, off-beat metaphors or colorful language is accepted. In fact, if a sportscaster deviates at all from straight-reporting, he will be removed from his position. In 1966, Jack Whitaker was banned from announcing at the Masters for five years for referring to a crowd as a “mob.” Nearly 30 years later, tournament officials were as strict with Gary McCord when he likened the 17th green to a smooth bikini wax. He was also banned for five years.

Patrons There are no spectators or fans at the Masters, only “patrons.” It kind of makes sense to elevate the name of a spectator since the badges (not tickets) are nearly impossible to come by. Patrons who already have badges renew them each year and then they’re passed down from generation to generation — the club has not sold a new badge in almost five decades. The club kept waiting lists for brief periods, but the people who want badges each year outnumber the badges the club can provide.

Keep It Classy Patrons are scolded for any number of reasons — leaning too far back, bare feet, running, taking someone’s spot or lawn chair in the patron viewing area. If you go to the tournament, your behavior should match your behavior at church.

golfMembership Membership at Augusta National is different than being a patron. It’s very exclusive — members are senators, billionaires, CEOs of Fortune 500 companies — not your everyday golfers. But it’s that way by design — membership is only granted with an invitation. How to get that invitation is anyone’s guess, but it helps to be aloof. Bill Gates did not make his desire to be a member a secret — in the 1990s, he hobnobbed and golfed with those who have pull, but it wasn’t until the early 2000s that the club extended an invitation. And, up until a few years ago, it was an all-male club. The first female members — former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and Darla Moore — were admitted in 2012.

Green Jackets The Masters is known for the green jacket that is awarded to the winner every year, and even that comes with rules. The winner can take it off the club grounds, but he has to return it within the year. After that, he can wear it whenever he wants as long as it’s worn on club grounds.

LTD Commodities loves sports for all seasons. Whether it’s watching a golf tournament or an NFL game or playing a pick-up game of basketball, LTD has products for playing on the field or watching from the sidelines.

March Pinteresting Picks

March is coming to an end, which means spring is in full swing — and you can tell by what our Pinterest followers are pinning! With snow still on the ground, we’re getting plenty of extra time to finish up our spring cleaning and get our gardens in order — both themes dominated our pins this month! Here are March’s Pinteresting Picks.


Protect your phone as it charges with this Deluxe Smartphone Charging Station. Designed for versatility, it has 3 standard outlets, so you can keep other appliances plugged in along with your charger, or charge up to 3 additional devices at once. Plus, there are 2 USB ports built into the station for phones and devices that require a USB adapter. The sides of the station pull out to cradle 2 phones or devices charging at the same time. Surge-protected charger means your phones and devices won’t be damaged by sudden power surges or outages. 


Set the Adjustable Wall Lamp at the height you need to fit your space or reduce eye strain. The curved arm holds out the light with a simple white shade. Knobs allow you to adjust the height and angle for the right amount of light for reading or crafting. 


The Set of 2 Wrought Iron Garden Trellises displays your climbing plants in an especially attractive way. The freestanding trellises, topped with a decorative finial, add a dramatic accent to your yard. Encourage climbing roses, ivy or other flowers and shrubs to cover the heavy-gauge, rustic-finished bars. When not in use, they nest for easy storage.


Honor the graduate with a Graduation Keepsake Frame. The Then and Now Frame holds two photos: for example, a baby picture and a graduation photo. An inscription reads, “Our Graduate Then & Now…Wherever you go…go with all your heart.” The Tassel Frame holds a photo and the graduate’s tassel. Through the Years Frame has a 2″ sq. opening for each year’s school picture from K through 11th grade and a 4″ sq. opening for 12th grade. Polystyrene frames with acetate protectors. Ready to hang.


This wooden Ready-to-Go Vanity Shelf adds attractive storage and organization. Perfect for makeup, styling tools, accessories and more. The large, open middle compartment has a faux drawer side. Underneath it is a functional drawer perfect for smaller supplies. Three surface holes are sized for curling irons, a hair dryer or other appliances. 

5 Best Herbs to Grow in Your Garden

ChivesMother Nature has been teasing us with the snowy spring weather, but this last storm is not going to break our stride. We’re still planning our gardens as if we didn’t just get a fresh blanket of snow! Right now we’re focusing on adding a little flavor to our gardens with herbs. Herb gardens make so much sense — herbs can get pretty expensive when you buy them fresh — so we’ve put together a list of the best herbs to grow in your garden.

Chives Chives are versatile for cooking — freshly minced, they add bright green to an omelet, give cream cheese a delightful zip or boosts a soup’s freshness. Chives are also rich in dietary fiber, packed with vitamins and an excellent source of folate. While they do so much for our food and bodies, they’re also easy on the eyes. When they’re in bloom, their wisps frame a delicate purple flower that some gardeners use as edging for herb gardens. To make sure they’re as happy as they make us, keep them in full sun. They’re not picky about the dirt they grow in —  they grow well even in poor soil.vertical-planter

Basil Basil is great on pizza, makes pesto perfect and produces a stand out pasta salad. There’s no herb that you’ll use more than basil! Basil is a great source of protein and vitamin E on top of being tasty. Basil plants are bright green and don’t stop growing if they have rich, moist soil and a good six hours of sunshine every day. They’ll be good to plant outside two weeks after the last frost.

rosemaryRosemary There’s no shortage of health benefits from rosemary — it’s good for digestion, makes our hair and skin nice as well as boosts our immune system. In the kitchen, it’s fantastic roasted with chicken, infused with oil for salad dressing or in drinks, it adds a unique layer of flavor to cocktails. In the garden, rosemary brings a garden bed a unique aesthetic. It has leaves that are like soft needles with a piney fragrance. That fragrance is very relaxing — studies have shown that it can actually reduce hormones that make us feel on edge and anxious. If you put it on a garden path for people to brush against, it releases its scent to make your garden a sensory oasis. To care for rosemary, give it full sun with well-drained but moist soil and prune it regularly.dill

Dill Dill can turn just about anything into a summer treat — mixed with Greek yogurt, it makes a fabulous sauce for grilled chicken, it stamps out bland in egg or potato salad and it’s the perfect addition to savory baked goods like scones. Dill is also packed with anti-oxidants, vitamin C and folic acid, so you can’t go wrong by sprinkling it on your meal! In the garden, it’s feathery fronds peak out behind adorable yellow blossoms to add a little brightness to your herbs — it’s also a butterfly magnet! To care for dill, give it full sun, plant it in deep soil water it moderately.thyme

Thyme Thyme is a good source of folate, calcium and dietary fiber. It’s also known to lower blood pressure as well as boost your mood. In the kitchen, it’s popular for our holiday dishes — Thanksgiving probably wouldn’t be the same without it! It brings out the flavor in mushrooms, roasted vegetables and poultry. In the garden, thyme is a little different than the other herbs mentioned in that it makes fabulous ground cover. It looks great surrounding garden paths or as a flowery, fragrant blanket peppered with tiny blossoms on a garden bed to attract bees. To care for time, give it full sun and soil that drains well.

Items We Adore: Garden Product Picks

The first day of spring is here! We can already see some of the buds poking up from the ground and we can”t wait to get our hands dirty in the garden! This week we”re looking at all the things we need to make our gardens perfect — and we”ve made a list of a few of our faves! Here are this week’s Items We Adore: Garden Product Picks.


This futuristic Solar Orb Mobile is an interesting element for your outdoor decor. The shimmering orbs automatically light up at dusk. They”re surrounded by spinning rings. A solar panel at the top provides the power for the lights.



Gardeners and non-gardeners alike will love this Polanter Vertical Planter. It”s casino online easy to use, can be hung anywhere and needs less watering than hanging baskets and flower pouches. Use for flowers, tomatoes, strawberries, herbs and more. 


The Set of 2 Wrought Iron Garden Trellises displays your climbing plants in an especially attractive way. The freestanding trellises, topped with a decorative finial, add a dramatic accent to your yard. Encourage climbing roses, ivy or other flowers and shrubs to cover the heavy-gauge, rustic-finished bars. 


Maintain your plants indoors and out with a Set of 3 Glass Watering Stakes. Fill these clear, decorative figurines with water, then stake them in any potted plant. The watering stake drips water into the dirt, so your plant is always perfectly watered. 


Twisted Garden Bell Tree enhances your garden with unique style and sound. It has 6 spiral wires adorned with multicolored acrylic beads and bells at the tips. When the wind blows, the bells create beautiful, harmonic sounds.