by Connie Oswald Stofko
The voting is done, and the front yard of the large Victorian at 28/36 North Parade in Buffalo won the first place People’s Choice Award for large gardens in the Front Yard Competition of the National Garden Festival in Buffalo. It was designed by The English Gardener, Ltd.
Professional landscapers donated their time and materials to transform 19 front yards as part of the Front Yard Competition, the first event of its kind in the country. It was part of the National Garden Festival in Buffalo.
We’ll show you the other prize-winning makeovers in future articles.
This large, old Victorian had a grassy lawn, but not much else in its landscape when work started, said Glenn C. Robertson, project supervisor for the English Gardener. (See the “Before” photo below.)
The English Gardener started by taking out grass and building raised beds, using natural dry-stacked blue stone walls. The walls help to hold the soil in and keep the grass out, Robertson explained.
In the photo below, note how the design on the left side of the house “jumps” the sidewalk, so that people walk through the garden instead of walking by the garden.
“We always believe a garden should be a journey,” he said.
The beds were planted with perennials. Tall plants are in back and short plants in front.
The plants were chosen for sequential blooming to make sure that as one plant stopped flowering, another took its place. They also mixed textures. Some annuals were added so the homeowner would have color right away.
The home is on a double lot, and there was no focal point for the side yard, Robertson said. To remedy that, they built a raised bed with flowering shrubs and perennials. Evergreens add winter interest.
In the Front Yard Competition, this design also won second place, Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy Award (Large Gardens) and Media Choice Award (Large Gardens).