Light up a gazing ball, make a trap for fruit flies, plus more news

This is another one of those articles I like to think of as potpourri– a little bit of this and a little bit of that. I hope you find something that’s useful or entertaining.

gazing ball in Kenmore NYLight up a gazing ball.

These instructions for making a lighted gazing ball, like the one you see at left, come from Kathi and Craig Schwab of Kenmore:

“We used an extra LED light that we had, put it inside the globe and connected the lighted gazing globe to the landscape lighting we use.

“I think you could also use a small battery-operated candle inside the globe.  Some, not all, battery operated-candles have four-hour timers on them, which would be ideal for the globe.

“When we went on Buffalo’s Garden Walk this year, there was a garden where the man put clear Christmas lights inside the globe and he said it looks very  pretty at night.  We have to credit this man for the great idea he had!

“The lighted globe just adds to the dramatic effect that landscape lighting gives.”

Catch those darned fruit flies.fruit fly trap in Buffalo NY

We bought a couple quarts of tomatoes in August and left them on the counter while we worked our way through them. It took a few days for us to use them all, and by the time we got to the bottom ones, they had some soft spots.

By then, the fruit flies were going crazy, and they hung around for weeks and weeks– until I tried this tip from David Clark, horticulturist. It worked like a charm!

You need a glass and a piece of paper. Roll the paper into a tight cone with a tiny hole at the bottom. Secure the cone with a paper clip or tape.

Throw a small chunk of fruit in the glass. A piece of banana peel works well, too. Set the cone in the glass. Make sure the cone fills the top of the glass.

Fruit flies will be attracted by the smell of the fruit, make their way down the paper funnel, through the hole and into the glass. Once they’re in the glass, they try to fly out through the top, but their path is blocked by the paper cone butting up against the rim of the glass. (If your cone doesn’t fit snugly, you can try sealing the rim and cone with tape.)

When you have caught fruit flies, take the glass outside and remove the cone. The fruit flies will take off.

 Support our local businesses on Small Business Saturday

Small Business SaturdayThe 2nd annual Small Business Saturday is a day dedicated to supporting small businesses
on one of the busiest shopping weekends of the year.

On Nov. 26, people are asked to shop small at their favorite local stores and help fuel the economy. When we all shop small, it will be huge.

If you want ideas on where to shop, check out the advertisers on

The Botanical Gardens are bursting with color for the holidayspoinsettia from Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens

Starting on the day after Thanksgiving, you can take in the splendor of the annual Poinsettia Show at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens, 2655 South Park Ave., Buffalo. The 17 varieties of poinsettia in the show include Picasso, Marble, Mars, Whitestar, Marblestar, Orion, Maren and Lipstick Pink.

Also opening that day is the Garden Railway Exhibit, which will be double the size of last year’s exhibit and include Thomas the Train. It is organized by the Western New York Garden Railway Society.

The Botanical Gardens will also hold a Tropical Holiday Brunch, a fundraising event, at Romanello’s South on Dec. 7.

The Holiday Celebration on Dec. 10 includes hands-on kids activities and crafts from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. ($2 per child). Photos with Santa are free if taken with your own camera, but if you would like a print from Santa’s helpers, prints are $5 each.

The holiday festivities will come to a close with Dollar Admission Day on Dec. 30 when you can enjoy the beautiful Botanical Gardens for only $1. Children under 3 and members are always free.

Admission to the Botanical Gardens from Nov. 25 – January 1 includes the Poinsettia Show and the Garden Railway Exhibit. Prices are $8 for adults, $7 for seniors (over age 55) & students (over age 13 with ID), $4 for children ages 3-12, and free for members and children under 3.  Purchase tickets at the door or online at

Hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. The Botanical Gardens will close at noon on Christmas Eve, remain closed all day on Christmas and close at noon on New Year’s Eve.


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