by Connie Oswald Stofko
Here’s something to look forward to: Open Gardens and some garden walks this summer!
You can see a list of which gardening events are open and which are canceled at the end of this article. There may still be changes, so to get the most up-to-date information, go to the calendar page of Gardens Buffalo Niagara.
One of the garden walks that has been canceled is the The Hamburg Garden Walk, but organizers plan to offer virtual tours of some beautiful village gardens this summer. If you live in the Village of Hamburg and would like to show off your garden, contact them.
In the meantime, you can see photos of Margaret Sardinia’s gorgeous landscape here. I visited in 2019.
Sardinia uses some very formal elements in her landscape. She also pulls in elements you might find in a cottage garden design, softening the feel of the design.
Take a look at the flowers along the outside of the fence. The plants are placed neatly, avoiding the random or even messy look that cottage style gardens can exhibit. But the growing habit of the plants is free form and bouncy, giving an informal feel.
The container on the gate softens the lines of the fence, and the trellis at the entrance is welcoming.
When you pass through the gate, you are met with a stunning view that is more formal. A straight path leads you to a perfectly round hedge. Everything is symmetrical.
Guests can relax in the gazebo or in other seating areas in the yard.
Something you wouldn’t expect to see in a formal landscape is a chicken coop, but Sardinia has been raising chickens since 2013.
“It’s super easy,” she said. “My mother raised chickens.”
Sardinia said she bought the chicken coop, so all she has to do is feed and water the hens and check for eggs every day. Her bantams can tolerate the cold.
She did have a rooster, but couldn’t keep it because it was too noisy.
The three hens “are really friendly pets,” Sardinia said. She also has a tortoise, fish, and two large dogs: Ellie, a Bernese mountain dog, and Ruth, a black lab.
Gardening tip: The dogs like to lie down in the garden among her lilies, which isn’t good for the lilies. To discourage the dogs, she stands flat rocks upright in between the plants. The rocks can also help to hold up drooping plants, she said.
Ellie also likes to dig in the mulch, so Sardinia lays down chicken wire under the mulch.
Open Gardens and garden walks: current list
Here is a list of which garden events in our area are still scheduled and which are canceled. Things may change, so to get the most up-to-date information, go to the calendar page of Gardens Buffalo Niagara.
- Garden Walk Buffalo won’t be held as a two-day walking tour this year. Instead, a new program called Buffalo Garden Views will feature a variety of activities throughout July. Gardeners from the Buffalo Niagara region–and around the world–can experience these activities from home on social media. And there will be some in-person activities, too, such as touring front-yard gardens. See views of varied front yards from previous years of Garden Walk Buffalo here. See more about Buffalo Garden Views here.
- The Hamburg Garden Walk has canceled the in-person garden walk that was scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, July 11 and 12. The organizers plan to offer virtual tours of some beautiful village gardens this summer. If you live in the Village of Hamburg and would like to show off your garden, contact them.
- Open Gardens: Thursdays and Fridays from July 2 through 31.
- Lockport in Bloom will be held 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, July 11 and 12. Pick up maps at the Kenan Center, 433 Locust St., Lockport. Lockport in Bloom Twilight Tour will be held from 7 to 10 p.m. Saturday, July 11.
- Samuel P. Capen Garden Walk will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 11. Capen by Night will be held from 8 to 11 p.m. Saturday, July 11.
- The Amherst Garden Walk will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 11.
- The City of Tonawanda Garden Walk will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 18. The Friday Night Lights will be held from 9 to 11 p.m. Friday, July 17.
- The East Side Garden Walk will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, July 18.
- The Northwest Buffalo Tour of Gardens will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 18. (See their contingency plans here.)
- South Buffalo Alive will be held from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Sunday, July 19.
- Garden Walk Niagara (Black Squirrel Home and Garden Walk) will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 8.
- Lewiston GardenFest, originally scheduled for Saturday & Sunday, June 20 and 21
- Buffalo Style Garden Art Sale, originally scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, June 27 and 28
- Snyder-CleveHill Garden View, originally scheduled for Sunday, July 12
- Grand Island Garden Walk, originally scheduled for Sunday, July 12
- Ken-Ton Garden Tour and Night Lights, originally scheduled for Friday through Sunday, July 17-19.
- Lancaster Garden Walk, originally scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, July 18 and 19.
- Village of Williamsville Garden Walk, originally scheduled for Saturday, July 18.