rose climbing on trellis

Prune roses when forsythia blooms, but don’t cut back climbing roses

Here are two tips from the Western New York Rose Society on pruning and planting roses. Tip #1: Don’t prune or plant roses too soon. Wait until you see forsythia blooming in your neighborhood. When you see those yellow blossoms, you will know it’s the perfect time to start planting and pruning your roses. From Steve Styn, Western New York Rose Society Rosarian Tip #2: Don’t cut back your climbing roses. Just trim the brown tips off in the spring. …

rose from Albion garden

Should you prune roses in fall or spring in WNY? Hint: not fall!

Here’s a question I got from Diane, a reader: “I would love it if you would settle a long-standing debate regarding roses in the Western New York area.  Cut them down in fall or spring?” Lillian Stiegler, president of the Western New York Rose Society, responds, “You don’t prune your roses in the fall. The only exception is if it’s exceptionally tall and you’re afraid it will break in the snow.” If you have climbing roses, you can cut away any dead…

dandelion with seeds blowing

Act now on weed seeds, lesser celandine, gypsy (spongy) moths & roses

by Connie Oswald Stofko Some gardening tasks have a small window of opportunity. Here are four things you should do in your garden now. Stop weeds before they pop out of the ground Pre-emergent herbicides stop weeds before they even pop out of the ground– they act on seeds at the germination stage. The optimal time to use pre-emergent herbicides is early in the spring, just before the forsythias bloom or while they are in bloom. Corn gluten meal is…

Should you cut back roses in autumn?

After reading a previous article about roses, a reader asked a follow-up question: “Hello! I was always told to cut back rose bushes in the fall. That’s wrong?” Here is the response from Bonnie Vitale, president of the Western New York Rose Society: Save the hard pruning for spring. In the fall, cut off any broken stems. Some gardeners like to cut their rose bushes down to a height of 18-24 inches in the fall to prevent wind and snow…

montage for early autumn

Six timely reminders for your early autumn garden

by Connie Oswald Stofko Here are some topics from previous issues that may answer a question that has come up for you recently, or may act as a timely reminder. Have you had houseplants outside for the summer? Here is information on how to get rid of bugs before you bring your plants inside. If you want a delightful springtime show of blossoms, plant bulbs now. Find suggestions here on what perennials to plant around tulips to hide the dying…

Free class at Lockwood’s covers what you should do in garden in October

Don’t prune in autumn. That’s one of the important bits of advice gardening expert Sally Cunningham will share during a free class on “Yard and Garden Care in October (for a Better Spring!)” at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, October 12, at Lockwood’s Greenhouses, 4484 Clark Street, Hamburg. While the class is free, seating is limited, so please call 649-4684 to make a reservation. Whether you maintain a yard or grow vegetables and flowers, the jobs you do now will make a…

cut dead perennials in spring in Buffalo NY

Warm weather! What you can– & can’t– do in your garden now

Clean up your yard, but leave the mulch in place When the forsythia is in bloom, that’s a good time to cut back your rose bushes and take the mulch off your garden beds, said  Dawn Trippie-Thompson, owner, with her husband Ken Thompson, of Thompson Brothers Greenhouses, 8850 Clarence Center Rd., Clarence Center. That’s a rule of thumb she learned in horticulture coursework at Niagara County Community College. Forsythias usually bloom in late April or early May, so even the…

cold wave pansy from Mischler's in Williamsville NY

Spring has arrived in Buffalo! Six things to do in your garden today

I spotted my first robin last week. My crocuses, daffodils and hyacinths are blooming. The weather has been amazingly mild– bordering on hot! And the calendar says that today is the vernal equinox. Any way you look at it, spring has arrived in Buffalo, and we gardeners are raring to go. Here are six great gardening tips you can use right now: Spring gardening tip #1 Try new Cool Wave pansies, a frost tolerant plant that trails and spreads. It…

perennial garden in Lancaster NY

How to start a perennial garden

by Connie Oswald Stofko If you want to start a new garden with perennials, you could plop some random plants into the ground and hope for the best. But putting some thought into what you’d like your garden to be will make you happier in the end, said Jen Weber, vice president and manager of Mike Weber Greenhouses, 42 French Rd., West Seneca. (They are now open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m….

rocks and flowers installed by Busy Beaver Lawn and Garden

Before & after: How my front yard went from ho-hum to awesome

by Connie Oswald Stofko by Connie Oswald Stofko The part of my landscape that everyone sees– the front yard– was so plain it bordered on unattractive. (See the before images below.) I knew what I wanted to achieve, but I didn’t know what it should look like or how to make it happen. So I called in the experts at Busy Beaver Lawn & Garden and gave them a list of things I wanted to accomplish. That list included: Create…