Wegmans Family Garden offers indoor learning at Botanical Gardens

The temperature outside was in the teens and snow blanketed the ground, but it felt like spring inside the new indoor Wegmans Family Garden at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens, 2655 South Park Avenue, Buffalo. A grand opening was held yesterday for the new indoor space, which provides hands-on activities for children that help them learn about plants and nutrition. Children of all ages and abilities can engage in free play as well as structured activities. In the…

Check on your amaryllis and other items too good to miss

I walked into my basement this weekend and was surprised to see that my amaryllis bulbs were leafing out. I shouldn’t have been surprised; this is precisely what they were supposed to do. I am forcing them to bloom indoors so I can enjoy gorgeous flowers in the middle of winter. But out of sight, out of mind. I wasn’t paying attention and didn’t notice their activity until the leaves were quite long and I had a flower bud. If…

poinsettia painted with confetti in Hamburg NY

Hand-painted poinsettias for New Year’s & more news too good to miss

For New Year’s: Poinsettias painted with confetti pattern You can add a little zest to your New Year’s celebration with a poinsettia hand-painted with a confetti pattern. The poinsettias are painted by Steve Lockwood, owner of Lockwood’s Greenhouses, 4484 Clark Street, Hamburg. No two plants are alike. Special paint is used that doesn’t hurt the plant, explained Teresa Buchanan, general manager at Lockwood’s. Glitter adds a little sparkle. At right is a poinsettia painted in red, white and blue. __________…

Carol Franklin garden in Buffalo NY

‘Bloom where you are planted’ is motto of Buffalo gardener

When Carol Franklin is outside watering her garden on Prospect Avenue in Buffalo, people will stop and tell her what a good job she’s doing. They don’t expect to find city areas to look as good as this, she explained, but you can have a great garden wherever you are. “Bloom where you are planted,” Franklin said. I visited Franklin this July during Garden Walk Buffalo. Her welcoming front garden wraps around the side of the house and can be…

lava chrysanthemum in Buffalo

Mum show and more autumn news & tips for Buffalo area

Chrysanthemum Show set at Botanical Gardens Mums are the emblematic flower of autumn, and the Chrysanthemum Show at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens is a Western New York tradition. It has been held annually for more than 105 years! The show is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. from Saturday, October 20 to Sunday, November 11 at the Botanical Gardens, 2655 South Park Avenue, Buffalo. Enjoy all the colors of the fall season with many different varieties…

Twenty First Century spuria iris from Hedgecock

Iris that’s new to Western New York may save you work– hear more

You’ve probably never heard of the spuria iris, but it may be a good alternative to the tall bearded iris– the spuria iris doesn’t need to be moved every few years. If you want to avoid heavy digging, this might be a good choice for you. Learn more about this plant when the Western New York Iris Society hosts the annual meeting of the affiliated clubs of the American Iris Society Region 2. Jim Hedgecock, a renowned hybridizer and president…

Autumn Reflections 1 in Western New York

Is there a purpose to fall leaf color? Plus read more tips too good to miss

Is there a purpose to fall leaf color? The crimson color of autumn leaves is astonishingly beautiful, but it may serve a purpose for the tree, too, according to Leaflets, an online newsletter produced by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. The red and violet colors in leaves come from a group of pigments called anthocyanins, which are created by the leaf to act as a sunblock. As the levels of chlorophyll are depleted, the leaf cannot use all…

Photo by Sarah Williams.

Master Gardener classes set; people from any county may attend

Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE) of Niagara County is offering the Master Gardener Training Program this fall, with the first class scheduled for  Saturday, October 27. People from any county may attend and students are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis. These classes provide participants with basic training in a variety of horticultural subjects using class lectures, group discussion questions, quizzes and hands-on activities in the CCE greenhouse and grounds. There are 18 Saturday classes. See the topics for each class and…

Barbara MacNaughton - First Place Color at Buffalo Botanical Gardens

Garden photography: two contests in Buffalo area & plenty of tips

If you enjoy taking photos of flowers and nature, you may be interested in two contests coming up in Western New York. In this article, we also offer you some resources for making your photos even better. Photography contests Photography contests are being held by the Charles E. Burchfield Nature & Arts Center and the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens. Charles E. Burchfield Nature & Arts Center photo contest Entries for the Charles E. Burchfield Nature & Arts Center…

compost bin in Amherst NY garden

Easy compost bin, research study & more items too good to miss

Speed up compost with this no-turn bin I love these instructions for making a bin for a compost pile that you don’t have to turn. It’s cheap and very, very easy. Compost piles need oxygen to carry on the decomposition process. One way to speed up your compost pile is to turn the pile with a pitch fork. This design by Fred Davis of Hill Gardens of Maine allows air to circulate throughout the pile so you don’t need to…