Lancaster Garden Club

Theme helps gardeners coordinate decorations

When you have 12 different garden clubs decorating the rooms of a mansion, how do you assure that the house will have a coherent look? At the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site, they choose a theme and colors. This year’s theme is “A Visit From St. Nick” and the colors are red and gold. That color scheme can be seen in the elegant dining room at left, decorated by the Lancaster Garden Club. The portrait is of Frances Wilcox, daughter of…

Smallwood Garden Club in Amherst

Garden clubs re-create turn-of-century Christmas at Roosevelt Inaugural Site

by Connie Oswald Stofko During the Victorian era, wealthy Buffalo residents celebrated Christmas with spectacular parties and lavish decorations. Get a taste of that bygone era during the Victorian Christmas events at the Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site, 641 Delaware Ave., Buffalo. You can still make reservations for events on Thursday and Friday of this week, which include a dinner theater performance by Mike Randall, actor and meteorologist for WKBW-TV, in Charles Dickens Presents: A Christmas Carol. Randall will perform as…

Theodore Roosevelt Inaugural Site decorated by gardeners in Buffalo

Get a taste of Victorian celebrations

Get a taste of how Christmas was celebrated in Buffalo during the Victorian era by participating in the Victorian Christmas events at the Theodore Roosevelt Inauguaral Site, 641 Delaware Ave., Buffalo. The site has been decorated by the Federated Garden Clubs of New York State, Eighth District, to evoke the feeling of the times. You can still make reservations for a luncheon and two dinners this week: “Shirley Temple Black: An American Treasure” will be the presentation by Dorothy Freeman…

Miscanthus sinensis 'Morning Light' in Amherst NY

The grass that made me cry, and my best organic gardening tip ever

Adventures in Organic Gardening By Laura Sileo-Lepkyj It was potting day last weekend. Oh, how I expected the tears to flow. We’ll be moving in January and I had made a list of a few of the rarer items in my garden that I want to take with me: the newly planted peach tree saplings, the purchased but luckily never planted Japanese holly, the similarly unplanted Corylus avellana “Contorta.” Since the ground will be frozen solid when we move, I…

Western New York Garden Railway Keuther

Incorporate plants into your garden railway

by Connie Oswald Stofko Last week, we introduced you to model railways for the garden. To see one in person, check out the exhibit by the Western New York Garden Railway Society at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens, 2655 South Park Ave., Buffalo. The exhibit is running now through Jan. 2. Today we’ll talk about the gardening aspects of the hobby. When choosing plants for your garden railway, you want to look for ones that you can keep…

Western New York Garden Railway Henderson train

Add the element of motion to your garden with a model railway

by Connie Oswald Stofko Many  gardeners work with color and shape and water and aroma when  creating their outdoor spaces.  Consider adding the element of motion by installing a model railway. You can get a peek at a garden railway when the Western New York Garden Railway Society opens its exhibit the day after Thanksgiving at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens, 2655 South Park Ave., Buffalo. The society has chosen an Old West theme, with adobe buildings and…

rock border in Williamsville NY garden

Finding inspiration in the garden

Many of us find spiritual inspiration in our gardens. Mary Jo Foley of Williamsville shares a gardening experience that reinforced her outlook on life: My friend Beth was helping me get my landscaping ready for my son’s high school graduation party. I told her I wanted stones as a border, but didn’t want to spend a lot of money on them.  After pruning the bushes with her electric trimmer, we decided to take a walk, as I do everyday to…

H. Blue Mouse Ears sports in bowl by Mike Shadrack

Intrigued by ‘little’ hostas? Here are tips on caring for them

  by Connie Oswald Stofko “This is the ideal climate for hostas,” said Mike Shadrack. “They like a harsh winter. You can’t grow them in Florida or Texas.” Mike and his wife, Kathy Guest Shadrack, have written The Book of Little Hostas: 200 Small, Very Small, and Mini Varieties. Last week, they introduced us to this plant that enjoys a cult following, and in this article they share some tips on caring for little hostas. (By the way, the proper…

compost for garden in Buffalo NY

Are you throwing away what your garden needs?

by Connie Oswald Stofko If you’re not using your leaves for compost, you’re throwing away a perfectly good supply of nutrients for your soil. When you compost, you allow plant materials to decompose, which produces a dark material that is great for your garden soil. Granted, some municipalities pick up the leaves and do the composting for you. But as a gardener, you may want to try composting. It’s nice to have your own supply of compost on hand when…

Mike and Kathy Guest Shadrack of Hamburg

Hamburg authors write first book ever published on popular “little” hostas

by Connie Oswald Stofko The wife-and-husband team of Kathy Guest Shadrack and Michael Shadrack of Hamburg has written The Book of Little Hostas: 200 Small, Very Small and Mini Varieties, which is scheduled to be released Nov. 24.  “Little hostas are very, very popular at the moment, and their popularity is ascending,” Mike said. “They have a cult following,” Kathy added. “People collect them like tea cups or Hummel figurines.” The Book of Little Hostas is the first published on…

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