video on buying and planting perennials

2 tips on buying & planting perennials– Yes, you can plant them now!

by Connie Oswald Stofko First: Yes, you can still buy and plant perennials! You can even plant them in autumn. Today we get a couple of tips from Jen Weber, vice president and manager of Mike Weber Greenhouses, 42 French Rd., West Seneca. They grow Gardener’s Own™ brand plants. When you’re buying perennials, don’t be afraid to buy a rootbound plant. Weber explains why buying a plant with roots sticking out of the pot is actually a good thing. But what…

colorful window box in shade

A tip for shade gardens, plus list of garden walks this weekend

  by Connie Oswald Stofko Here’s a quick tip for shady gardens: use annuals. I talked with Kathleen Pratt on the Amherst Garden Walk last weekend, and visitors exclaimed over how much color she had in her gardens even though her yard is so shady. One way she does it is by using annuals. Pictured is the window box on her shed. It contains wandering Jew, which is a plant many of us use indoors; begonias, coleus and fuchsia. The trailing…

giant hogweed from NYS DEC with man in protective clothing

If you see giant hogweed, don’t touch this dangerous plant!

by Connie Oswald Stofko The good news is that Western New York has fewer giant hogweed plants than it once did, but there are still occasional sightings of this dangerous plant in our area, said John Farfaglia, extension educator with Cornell Cooperative Extension in Niagara County. Its sap, in combination with moisture and sunlight, can cause severe skin and eye irritation, painful blistering, permanent scarring and blindness. This is a seriously dangerous plant. I saw giant hogweed in Niagara County several…

chair in shade

Heat wave: take care of your garden– and yourself!

  by Connie Oswald Stofko Western New York is feeling the heat wave that is moving across the country. “If there was a time to water, this is it,” said John Farfaglia, extension educator with Cornell Cooperative Extension in Niagara County. Pay special attention to trees and shrubs that have been planted in the last couple years, Farfaglia said. Those are the plants that will suffer the most if they’re not watered. Make sure you water deeply. Hanging baskets can…

tomato late blight

Late & early blights: dealing with these diseases of tomatoes, potatoes

by Steven Jakobi, Allegany County Master Gardener Volunteer Gardeners love growing tomatoes, and losing them to disease can be disappointing. There are two blights to watch out for: late blight and early blight. These can affect potatoes as well. Causes of late blight and early blight There are two very different blight diseases that affect tomatoes and potatoes (and some of their relatives in the plant family Solanaceae). Late blight, caused by the fungus-like water mold, Phytophthora infestans, is a…

Japanese beetle in Buffalo NY area

Now is time to check for Japanese beetles in WNY gardens

by Connie Oswald Stofko Adult Japanese beetles are out and active, so now is the time to check to see if you have them in your garden, said John Farfaglia, extension educator with Cornell Cooperative Extension in Niagara County. He has spotted them in his own garden. Japanese beetles occurrences can be very local, so you may not have them in your own garden. If you have them, you’ll know. It’s easy to see the beetles and to see the damage…

Open Gardens start this week; four garden walks this weekend

  by Connie Oswald Stofko In addition to the many garden walks we have in Western New York, we are fortunate to have Open Gardens. The Open Gardens are like garden walks, but they take place on Thursdays and Fridays instead of on weekends, and they happen only during July. And unlike most of the garden walks, which allow any garden in the area of that walk to be listed, Open Gardens include just select gardens. There will be 75…

succulents in hexagon frames

We’re proud to sponsor new exhibit: Nature’s Kaleidoscope

  by Connie Oswald Stofko Nature’s Kaleidoscope is a new exhibit at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens that aims to give you a new way to look at nature– through shapes and patterns, said Kristin Pochopin, director of Horticulture at the Botanical Gardens., the online gardening magazine for Western New York, is proud to be the sponsor of this summer event. Start off your visit by looking through a giant kaleidoscope located in the main dome. Then look for…

jumping worm Amynthas

New threat: jumping worms. Are they already in WNY?

  by Connie Oswald Stofko There’s a new threat to Western New York gardens: jumping worms. They’re bad for your garden, and they can really screw up the ecosystem of forests. Jumping worms (so named because they jump and thrash when handled) can change the consistency of soil, making it granular and grainy, like coffee grounds. That hinders the germination of plants, said  Andrea Locke, coordinator for Partnerships for Regional Invasive Species Management (PRISM) in Western New York. They can deplete the soil of…

Fester corpse flower Buffalo Erie County Botanical Gardens

Fester update: It may be bigger than Morty ever was!

by Connie Oswald Stofko Fester, the second stinky corpse flower to bloom at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens, is already bigger than Morty was this year, and Fester may grow bigger than Morty was in 2014, said Erin Grajek,  associate vice president of Marketing & Visitor Experience at the Botanical Gardens. Fester can grow two to eight inches per day and is now 63.5 inches or about 5 1/4 feet tall. Morty was about 4 1/2 feet tall this year, but was…

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