red tire container garden in Buffalo NY

Vertical garden made from old gutters draws attention on last garden walk of year

by Connie Oswald Stofko “We just really like recycling,” said Carrie Madigan, who gardens with her mother Patty Connors at 180 Crowley Ave., Buffalo. “I don’t want to buy something super expensive if I can make it.” Visitors saw many examples of her creative gardening on a budget during the 11th annual Black Rock & Riverside Tour of Gardens held Aug. 1. The Starry Night Garden Tour was held during the evening. It was the last garden walk of the…

window box in Snyder NY

Gardener has more than 300 varieties of plants in small Snyder yard

by Connie Oswald Stofko Dick Herr has a way with plants. He had a yucca plant in his garden, but dug it out 35 years ago. Last year– surprise!– it came back. Now it’s taller than ever and was in full bloom when I visited last week. You can see his gardens at 180 Hamilton Dr., Snyder, during the Snyder-CleveHill Garden View from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, July 12. Maps can be picked up at Trillium’s Courtyard Florist,…

coleus Kingswood Torch at Buffalo Botanical Gardens

8 reasons why the Botanical Gardens uses coleus– & why you should, too

by Connie Oswald Stofko Coleus doesn’t get showy flowers, yet it’s the featured plant in the Celebration of Coleus and Color show that starts Saturday, June 13 at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens, 2655 South Park Ave., Buffalo. Even without an emphasis on flowers, this exhibit is a favorite among some visitors to the Botanical Gardens, said Jeff Thompson, director of horticulture. What’s the attraction of coleus? Today we’ll give you eight reasons why the Botanical Gardens showcases…

Eggplant Patio Baby from AAS

Grow tomatoes & eggplant in a small space, or try the hottest peppers in the world

by Connie Oswald Stofko People often tell me they have no room to garden, but if you have room for a pot or hanging basket, you have room to garden. Gardening in containers counts as gardening! Today the folks at Lockwood’s Greenhouses tell us about a smaller, compact version of eggplant that’s well suited to containers, as well as a cascading cherry tomato that you can grow in a hanging basket. Then they tell us about bhut jolokia, the hottest…

cut dead perennials in spring in Buffalo NY

17 reminders for your early spring garden in Western New York

by Connie Oswald Stofko As I sat outside yesterday in shorts and bare feet, it felt as if summer was here to stay. But that’s how it feels every spring in Western New York, and every year our spring weather takes us on a roller coaster ride. The high was in the 70s yesterday, yet you know we’re still going to get freezing temperatures before summer really arrives. Some years we’ve had flakes of snow flying around in the air in May. I know…

bulb gardens from Mischler's in Williamsville

Get a bulb garden at Mischler’s to enjoy a taste of spring

Yes, the calendar says it’s spring, but it might not feel much like spring in your garden. Even if you have daffodils and hyacinths poking up in your beds, there probably aren’t any blooms to pick and bring inside. Get a taste of springtime with an indoor bulb garden. They’re available at Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses, 118 South Forest Rd., Williamsville. They’re wonderful for your own home and make great hostess gifts, too. As we told you at the end of last…

baa baa black sheep miniature garden at Mischler's Williamsville

Storybook theme at Plantasia appeals to kids, adults; see fairy gardens, kids’ activities

by Connie Oswald Stofko “Every Garden Tells a Story” is the theme of Plantasia 2015, and you’ll see some creative interpretations in miniature gardens from Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses. Plantasia kicks off with a Preview Night from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 18. Tickets for Preview Night are $15 and can be purchased online or at the door. It will include  food tastings from local restaurants and a cash bar. Plantasia continues from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday…

steps in Whittemore garden in Hamburg NY

A natural slope adds interest to colorful shade garden in Hamburg; garden walks are coming!

by Connie Oswald Stofko A natural slope combined with raised beds add interest to the Hamburg yard of Barb and Dave Whittemore. “There are seven steps to the top deck,” Dave pointed out. “We really have vistas with this. The elevations make a world of difference. That’s one thing I really enjoy.” A screened-in seating area is perched at the top of the garden looking down on the main part of the yard. “You can sit up there and see…

Gaultheria procumbens wintergreen at Lockwood's in Hamburg NY

Lockwood’s last-minute gift ideas for a gardening friend– or yourself!

by Connie Oswald Stofko Here are some great last-minute gift ideas for gardeners from Lockwood’s Greenhouses, 4484 Clark St., Hamburg. They’re all plants that gardeners can enjoy in the house now for their flowers or berries, then plant outside in the spring and enjoy as perennials for years to come. Of course, you can buy them for yourself, too. The first choice is a wintergreen called Gaultheria procumbens. As she showed it to me, Teresa Buchanan, garden center manager, crushed…

potted perennials in winter at Mischler's in Williamsville NY

Clever perennial planter from spring still looking good into winter at Mischler’s

We’ve had snow and cold, yet this perennial container that was planted up in the spring is still going strong. Mark Yadon of Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses, 118 South Forest Rd., Williamsville, designed this creation called “Winter Green.” He planted it up as a demonstration at the Lewiston GardenFest in the third week of June this year. As we told you in September, there are two tricks to this planter. First, Yadon chose perennial plants that keep their color after…