Preserve leaves with glycerin for dried floral arrangements

by Connie Oswald Stofko I had never even heard of using glycerin to preserve leaves until David Clark, horticulturist, showed me how. It’s a simple and inexpensive technique. You can learn how to do it in the video below. Last week we showed you how to dry flowers. Next week we’ll show you how to combine the preserved leaves and flowers by making a hand-tied bouquet. You can learn even more in a series of upcoming workshops led by Clark…

David Clark drying flowers

Video shows you how to dry roses; workshops coming up in Buffalo

by Connie Oswald Stofko Learn how to dry roses using silica gel in the video below with David Clark, a nationally recognized horticulture instructor, gardening expert and event judge. You can learn more in a series of three hands-on workshops to be led by Clark as part of the 125th anniversary celebration of Blessed Sacrament Church in Buffalo. The sessions will be held from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 27, March 6 and March 20 in the gymnasium of the Catholic Academy of…

Carnation is the birthday flower for January, but it gets no respect

The birthday flower for January is the carnation, which is one of my favorite flowers. It has everything you could want in a flower– a beautiful shape, a wide variety of colors and a delightful fragrance. But some people look down on the magnificent carnation. “The carnation got a bad reputation,” said Maggie Wittmer, floral designer at Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses in Williamsville. “There’s no reason to hate the carnation. That’s a bum rap.” In addition to being beautiful, the…

decorations by Youngstown Garden Club in kitchen at Fort Niagara

Woodland motif used in Old Fort Niagara holiday decorations

An “Upstairs, Downstairs” theme has been used by the Youngstown Garden Club to decorate  Old Fort Niagara for the holidays. The decorations are woodsy and rustic to fit in with the architecture of the building known as the French Castle, built in 1726. The ornaments used in the officers’ areas are are fancier, embellished with satin ribbons and silver cording. You can see the decorations through Monday, Dec. 31. Hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. (The fort is…

dried flower scene by Larson in Buffalo NY

Dried flower designs: Get inspired with creations from convention

Wonderful bookmarks, pictures and plaques using dried materials were on display this spring at the National Garden Clubs convention held right here in Buffalo. The convention offered so much to write about, I had to spread out the articles. In previous installments, you can get ideas for miniature flower arrangements; you can watch Ricardo Costa, internationally renowned floral designer from Brazil, create a flower arrangement, and you can see exhibits from the flower show. I saved the topic of dried…

glasses at Lockwood's in Hamburg NY

Use a nature theme to bridge from fall to winter decorating

When it comes to decorating, gardeners like to bring the outdoors inside, and using a nature theme actually makes it easier to transition from fall holidays to winter holidays. Pine cones are great transitional elements, said Mary Gurtler, designer at Lockwood’s Greenhouses, 4484 Clark St., Hamburg. The wine glasses in the photo above are a great example of that. If I describe them as being painted in fall shades of yellow, brown and green, you can picture them on a…

pumpkins with succulents at Lockwoods in Hamburg NY

Easy way to turn a leftover pumpkin into a Thanksgiving centerpiece

If you have a whole pumpkin left over from Halloween, here’s an easy way to fancy it up for Thanksgiving. This idea comes to us from Becky Watts, CNLP, garden consultant at Lockwood’s Greenhouses. Take a whole pumpkin. (Note that the green pumpkin in the photo is a real, fresh pumpkin. It’s a variety called Ghirardelli.) Glue Spanish moss to the top of the pumpkin using Aleen’s Craft Glue. Watts said she spreads a band of glue about two inches…

miniature floral design in clay from national garden clubs convention 2012

Miniature flower arrangements can yield big fun– get creative!

I was entranced when I saw the exhibit on miniature floral designs this spring at the National Garden Clubs convention held in Buffalo. Miniature arrangements are something anyone can do and you can be as creative as you like. In flower shows, a miniature flower arrangement can’t exceed five inches in any direction, and sometimes the rule is set at three inches, said Carolyn Doerflein, National Garden Clubs accredited master flower show judge, who created the exhibit. At home you…

fall planter in barrel in Amherst NY

Today’s video demonstration: Make a larger & more complex fall planter

Last week Colleen Morrissey of Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses showed us how to make a super simple fall planter as well as a hanging fall planter in nontraditional colors. Today she demonstrates a more complex project: how to plant a very large container garden using a whiskey barrel planter. Morrissey packs in a large number of plants, which is a key to making the planter look full and lush. Here’s a tip: It’s nice to have a large variety of…

fall containers video in Buffalo NY area

Watch video to make super quick fall planter & hanging pot

Add some autumn color to a porch, patio or other spot in your yard with a fall container. This video demonstration is presented by Colleen Morrissey, herb manager and container designer at Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses, 118 South Forest Rd. Williamsville. Morrissey starts out by giving suggestions for plants that are frost resistant and should take you into the middle of November. They include annuals, perennials, herbs and grasses. Plants are available now at Mischler’s. She shows you how to…