archer's gold thyme in Buffalo NY area

Herbs: versatile, tasty and easy to grow in Buffalo area

by Connie Oswald Stofko “People are so afraid of growing herbs, but herbs are easy to grow,” said Sue Duecker, past president of the Western New York Herb Study Group at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens. Duecker will present a free class called “All About Herbs” at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 14 at Zittel’s Country Market, Route 20 between South Park Ave. (Route 62) and McKinley Parkway in Hamburg. Although the event is free, please register at the…

lily of valley

Lily of valley is flower for May

by Connie Oswald Stofko Tiny yet powerfully fragrant, the lily of the valley (also called May bells)  is a favorite for spring gardens. It is the flower for birthdays in May and symbolizes sweetness, purity and return of happiness. The scientific name for the plant is Convallaria Majalis. Lily of the valley is easy to grow. It is a perennial, so it comes back every year. It spreads and keeps its green leaves all summer long, so it can be…

Swinging Linda coleus

Coleus provides color in sun or shade garden in Buffalo

by Connie Oswald Stofko Coleus is  “probably one of the easiest plants to grow in your garden,” said Doug O’Reilly, horticulturist and head gardener at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens. “That’s why I grow them.” A Coleus Show will be held from this Saturday, May 7 to Sunday, May 29 at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens, 2655 South Park Ave., Buffalo. Hours for the show are  10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is $8 for adults,…

miniature butterfly bush in Burt NY

New small shrubs are great for tight spaces– even containers!

by Connie Oswald Stofko A new trend in gardening is the development  of small bushes that fit nicely into tight spaces– some are even suitable for containers! These new varieties preserve the characteristics we enjoyed in the larger versions. One example of a smaller bush is ‘Bloomerang,’ a very fragrant reblooming lilac introduced two years ago that grows only  four or five feet tall. That’s not like your grandmother’s lilac, which might have gotten 10 feet tall, said Mark Van…

mini greenhouse in Buffalo NY

Five great tips for starting new plants from cuttings

by Connie Oswald Stofko Even if you already know how to root a plant in water, you can make the process more successful with great tips from David Clark, professional horticulturist. He also shares tips on two easy methods for starting plants that you may not have used before. Clark recently gave two hands-on workshops on plant propagation at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens. He shared a wealth of information, including these five great tips: 1. Create a…

tulip tree

Use your garden to help the Buffalo-area watershed

by Connie Oswald Stofko In the  early 1900s, Margaret Wooster’s family farmed land in the Genesee Valley, south of Rochester.  When salt deposits were discovered underground, the family sold their land to a mining company. A mine shaft was sunk and family members went to work as salt miners for the company. Eventually the mine was sold to what became Azko Nobel and the mine became the largest salt mine in North America. Unfortunately, disaster struck in 1994. Residents of…

prune shrubs in Buffalo

Now is time to do most pruning in Buffalo area

by Connie Oswald Stofko When it comes to pruning, the most common mistake people make is that they do it at the wrong time, said Sally Cunningham, CNLP, who is a horticulturist, author and garden consultant. Cunningham will join Rex Weber, CNLP, arborist at Bradley Tree, in teaching a pruning seminar on Saturday, March 19 at Lockwood’s Greenhouses, 4484 Clark St., Hamburg. “Where most people go wrong is that they go around like little squirrels and try to tidy things…

daffodil in Buffalo

Daffodils are the birthday flower for the month of March

by Ruth Syron Daffodils (also known as jonquils or narcissus) are the March birthday flower. In the Victorian era, daffodils meant, “You are an angel.” In the modern language of flowers, daffodils are a symbol of domestic happiness and friendship. Both meanings hold very nice sentiments. The daffodil is considered the national flower of Wales. On St. David’s Day, March 1, many folks wear the national flower on hats or lapels. The daffodil competes with the leek as the Welsh…

Inticancha White Pink Blush frost tolerant annual

Plant annuals in Buffalo in April! New series available

by Connie Oswald Stofko A new frost-tolerant annual called Inticancha will be available at Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses in Williamsville. “You can put it out in mid-April in containers or even in ground beds,” said Mark Yadon, vice president of Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses. “It’s nice to get that kind of color a month ahead of time. “It’s nice to extend the gardening season, too. Here in Buffalo, that’s kind of important.” The Inticancha series is a dwarf alstromeria that…

front view 48 North Parade St Buffalo

Designer in Buffalo chooses garden colors to coordinate with house

by Connie Oswald Stofko Everything in this landscape– including the stone– is done in greens, whites and purples. “The homeowner left the design up to us,” said Sean Haentges, owner of S & R Greenleaf Landscaping. “We incorporated the design with the house.” The design at 48 North Parade St., Buffalo, was part of the Front Yard Competition, an event in the National Garden Festival in Buffalo in 2010. As we promised, throughout the winter we’re showing you designs from…