Christmas trees made of tomato cages

4 holiday tips for gardeners in WNY

by Connie Oswald Stofko Keep your garden in mind as you celebrate the holidays with these four fun tips. Reuse a tomato cage to make a Christmas decoration. They’re simple to make. You can unwind the decorations and use them again as tomato cages next summer. When wrapping presents, choose materials that can be composted. You’ll be keeping items out of landfills, plus you’ll be creating wonderful compost for your gardens! Use this tip to water your Christmas tree without…

'Autumn Leaves' poinsettia at Mischler's in Williamsville NY

Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day, poinsettias help you celebrate!

by Connie Oswald Stofko Poinsettias are wonderful for all the winter holidays, from Thanksgiving to New Year’s. You can use them to decorate your home or give them as gifts. The colorful part of the poinsettia that looks like a flower petal is actually a bract, a kind of leaf. Poinsettias come in many different colors. Here are just three from Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses in Williamsville: ‘Autumn Leaves’, which has bracts in autumny orange tones ‘Princettia’, the whitest poinsettia…

funnel to water Christmas tree

Water your Christmas tree without bending using clever trick from reader

by Connie Oswald Stofko “I don’t have to get down on my hands and knees to water the Christmas tree anymore,” said Rick Martinez of Niagara Falls. If you have a real Christmas tree, you know you have to keep it watered. Here’s a great tip from Martinez that makes watering your Christmas tree a little bit easier. You need a small funnel and four feet of half-inch tubing. Insert the funnel into the tubing. Use zip ties to attach…

living Christmas tree

Living Christmas tree: enjoy inside, then plant outside

by Connie Oswald Stofko One way to make Christmas last a little longer is by buying a living Christmas tree. You can decorate it, enjoy it inside, then plant it outside where it will grow for years to come. Living Christmas trees are available now at at Urban Roots Cooperative Garden Market, 428 Rhode Island St. Buffalo. “We have three or four families who come in every year,” said Patti Jablonski-Dopkin, general manager of Urban Roots. “You’d think kids would want…

snowball hydrangea

4 ideas for hostess gifts and holiday gifts for gardeners

by Connie Oswald Stofko Thanksgiving is this Thursday, and from there we rush headlong into any number of holiday celebrations. Here are four ideas for thoughtful gifts to give gardeners and non-gardeners alike. ‘Snowball’ hydrangea We’re starting off with the ‘Snowball’ hydrangea because it can serve as a festive accent in your home from Thanksgiving through all the winter holidays. This potted plant will last probably a couple months, according to Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses, 118 South Forest Rd., Williamsville….

white glitter poinsettia in Amherst NY

Poinsettias are easy to maintain, so why doesn’t yours rebloom?

by Connie Oswald Stofko We know that it’s easy to care for poinsettia plants. They can last through January and into spring without much effort, and many gardeners successfully nurture their poinsettias through summer. So why can’t we get poinsettias to rebloom the following year? And since poinsettias are so easy to care for, why do we buy the plants? Why don’t we start from scratch and grow poinsettia plants ourselves? “It’s difficult,” said Mark Yadon, vice president of  Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses,…

Christmas greens in pot with bow

Outdoor arrangement uses fresh-cut greens

Here’s an outdoor arrangement to welcome visitors to your home. This idea comes from Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses, 118 South Forest Rd., Williamsville. Greens are placed upright in a plastic pot and decorated with a big red bow and pine cones. The greens are fresh-cut and locally grown. There’s soil in the pot to hold the branches in place. Rain will keep the soil wet, adding more weight and helping keep the pot stable. The arrangement looks charming in the…

take photo with poinsettia backdrop at Mischler's in Amherst NY

Poinsettias make a stunning backdrop for holiday photo at Mischler’s in Williamsville– It’s free!

Looking for a festive backdrop for your holiday greeting card? Pose with a backdrop of hundreds of colorful poinsettias at Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses, 118 South Forest Rd., Williamsville. It’s free! Take your camera and pose your family or friends anytime from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. this Saturday, Dec. 2. The family pet is welcome, too. This opportunity is part of the Holiday in the Village of Williamsville celebration presented by the Williamsville Business Association. While you’re there, enjoy…

lily centerpiece for Christmas at Mischler's in Williamsville NY

Homegrown lilies are part of Christmas centerpiece

Whether you’re looking for a decoration for your home or a gift for a friend, think of fresh flowers. The centerpiece pictured uses oriental lilies grown in the greenhouses at Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses, 118 South Forest Rd., Williamsville. Even the pine cones are sourced locally. Other flower and plant suggestions include miniature gardens, snowball hydrangeas, and poinsettias. You can order online or call Mischler’s at 632-1290. Save…

Varieties of poinsettias range from darling to dramatic

by Connie Oswald Stofko “Aren’t they the cutest thing you’ve seen?” said Teresa Buchanan, general manager at Lockwood’s Greenhouses, 4484 Clark St., Hamburg. We were looking at two new varieties of poinsettia: mini pink ‘Princettia’ and mini white ‘Princettia’.  Even the name ‘Princettia’ is darling– a blend of princess and poinsettia. The mini ‘Princettias’ are unusual because they are miniatures; the plants are only about eight inches high and will stay small. This is the first time Lockwood’s, which grows…