Thanksgiving still life in Amherst NY

When I count my blessings on Thanksgiving, I think of you

I hope this doesn’t sound corny, because I mean it. As we approach Thanksgiving, I realize that I have many things to be grateful for, and you are one of them. I started Buffalo-NiagaraGardening.com a little more than two years ago. It seemed like a good idea, but there were so many unknowns. It was the middle of the biggest recession this nation has seen since the Great Depression, and that seemed like a risky time to start a new…

canna lilies by fence in Buffalo NY

How to keep your canna lilies over the winter & 2 more tips

“I haven’t bought canna lilies in years because they multiply,” said Kristen Suto of Busti Avenue, Buffalo. We visited her lush front yard, which has a view of the Niagara River, during Garden Walk Buffalo in July. Suto has canna lilies in pots and in beds throughout her gardens. The yellow flower in the photo below is another canna lily. If you haven’t already brought in your canna lily bulbs for the winter, do it now. When Suto brings her…

Arbordale pond class in Amherst NY

Pond classes, Q&A & more items too good to miss

Pond winterization & other free classes set at Arbordale Classes on pond winterization, pruning and landscape design will be held at Arbordale Nurseries and Landscaping, 480 Dodge Road, Getzville. The 45-minute classes are free with pre-registration. To register, email info@arbordale.com or call 688-9125. Pond Winterization 6 p.m. today and repeated at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 6 You’ll learn what to do with pond equipment, fish care, cleaning and plant care, and a few old wives’ tales will be bashed.  …

compost bin in Amherst NY garden

Easy compost bin, research study & more items too good to miss

Speed up compost with this no-turn bin I love these instructions for making a bin for a compost pile that you don’t have to turn. It’s cheap and very, very easy. Compost piles need oxygen to carry on the decomposition process. One way to speed up your compost pile is to turn the pile with a pitch fork. This design by Fred Davis of Hill Gardens of Maine allows air to circulate throughout the pile so you don’t need to…

cucumber water in Buffalo NY

How to keep cool in Buffalo and other summer gardening tips

The official start of summer is June 20, but the summer weather that we previewed in March seems here to stay.  Here are a couple tips to keep you cool in your Western New York garden this summer, as well as other summer tips. Cucumber water is refreshing I tasted cucumber water for the first time last summer at the home of Sharon Heim and David Wahl in Buffalo. As you can see from the photo above, it makes a…

You know you’re a gardener when…

A few years ago I realized gardening had gone beyond a hobby for me and become a passion. As I jotted an appointment onto my calendar, I realized that it was already the middle of December. I got a giddy feeling in my stomach and thought, “It’s almost time for seed packets to show up in stores!” That’s when I knew I was a gardener. I may not be skilled in gardening. Heaven knows I didn’t water my garden nearly…

visitors to Lewiston NY garden walk 2010

Buffalo-area gardeners have many reasons to be grateful

We Buffalo-area gardeners should take a moment to stop and count our blessings. We live in an area with so many gardening riches that it’s easy to take them for granted. Let’s start with something as simple as a garden walk. Backyards, which normally are private spaces, are opened to strangers and friends alike. You’re invited to enjoy the scenery and take photos if you want. The gardener is willing to answer questions you might have about their garden. Wait,…

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…

violets

Explore the symbolism of February’s birthday flowers: violet and iris

by Ruth Syron February folks actually have a choice of two flowers for their birthday, the iris and the violet. The violet has a charming and long history in mythology. Greek myth states that Zeus fell in love with Io. Zeus was afraid that Hera, his wife, would discover him and Io, so he made Io into a white heifer. Zeus created the sweet scented flower that we know as the violet for Io to eat while she was a…

rock border in Williamsville NY garden

Finding inspiration in the garden

Many of us find spiritual inspiration in our gardens. Mary Jo Foley of Williamsville shares a gardening experience that reinforced her outlook on life: My friend Beth was helping me get my landscaping ready for my son’s high school graduation party. I told her I wanted stones as a border, but didn’t want to spend a lot of money on them.  After pruning the bushes with her electric trimmer, we decided to take a walk, as I do everyday to…