tree seedlings from NYS Department of Environmental Conservation

5 reasons to buy tree & shrub seedlings; sales are open now

by Connie Oswald Stofko Sales of tree and shrub seedlings are again being held in Western New York through counties and through the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). Here are 5 reasons why you should consider buying tree or shrub seedlings: Tree & shrub seedling sales The sales have different ordering deadlines. The organizers suggest you order early to make sure the items you want are still in stock. The county sales generally have you pick up…

branch of Christmas tree with ornament

Buy locally in WNY: Christmas trees & more

by Connie Oswald Stofko I just received this reminder: You can buy Christmas trees grown right here in Western New York. “Purchasing a local tree is easy and affordable, and it helps support our local agriculture industry,” said Cassandra Skal, Agriculture Program coordinator with Cornell Cooperative Extension of Chautauqua County. You can also purchase meat, including hams, turkeys and lamb, from local producers. For details on where you can get farm products, check out the Chautauqua Grown directory here. See…

basket of tomatoes and cucumber by Stofko

Reminder: share your extra produce

by Connie Oswald Stofko Are you one of those gardeners who don’t know what you’re going to do with all that zucchini? Or maybe you had a bumper crop of tomatoes. Or peppers, squash, basil… . There are places near you that would be thrilled to take that extra food off your hands. FeedMore WNY distributes food to hungry people throughout Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie and Niagara counties. They partner with 300 agencies. You can find food pantries near you on the…

orange and red peppers

Inflation: Ideas for growing food in WNY

by Connie Oswald Stofko Maybe you haven’t noticed, but food prices are going up and may continue to rise. Food plants may be a good investment right now. To deal with inflation, consider growing vegetables, herbs or fruit that: You are really going to eat Are expensive to buy You can share with others Plant what you like to eat I used to have a large section of garden filled with chives. They grow easily and get a pretty purple…

heirloom squash at Urban Roots in Buffalo NY

Heirloom & specialty squash at Urban Roots: decorative & tasty

by Connie Oswald Stofko Instead of placing a common pumpkin outside as a decoration, you can use an eye-catching heirloom or specialty squash, said Patti Jablonski-Dopkin, general manager of Urban Roots Cooperative Garden Market, 428 Rhode Island St., Buffalo. “The bonus with these is that they are beautiful for decorating, and then delicious to eat,” she said. “They come in great shapes and different colors. They’re great on tables.” When she displays hers outside, she leaves them out until after…

composite image for Growing Gowanda event

Turning Gowanda brownfields into tourist destination, agri-hub

by Connie Oswald Stofko Gowanda, a once-industrial village left with 18 contaminated or underutilized properties, is working to revitalize itself by becoming a destination for agri-tourism and a hub for agriculture businesses. Not only that, it aims to reinforce and strengthen all the agriculture in this region. Find out more and get a taste of agri-tourism at Growing Gowanda from 5 p.m. until dark this Friday, Sept. 10 at 10 Industrial Place, Village of Gowanda. It will be set up…

flowering dogwood

Trees with flowers, fruit & nuts offered in state, county sales

Find trees to fit your landscape in the annual seedling sales held by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) and by local counties. Each sale has different offerings. In addition to tree seedlings, some counties offer shrubs, wildflower seeds, ferns and supplies for your plants. See details on the DEC sale here. See sales in these counties: Cattaraugus Chautauqua Erie Genesee Niagara Orleans (See page 5 of the newsletter.) Trees with flowers, fruit & nuts Here are…

seeds

New seed library for WNY opens; it’s free!

by Connie Oswald Stofko The WNY Seed Library–the first free seed library of its kind in Western New York– has opened in Amherst. “There was no place in Western New York where you can get seeds for free,” said Brenda Snyder, who started working on the WNY Seed Library in June 2018. Food security is one of her goals. She feels that no one should go without food because they can’t afford it. The seed library aims to provide heirloom…

seeds

Free seed library starting in Amherst for organic veggies, herbs, flowers

by Connie Oswald Stofko Brenda Snyder was looking for a seed bank–a place where seeds are collected and shared–but she couldn’t find one in Western New York. “There were no seed banks I could even drive to,” Snyder said. “I thought, ‘How is that even possible?’ I decided somebody just needed to take the bull by the horns and get it rolling.” Working with other volunteers, she is setting up the WNY Seed Library, a free seed library for anyone who wants…

stinging nettle

Stinging nettle: weed or crop?

by Paul Hetzler, Cornell Cooperative Extension of St. Lawrence County If you have a nettle patch, put away the weed killer and consider yourself lucky to have this tasty plant. Many gardeners don’t like stinging nettles (Urtica dioica) because they are painful to touch. The plants sprout little hypodermic needles on their stems, leaves and even flowers. These glass-like silica-based needles, called trichomes, inject a mixture of irritating chemicals upon contact. So why would you risk putting it in your…