garden around patio in Williamsville NY

Williamsville yard that has sun & shade makes good use of containers

Container plantings add color to the garden surrounding the backyard patio of Mary Murrett, who shared her gardens at 178 Hirschfield, Williamsville, during the Village of Williamsville Garden Walk on June 30. She has fun designing her containers as she goes along. “I go nuts at the nursery,” Murrett said. “I take one of these, and one of these and one of these.” When she gets all her plants home, she sets a piece of plywood across a carpenter’s trestle…

garden by pool in Parkside area of Buffalo NY

100-year-old house features large perennial border in long side yard

The weather was seasonably warm on Sunday, and that made the cool, blue pool below look even more appealing. Michael and Claudette Rivera of 268 Crescent, Buffalo, shared their lovely landscape during the 15th annual Parkside Garden Tour on June 24. Their home was built in 1913 by the Kelly family that established Hens and Kelly, a local upscale chain of department stores that operated from 1892 to 1982. Mike likes to use plants that go with the time period…

spring flowers in garden in Hamburg NY

Waves of spring flowers bring beauty to Hamburg garden

Spring is an overlooked time for gardens in the Buffalo area. It seems we spend our time waiting and preparing for the end of May, the traditional time to plant tender annuals, and we forget to pause and enjoy the beauty of spring gardens. With perennials, you can have successive waves of blooms in your garden starting in early spring, said Fran Evans of Hamburg, who is a Master Gardener with Cornell Cooperative Extension Erie County. I visited his garden…

'Phantom' petunia sold in Buffalo NY area

Black petunias & annuals that grow in dry or shady areas in Buffalo

We promised to tell you more about annuals that will work well in your Buffalo area garden. Today we’re going to talk about a black annual, a drought-tolerant annual and a shade annual with colorful leaves. Bonus: If you love impatiens for shade, try a new variety that you can plant in sun. These tips are shared by the staff at Lockwood’s Greenhouses, 4484 Clark Street, Hamburg, NY 14075. Lockwoods will exhibit at Plantasia, which will be held at the…

closeup in fairy garden in Buffalo NY area

Fairy gardens are fun new trend for Buffalo– great for small spaces, too

Fairy gardens have such a wide appeal, it’s easy to see why they’ve become such a hot new trend in the Buffalo area. Fairy gardens are great for people with limited space, for people who want to share gardening with a child, or for people who just like being creative. “Basically, a fairy garden is a miniature garden planted in a container or in the landscape,” explained Mark Yadon, vice president at Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses, 118 South Forest Rd.,…

grassless front yard in Buffalo NY

You don’t need grass in your front yard– make it a garden!

You don’t have to have grass in your front yard. I loved the grassless front yard of Anne Gareis, which I saw on Garden Walk Buffalo in 2011. A spectacular evergreen takes up most of the space in the front yard. She could have planted grass in the space around the tree, but instead she extended the garden from the front of the house to the tree. “Grass is boring,” Gareis said. Ferns, hostas and other shade-tolerant plants fill in…

'Daydream' and 'Tomato Soup' echinacea in Buffalo NY

Planting season isn’t over! Check garden centers for new arrivals

Many gardeners feel they must get their garden planted by Memorial Day weekend or they’ve missed some sort of deadline. They think that if they go to a garden center now, they’ll see nothing but shriveled-up specimens on a discount table. Surprise! It’s still planting season in Buffalo and Western New York, and garden centers are full of fresh, new perennials and trees that you can plant right now.  Plus, you get instant color and instant flowers because these fully…

symmetry in Buffalo NY by Richard Speth

Work is done in Buffalo front garden competition– Is that a hosta I see?

Last week, we left you this conundrum: A shady front yard at 87 Newman Place, Buffalo. Murray Brothers Nurseries, which has 350 varieties of shade-tolerant hostas,  ready to do a makeover. A homeowner who wants color– but no hostas! Work on the front yard was completed last week, and we won’t keep you in suspense a moment longer. Yes, the homeowners love their newly designed front gardens! And yes, the designer used hostas, but you have to look hard to find…

Murray Brothers staff at Front Yard Garden Competition in Buffalo NY

Front Yard Garden Competition under way near Cazenovia Park

by Connie Oswald Stofko Work is underway in the second annual Front Yard Competition held as part of the National Garden Festival in Buffalo. Members of the Western New York Nursery & Landscape Association will transform 15 yards facing the Frederick Law Olmsted-designed Cazenovia Park in South Buffalo. We’ll take a look at one of those yards, 87 Newman Place, whose makeover is being done by Murray Brothers Nurseries in Orchard Park. The homeowners are Richard Speth and his wife…

garden gate from Kerry Ann Mendez

Your plants aren’t your children: advice for low-maintenance gardens

by Connie Oswald Stofko Kerry Ann Mendez, garden designer, author and consultant, will kick off the festivities for the National Garden Festival on Friday, June 24 with a talk on “Tips for Low-maintenance, High-impact Perennial Gardens.” You can also join her that day for a tour of the perennials and shrubs at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens. (See details of the opening day activities at the end of this article.) Mendez has written two books. The Ultimate Flower…