forest-like backyard in Buffalo NY

Serenity of a forest found in City of Buffalo backyard

by Connie Oswald Stofko Many people struggle with shady yards, wishing they could grow the plants they see in sunnier gardens. Jeff Lokken is different. He embraces his canopy of trees. The result is a forest-like retreat from the noise of the city. We visited Lokken last year during Garden Walk Buffalo at the home he shares with Rebecca Bish at 170 Prospect Ave., Buffalo. This year Garden Walk Buffalo will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday…

pond in Riverside area of Buffalo NY

Pond in Buffalo evolved from space that held garage for Model T Ford

How this pond was created is a long story that involves a garage built for a Model T Ford, two kids’ fascination with WWI and a couple who know how to rescue great items from the trash. The story starts in 1995 at the home of Michelle and Jim Schmitt at 253 Crowley Avenue in the Riverside area of Buffalo.They had an old garage that had been built for a Model T. It even held some Model T parts, including…

Cherry blossom festival is budding in Buffalo’s Japanese Garden

by Connie Oswald Stofko Just as they do in the United States, the cherry trees in Japan bloom first in the southern part of the country and later in the north. Visitors enjoy the spectacular views and accompanying celebrations, and some tourists follow the festivities from south to north during the cherry blossom season. Wouldn’t it be wonderful for tourists in this country to be able to do the same thing? Washington, D.C. already holds the huge National Cherry Blossom…

Cash prizes offered in photo contest, & more items too good to miss

Cash prizes offered in Jamestown Audubon Society’s photo contest The Jamestown Audubon Society’s Nature Photography Contest offers prizes in three categories and two divisions. The youth division is for ages 8-18 or still in high school and the adult division  is for ages 18 and over or post-high school. Youth and adult winners in the categories of landscapes, plants, and wildlife will all receive a $100 cash prize as well as free photo finishing. “Every winner receives a cash prize,”…

bird feeders in Amherst NY

Need a gift for a gardener? Here are 5 great ideas

People who want to buy a gift for a gardener often don’t know what to get. They see an item that they think might be nice, but then wonder if it’s really useful or whether the gardener already has it. Today we’re going to give you five suggestions for gifts that gardeners will love. (If you are a gardener, feel free to drop a few hints by sending this article to someone you love. Or, print out the article and…

watering garden in late autumn in Buffalo NY

5 tips for your late autumn garden and more items too good to miss

Five tips for the late autumn garden There is still plenty that you can do in your garden, including planting! Here are a few things you can accomplish in your garden right now. They come to us from Jeff Salmon, president of Arbordale Nurseries & Landscaping, 480 Dodge Road, Getzville. The soil is still warm and you can still plant. Late fall plantings will continue to root and establish themselves, so you’ll be farther ahead if you plant now than…

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.  …

Brian and Linda Blyth in their garden in Tonawanda NY

Hand-built barns, ponds and lavish gardens mark Tonawanda property

The first thing you notice about the yard of Brian and Linda Blyth is how beautiful it is.The next thing that surprises visitors is how large it is. “It goes back and back and back,” Linda said. The Blyths showed their yard at 939 Delaware Road, Tonawanda, during the Ken-Ton Garden Tour on July 21 and 22. You can also see their garden from 2 to 6 p.m. Thursday, July 26 during the Open Gardens of the National Garden Festival….

tropical landscaping around pool in Amherst NY

Amherst garden was developed with a tropical theme

When Jim Hachick bought the house at 112 Autumnwood in Amherst 12 years ago, the yard was overgrown. But little by little, it has been transformed into a tranquil space that can also be used to entertain friends. Hachick showed visitors around during the Amherst Garden Walk on July 21. “The pool was already here,” Hachick said. “That is probably the only thing that hasn’t changed.” He even planted the trees, including a tall columnar oak  near the pool. At…

Perennial garden in Amherst NY

Objects picked from trash add beauty to Amherst garden

Suzi Redino estimates that only 5 to 10 percent of the furniture and decorations in her yard were purchased. The rest were picked out of the garbage. Literally. Suzi specializes in trash to treasure in her interior design business, Cherry Tree Design. Her husband Rick’s family business is a junk yard, R & R Salvage. Almost every day he brings something home to her, and many of the items find their way into her yard. “That’s from the junkyard,” she…