Garden tips

Garden tips for the Buffalo area.

5 tips to make the most of autumn leaves in your garden

October 21, 2014
Photo by Connie Oswald Stofko

by Connie Oswald Stofko Do you know that there are people who essentially throw their leaves away? They rake them out to the curb and wait for someone to haul them away. I find that amazing because those autumn leaves are a valuable commodity for your garden– yet they’re free! Here are five tips...
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Got clay? Don’t want to dig? Want a new bed over lawn? Try lasagna gardening in autumn

October 14, 2014
Got clay? Don’t want to dig? Want a new bed over lawn? Try lasagna gardening in autumn

by Connie Oswald Stofko It’s autumn, and here’s an outside project you can do today: create a lasagna garden. Lasagna gardening is a method where you apply material to your garden bed in layers, like in a lasagna. Lasagna gardening has several advantages: You don’t have to till or dig your garden bed. The...
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Question: What happened to the color on the hydrangea tree blossoms?

October 14, 2014
Question: What happened to the color on the hydrangea tree blossoms?

Here’s a question from a reader: Hi!  I have another hydrangea tree question. My H. Paniculata Limelight is now three years old. The first two years I had large blooms that started out slightly green, changed to a bright white, then turned pink. (See the bright white blooms here.) This year there were many...
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Four things to do in your early autumn garden

September 30, 2014
tomatoes in early autumn Amherst NY

It’s officially autumn in Western New York, but that doesn’t mean we’re done working in our gardens. We’ve had a lovely stretch of warm and sunny weather, so it’s been a pleasure to work outside, and that pleasant weather should continue for a few more days. Whether you want to be productive or are...
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Early 20th century innovations include lawns, foundation plantings; learn more at talk

September 30, 2014
Foundation planting in Illinois 1925 from Laura Burchfield

by Connie Oswald Stofko We don’t live the way people did at the turn of the last century, and that’s reflected in our landscapes, said Laura L. S. Burchfield, co-author of American Home Landscapes: A Design Guide to Creating Period Garden Styles. Back then, people had outhouses. They needed a space for livestock. An...
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Get tips from history to deal with a combination of dry and wet conditions in your garden

September 23, 2014
herb garden at Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village

by Connie Oswald Stofko A combination of gardening problems faces Buffalo Niagara Heritage Village, the 35-acre historical interpretive center in Amherst that showcases 19th century buildings set up like a village. Much of the landscape is boggy, so gardens can be wet early in the season. In addition, there’s no irrigation system, and hoses...
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Get inspired by another peek at garden art in Lancaster yard

September 23, 2014
fire extinguisher as garden art in Lancaster NY

by Connie Oswald Stofko I visited the garden of Karen Deutschlander of Lancaster last summer as she was preparing for the Lancaster Garden Walk, then I showed you how she uses vignettes in her garden. She has quite a collection of other garden art, too. On this first day of autumn, let’s take another peek...
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Frost is only weeks (days?) away in WNY; protect tender plants to prolong growing season

September 16, 2014
frostfog courtesy Donna Brok Garden Walk Garden Talk

It’s just a matter of weeks (or perhaps days) before we get frost in Western New York. Although he doesn’t know of any parts of Western New York that have gotten frost yet, there was a frost advisory Sunday night for the Town of Andover in Allegany County, said Mark Holt, Agriculture-Horticulture community educator...
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Learn the secret of this award-winning container– It lasts from spring to winter!

September 2, 2014
three season container planting from Mischler's in Williamsville

Here’s a great container called “Winter Green” created by Mark Yadon of Mischler’s Florist and Greenhouses, 118 South Forest Rd., Williamsville. You can plant up a container like this in spring and enjoy it throughout summer, autumn and even into winter. “It will stay nice probably until Christmas, even if it gets snowed on,”...
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Reminder: Don’t use fertilizers containing phosphorus on your lawn

September 2, 2014
dew on blades grass in lawn in Western New York

In order to help protect our waterways, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) is reminding gardeners not to use lawn fertilizers that contain phosphorus. The 2012 Dishwasher Detergent and Nutrient Runoff Law prohibits the use of phosphorus fertilizers unless a new lawn is being established or a soil test shows that...
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