Garden tips

Garden tips for the Buffalo area.

Noisy West Seneca yard becomes private paradise

August 23, 2016
gardens around water feature in West Seneca NY

by Connie Oswald Stofko You could see– and hear–  the nearby convenience store from the backyard. But not anymore. Bernie Grosser and Jim Jankowski now have a private backyard paradise at their home on Tudor Place in West Seneca. I visited them during the fifth annual West Seneca Tour of Gardens held July 23...
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Late blight can occur even in dry weather, plus three more articles from Master Gardeners

August 22, 2016
tomato late blight

Is tomato late blight and potato late blight possible in a dry year? Unfortunately, yes. Late blight is the fungus-like disease that has caused devastating losses to tomato and potato gardeners and growers in some recent years. It develops and spreads rapidly in a wet year. But high relative humidity is all late blight...
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Natural stone or concrete for garden wall? Two reasons why stone is easier

August 16, 2016
building garden wall at Waterman's in Concord NY

by Connie Oswald Stofko Natural stone not only adds charm to your landscape, it can be easier to work with than concrete, said Ethan Waterman, manager of Waterman’s Greenhouse, 12316 Vaughn St. (Route 240), East Concord (Springville). The first reason that it’s easier using natural stone for a garden wall is that a piece...
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Oak tree suddenly lose leaves in August? Tell DEC

August 15, 2016
oak wilt

If you see an oak tree suddenly lose leaves during August, report it to the New York State’s Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). The tree could have oak wilt, a very serious tree disease in the eastern United States, killing thousands of oaks each year in forests, woodlots and home landscapes. Report suspected cases...
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Riverside gardener packs a lot into small yard

August 9, 2016
outdoor rooms in Black Rock Riverside Buffalo NY

by Connie Oswald Stofko Three-quarters of the space in Sue Tronolone’s small backyard is taken up by the garage, driveway and above-ground pool, but you should see what she does with the space she has left. Tronolone shared her landscape on the Black Rock & Riverside Tour of Gardens during both the daytime tour...
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WNY is under drought warning; please conserve water

August 9, 2016
cloudless sky by Stofko

by Connie Oswald Stofko As of last week, Western New York is under a drought warning. Residents are asked to conserve water. A warning is the second of four levels of state drought advisories: watch, warning, emergency and disaster, according to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). While the Southern Tier...
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Shopping carts become mobile gardens in Niagara County; gardening classes set

August 9, 2016
old shopping cart used as container garden in Niagara Falls

Here’s  a clever idea for a container garden: an old shopping cart. It’s part of Grow on the Go, a mobile garden project through Cornell Cooperative Extension based in Niagara Falls. The idea is to help Niagara Falls residents grow fruits and vegetables in an urban environment where they may be living in an...
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Groundcovers are important in grassless front & backyards

August 2, 2016
grassless front yard

by Connie Oswald Stofko Valerie and Anthony Hotchkiss of 42 15th St., Buffalo, have shared their gardens on Garden Walk Buffalo for eight years, but if you haven’t seen them in awhile, it’s worth going back. The couple got help from a landscaper, and what you see is all new in the last three...
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Is it a weed or a plant? Common mullein & more

August 2, 2016
mullein flower in Batavia NY

by Connie Oswald Stofko John Jankowski of Batavia sent me a photo that he wanted me to identify, then asked, “Is it a weed or a plant?” Now, usually I’m no help when people want a plant identified. I’m not a gardening expert, so I almost always have to tell people to contact the...
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‘Lazy gardener’ shares tips on how he created Irish pub in backyard

July 26, 2016
gardens and Irish flag at front of house in Tonawanda

by Connie Oswald Stofko It’s an Irish pub. It’s an outdoor living room. And it has gardens. That’s what you encounter when you visit Michael Ryan’s backyard on Englewood Ave., Tonawanda. It’s the party place for his family and friends. Visitors are amazed and assume he must spend lots of time maintaining his landscape,...
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