Friday, November 17, 2006

Out & About: Aurora

On my way back up the east side of Cayuga, I passed through the darling village of Aurora. I had been making a bee line for the MacKenzie-Childs retail shop, but this gorgeous Ginkgo caught my eye, and so I turned around.

Out & About: Ithaca

I visited Ithaca on Monday and stopped, as always, at Cornell Plantations. The Winter Garden, while only a few years old, is looking very fine. My pictures don't do it justice.

At the bottom is a leaf from the bigleaf magnolia, referenced below, in the groundcover garden.

Seats Available for Philly Tour

(From the Nov-Dec '06 UGJ) — Want to see the Philadelphia Flower Show in style? Michael Warren Thomas takes a group each year, and the visit encompasses a lot more than just the show, which is worth a trip in itself. This year there will be stops at Longwood Gardens and Winterthur, and as always, some excellent dining.
Spots are available for March 7 – 8 and March 10 – 11, 2007. The price of the trip, $340 per person (double occupancy) includes transportation, hotel, two lunches, continental breakfast, and an “elegant” closing dinner at Radisson Lackawanna Station Hotel.
For details or to sign up, call 585/328-8300 or visit

Naturally Green “First in Bloom” Contest

(From the Nov-Dec '06 UGJ) — Michael Warren Thomas’s “First in Bloom” contest has definitely expanded since the days when all you had to look for was the first snowdrop. For 2007 there are eight categories, from bulbs to perennials to vines, each with a prize of dinner for two. The first person to call Thomas after midnight on January 1, 2007, at 585/328-8300, with the first flowers blooming outdoors (not just in bud) in each of the categories, will win a dinner for two gift certificate. If you do happen to find the first snowdrop, your reward is dinner for two at Max of Eastman Place—pretty fancy.
Naturally Green airs Saturday mornings at 9 on WYSL am, 1040 in the Rochester area. Listen online and get full details about the contest at

News from The Gardens—Photo Contest, Poinsettia Sale

(From the Nov-Dec '06 UGJ) — The Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens’ annual photo contest in underway, with entries due by November 27th. Each submission should fall into one of the following categories: Flora, Architecture, or Human Interest. Fess are $10 for the first entry and $5 for each additional one.
Here’s a way to get your holiday plants while helping The Gardens at the same time. Orders for poinsettias will be accepted through November 10, with pick-up December 4 – 10.
For details, call 716/827-1584 or visit

CNY Blooms Debuts This Spring

(From the Nov-Dec '06 UGJ) — Good news for garden lovers! The Central New York State Nursery and Landscape Association is busily planning its first ever independent flower and garden show, CNY Blooms. The event will be held at the OnCenter, a facility with a decidedly “outdoor” feel, right in the middle of Syracuse. There will be competition gardens, participation from local colleges, and garden club representation, plus seminars and educational presentations. The opening night preview party will benefit the Food Bank of Central New York.
CNY Blooms will take place March 1 –4, 2007, dates that will not conflict the two existing shows in our area: GardenScape, in Henrietta, March 15 – 18, and Plantasia, in Hamburg, March 22 – 25.
For more information, visit

Shrub Coat in Production Locally

(From the Nov-Dec '06 UGJ) — Beaver Landscaping, Clarence-based producers of the Shrub Coat, announce that they have contracted with Depew’s Southeast Works, a company employing and training handicapped individuals in the community with job skills. Southeast Works will assemble and package the locally-manufactured product, a “better than burlap,” reusable, alternative for protecting shrubs from the winter ravages of wind, snow, ice, salt and animals.
Shrub Coat, the invention of owner Steve Bakowski, is made of green, breathable fabric on a pyramidal frame, and comes in various sizes to conveniently protect shrubs and bushes up to nine feet tall. This design helps dormant plants emerge green and healthy in the spring. And, as Steve’s wife and business partner Joyce points out, it is easy to incorporate into your holiday decorating scheme—just add lights.
For more information on the Shrub Coat, call 716/583-7872 or visit

Dangerous Beauty

(From the Nov-Dec '06 UGJ) — Our cover image this issue is beautiful. But the invasive plant it depicts, autumn olive, is a threat to plants—and even animals— in our native environment. This juxtaposition is the theme of Christine Sevilla’s new series of images, “Thanatopsis.”
“The dangerous beauty of invasive plant species has brought them to new, alien locations where a less handsome weed would be quickly eradicated,” Sevilla writes. She hopes her project will encourage citizens to grow native plants and varieties of non-natives that are proven not to be invasive.
The artist has made twelve of the Thanatopsis images into her 2007 calendar. Each month is printed on a separate five by seven-inch card that fits into a simple, clear, plastic standing frame, which can be reused from year to year. The calendars are available at the Memorial Art Gallery Store, 500 University Ave, Rochester, or by calling 585/586-6085 (this number is WRONG in the print version) or e-mailing Sevilla at They are $20 each, or $15 for just the cards.
Sevilla is also planning an exhibit in 2007, and to publish a brochure this spring. To see more of her work, visit
For information on what you can do to help control invasive species, visit

Susan Latoski Exits RCGC

ETTG is sad to report that Susan Latoski, long time Executive Director of the Rochester Civic Garden Center, has left in order to take a position with the Landmark Society. She will be sorely missed.

Given the untold hours I have spent with Susan over the past ten years, often with camera in hand, it amuses - and frustrates - me to not be able to come up with a lot of images of Susan in the Garden. I have plenty of shots of Susan's garden, and many of Susan on a Bike and Susan on Skis, but of Susan in the garden, this is the best I can come up with...and she's not even in focus (the bigleaf magnolia flower is!). I took this slide in '02 at one of our frequent visits to one of our favorite spots, Cornell Plantations.

I know Susan will knock 'em dead in her new job, and I wish her the best of luck and send her off with lots of love.

A new way to find the UGJ

Looking to pick up a copy of the latest UGJ? Check out our new map of distribution locations, updated with each issue (keep in mind that some outlets are only open seasonally).
UGJ Distribution Locations