Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Who's Your Buddy?

Here he is, Mr. Cuteness, the adorable Redbud.

For those who may not know: the redbud, Cercis canadensis, is a diminutive woodland tree, native to our area, that is in bloom right now. It has little purple blossoms that really stand out in the forest understory, especially since the other trees aren't completely leafed out yet.

A very sweet little tree and a very sweet little guy.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Very Big in Buffalo

There's an article about the UGJ in the latest Buffalo Spree, on newsstands now. You can also read it on the Web site. Once there, scroll down through the table of contents, and the link is in the Living section.

I have a feeling Mom might be picking up a few copies of this issue.

Thanks to reporter Ron Ehmke and to fellow blogger, Spree editor Elizabeth Licata. This is very exciting and quite an honor.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Greetings from Maine

Here's the view from the backyard of my parents' house. There is a
very old orchard that needs rehab but still produces very well.

Monday, April 07, 2008

Late Breaking Event: WNY Rose Society

Submitted by the WNY Rose Society

The WNY Rose Society will be holding its monthly meeting at St Stephen's-Bethlehem UCC, 750 Wehrle Dr (near Union Rd) Amherst on Wed Apr 16th at 7 pm. The public is welcomed to participate in the night's program - Rose Based Floral Arrangements - presented by Gene Noto, an accredited ARS Rose Judge and Consulting Rosarian. Snacks served, open at no charge to the public. For information contact Dave Swanka at 833-5549 or dswanka at roadrunner dot com.

Submitted by the WNY Rose Society

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Which one?

They're both darling. Which will be our new little boy?

We chose the one on the left, with the traditional markings. We chose solely on personality...he was a little more active and outgoing, and seemed to get along well with Lily. The one with the half-white face, SO SWEET, was just a little too mellow. He kind of sat there and looked around. He'll be great for a single-dog family. A real suggle bunny.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Update: There will be no update

I'm trying to update the Web site to reflect the fact that it is now April, not January. Unfortunately GoLive, the software I use, in not cooperating. I think it's some conflict with Leopard...what a surprise. Anyway. Usually I would take the whole day and monkey around with it, download patches, figure workarounds, etc. But not this time. I'm too busy with the next issue. If you need updated information just let me know and I'll get it to you. You can e-mail info AT upstategardenersjournal DOT com. Thanks!

Thursday, April 03, 2008

First Day of Spring

That's what today was for me. I took the dog for a walk in the park, and when I came back at about 2:15, realized that if I went back up to my office to work the rest of the afternoon, I would just die. So I didn't. I grabbed a rake and my Felcos and hit the ground.

Things are still moving slowly in Caledonia. I have a few clumps of crocuses in bloom, but there are several more right behind them. The snowdrops are starting to get up to speed—they've only been in two years. That's all that's in bloom today.

Upgrade: Open Days Directory

The Garden Conservancy is kind enough every year to send me a copy of the Open Days Directory, and I always enjoy having a look, but the 2008 edition is noteworthy. Never mind that the process by which it's produced is far more "green"; the book is much more attractive than in the past. The cover is a rugged, textured stock, and the inside pages are thin, like parchment. And there are color photographs now—beautiful ones. The printing is very well done, so the pictures are very clean-looking. There are also some new sections (OK, I'm rummaging around and can find 2004 - 2006, so who knows how new they really are) outlining, in a very nicely designed format, how to use the book and what's going on.

So. What IS going on? The Garden Conservancy is an organization that works to preserve important American landscapes both public and private. It funds this work partially through its Open Days program, which allows visitors (like us!) to access mostly private gardens, each for one or two days a year, that aren't usually open to the public. (There are some public gardens that are involved too, and the access for those varies.) Admission to each garden is $5, and if you get the book, you get one free admission ticket. If you're a member, you get the book free, too.

The book lists all the gardens, with descriptions, directions and what days they're open. You can get the same information here, but the book is prettier and you can keep it in your glove compartment.

The Open Days program is fairly well represented in Ithaca and the Syracuse area. If you're in Rochester or Buffalo, not so much. This coming Saturday, April 5, Hitch Lyman's legendary snowdrops are on display in Trumansburg. There are other Ithaca area gardens open June 14 and July 12 and on July 13 there are four in Cazenovia.

If you travel a lot, the book is definitely recommended. If you carry your AHS membership card too, there's pretty much nowhere you can't go. You can purchase the book here.

Photo credit: I swiped this from the Garden Conservancy's Web site.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Garden Shows Wrap Up: Plantasia

I have to admit it. I got terrible pictures at Plantasia! I must have been distracted by the kettle corn. So I will post my measly offerings, and Maria, can you help me out? I know you're holding!

The McKinley High float was really cool.

I am a total sucker for checkerboard pavers with grass or herbs growing in the empty spaces. This was in Tom Mitchell's display.

See? No more good pictures. I'll post the winners here though.

2008 Awards

Overall Best of Show Menne Nursery

Best of Show Large Garden Dore Landscape Associates

Best of Show Small Garden Mitchell Landscaping

Best use of Plant Material Large Garden Menne Nursery

Best use of Plant Material Small Garden Mitchell Landscaping

Best use of Hardscapes Large Garden Chevalier Lawn & Landscape

Best use of Hardscapes Small Garden Murray Brothers Nurseries

Best use of Water Large Garden Dore Landscape Associates

Best use of Water Small Garden Restorff���������s Landscape Service

Best use of Color Menne Nursery

Honorable Mention Beyond the Basics

Best Vendor Green The Springville Business Group

Best Vendor Equipment/Hardscapes Groundhog Landscaping

Best Not for Profit Buffalo Bonsai Society

Buffalo Spree���������s Choice ��������� Vendor Lockwood���������s Greenhouses

Buffalo Spree���������s Choice ��������� Garden Mitchell Landscaping

Valu Home Centers��������� People���������s Choice Award Menne Nursery

Garden Shows Wrap-Up: GardenScape

I stopped by during set-up on Wednesday. Generally it's a very busy time for the magazine, so I don't. But this year I thought it might make a good column, and also I wanted to drop off some books while I could still drive into Minnett. Here's a view from the stands. (It's two pictures sort of pasted together.)

I was hoping to blog the design challenge, but because it was on the stage I felt too self-conscious to really get close.

The following four images are of Waterford Tillings winning garden, Recycle, Rethink, Regarden. It was a fantastic display. A year I ago I had never heard of Pietro Furgiuele. At last year's show he came up with the design challenge, and I thought he was very clever. Now...this? It's impressive.

Below that, the display for the Genesee Valley chapter of NARGS, designed by Betsy Knapp. Truly great.

The winners are here.

Garden Shows Wrap-Up: CNYBlooms

It's long, long overdue, but I finally have a little time to comment on the upstate New York garden shows that have been going on for the past month. I didn't take as many pictures as I normally do, but here goes.


In only their second year, the CNYBlooms team continued to do a fine job with the show. It was really well organized, and they have a new producer who's great: Maureen Baringer. Here's the list of winners.

Overall Competition Gardens
Best Garden Overall, Large:
Landmasters Group, Inc.
Best Garden Overall, Small: Michael Grimm Services

Most Original Overall: Landmasters Group, Inc.
Favorite Garden Overall: Landmasters Group, Inc.
Environmental Award Overall: Phoenix Flower Farm

Special Category Judging
Best Hardscape, Large: Mueller Farms Landscaping
Best Hardscape, Small: Anthony DeMarco & Sons
Best Water Feature, Large: Green Scapes, Inc.
Best Water Feature, Small: Chuck Hafner's Landscaping
Best Use Of Plant Material, Large: Ballantyne Gardens
Best Use Of Plant Material, Small: Michael Grimm Services
Best Garden Accent, Large: Ballantyne Gardens
Best Garden Accent, Small: Anthony DeMarco & Sons
Best Carpentry, Large: Landscapes East
Best Carpentry, Small: Total Lawn Care
Best Use Of Color, Large: Sensenig���������s Landscaping
Best Use Of Color, Small: Kapper Landscaping

Non Competition Gardens
Best Educational Booth:
SUNY Morrisville
Best Retail Space: Aspinall���������s Nursery
Best Exhibitor Booth: Bartlett Tree Experts

The Ballanyne Gardens retail space helped to draw attention to the vendors around the corner from the main display area���������myself included. It was like a giant green beacon. Much appreciated.

Directly across the way was their display space. I'm thinking you can tell which part won the Best Garden Accent, Large award.

Although it could also have been this, the Irish pub replica. Very cool.

A bug.

Late Breaking Events: Urban Roots Workshops

Submitted by Urban Roots.

Workshops are free of cost, and are offered at Urban Roots Community Garden Center at 428 Rhode Island Street.

Upcoming workshops

Saturday, April 5th 11am – Attract Birds and Butterflies to Your Garden presented by Karen Sirgey of Avian Architecture.

A workshop with master bird house designer and builder, Avian Architect, Karen Sirgey. Special for the season of bird migration, Sirgey will present bird and butterfly housing and gardens designed to attract them. Demonstrations will include planning of the bird and/or butterfly garden and setting up a house for our winged friends.

Thursday, April 10th 5:30pm – Summer Bulbs presented by Elizabeth Licata of GardenRant.com and Buffalo Spree.

Elizabeth presents on summer bulbs and tubers such as lilium, dahlias, colacasias, and canna. How and when to plant them, maintain them, and overwinter those that need it. How you can have some type of lily blooming from early June through early September, the special needs of colocasia, and how indoor starts may be necessary in some cases. All the new hybrids will be discussed. Pest or disease problems that may arise will be discussed, as will the necessary evil of staking and ways to cover and disguise the lanky stems of tall lilies.

Saturday, April 19th 2pm – Shade Gardening presented by Roxanne McCoy of Lilies of the Field

Thursday, May 1 time tba – Green Economy: Composting and Reducing Waste for individuals, organizations & businesses. Co-sponsored by Buffalo First. RSVP by April 25 to Buffalo First (www.buffalofirst.org) at info@buffalofirst.org. Free to Buffalo First Members and Urban Roots Member-Owners, $10 suggested donation for non-members.

Saturday, June 21st Time TBD – Flower Press a workshop for children and parents presented by Karen Sirgey of Avian Architecture.

Please sign up to secure a spot: 716-362-8982 or email workshops@urbanroots.org.

Submitted by Urban Roots.

Late Breaking Event: Pet Tree Program at Bristol's

Sumbitted by Bristol's Garden Center

Bristol’s Garden Center to Give Away Free Trees (seedlings) to Children Through “Pet Tree” Project

Bristol’s Garden Center will give away free trees (seedlings) to children during their Annual Spring Open House April 5th and 6th. Bristol’s is embarking on this “Pet Tree” project in order to encourage families to plant a tree together as a fun family activity, and to help kids learn about the joys of nature, planting and the positive impact trees have on the environment.

“Any child who comes with a parent can choose his or her seedling on any day of our open house,” said Tom Sanna, Vice President Bristol's Garden Center. “We’re encouraging each family to take their tree home, plant it, nurture it, watch it grow, and even name it. In our experience, when a child names a tree, it personalizes it and they take even better care of it and develop a more meaningful connection with nature as they tend to their tree over time.”

Each free seedling will also come with an “adoption agreement,” which the child can complete and sign. It indicates that the child agrees to the responsibility of not only planting their very own “Pet Tree”, but taking care of it as it grows. Bristol’s encourages planting of the trees on Arbor Day (April 25) or any day. Each tree can be planted in honor of a loved one or pet who has passed away, to commemorate a birthday or new birth in the family, or simply for the joy of adding something positive and beautiful to our world.

The free seedlings will be available on April 5th and 6th, one per child when accompanied by a parent or guardian, while supplies last. “We are, obviously, all about being green at Bristol’s,” noted Sanna. “This is our gesture at making a difference in a number of ways and encouraging environmental responsibility by sponsoring a very worthwhile experience that children can enjoy, have fun with and learn from - with their parents. Our motto is ‘always growing, always caring’ and this is one way to exemplify it.”

Bristol’s Garden Center is located at 7454 Route 96 in Victor, NY, just southeast of Eastview Mall. Operating for over 20 years, Bristol’s is open year-round, stocking a wide array of trees, shrubs, houseplants, annual and perennial flowering plants, soils and
mulches, pottery and other products.

For more information about the “Pet Tree” project, contact Tom Sanna at Bristol's Garden Center at 585.924.2274 or via e-mail at customerservice@bristolsgardencenter.com.

Sumbitted by Bristol's Garden Center

Late Breaking Event: The Lotus Odyssey

Submitted by the Genesee Valley Pond & Koi Club

Featured Speaker: Mr. Warner Orozco

Saturday April 19, 2008

Time: 1:00

Location: Henrietta Public Library – Community Room

455 Calkins Rd. Henrietta, New York

This program is free to all; please bring a friend!

Join Warner as he enthusiastically takes us on a journey around the world in search of the magnificent lotus. Discover his passion for this fascinating aquatic plant as he shows how lotus are grown, utilized and displayed for ornamental enjoyment. Journey through Thailand, China and many other destinations as Warner unlocks the secrets of the magnificent, sacred lotus.

Mr. Warner Orozco is a graduate student at Auburn University in Alabama. Currently he is working with Dr. Ken Tilt on a multidisciplinary project involving the lotus: Nelumbo lutea and Nelumbo nucifera. They are exploring the economic potential, aquaculture, botanical and social aspects of growing the lotus in the Southeastern United States. Warner is also part of the team who is registering new varieties of lotus for the International Waterlily and Water Gardening Society. Warner also operated an environmental tour agency in Costa Rica arranging and leading tourists through the natural wonders of his country before coming the U.S. to study.

Submitted by the Genesee Valley Pond & Koi Club