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I write about overwintering tropical plants with several emotions this week. I have gotten to know some Florida plant growers in recent years. Twice FNGLA (Florida Nursery, Growers and Landscape Association) hosted garden writers from across the country to tour historical tropical plant gardens and growers, so we would understand and use more of their plants. Then they …

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Mum time already? My annual outing for fall mums is quickly approaching. Once I get them home, I’ve tried to get a little more creative in recent years, rather than just plopping them on the front porch and remembering to water them when necessary. Placing them in clay pots, around which I tie a bunch of raffia for a rustic touch, has always worked for me. So has plac…

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It’s “triage time,” the toughest time of year for me and many other gardeners. What plants can I take inside, store outside or in the basement, or plant now? And which plants must I let go – turn them into the soil or compost pile? Outside plants Perennials, shrubs and trees still in pots require a decision now. They are the plants you were so excited to find. …

Hamburg House and Garden Club will meet at 7 p.m. Sept. 26 in the Community Center, Hamburg. Bonnie Bullivant will present “Easy to Grow Houseplants.” Business meeting to follow. Call Nancy Kalieta, 826-7462. Amherst Garden Club will meet at 9:30 a.m. Sept. 27 in St. Johns Lutheran Church, 6540 Main St., Williamsville. At 10 a.m. Lois Shriver, chairwoman of the Amhe…

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Storms are on our minds this week, as we have watched the people, animals, buildings and shorelines of Florida assaulted by Hurricane Irma. We don’t worry much about hurricanes here: A recent report listed Buffalo as the fourth-safest city in terms of natural disasters, even if we experience some much-publicized snowstorms. What we do and should worry about: wind and …

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Smallwood Garden Club will meet at 7 p.m. Sept. 18 at Williamsville United Methodist Church, 5681 Main St., Williamsville. Nancy Kalieta, former volunteer coordinator at the Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens and president of Hamburg House and Garden Club, will present "The Victorian Language of Flowers." The Federated Holland Garden Club will meet at 11 a.m. Sep…

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Cornell Cooperative Extension of Erie County Master Gardener Program will host three fall gardening classes in September: Making Hypertufa Containers (10 to 11:30 a.m. Sept. 9 in Hamlin Park, East Aurora); Making Kokedamas: Japanese Moss Balls (7 to 8:30 p.m. Sept. 19 at the CCE office, 21 S. Grove St., East Aurora); and Overwintering, Propagation and Making Cuttings (7 to…

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Certain plants take center stage as summer wanes, no matter where you live and what you define as summer. Whether you garden in a temperate climate with cold winters (most of Western New York) or in milder maritime zones (much of Ireland or England for instance), the late summer gardens have certain characteristics. Flowering perennials are generally taller than spring …

Last week a band of Americans flew to Ireland with me to visit gardens and historical sites. Some also wanted to experience the country from which many of our ancestors emigrated. Many of the group — from Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, New York City and Florida — had specific expectations: Perhaps we would see small, pretty gardens (that might not achieve the standards …

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Some of the plants that showed off for our garden-peeping tourists and guests during July and early August are still going strong: tall Rudbeckia ‘Herbstonne’, daisies and perennial geraniums that were cut back, reblooming roses, and late daylilies. But then what? I recommend a late summer driving tour to the garden centers of Western New York to see what else co…

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East Aurora Garden Club will hold its annual picnic and auction at noon Aug. 14 in Elma Town Park (Shelter No. 1), 3011 Bowen Road, Elma. In case of rain, picnic will be at the St. Matthias Episcopal Church, Main and Maple streets, East Aurora. Park in rear. Call 980-3202 or 652-4985. Cheektowaga Garden Club will hold its club picnic at 5:30 p.m. Aug. 14 in member Sally…

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Thousands of people visited the gardens of Western New York in July and early August, many from distant states and countries. This week 344 of the visitors were garden writers (or bloggers, photographers, teachers) coming from as far away as Australia, Canada, Puerto Rico, California, Florida and Iowa. They cast their eyes upon the gardens, met the gardeners, dined and …

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This weekend you may see six large motor coaches driving to the Southtowns, roaming the gardening neighborhoods of Buffalo, and visiting our parks and public gardens. The giant buses are filled with tourists we very much want: guests who will write about us, take pictures, post, blog and publish. It’s the garden writers from across the United States and Canada, who ha…

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We recently hosted a sizable gathering and, for the first time ever, I used a large glass drink dispenser with a spigot at the bottom for one of the beverages we served. I have seen those dispensers for years at places like Pottery Barn, Bed Bath & Beyond and, well, just about everywhere. For our party, I considered buying one but quickly dismissed the idea. Thos…

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The public is invited to a Meet the Authors gardening event from 2 to 4 p.m. Aug. 4 at the Buffalo Niagara Convention Center, 153 Franklin St. More than 25 garden book authors are expected to participate. No ticket required. The event is free to attend and coincides with the GWA/Association of Garden Communicators Annual Conference taking place in Buffalo. The 13th annu…