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Gov. Andrew Cuomo proclaimed May 6 to 12 to be Compost Awareness Week. The proclamation (an edited version here) reads: “Whereas, the Empire State supports environmentally-friendly initiatives … such as composting … through more than 190 regulated facilities in New York State that process more than 700,000 tons of organic material; and “Whereas, organic materials mak…

Columns

The bed swing on the sun porch that The News photographed for our recent Home of the Month in the Parkside neighborhood was a real attention-getter. A sun porch is inviting enough, but a bed swing makes it even more so. Theresa Roma, who lives in the home with her husband, Adam, and their three children, said the swing was crafted in South Carolina. It was a Mothe…

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It sometimes feels as if it happens overnight: Forsythia, flowering pears, tulips, daffodils and more burst into bloom after a long winter and a cold, rainy spring. Yes, crocuses could be seen sprinkled with snow in April, but it really wasn’t until early May that the big blossom party began. Spring. Finally spring. Buffalo News photographers recently captured so…

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Ready for some plant shopping? Check out these sales organized by area garden clubs this weekend or next. Depending on the sale, you may find annuals, perennials grown by club members, succulents, garden art and more. Sales benefit various civic organizations, programs, scholarships, etc. Plant sales on May 19: • Hamburg Garden Club: 7:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., Hamburg F…

Gardening

The McNattys have lived in their home in Lancaster for 11 years. With 7 acres to maintain, Mary and Dan, a retired house painter, spend a lot of time in the garden. The large wraparound porch is just one highlight of the home. Mary’s meditation room, with infrared sauna, is another place to relax. Here is how Mary described the home ‑ both past and present ‑ for our Hom…

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You’ve probably heard this tale before. Strangers drop off a note at a house they admire in a neighborhood they love, inviting the homeowners to contact them if they ever decide to sell. That’s how Adam and Theresa Roma landed their dream home in Buffalo’s Parkside neighborhood. “We didn’t know what the inside looked like. We just liked the double lot,” said Theresa …

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Through the years, George Utz and Colleen Lewis have put a lot of work into their home in the Town of Hamburg – both inside and out. Lewis is a retired psychologist who now works part time at Dent Neurologic Institute in Orchard Park. Utz, past fire chief for the Village of Hamburg, is a residential program counselor at Buffalo Psychiatric Center. Lewis described the…

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As the calendar flips to May, I’m reminded that graduation season is quickly approaching. Last year, when our daughter was a high school senior, I was surprised just how quickly it all came up. Especially the graduation parties – and decisions about graduation gifts. Sometimes, my husband I were invited to attend the parties. Other times, we were not. There were clas…

Gardening

It’s April and usually that means lots of rain. “April showers bring May flowers,” indeed. In an ideal world plant roots absorb water with nutrients that travel through the plant’s vascular system and trigger production of shoots, leaves and buds. Plant roots absorb much of the rain, and the soil – replete with organic matter and microorganisms – holds the rest of the mois…

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The garden at Jim and Leslie Charlier’s home has been a must-see for years during the annual Garden Walk Buffalo. It has been featured in numerous national publications, including This Old House, Backyard Solutions and Fine Gardening. This week, we take a look at the inside of their home, with its local artwork, colorful walls and handcrafted items. Jim Charlier runs…

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Bulbs have been on my mind all week. Last Friday I was in Keukenhof Gardens in the Netherlands, where about 5 million tulips and other bulbs provide breathtaking plantings over a 70-acre park. This year’s theme: The Romance of Flowers. Five indoor pavilions provide education on tulip history and science as well as exciting plant introductions. If you love flowers, this …

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This house in the Linwood neighborhood has been many things – private home, hair salon, dental offices, nursery school – but its bones have remained strong and its personality intriguing. So much so that current resident Erin St. John Kelly refers to the house not as an “it” but as a “she.” “I think of this house as my old lady friend,” said Kelly, who moved to Buffa…

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Have you heard the term “keeping room”? If you checked out our latest Home of the Week on BuffaloNews.com, you saw one. There is a keeping room in the East Aurora home of Arno and Susan Tapani. Photos of the interior and exterior of their house appear on our weekly online feature. We won’t mind if you call it a sitting area or even a small family room. But this extensio…