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Picture a gardening day: A warm sun is shining on your bare arms. Your sharpened shovel lifts soft soil as you plant the first tomatoes into a weed-free bed. Flowering flats of marigolds and begonias sit nearby, awaiting your tasteful placement. The birds are chirping ... It’s May, at last! Here is the darker picture: The month of May isn’t all merry. There are hard …

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You see them room after room. Topiary, philodendron and snake plants in the sitting nook. Fiddle-leaf figs, hydrangeas and rosemary in the sunroom. Orchids, boxwood, Boston ferns, succulents, palms, tulips, mosses – all of these and more can be found throughout the 2019 Decorators’ Show House. Even some wallcoverings are botanically inspired. There’s more outside, fr…

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The votes are in for our latest Reader Challenge and, for the first time, we have a tie. No, we will not be going into overtime. Readers were invited to send in photos of pitchers that show how they use them or decorate with them. For the online voting, there were three from which to choose. Photos submitted by Patty Williams and Courtney Gorman are tied for To…

Gardening

Decorators’ Show House offers ideas that appeal not just to humans but also to the dogs in their lives. That’s right, the site of this eagerly anticipated community fundraiser has two canine-inspired spaces. It’s all part of the 20th Decorators’ Show House, the Palmer Centennial House at 288 Lincoln Parkway that begins its three-week run April 27 and continues through M…

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For our latest Reader Challenge, we asked for photos of pitchers that show how people use them or decorate with them. Thank you to everyone who participated in the challenge. Now it’s readers’ turn to vote. This week there are three options from which to choose. We ask for your email address to avoid multiple submissions ... not that our readers would ever do that. 🙂…

Gardening

The Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens has announced the dates of its annual "Great Plant Sale." The sale will be held May 16, 17, and 18. On May 16 the sale will only be open to Botanical Gardens members and volunteers from 4 to 8 p.m. The sale will open to the public on May 17 from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and May 18 from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. It is free to the public and …

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One of the handiest accessories we have in our homes is the classic pitcher. It can be used in many ways from holding cooking utensils to displaying fresh flowers to showcasing fancy beverages. Design-wise, it might be clear, solid colored, patterned or textured. Large or small. A family heirloom, wedding gift or thrift store find. Now we want to see photos of some o…

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People want to see flowers now – as many and as soon as possible. So we go to garden centers and look, perhaps to buy. This region’s garden centers are exhilarating after winter – tropical houseplants, early flowering annuals and perennials, spring-flowering shrubs. But what are you seeing and when can you put them outside? What is ‘cold-hardy’? In professional ga…

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The above photo of snowdrops received 57.5 percent of the votes in our latest Reader Challenge. This was the chance for people to send in photos of early bloomers popping up in their gardens after this long, long winter. Allison Sagraves took the photo on April 7 at the family's cabin in Holland, which they purchased last fall. She discovered the snowdrops in a mature r…

Gardening

For our latest Reader Challenge, we asked for photos of early bloomers – those delightful hyacinths, crocuses and other signs of spring beginning to pop up in the garden. Thank you to everyone who participated in the challenge. Now it’s readers’ turn to vote. This week there are four options from which to choose. We ask for your email address to avoid multiple submis…

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In early spring, it’s always uplifting to see buds on trees or shrubs and flowers poking up in the garden. Once we see them, many of us can’t resist taking a few photos. Now we want to see some of those photos you have taken recently as you wait for your garden to be in full bloom. Email your photo to homeandstyle@buffnews.com. A phone number is helpful. We plan to h…

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Do you remember when recycling entered our collective conscience? Did you first think about The Three Rs – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle – in the 1960s or 1970s? In popular culture the 3-R mentality has certainly had highs and lows along the way, but now commitment to environmentally responsible consumerism is reaching a new high. That’s thanks in part to a caring younger g…

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The recent Philadelphia Flower Show reminded gardeners of what we know deep in our hearts: Flowers make us happy! The 190-year-old award-winning show, produced by the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society, is the country’s largest and oldest flower show. It’s always fabulous. This year’s theme was “Flower Power,” and the happiness factor was contagious: We danced. We bo…

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The wind hit hard as February waned, damaging structures, vehicles and, most of all, trees. Late winter is the right time for most pruning anyway – a surprise to many – but now the task at hand is “corrective pruning.” What can you do, and how should you do it, to salvage or improve your beloved shrubs and trees? Storm-damaged trees Decision No. 1: What is worth t…