Garden symposia, contests, parties, dinners & mega tour

Wild week continues.

Garden Symposium
First up, a Garden Symposium, this Friday, July 23 at Forest Lawn Cemetery as part of the National Buffalo Garden Festival. Speakers include Professor Richard Benfield, speaking about the great botanic gardens of the world, he is author of the forthcoming book, Garden Tourism. Landscape Architect Virginia Burt on how to create sacred spaces. Sandra Sparks will speak on the Women and Gardens of Forest Lawn.

All photos are garden transformations by Siobhan Nehin.

Also presenting will be Siobhan Nehin, Queen of the Garden Fairies (see a Buffalo native, who lives in Florida (and an old boss of mine, not that she's old, or bossy. Okay, well, she's not old) will present her Magical Garden and Patio Transformations, taking spaces from "blah to a-ha." At lunch, the Garden Fairies here for Garden Walk, will demo how to make personalized garden mementos. Using letters pressed into cement, participants will learn how to make customized stepping stones and plaques. The Garden Fairies will also talk about their latest community beautification project,  a 22' x 17' mosaic mural.

Anyway, the symposium is only $50 and includes a lunch from Quaker Bonnet. Starts at 9:00 a.m. here's the lineup:
  • 9:30am: Siobhan Nehin
  • 11:00am: Virginia Burt
  • 12:00pm: Lunch
  • 1:00pm: Richard Benfield
  • 2:15pm: Sandy Starks
Sign up by emailing Sandy Starks here. Or call 716-885-1606 x302

Front Yard Garden Contest
Tonight, at 6:00 p.m. in front of the renovated front yard gardens on North Parade, the winners of the National Garden Festival Front Yard Garden Contest will be announced at the Western New York State Nursery & Landscape Association picnic. Awards will be given by:
  • District 8 Federated Garden Clubs
  • Buffalo & Erie County Botanical Gardens
  • Buffalo Museum of Science
  • Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy
  • Niagara County Community College student awards
  • Buffalo Spree magazine
  • WNY Hosta Society
  • Media Awards—WGRZ, WIVB & WKBW
  • Nursery & Landscape Association Awards
  • People’s Choice: First, Second and Third
This weekend the Buffalo Niagara Convention & Visitors Bureau is hosting a few garden industry editors and special guests. Among them are James Bagget (and an associate), editor of Country Gardens magazine; Stacey Hirvella, Senior Associate Garden Editor, Martha Stewart Living; Veronica Sliva, writer, Canadian Gardening magazine; and Richard Benfield, author of the forthcoming book, Garden Tourism.

There's also a host of Garden Walk parties that have sprung up throughout the city that I am NOT hosting, in which my wife & I will make an appearance or two, if we're given the chance and aren't physically and mentally exhausted.

Garden Walk Buffalo
Oh, and the nation's largest garden tour. 355 gardens and an estimated 50,000 garden-viewers. Oy.


  1. Thanks Jim! I know how much you have on your plate.

    Can't spend the day at the Symposium? Limited seating is available for each lecture - $15 each- individual tickets available at the door only. Lunch reservation must be made in advance.

  2. Wow - that's a lot going on. Enjoy!

    I'd love to be at that symposium.



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