Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A Bike Tour of Gardens in Parkside

Sunday I went on the last of the five GObike Buffalo tours of gardens. It was a joint project between GObike Buffalo, the area's leading bicycling advocates and the National Garden Festival. What started out as one bike tour ended up bring one a week for five weeks. Thanks go to Mitch Flynn and Cindy Kincaide for making that happen. About 50 people in total took the tours. Each week was a different set of gardens so that the tours could attract repeat customers. The rides were from 10 am to 1 pm, covered around 5-7 miles and covered 6-8 gardens on each tour. Lunch was included. The $30 cost covered the lunches, a donation to GObike Buffalo to support their efforts to make Buffalo a bike-friendly community and a little donation to the National Garden Festival to support its garden tourism efforts.

I chose to go on the Parkside tour. I've been to all of the Garden Walk Buffalo gardens they were visiting. The Parkside neighborhood in Buffalo was laid out by Frederick Law Olmsted with graciously-curved streets and has great homes from modest bungalows to grand Victorians, to the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Martin House Complex (partially shown above)–a series of five structures of which started construction in 1903–considered to be one of his finest examples of his Prairie style of architecture. And it was one of our stops for this garden tour by bike.

The first garden was small but nice. It was partially
"forested" by virtue of the large trees on the property.
The first stop also had some great statuary place throughout, like this great Griffin.
The next stop was a pristine colorful garden that looked like it was well-cared for.
Many of us were intrigued by the beautiful rough stone wall in the back of teh garden.
Also intriguing was the way this gardener hides his blue garbage bin, the bane of many Buffalo city gardeners. This enclosure was on wheels and just rolled away from the fence. On the right side, originally, there was a planter.
I'll do a separate post on this garden. The garage wall of "stuff" was clever, creative and worthy of a visit.
I'd never been to this garden. It was quite a surprise. I'll do a post sometime on the rock collection here, but I loved the way these hung leaded glass windows divided the two parts of the garden. Around this and behind the trees there was an entirely different garden, larger than the front garden and a totally different feel.
Theh back garden had a a fountain and pond, more rock gardens, a table and chairs and this beautiful arbor that looked all shabby chic (and also looked like some sort of alter!).
The last garden of the day had this pet memorial wind chime structure. The whole thing moved in the wind so all six or seven chimes could go off at once.
They also had a sculpture made of a box elder that died on the property as a memorial to past pets. This is the trunk.
Way up high you can see the top of the stump made into a sculpture/pet memorial. At the top is a mountain lion representing their many years of cat rescue and the owner's volunteer work at the Buffalo Zoo (walking distance from their home). The peregrine Falcon at the top represents the species' coming back here in Buffalo, partially by efforts of SUNY Buffalo (where the owner works). A dearly-depart dog, Nushi, is sculpted into the base, forever guarding his domain, and a beloved cat is sculpted, eternally climbing the tree.




1 comment:

  1. Looks like it was a fun way to visit gardens. The garage of stuff looks interesting and it will be interesting what you will say also.

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