Gardens & Tours
Buffalo is home to amazing public and private gardens and this year's tour line-up will feature a fantastic group of gardens, covering a wide array of techniques and trends, including public gardens as well as private gardens. Below is a schedule and preview of all the gardens and venues #GWA2017 attendees will visit.
Saturday, August 5
The Cottage District
Tiny, historic cottages along a walkable street with intensely planted front yards and picturesque architecture. The visit includes an unstructured walk along Little Summer Street and separate stops at two of the most photographed gardens on 16th St. (where gardening transformed a drug-riddled block) and Norwood Avenue.
Three larger gardens that often host hundreds of people: the Victorian on Delevan Avenue, a Tropical Paradise (with tiki bar), and a garden on a roof that is accessed by a sliding library ladder.
At opposite ends of this charming street (much photographed architecture all along) are two stars: Jim and Annabelle’s (the sign says Mary’s Garden), with amazing
dahlia collection, lilies, and rare potted annuals and succulents in a deeply planted double lot, and Jim Charlier’s famous “Shed Mahal”, pear espalier, succulent wall
hangings and general artistry. Along the avenue at least three yards deserve a stop (including Asian influence and a Huechera/Hosta shade garden).
Sunday, August 6, 2017
Horticulture Heritage Tour
Visitors to Buffalo soon become aware of the landscape architectural influence of Frederic Law Olmsted and Frank Lloyd Wright. This tour provides garden writers with a story-worthy perspective and unique access to three destination sites with a focus on their horticultural connections. Each visit will last approximately 50 minutes, led by expert docents.
Buffalo Olmsted Park: Rose Garden, Japanese Garden, Hoyt Lake
Frederick Law Olmsted (1822-1903)--considered America’s greatest landscape architect—designed a system of parks and parkways in Buffalo that were the first of the kind in the country with six parks and connecting parkways and circles (National Register of Historic Places). Tour will focus on the largest park central to Buffalo and the museum district: Delaware Park, which includes Hoyt Lake, site of Shakespeare in the Park, and the scenic Rose Garden (behind the Albricht-Knox Art Gallery). The Japanese garden, visible from the rose garden, is across Hoyt Lake (behind Buffalo History Museum) will be toured separately.
Darwin Martin House
Discover an integrated landscape: The Darwin Martin House and landscape is a prairie style masterpiece of “organic architecture” designed by FLW for Darwin Martin in 1905. The unified composition includes the site, the house, the incredible interior detailing, and a landscape with outdoor spaces and numerous planters, keeping you in touch with the natural world at every turn. Visitors will learn about the Martins’ passion for flowers and horticulture and the historic landscape restoration plans from MH horticulturist Nell Gardner. (Walking tours, with terrific gift shop included)
Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Garden
One of the only two remaining Lord & Burnham glass-house conservatories, the Victorian-style botanical garden is located on another Olmsted park and arboretum. Horticulture treasures from
around the world may be viewed in the conservatory, including the cactus/succulent house, orchid house, palm house, and orangerie.
MONDAY, August 7, 2017
Choice of Draves Arboretum or Southtowns Private Gardens
Southtowns Private Gardens
Some of the great gardens of the region are in the scenic rolling hills of “South Towns” Hamburg, Boston, and Eden. They include “Smug Creek” (the garden of Kathy and Mike Shadrack, international hosta experts and authors), private daylily, hosta, and intensive perennial gardens, and the breakthrough landscape project with the highest LEED standards showing bio-retention, rain garden, recycling and repurposing to the max.
Recently accredited through the ArbNet Arboretum Accreditation Program, Draves Arboretum was created by arborist Tom Draves and the Morton Arboretum and includes at least 500 tree species,
including new Draves discovery ‘Streetkeeper’ Gleditsia. This is the newest arboretum in the U.S.
Tuesday, August 8, 2017 (Optional)
Post-Con Story Tour (Full Day)
This extended full-day tour will travel into Canada to see and experience the roaring grandeur of Niagara Falls from the northern side. The tour will travel along the Niagara River from Mather Arch at the tip of Lake Erie to the famous Floral Clock visiting horticultural, cultural and natural highlights along the way. Destinations include the Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens and School of Horticulture, Butterfly Conservatory, Floral Showhouse with the Life on Display miniature houses, and the newly restored, historic Oakes Garden Theatre. The day includes a box lunch and visit to the brink of the Falls, as well as dinner at Queen Victoria Place Restaurant and finishing the day with an evening lighted view of both the Horseshoe and American Falls.
Due to sometimes busy border crossing times, a hotel return time cannot be guaranteed on Tuesday evening. Please plan your flight for the following day. A valid passport is required for this tour.