Wednesday Walks – Garden Walk Buffalo


Back in Buffalo for a tour down beautiful North Pearl. Most of these images are from the garden of Alan Bigalow and Elizabeth Licata, fellow blogger at her personal blog, Gardening While Intoxicated.  She is a featured writer on Garden Rant, a blog known to most garden bloggers.


You can see more of her garden on her site, I am just showing you a few of the gardens along the way down North Pearl. One unique feature in her garden is the painted garage door. It makes a colorful focal point and backdrop for the seating/dining area.


This street has beautiful historic homes from the late 1800’s. If you get a chance to visit Garden Walk Buffalo, I would encourage you to not miss this area.


The creativity abounds, but unlike some other areas around Buffalo that depend heavily on whimsy, this street does it in a such an artful and upscale way. I have gardens to show that art commands all the attention, but here it is incorporated in a seamless manner. Plants too can share the spotlight.


Paths are natural in material use and direction with seating for a moments rest. But note this path leading to the garage door you saw painted at the opening to the post. This is the driveway, now converted to a garden-bed lined pedestrian path.


Like many gardens throughout Buffalo, the sidewalk area is planted creatively. I did a very thorough post on planting the Hell Strip and as a designer, do make note of ambitious use of materials limiting pedestrian travel like below. Many considerations to weigh when planting one in your town.


Houses are usually tight to the sidewalks on these city properties, allowing very few square feet of garden. Below, the scene is still pretty despite the front and center trash receptacle.


The same narrowness of usable space applies on the sides of homes too, yet the homeowners of Buffalo make the best use of real estate than anywhere I have seen. You find little use of turf grass in Buffalo.


As with the last few Wednesday Walk posts, there is still a lot of color. Some homes more than others, but they usually incorporate blooms from Spring until the snowflakes make their entrance.


Many Buffalo homes have a cooling garden oasis in the rear of their homes and deep porches on the front.


The generous use of greenery has both a psychological cooling as well as cooling the body. Everyone knows the benefit of shading and transpiration. It might be 10° cooler in such a heavily planted space in a rear yard or courtyard. Even the plants benefit from having close neighbors shading their roots. Adding a water feature is also going to bring the temperature down, not to mention the calming sound.


And of course, mature trees enclose a space and make it seem like miles and miles away from the bustle of city life. They aid in cutting down urban noise too.


Some gardens create texture with limited variance of color.


No matter the temperature, visiting gardens during July is made more pleasant. You get taken in by the sheer beauty to be found.


If you yourself have a city garden, there is much to learn in these creative spaces. Look at the use of texture and form above or the wildly colorful plantings in very little space below.


And again, note how paths and elevation change are used to move people through the gardens. When visiting large public gardens the designers are masters of people moving, but one can be in a small space as well.


About Garden Walk Garden Talk

I love to photograph, paint, draw, design, garden, travel the world, and pass on a few tips and ideas that I learned through experience as a Master Gardener and architect. I am highly trained in my field and enjoy my work each and every day. I garden in Niagara Falls, NY in zone 6-B. Find me at:
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20 Responses to Wednesday Walks – Garden Walk Buffalo

  1. Gorgeous gardens! And now I’m off to go check out Gardening While Intoxicating! 🙂

  2. Hard to imagine what abundance and colour will emerge from this winter! Beautiful gardens, beautifully shot and recounted. 🙂

  3. menomama3 says:

    That was such a happy-making tour. I could almost feel the heat of summer. Thank you for that respite from the cold.

  4. Beautiful gardens, and I love the architecture, too.

  5. Lots of inspiration in this post–you’re right, Donna! There’s something to be said for limited space. Sometimes it brings out the truly creative side of us. I have one small garden plot with very limited space that I’m very proud of, while some of the larger areas vex me. 😉

  6. My Heartsong says:

    Victorian houses-love them and particularly taken with the patterned rocks in the unique boulevard garden.I am starting to see the layering from low to the ground to high on the walls-very attractive and well planned.The greens and colours are stunning.

  7. Of Gardens says:

    This garden tour was just what I needed on the still very cold March morning

  8. laflor5233 says:

    Makes me want to jump into your pictures!

  9. Once again, you’ve made me really want to visit Buffalo! These gardens, in such tight spaces, are just wonderful. And I love the architecture. That deep porch is fabulous. Are all these homes in a particular district of Buffalo? Thank you for giving all of us still in winter a taste of summer–it felt more like summer than spring. And I really love these walks you take us on.

  10. Indie says:

    I absolutely adore good little city garden plots. I think it is because the good ones are always so creative and manage to fit so much in a little amount of space. There are levels and layers, and everyone passing by gets to share in the beauty. It was great to see what was tucked in the back of the garden (pedestrians don’t usually get to see the back), and I like what she did with her Hell Strip!

  11. patricksgarden1 says:

    Well done Donna on creating a sense of actually being in that charming neighborhood. Didn’t care for the art executed on the garage door but it makes an inspiring thought. Let’s celebrate the first day of spring (in 3 hours) and look forward to the lushness of July in our gardens, my learned friend.

  12. A.M.B. says:

    Beautiful photos! We’re just minutes away from spring (as I write this), and I wish I had more ready to bloom in the garden than I do at the moment.

  13. acuriousgal says:

    Such a gorgeous garden tour and I just love those old homes and buildings too

  14. mjarz says:

    The pictures on this post are wonderful! I am so inspired by these plants, colors and textures. Thank you for the lovely tour.

  15. Mac says:


  16. bittster says:

    I kept trying to focus on your text, but the pictures are so distracting! There are so many ideas for dealing with tight spaces it really wipes out the excuses most people use. Also I love some of the color mixes in the pots and gardens…. but I’m still a little lukewarm to orange and pink 🙂

  17. I have got to get to Buffalo! Like you said, maybe after the 2015 fling in Toronto.

  18. Oh I needed these stunning views…you captured them so beautifully

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