BUFFALO NEWS: May 25, 2011
And which flower is your favorite?
By Susan Martin
Home and Style Editor
Published:May 25, 2011
White tulips are my favorite flower. They speak to me. I carried a simple bouquet of white tulips at our wedding, and it was an easy decision.
(Unlike choosing the appetizers.)
Still, when I stop by a local farmers' market on a Saturday morning, I always slow down for gladiolus. I have the perfect vase for them -- big and tall -- and I love how glads can liven up a room, especially for a party.
Oh, and gerbera daisies in fun colors such as hot pink and orange? Flower power! They make me feel 16 again.
Curious about other people's favorite flowers -- inside or out, annual or perennial -- I began asking around.
Here is what some gardeners told me:
Wendy Zuch, manager of Zittel's Country Market, 4415 Southwestern Boulevard, Hamburg: "If I had to pick just one, it would be Heuchera. It is such a reliable, beautiful and versatile garden plant. You can use it in containers; you can use it in perennial gardens, obviously. There are so many varieties with different colored foliage, and they complement so many other plants."
Sharon Low, president of the Lewiston Garden Club: "Roses; they are just so beautiful. I don't have much luck growing them, but I still love them."
John M. Hochadel, owner of Flowers etc., 387 Franklin St., and Garden Walk Buffalo veteran: "Probably hydrangeas; I like the colors. I like the pinks, and I also like the blues and how they will change to the deeper purples as the season goes on."
Mary Lowther, mayor of the Village of Williamsville and an organizer of the Williamsville Garden Walk, also likes blue hydrangeas.
"They are so beautiful and, for me, they are hard to grow. When they bloom it is so exciting. And they are beautiful all season long. Even when they dry on the shrub in the winter, they are still lovely," she said.
Joan Schanley, member of Snyder-CleveHill Garden View garden tour committee: "Our lilies-of-the-valley are now in bloom and smell heavenly along the side of our house."
Sally Cunningham, Great Gardening columnist for The Buffalo News, offered three favorites: "New York Ironweed (Vernonia), a native perennial, because its gorgeous, huge, magenta flower heads make all the pollinators and beneficial insects happy."
And another: "Mandevilla, a tropical flower we use as annual. Why? In a hot, sunny spot it blooms all summer long, and hummingbirds always find it!"
And her third: "Borage (an herb with a blue flower) -- because the periwinkle blue flowers attract honey bees that help pollinate the squash and other vegetables, and they are also delicious -- taste like cucumbers!"
She also passed this along from Jack Maeder of East Aurora -- an amateur photographer and nature observer, who said: "I love the perennial called Culver's Root (Veronicastrum). It's handsome and neat -- grows straight up -- but, best of all, the bumble bees dive into the flowers and roll around as if they're intoxicated."
Finally, Jim Charlier, president of Garden Walk Buffalo, didn't skip a beat when naming his favorite flower:
"Whatever is blooming at the time," he said.