Garden Walk Book

Recently Buffalo Heritage Press published Garden Walk Buffalo, which I received for review. The first words from my lips were "Wow! How beautiful!" Since I did not receive this book in time to suggest it for a Christmas or a Hanukkah gift, I can only suggest that you buy it for someone you love or better still, for yourself. As readers of this column already know, I sincerely believe that all gardeners are special people who relate to each other no matter what their background, education or religion. I have gone on several garden walks in the city of Buffalo but seeing gardens featured with photographs and commentary is an experience not to be missed. The camera has a way of giving focus. Sometimes when we physically experience a garden we are simply overwhelmed by what we see or are surrounded by other people and miss the details. This incredible book answers our needs by letting us see what we missed or simply by refreshing our memories. If you have never gone on a garden walk, this beautiful volume will both inspire you and make you plan to go in the future.

Garden Walk Buffalo is more than a book of garden pictures. This book provides practical information for those who might wish to begin a garden walk where they live. It showcases gardens from the different districts of the city of Buffalo. Not only private gardens are featured. The Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Site, the Wilcox mansion, the Historical Society, Erie Basin Marina, and the Albright Knox gardens are showcased, as well as community gardens. A map of each area of the city opens every section.

Each central photograph is accompanied by smaller snapshots of the displayed gardens. You will see exuberant gardens, formal gardens, gardens that continuously flow from one into another, multiple gardens on the same property, ponds, English-style gardens and whimsical gardens.

In each garden description, "What They Ask About" includes the most commonly asked questions by the walkers who have viewed these impressive gardens, with both practical and amusing queries. I was inspired and humbled by the work of these incredible people &emdash; gardeners and photographers alike.

The number of gardens on Buffalo's Garden Walk has blossomed from just 19 in 1995 to 260 gardens in 2006. What unknown treasures await us in the future? What better way to unite both city and suburbanite in the quest for beauty and knowledge? What wonderful people we have in the city of Buffalo who choose not to keep their gardens for themselves but to share them with us all.

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