Host a Shower at the Gardens!

Posted on May 04, 2016 by Erin Grajek | 0 Comments

Wedding season is officially upon us! We are looking forward to seeing all the beautiful couples and watching as they embark on this new chapter of their lives. Before the big day, many brides attend their bridal shower.  The Gardens is a perfect place to hold a shower.

Showers, whether they are bridal or baby, are so special to be a part of because so much love goes in the preparation and execution. Family and friends “shower” their loved one with a day just for them. From the centerpieces, to the food and the favors, everything is carefully thought out in order to make this time most extraordinary.  To see our space or to inquire, contact the events department at 827.1584 ext. 219, ext. 220 or

The Botanical Gardens is a popular venue for private events including weddings, cocktail parties, luncheons and more. One of our favorite greenhouses for private events is Greenhouse 11, the Panama Cloud Forest. Full of exotic plants such as orchids, bromeliads, spanish moss and even a papaya tree, this greenhouse transports you to a luscious rainforest.

A Perfect Space
The Panama Cloud Forest is perfect for a small event for about 25 people. The orchid arbor provides a stunning backdrop for any occasion, especially intimate ceremonies. Spanish moss hanging capriciously off arching trees makes for a wonderful ambiance. For larger events, this room is a great location for dinner stations and dessert bars. Food is set out around the center garden island as the guests discover the various delectable items that await them. For cocktail parties or smaller receptions, this room often holds a bar and high top tables for mingling guests. When the weather is nice, the side doors open to allow guests to explore our Peace Garden.

The Panama Cloud Forest is just one of the many greenhouses that provide natural décor for any event. To inquire about hosting your event at the Gardens, contact the events department at 827.1584 ext. 219, ext. 220 or


Connecting with our Community

Posted on May 03, 2016 by Erin Grajek | 0 Comments

Over the past year, we have been working hard to broaden our volunteer outreach and have engaged many diverse organizations, corporations and schools. Here are a few of the organizations that have been helping us to enhance the Gardens and enrich the visitor experience.
  • Town of Clarence Youth Bureau
  • Sacred Heart Academy Day of Sharing
  • Grand Island High School
  • Baker Victory Work Appreciation for Youth Program
  • Earth Spirited internship for students of Erie Community College and Buffalo State College
  • East Aurora Garden Club
  • Cable Street Community Garden
  • M&T Bank
  • Bank of America
  • People INC
  • University at Buffalo Nursing Program
  • University at Buffalo Honors Colloquial
  • Buffalo State College Anthropology Society
  • United Way
  • Community Services
  • RSVP Erie County
  • Girl Scouts of WNY
  • Buffalo & Erie County Public Library
  • 4-H & Cornell Cooperative Extension of Erie County

If you or the organization you work for would like to volunteer for one day or on a regular basis. Please contact our Karen Hammer at or 827.1584 ext. 207.

We Are Growing!

Posted on May 02, 2016 by Erin Grajek | 0 Comments

A message from Dave Swarts, President/CEO...

2016 has been a record breaking year in so many ways.  The growth and successes we continue to experience would not happen without the incredible support we receive from our 3,500 loyal members, 250 volunteers, a dedicated staff and thousands of financial contributors. Together, our efforts are making a difference.  Thank You!

Lumagination began in January with a kickoff cocktail party that attracted a record breaking crowd of over 300 guests.  Attendees were treated to a preview of Lumagination while sipping exotic cocktails and enjoying tasty appetizers.  Eleven thousand visitors, another record breaker, experienced Lumagination over the 20 night exhibit.

The Spring Flower Exhibit featured thousands of fragrant and colorful spring flowers in very creative displays.  The horticulture staff and volunteers did a wonderful job with the displays. The spring exhibit attracted over 15,000 visitors. Also, the annual Easter Egg Hunt was another sellout with 300 kids participating in the event.

The Great Plant Sale in May will offer members and the public opportunities to purchase unique annuals, perennials and shrubs to brighten up their gardens and homes.  The pre-order generated a record number of orders and generated extra revenue for the Gardens.  

Construction Update - Erie County’s project to reconstruct greenhouses 2 and 3 should be finished this summer.  When done, the Botanical Gardens Society will be presented with two empty greenhouses.  It becomes the Society’s responsibility to raise the funds to rebuild the exhibits. The cost to rebuild the exhibits is estimated to be $350,000.  
Our staff has been working diligently to raise the funds needed to rebuild the
exhibits, which we hope to open to the public later this year.

The new exhibits will retain the popular Koi Pond and beautiful waterfall.  It will also include a new water feature, a redesigned bridge over the pond, a Moon Gate, a living wall, and new pathways displaying exotic plantings that will enhance the exhibit’s aquatic and Asiatic themes.  We are very excited about this project and look forward to reopening the new exhibits.

We also have many wonderful events planned this summer, including Starry Night in the Garden on June 22.  Tickets can be purchased at  Also, for the third year, we are hosting Botanics and Brews on July 21.  It’s a fun night - great beer tastings, food and music.  Check out our website for more details.

Thank you for supporting the Botanical Gardens, and we hope to see this summer.

Dave Swarts, President/CEO

Fairies and Gnomes Visit the Botanical Gardens this Spring!

Posted on March 28, 2016 by Erin Grajek | 0 Comments

Buffalo, NY - Fairies and Gnomes are mystical and magical creatures and the Botanical Gardens will celebrate their charm with the Fairy and Gnome House Contest, the Fairy and Gnome Festival and the Fairy Garden Make-It Take-It Workshop on April 30.

The Botanical Gardens is looking for imaginative minds to enter the Fairy and Gnome House Contest.  Anyone can enter including; scout groups, classrooms, families, individuals, neighborhoods or teams. “House” is open to interpretation.  Participants are encouraged to be creative to construct original houses, gardens, camp grounds or wherever you think fairies and gnomes spend their time.  Creations must consist of natural or natural looking materials and organizers encourage the use of recycled materials.  Intent to participate is due April 15 and completed houses are due to be delivered to the Botanical Gardens by April 29.  All entries will be on display for the Fairy and Gnome Festival on April 30. Winners will be chosen at the Festival and various prizes will be awarded.  Prizes will include Garden memberships, an hour-long education program at the Gardens for a group and more.  The entry fee is $5 for Garden members and $8 for the general public.  Go to or call 827.1584 ext. 292 for more information.

The Fairy and Gnome Festival will take place at the Botanical Gardens on April 30 from 10am-5pm.  Enter the Gardens’ enchanted forest for fun fairy activities including: a special scavenger hunt, live interaction with feathered friends, story time, face painting, nature walks and some whimsical surprises.  Hands on crafts include; beaded garden stakes to attract fairies to your garden, magic wands and more.  Attendees will also have the opportunity to enjoy the Fairy and Gnome House Contest entries and vote for their favorite.  The festival is included with Garden admission; $9 for adults, $8 for seniors (55+) and students (13+), $5 for kids 3-12, Garden members and kids two and under are free. Attendees that wear a fairy or gnome costume will receive $1 off admission.

The Fairy Garden Make-It Take-It Workshop is also part of the Festival fun.  The workshop is offered at 9am and 3pm on April 30.  Kids ages 5-12 with great imaginations are encouraged to create the perfect fairy or gnome hideaway using acorn dishes, leaf fences, seed mailboxes and so much more.  This artistic workshop will use found and natural materials to ensure fairies and gnomes will feel right at home. The workshop is $15 for Garden members and $20 for the general public and pre-registration is required as space is limited. Containers, soil and plants are included in the registration fee and participants may purchase pre-made twig furniture for $5 per two pieces before or at the workshop. 

For more information, visit  The Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens Society, Inc. is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing appreciation for and knowledge of plant life and its connection to people and cultures through its documented living plant collection, historic conservatory, education, research and exhibits.


Workshops, Tours and a Bulb Sale Will be Held this Spring at the Botanical Gardens!

Posted on March 24, 2016 by Erin Grajek | 0 Comments

Buffalo, NY - The Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens offers a wide variety of programs, workshops and special sales throughout the year.  This spring, the Botanical Gardens will hold a Beginning Bonsai Workshop on April 21 and April 22, a Black Friday Spring Bulb Sale on April 29, two Arbor Day Tree Tours on April 29 and two Hypertufa Container Workshops on May 14.

The Beginning Bonsai Workshop is a hands-on workshop that is one of a kind. Participants will fashion live bonsai trees while learning the art of bonsai with the Buffalo Bonsai Society. On both April 21 and 22 the workshop will be held from 6-9pm. Organizers suggest that participants bring gardening gloves and a large box to transport their bonsai once completed. Space is limited in each session and all materials will be provided. Workshop pricing for Botanical Garden Members is $75 and $80 for the general public.

The Botanical Gardens pulls all the blubs from the Spring Flower Exhibit to hold a Black Friday Spent Spring Bulb Sale.  This popular sale is set to begin at 9am on April 29. Buyers line up around 7am and organizers urge the public to arrive early because the bulbs go fast! The Botanical Gardens will provide a bag for each guest, limit is 3 bags per person, at the great price of $10 per bag. The Bulb Sale takes place in the garage behind the Botanical Gardens and admission to the Sale is free to the public.

Celebrate Arbor Day with Arbor Day Tree Tours on April 29 at 4pm and 6pm. The tour will take guests around the grounds of the Botanical Gardens to visit trees in the collection and learn the basics of tree identification. The Botanical Gardens recently received Level II Accreditation as an Arboretum through ArbNet, the interactive community of arboreta.  Tours will be held rain or shine and are $10 for both Botanical Garden members and the general public.

The popular Hypertufa Container Workshop will be held on May 14 at 9am and 1pm. Participants will create a unique planting container from peat moss, Portland cement and perlite. This is a messy workshop and organizers ask participants to wear appropriate clothing.  Participants must bring one container to mold the creation, no larger than 12 inches by 16 inches. Workshop pricing for Botanical Garden Members is $25 and $30 for the general public.

For more information, visit  The Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens Society, Inc. is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to advancing appreciation for and knowledge of plant life and its connection to people and cultures through its documented living plant collection, historic conservatory, education, research and exhibits.

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