Community Pride was on full display last Saturday as gardeners on Buffalo’s East Side displayed their finest flowers and vegetables during the annual Garden Walk.
It was the first time in the Garden Walk’s history that the East Side was included in the self-guided tours, although we have always known that beautiful homes and gardens existed throughout the Black community in every area.
On Saturday July 21 one of Buffalo’s best kept secrets was proudly revealed as friendly neighbors welcomed visitors; sharing amazing stories and beautifully landscaped yards.
Some of the examples above: Barbara and Bud Campbell of Benwood Avenue whose gardens were filed with perennials and summer annuals; John and Shirley Thompson’s Lemon Street yard immaculately manicured with sculptured shrubs; David and Medeena Brown (the Thompson’s neighbors) introduced us to a lovely pale blue deck and a front and back yard beautiful decorated with baskets of flowers.
A few houses down Mr. Brown revealed an amazing “mini farm’ where he grows, among other things, corn, greens, sweet potatoes, onions, okra, and squash. A native of Dothan, Alabama (100 miles south of Birmingham), he said he was raised on a farm where he learned the skill of garnering and farming. Glenwood Avenue at the corner of Dupont Street revealed over 30 raised beds of chemical free, organic, non-GMO vegetables farmed by Allison DeHonney’s Urban Fruits & Veggies urban agriculture company and a stop by Dawn Berry-Walker’s Mercer Street home was an amazing experience.
She and her husband Henry’s jazz-themed yard/garden is filled not only with the natural beauty of their gardening skill, but exhibits of dawn’s artistic genius and their reverence for Black culture and Black Classical Music (Jazz) which is on full display for all to see and hear.
Dawn, the daughter of the late jazz great James “Pappy” Martin and longtime educator Dr. Kay E. Martin – a huge jazz fan as well – currently keeps jazz alive as the head of the Masten Jazz festival which her father co-founded.
There were approximately 40 homes that took part in the East Side Garden Walk.
Congratulations to all the participants. The Community Is Looking Forward To Next Year’s East Side Garden Walk!