Praise & Reviews

Buffalo-Style Gardens is a joyful tour through the offbeat, artistic, handmade sensibility that has put this hip, hardscrabble, urban community on the horticultural map.”
~ Amy Stewart, author, The Drunken Botanist, Wicked Plants, and more; founder,

Buffalo-Style Gardens beautifully captures the exuberant colors, inventive use of small spaces, and the joyful creativity present in the gardens on tour. Everyone who loves outdoor living spaces will be inspired and delighted by this book.”
~ C.L. Fornari, author, The Cocktail Hour Garden;

“Buffalo gardens are now tourist attractions for visitors from all over the U.S. and beyond. Jim Charlier and Sally Cunningham describe a gardening creativity that is like no other: lush, urban, funky, welcoming, and – always – unexpected.”
~ Elizabeth Licata, editor, Buffalo Spree Magazine; author, Garden Walk Buffalo; contributing writer,

“Having spent a career creating and caring for public gardens, I can only state in humble admiration that I’ve never seen anything like the pride and joy expressed in what has come to be called “Buffalo-style.” Let this book rub a bit of that off on you.”
~ Harry Jongerden, Executive Director, Toronto Botanical Garden

“Buffalo-style gardens are unique in the gardening world and this book captures them.  Read, smile, absorb, and make these ideas your own!”
~ Mike and Kathy Shadrack, authors of Encyclopedia of Hostas and The Book of Little Hostas;

“Leave behind your preconceived notions of what a garden should be and dive into a world of gardens full of color, discoveries, textures and the good neighbors that build them.” 
~ Tomas Herrera-Mishler
, President & CEO, Balboa Park, San Diego

“By turns quirky, fun and inspiring, this book is a roadmap to designing gardens from the heart.”
~ Susan Morrison,
landscape designer and author, The Less is More Garden and co-author of Garden Up!

“To date what has been lacking is a book devoted to the quirky and weird gardens Buffalo displays (there are LOTS of beautiful garden coffee table books but few specialize in whimsy!). I teach a course entitled Weird and Wonderful Gardens of the World – I can hardly wait to steal some examples from this book!”
Dr. Richard W. Benfield, author, Garden Tourism

“Jim Charlier and Sally Cunningham splendidly share the eclectic, unconventional approaches to gardening and design that make Buffalo gardens so memorable.“
~ Kylee Baumle,, author, The Monarch

“Who would’ve thought Buffalo would be the epicenter of a new wave in American gardening?… [I]n this idea-inducing new book you’re sure to find plenty to “borrow” in your own gardens.”
~ George Weigel, garden columnist, author, Pennsylvania Getting Started Garden Guide

“Buffalo-Style Gardens will introduce you to new possibilities in plant combinations and colorful backdrops, ways to incorporate art, and ideas for how to repurpose everyday items into your landscape.”
~ Teresa Watkins, landscape designer and author, A Gardener’s Compendium, Volume 1 and 2.

“Sally Cunningham and Jim Charlier have been deeply involved in the revolution of gardening taking place in and around Buffalo. …the perfect gardeners to show us all how to create our own Buffalo-style garden no matter where we live.”
~ Carol Michel,; author, Potted and Pruned: Living a Gardening Life

“Sally Cunningham and Jim Charlier articulate gardening and design in a form that both gardening enthusiasts and landscapers can put immediately to use. They need this book.”
~ Carolyn A. Stanko, CNLP, Horticulture Program Coordinator and Associate Professor, Niagara County Community College

“These aren’t cookie cutter designs: they’re personable, clever, and enchanting. My imagination soars to bring the “Buffalo-Style” philosophy to my garden 1500 miles away.”
~ Linda Lehmusvirta, producer, PBS’ “Central Texas Gardener

“Who better than Jim Charlier and Sally Cunningham to show me (and you) the best Buffalo-style gardens and explain what makes them work. If you can’t “shuffle off to Buffalo,” this book is the next best thing.”
~ Kathy Purdy,

“Get ready to be inspired.”
~ Helen Battersby,

“Buffalo-Style Gardens gives us permission to have fun and celebrate what makes our garden unique.”
~ Theresa Forte,
photographer and garden columnist for St. Catharines Standard, Niagara Falls Review and Welland Tribune

“This is a book to savor, enjoy and treasure for the intelligence, photography and humor!”
~ Linda Garwol, Director, Buffalo in Bloom; Master Gardener; lead gardener, Niagara Square Gardens, at City Hall Buffalo.

“I can’t wait to bring some of the delightful essence of Buffalo-Style Gardens into my own space.”
~ Tara Nolan, author, Raised Bed Revolution; contributing writer,

“We are delighted to welcome this well-written and beautiful book to the treasure trove of available garden publications.”
~ Barbara Ballinger and Michael Glassman, co-authors, The Garden Bible

“Filled with inspiring photographs of real-life gardens by real people, Buffalo-Style Gardens is a must-have for garden enthusiasts looking to make their garden their own.”
~ Joanne Shaw, landscape designer; “Down the Garden Path” radio show and podcast

“Sally Cunningham led me down the Buffalo-Style Garden path.  I was enthralled by the interesting, quirky, usually small, gardens created and maintained by their owners. Now Jim and Sally have produced this wonderful book about creating such gardens and it’s as different and delightful as those gardens.”
~ Kenneth C. Brown, garden writer and speaker, Toronto, Canada;

To date what has been lacking is a book devoted to the quirky and weird gardens Buffalo displays (there are LOTS of beautiful garden coffee table books but few specialize in whimsy!). I teach a course entitled Weird and Wonderful Gardens of the World – I can hardly wait to steal some examples from this book!
Dr. Richard W. Benfield, Chair, Department of Geography, Central Connecticut State University, author, Garden Tourism

Sally Cunningham leads garden tours for enthusiasts in many parts of America and abroad, and her coauthor has similar experience and writes a blog, on his website,, and has a colorful instagram site, #jimchariler. The gardens…are woven throughout their book, and different aspects of the gardens make for different chapters and analyzing garden elements. From Aesthetics of Hardscapes, to Good Edges make the right impression (and life easier), you will find every page rich with something you may not have thought of in that way before, or see something you want to try in your own space. Want to add drama? Add curtains! While it’s a colorful, whimsical and totally inspiring book, it is also very realistic and wraps up with information they call “Hort Tips for Digging Deeper.” In the final segment of the book, you will see the nitty gritty to help you make your garden, no matter what style you choose, as successful as the ones on the Buffalo Gardens tours. Watering, soil testing, drainage rates (do a perc test!) are all unglamorous but absolutely necessary, as Cunningham and Charlier write. This is a book to have on hand, in hand, and refer to if you are feeling overwhelmed and want to have a pickmeup, kick in the pants, to keep at it and your garden will evolve as these have, over a twenty year period. I can’t thank Sally Cunningham and Jim Charlier enough for making these gardens seem so accessible and make the readers feel that our ideas for our gardens should be as fun as these are.”
– Cris Blackstone

Praise for Buffalo’s garden culture and Garden Walk Buffalo

“Since 1995, when Garden Walk Buffalo emerged to beautify our city, there has been a profound transformation of the language used to describe our city. Words like “chilly, gritty, rust belt” began to give way to “pretty, vibrant, thrilling. Buffalo – yes, Buffalo! – was blooming.”
~ Edward J. Healy, Vice President, Marketing at Visit Buffalo Niagara.

“The Buffalo-style garden is an original American contribution to landscape design.”
~ Allan Becker

“Garden Walk Buffalo is proof that you do not have to have a Longwood Gardens as an attraction in your community, to be a garden tourism destination.”
~ Michel Gauthier, Executive Director, Canadian Garden Council and the International Garden Tourism Network

“…you can see that the Buffalo Style is found not only in the garden designs or the carefully composed floral selections, but in the neighbourhoods and in the gardeners…” 
~ Barbara Conroy,

“Maybe you have more control over that neighborhood than you think. ‘Buffalo Style Garden’: It’s a thing…” 
~ Marianne Willburn,; author, Big Dreams, Small Garden

“Here’s what I learned: Buffalonians may be the friendliest people in the country; Individuals can make an enormous difference; small actions create considerable momentum; and gardens can save a city.”
~ Diana Stoll,

Each community’s neighborhoods of gardens brought people together, whether it was a passerby stopping to admire them or neighbors connecting and relaxing together on a summer evening.”
~ Susan Mulvihill,

“It was as if a large welcome mat was spread from street to street,.. What does a three-hour roam around Buffalo mean to our industry? It should provide all of us with a richer understanding that we can make a difference in neighborhoods, in cities, and certainly in people’s lives. We sometimes need to be reminded that plants, gardens, and gardening are important to people. Not just to a few people, but to hundreds of thousands who enjoy the creativity and therapy of working in the dirt. Thank you Buffalo for providing us with that reminder. As for me, I am a born-again Buffalonian!”
~ Allan Armitage, Professor Emeritus of Horticulture, University of Georgia

“Garden Walk Buffalo adds value to communities. Not just economic but also social and cultural value. Social value is found in the friendships and associations made between immediate neighbors and neighbors across the region. Cultural value is found in the creative ways gardeners use small plots, weave artwork into the landscape — in short, the “Buffalo Style” of gardening.
~ Randolph Hohle,
PhD, Associate Professor, Sociology, State University of New York at Fredonia