Buffalo Garden

Having a ball in the garden

The home garden of Julia and Tony Favorito on Linwood Avenue is a creative person’s dream garden

After all these years of visiting Garden Walk Buffalo gardens, I still, on occasion, find gardens that leave me awestruck and delighted. This is this year’s entry. The creative people are both designers, Tony a toy designer at Fisher Price; Julia a freelance designer of anything she can get her hands on—toys, gardens, interiors, and her crowning garden achievement—this sphere she built (yes, she built it herself).

The deck inside comfortably fits
5-6 Adirondack Chairs.

New this year, it was built in time for Tony’s birthday this year. Julia also built it so there would be something interesting in the back yard to look at all year round from inside the house, but especially something significant and sculptural to see in the wintertime.

She purchased the plans for the sphere online, and had the wooden marine-grade staves custom milled by a friend, they had to be of exacting sizes. Then she assembled the base, then built the deck that is the interior platform, then finished the rest of the sphere.

And that cubist sculpture in the foreground? Tony learned how to weld and made that himself.

The large wall in the background is the back wall of the squash courts for the Delaware Avenue’s Saturn Club. It was there when they moved in. They planted and encouraged the ivy on the wall.

The staves were curved as they were
installed. They were delivered flat.

Even without the sphere, it’s a pretty amazing garden—where creative people, talented DIYers are married with style and good taste. There’s a formal parterre garden, fire pit, vegetable potager, outdoor dining are and still plenty of room for a large lawn and an oversized Buckminster Fullerish sphere.

I hope you can find your way to this Linwood Avenue garden on Garden Walk Buffalo next Saturday and Sunday, July 28 & 29, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Rather than blather, let me show you some photos…

A kitchen garden, intermixed with perennials, takes up a side yard.
Much like fruit stays fresh under a pyramid, based on my research, I can now unequivocally state that a beer tastes better in a sphere.
A well-placed spotlight projects art on that big solid wall.
Sculpture you can party in.
The fire pit with a sexy little wall with an espalier.
The formal French parterre garden.
I have a new favorite garden. You must by now too.


Jim Charlier is an advertising designer/photographer/crafter with a serious gardening problem. He's co-written a garden design book featuring the funky, quirky and fun gardens by the gardeners of Buffalo titled "Buffalo-Style Gardens: Create a Quirky, One-of-a-Kind Private Garden with Eye-Catching Designs" (BuffaloStyleGardens.com); he writes a long-standing garden blog (ArtofGardening.org); led the largest garden tour in America, Garden Walk Buffalo; has written for, or provided photography for dozens of magazines and books; has made presentations and participated in panel discussions on garden design and garden tourism nationally and internationally.

6 comments on “Having a ball in the garden

  1. That's freaking amazing. I want to have a ball too.


  2. LOVE the sphere and want to make a smaller one over the winter. I searched on line but don't see a source for the plans. Can you send a link?


  3. I love it! And I'd build it too! I also have a love for the fantastic sphere shape! It is such a perfect simple but also complex form. In my garden I call them orbs! But I make out of concrete! https://www.madebybarb.com/?s=orbs


  4. Pat, I believe this is where she bought the plans—I know she had to figure out how to make it a complete sphere, this one ends abruptly about three-quarters down. https://www.ebay.com/itm/WOOD-DOME-Geodesic-Dome-Greenhouse-TECNICAL-DRAWINGS-4m-8m-diameter-/223062691121


  5. Lisa at Greenbow

    An outstanding garden. A beer sphere. You are a poet too.


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