Tonawanda News

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June 17, 2014

GARDENFEST: Escarpment homeowner is among the 18 gardens open to visitors during June 21-22 event.

Escarpment home is among the 18 gardens open for Lewiston Gardenfest

Tonawanda News — Greg Gima never planned to buy a home in Lewiston.  

He and his wife had looked at the house on a lark just before Christmas. But as soon as he saw the home’s setting, nestled up next to the the escarpment among the trees, the lifelong gardener  knew he had to have it.

Since then, he has been working on the gardens surrounding the home and is so enthusiastic about the results that he is welcoming visitors to see his efforts during the two-day Lewiston Gardenfest, which opens Saturday.

The former East Amherst resident says he has found a gardener’s “nirvana.” 

“The problem with trying to garden in East Amherst is you basically spend a lot of money on deer food,” he explained. Beyond that, his new home near the top of the escarpment had a lot more to offer in terms of views.

“It has absolutely incredible views,” he said. “In the living room, looking out the windows, you’re looking at the shelf of the escarpment, with really awesome views of trees and hillsides.”

The father of three sons, Gima, who grew up in Tonawanda, credits his love for gardening to his father, Peter, and has planted annuals in his new backyard because his father used to plant them for his mother, Patricia.  But the younger Gima prefers perennials and has included plenty of those, including salvia, siberian irises, day lilies and an assortment of peonies.

He has also installed two streams and waterfalls with the help of Drew Langston of AI Landscaping, who drew up the plans and enthusiastically dedicated weeks to the design, Gima said.

A manager at Dupont, Gima and his wife, Judy, a nurse, decided to open their home to the public after visiting the Lewiston Region Tour of Kitchens and Homes last year. They enjoyed the experience so much that they participated in Tour of Kitchens and Homes last week, and are among the 18 gardens open to the public during the Gardenfest, including 11 at The Gardens at Oxbow, a housing development just off Center Street.

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