Garden Dilemmas, Delights & Discoveries, Ask Mary Stone, New Jersey Garden blog
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Designing Garden Layers

Hello Fellow Readers, “Plant more plants” was music to my ears shared by Claudia West at the recent NJ Plants tradeshow held in Edison, NJ. Claudia is the Ecological Sales Representative of North Creek Nurseries, my go-to wholesale propagation nursery in Landenberg, PA. He
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Bright yellow daisy-like flowers of Swamp Sunflower near a lake.

Native Plants for Native Pollinators

Hello fellow readers, About a year ago, I enjoyed a visit to a free public garden managed by the Morris County Park Commission tucked away in Far Hills, NJ, which became a column topic titled Wandering Willowwood Arboretum. Bruce Crawford, formerly the Director of Rutgers Gardens, joi
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two yellow flowering sunflower heads

Delights in my Dry Summer Garden

Hello fellow readers, As I write, it is Labor Day, a day of rest for many, and thankfully soft rain has begun. Countless plants in our gardens and trees and shrubs are tired from the dry summer we endured. But there is magnificence too. This morning I invite you to walk with me to fin
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pink and red roses in the middle of a hedge of boxwood in front of a park bench

Beauty & Beast of Roses

Hello fellow readers, After meeting Stephen Scannilello and purchasing his book A Year of Roses, my love-hate relationship with the beauty and beast of roses turned to respect. As you may guess, the fairytale Beauty and the Beast has something to do with it. I hope you enjoy the story
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a white cotton candy looking nest of fall webworms in a tree against a bright blue sky

Fall Webworm vs. Tent Caterpillars

Hello fellow readers, Have you noticed what looks like cotton candy decorating trees? I thought they were Eastern tent caterpillars, also called tent worms, we see in spring. But it turns out the white webs, often two feet wide, are fall webworms –tent worms’ close cousins. Comp
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A womnaiwht short brown hair planting perennials on a steep slope

Planting a Steep Woodland Garden

Hello fellow readers, Working with Stephanie of Denville, NJ, who moved from the west coast, was a privilege. She bought a cute cottage in a lake community overlooking a magnificent forest. The severe back slope is a dilemma for those who wish to meander amongst the trees. That’
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A an older golden retriever with a white face and big smile named Miss Ellie Mae sitting in a garden .

Origin of Dog Days & Sweating Like a Pig

Hello fellow readers, Mysteriously, a photo of our dear Miss Ellie appeared while posting last week’s column. It was taken on a hot day while out weeding. Miss Ellie plopped herself in the garden to cool herself off. It brought a smile as recently I snagged a photo of Jolee doin
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a small butterfly with ornate green, taupe with white streak details

Gift of Meadows & Mountain Mint

Hello fellow readers, An invitation to a pool party inspired gathering flowers from the garden to bring to the hosts. One of the lovelies, Mountain Mint, reminds me of a walk in the meadow with my birder buddy and naturalist I look forward to sharing with you. Voluptuous Hydrangea Flo
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Rosemary DeTrolio, wiht dark shoulder length hair and a blue shirt, sitting on a garden step with her two tan dogs

Sharing Garden Blessings with Rosemary

Hello fellow readers, I enjoyed sharing stories of garden blessings with Rosemary DeTrolio while visiting her garden in Hope, NJ—a serene plot of vegetables and flowers planted by an extraordinary lady whose calling is to help others grow their spirit. As the owner of Hands of Light b
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a brown chipmunk with cheeks stuffed with nuts

Chipmunk Remedies & Legends

Hello fellow readers, I hope you enjoy the story of Jolee’s big dig, inspiring a chat about chipmunk remedies and legends about why they have stripes. “It’s the only way I could get her to stop digging.” Three weeks ago, after working in the field, I came home
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