Garden Dilemmas, Delights & Discoveries, Ask Mary Stone, New Jersey Garden blog
A burst of morning sunshine through a forest of trees in fall.

Forest Bathing

Hello fellow readers, Once again, I begin our chat dictating while walking in the sights and sounds of nature. As I reflect on a pet loss ceremony we attended on Sunday, a monarch butterfly joins us, flying a bit ahead bringing a smile as the event was a butterfly release ceremony. Bu
Read More

Birthday Reflection Pulse Check

Hello fellow readers, Monday, the day the column is due to The Press, became a Birthday Reflection Pulse Check I’d like to share with you. Thank you for reading! May we all remember to embrace the unexpected in this garden of life and take more time to play. Birthday Reflection
Read More
small baby blue eyes blue spruce with needle cast symptoms of browned and drooping treetop and side needles.

Needle Cast on Ellie’s Memorial Tree

Hello fellow readers, Ellie’s memorial tree is showing signs of severe decline. About a month ago, I noticed the tippy-top of her Baby Blue Eyes Spruce badly wilted. A colleague confirmed its suffering from the dreaded Needle Cast. Still, I choose to believe there is Hope. We’ve chatt
Read More
closeup of a black and white dog with a nametag Jolee

Three Sisters Gardening & Jolee’s Emergency

Hello fellow readers, I intended this week’s topic to be about Three Sisters Gardening—companion plants in your vegetable gardens stemming from Native Americans. They combined corn, pole beans, and squash, creating an ecosystem for sustainable gardening. Rather than planting in
Read More
closeup of a large yellow sunflower bloom

Lessons from Woman with Flower

Hello fellow readers, While searching my stash of questions and garden of life tidbits, I came across an influential poem by Naomi Long Madgett titled Woman with Flower that I first heard over a handful of years ago. Most that review Naomi’s poem believe it pertains to a mother-
Read More
a snowman with a blue CZC tag around his neck with the name Mark Frosty

What’s in Store? Lessons from Frosty

Hello fellow readers, It’s coming up on nine years of our weekly chats. Hard to imagine! One of the annual topics is what’s in store for winter in the garden of life. From weather folklore to the go-to almanacs and weather authorities, none seem to agree this year, much li
Read More
Black and white photo of a smiling golden retriever in front of a boulder

Unexpected Furry Messenger

Hello Fellow Readers, As you know, Miss Ellie Mae is the mascot for our column since we began our weekly chats over eight years ago. With a heavy heart, I share the news that we helped her go home on Tuesday. She arrived unexpectedly eleven years ago during a tough time of transition.
Read More
two woman opening a wood and screen cage with monarch butterflies

Hospice Butterfly Release

Hello Fellow Readers, What a privilege to participate in a Butterfly Release Celebration hosted by Karen Ann Quinlan Hospice. It’s their 20th year of the celebration and the 40th year of serving our community. Previously they’ve held the event live in the counties they ser
Read More
Fall-leaf-in-hand

Fall is not Goodbye

Hello Fellow Readers, There’s a fall-ish feeling in the air, and today it’s official. September 23rd is when the sun will pass directly above the equator as it crosses from north to south marking the autumnal equinox. Soon leaves will change color and drop to the ground where th
Read More
Rosa-Dr.-Van-Fleet -Climbing-Roses

The Beauty and Beast of Roses

Hello Fellow Readers, Roses can be fussy. But when roses are in their glory, they surely are glorious. Lessons shared in the Beauty and the Beast… One should never judge another based on appearances – a lesson shared in the Beauty and the Beast enjoyed at the Papermill Theatre i
Read More
Head shot of Mary Stone in a straw hat   Join my free weekly newsletter!
Holler Box