Garden Dilemmas, Delights & Discoveries, Ask Mary Stone, New Jersey Garden blog
a white dog with black ears playing with a tennis ball in snow

Merry Season of Love over Fear

Hello fellow readers, For the first time in a long time, I wrote a Christmas letter to send with greeting cards to friends from far away, sharing the joy coming from the arrival of our rescue dog Jolee. And the inspiration she gave us as we witnessed her maneuver through the fear and
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a hand holding a small book titled She who Loves to Garden

Sow Good Services

Hello fellow readers, This is the first since spring I’m starting our chat from the writing chair in the library—not to say the screen porch won’t be put into play over winter. I especially love to bundle up and write when snow is puffing through the screens. But today, if
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a red maple leaf resting on the edge of Catfish Pond

“Leaf Therapy” fills emptiness

Hello fellow readers, Camp Mohican has been a place of respite and contemplation since I moved to Blairstown, NJ, 21 years ago. Contiguous with the Appalachian Trail, it’s one of the reasons I relocated here. Walking amongst the trees always helps my heart. Yesterday, I desperat
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a hand holding a plastic dish with seven moths being released outside

Moths are Beautiful Too

Hello Fellow Readers,  A few weeks back, we chatted about how moths are like butterflies that party at night, a sentiment shared by Randi Eckel of Toadshade Wildflower Farm (link to the story below). Since then, I’ve grown far fonder of them; like butterflies, moths are beautifu
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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
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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
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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
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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
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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-
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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
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