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

She’s a Beautyberry

Hello fellow readers, It’s a marvel how life brings people together. It’s one of the joys gained from the work I do. Especially when I rub shoulders with fellow gardeners, many far more accomplished than I in nurturing plants. Such is the case of Jacquie of Byram NJ who reached out fo
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Front Lawn Alternative

Hello fellow readers, When I met Stephanie of Denville NJ four years ago, she wished to forgo a front lawn and plant a garden she could stroll through and enjoy viewing from the inside looking out. An ambitious undertaking for most, but I quickly learned Stephanie didn’t think so. I d
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Planning an Alpine Garden

Hello fellow readers, One of the joys of doing what I do as a Landscape Designer is working with special folks with special properties, many with garden dilemmas that I see as opportunities. Like James of Sparta NJ who lives on a mound of massive moss rocks. Literally, his foundation
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Readying for Organic Veggies

Hello fellow readers, Sara from Oxford NJ asked how to prepare a plot in her backyard for organic vegetable gardening come spring. She suspects the previous owners used chemicals as when they moved in, the lawn “looked like a golf course.” Kudos Sara. It’s smart to consider the previo
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Dogs and Deer

Hello Fellow Readers, I’m delighted to help Pam and Ed of Sparta NJ create a useful backyard for their rescue canine kids to run. It surely was a dilemma as the grade change from their side gate to the flatter back forty compares to a ski slope. Walking the area was difficult for two-
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Gardens Glow

Hello fellow readers, Do you recall as a kid waiting until the last minute to finish your homework? As adults, it’s not about waiting, more about not having a minute to spare. Rush, rush, rush. You know the drill. Last on the list is my own garden. When I do make the time it bri
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Desperate Measures

Hello fellow readers, I’ve always thought the reasons to prune are similar to the reasons of caring for ourselves and our families. Improving appearance and health, training the young, controlling size, preventing injury or damage, rejuvenating the old, and influencing bounty. Darren
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How can it Bee?

Hello fellow readers, They say one out of every three bites of food depends on a pollinator. According to the Pollinator Partnership, the largest non-profit organization in the world dedicated to the protection of pollinators, the U.S. has lost over 50 percent of its managed honeybee
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Blank Wall Dilemma

Hello fellow readers, Kelly from Forks Township shared that she stares at a blank wall.  It’s their detached garage which sits directly behind the house and is covered with asbestos siding.  Having small children, she’d like to protect the wall from damage ‘by sports balls and the lik
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Fall Hunting & Gathering

Hello Fellow Readers, A few weeks ago we spoke about fall tasks and one is to take advantage of the great season to plant. What should he plant asked Harry from Hardwick. By and large anything that’s available and fits into your landscape plan and cultural environment – wi