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

Hello fellow readers, “Is there such a thing as wild hydrangea?” asked Tammy of Marshalls Creek PA. There is. Hydrangea arborescens is commonly known as Smooth Hydrangea or Wild hydrangea and its native in the woodlands of the northeast, but it blooms in the spring. What Tammy is noti

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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Doggone Dogwood Disease

Hello fellow readers, Anthracnose (Ann-thrack-nose, my phonetics) is the most talked about and the most serious amongst the doggone dogwood dilemmas. Though powdery mildew, leaf and flower blight spot, and crown canker rank high. Never mind the dogwood borer which can run amuck. Turns
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Trees of Life

Hello fellow readers, I’m back from the Woody Plant Conference held at Scott Arboretum Swarthmore College PA, always a treat. While not nearly as knowledgeable as the scientists and arborists in attendance, I have a love affair with trees; especially those that have lived far longer t
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Independence Day on the Top of the World

Hello fellow readers, Last Sunday we visited a favored hiking spot, Big Pocono State Park, which sits atop Camelback Mountain Resort in Tannersville, PA. I’ve coined it the Top of the World where you can see eastern Pennsylvania and portions of New Jersey and New York. More than that,
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Extraordinary Gardeners, Extraordinary Plants

Hello fellow readers, You may recall last year I missed the annual opportunity for annuals, then scrambled to doll up my empty pots with perennials late in the season. While I loved when their little faces emerged in the garage where they overwintered, and they are doing beautifully,
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Choosing Annuals

Hello Fellow Readers, (Excuse the late posting of this week’s column. I’ve been hobbling along without internet since last Tuesday’s Wizard of Oz storm. Humbling!) We have the green light for annuals based on the wisdom to wait until after the last frost date, typica
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Terrariums: a Mini-gardening Warmup

Hello Fellow Readers, Just before our gardens kicked into gear, I had the privilege of dropping in on a succulent event hosted by A&J Messina Greenhouses in Blairstown NJ which served as a mini-gardening warmup. What a lively group of over seventy guests learning how to make a ter
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Talking to Trees on Arbor Day

Hello Fellow Readers, Arbor Day occurs worldwide different times of the year based on the growing season. In the United States, its celebrated the last Friday in April, the origins of which dates to 1872 when J. Sterling Morton, President Cleveland’s Secretary of Agriculture, spearhea
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Spring Cleanup & Pruning Lavender

Hello Fellow Readers, At last the big cleanup. Curt and I spent eight hours cleaning up branches, sticks, and wheelbarrows of hickory nut hulls. The critters ate the nuts and left the husks. Talk about poor table manners…. Then there were the bucket loads of cones, a sign our hemlocks