Garden Dilemmas, Delights & Discoveries, Ask Mary Stone, New Jersey Garden blog
lady's mantle leaves with water droplets

Dollar Spot & Lotus Effect

Hello fellow readers, Have you noticed on a humid summer morning, sometimes there are shiny clusters of droplets on what looks like cobwebs in the lawn? The webs could be the branching nature of dollar spot fungus. Or, they may be the webs of grass spiders. Then there are the adorable
Litter being picked up in a white grovery bag with a smiley face next to mugwort

Weeding Mugwort – Picking up Litter

Hello fellow readers, Did you ever wonder why folks toss trash out their window littering our world? Did someone teach them that? Or is it they have no respect for our dear earth. Rather than being angry about it as I used to be, I’ve begun to pick it up during road walks. I think of
a garden of yellow daffodils in the shape of a cross

Dividing & Sharing Perennials

Hello Fellow Readers, I thought you’d enjoy the story of how I celebrated Easter dividing and sharing perennials. Easter with family wasn’t to be as I’m sure was true for most of you. Instead, we took a road trip up to Pine Bush, NY, to tend to my family’s plot
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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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Plant more Plants!

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. Her presentatio

Bad Bamboo?

Hello fellow readers, Recently Katie of Piscataway NJ shared her ‘horrible backyard dilemma.’ Her home was once her Dad’s, which piqued my curiosity. How could her Dad’s backyard be so horrible? It turns out the neighbor’s bamboo has taken over. At first glance, bamboo seems appealing
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Castor Beans Plants hide ‘Uglies’

Hello fellow readers, Last week, I shared the desperate measure of hacking back leatherleaf viburnums plagued with aphids. Ironically, Betsy from Stone Church PA asked about using castor beans plants in her garden, which is what I planted to camouflage the ‘uglies’ of the
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Yarrow Babies

Hello fellow readers, I love when folks send pictures of their gardens especially when their plants make new babies. Kathy of Andover sent a picture of her baby yarrows. The dilemma though, is she has more babies than she can handle. Yarrow are indeed ambitious plants native to most o
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Color Fix at Meadowbrook Farm

Hello fellow readers, I had the privilege of visiting the in-process plants for the upcoming 20th Anniversary of the Springfest Garden Show. Meadowbrook Farms of Jenkintown PA is major player in propagating plants for the Philadelphia Flower Show as well. My colleague Marty Carson of
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A Cape May Treat

Hello fellow readers, Greetings from Cape May where I am enjoying a fall respite. Cape May is at the very end of New Jersey and has attracted vacationers since the mid-18th century designating it as the country’s oldest seaside resort. In 1878 a fire destroyed much of the town c