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

Beaver or Woodchuck?

Hello fellow readers, ‘Help! A woodchuck is eating my trees’, writes Lucia, ‘and is he has moved in right near my front door where there’s a deep hole about a foot in diameter. So I think; do I bake a cake, bring some wine or what? Who can I call to help him move to the San Diego Zoo?

Finding Neem Oil

Hello fellow readers, Last week we spoke about aphids and a remedy using dish detergent. Since then, there’s been an influx of other kitchen and natural remedies against undesirables. Gail of Stone Church suggests garlic, a natural insect repellent as it emits a strong odor that

Taming the Jungle

Hello fellow readers, Diane of Knowlton asked for tips to “tame her jungle” which sounds like weeds and overgrown plants may be her dilemma. Weeds are misplaced plants – not a Mary original definition but frequently used to justify my naturalized landscape which sounds much bett
Deer Damage on Evergreens, Mary Stone of Garden Dilemmas

To Prune or Not to Prune

Hello fellow readers, To prune or not to prune, that is the question from Mary of Blairstown (that would be me) and oodles of others who are perplexed and annoyed by the devastating damage from the harsh winter. Plants that normally would be well on their way to showing signs of promi

Annuals vs. Perennials

Hello fellow readers, We are officially through our risk of frost so it’s time to shop for annuals. Many nurseries sell perennials in flats as well. Bob from Hackettstown was brave enough to ask what the difference between annuals and perennials is. I am certain it is confusing to man
Stop Garden Volcanoes Mary Stone Garden Dilemmas

Volcanos vs. Proper Planting

Hello fellow readers, 100 columns ago we began out garden chat; which has more to do than digging in the dirt as gardens are a medium for all that grows in life don’t you think? So for column 101 it seems fitting to reflect back on our very first topic; the etiquette of planting and m
Daffodils Mary Stone Garden Dilemmas

Easter Blessings

Hello fellow readers, Our world is greening up and the snow drops are finally peaking almost a month behind last year! As predicted the ticks have made a robust comeback after a long winter protected by the snow. Nasty pests I think our creator could have done without, though I suppos

Over seeding

Remember Ed from Basking Ridge who wrote in about his digger dog?  It seems Dulcie also loves a good game of fetch and Ed wonders how to create a lawn to stand up to speedy turns. His current lawn rolls up, has little root structure and is mostly crab grass and clover. Whether you hav
Winter Burn Mary Stone of Garden Dilemmas

Winter Burn

Hello Fellow Readers, Now that the tundra has melted away the damage caused by our infinite winter has come to full view.  Holy cow! Or should I say Holy Deer. For the first time my evergreen shrubs were hammered by Bambi. I’m trying not to hold a grudge as the poor things were starvi

Woolly Adelgid & Hemlock Mulch

Hello Fellow Readers, At last-the official start of spring! One of the chores many delve into along with their spring cleanup is freshening up their mulch. John from Andover asked what mulch he should use. Last week we spoke about the trend in using cocoa mulch but learned it can be t