March 2014
APLD NJ Newsletter
In This Issue
President’s Message
New Event
Greenwoods Garden Tour
From Our Winter Workshop
Book Reviews
Beauty of Bulbs
A Call for Submissions…
Chapter meeting/event Dates


 April 8 – Sponsor Meet & Greet

June 18, reception at Cottage Garden

Sept. 2014 two days visiting gardens and nurseries on Long Island



Wicki Stone


Pa. Day

Hopensack & Keller

Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve

Dates to Remember
April 8

June 18

watch for more specifics


Our Sponsors









 See our website for more about these sponsors…

President’s Message
APLDNJ is honored to be one of a very few chosen to install a garden at the 2014 Mansion in May. Blairsden in Peapack. Check this link for descriptions and photos:
Thank you to those who have offered help! We do need more volunteers  – to help lay sod and stone, plant small plants, and to be an APLD presence to greet visitors and talk about what we do.  Please watch for scheduling emails. The install has to be completed by 6PM, April 22 for preview parties, the press, etc. The show house is open every day in May.  62,000 square feet of house plus gardens will be visited by an estimated 27,000 people.  What’s the benefit? You, and your ability to create opportunity. Bring your business cards.
Continued thanks to Helen Grundmann, Jock Lewenden and Suzanne Bergeron who contributed so much effort to the success of the annual APLDNJ workshop day.
We have more events in the planning stages:
1) Sponsor Meet and Greet with a presenter from HOUZZ.  RSVP required.  Contractors may be invited as guests.  We need their names. Tues, April 8. Short Hills.
2) Cottage Garden, June 18.
3) Wicki Stone visit – TBD
4) Long Island visit garden and nursery – two mid September days
Your ideas are welcomed and encouraged.
Our Chapter board needs a refresh – A Secretary, and in 2015 a Treasurer, a President, a VP, and members to take on other roles.   Being part of this board is fun; it involves contributing time, and it is also about taking turns. Please consider giving a packet of time – bunches of you can each give a bit to make a lot.  APLDNJ is worth it.  Call me!
Wishing you each a banner 2014!
Jane Derickson-Friar



To all APLD NJ Chapter Members and their Guests

Our 4th annual “Sponsor Meet and Greet” event will be onTuesday, 6 to 9PM,  April 8th.


In order to show our appreciation to our sponsors for their support in 2013  and for their benefit as well as ours, we have changed the format a bit.


We have arranged for a 30 to 45 minute presentation from a representative from HOUZZ. Some of you may have heard of HOUZZ – for those that haven’t just click click here to take a peek!


We think this presentation will be beneficial to everybody in the audience.  We received favorable feedback on this idea from just about everyone we spoke with. So we hope you are as excited about this evening as we are!

We will have our “social hour” for our members to mingle with all of the sponsors at their designated tables. We will be providing light snacks along with wine, beer, soda and water. Instead of having each sponsor do a short speech about their product, we will formally introduce all of them.

We look forward to welcoming our new  sponsors of 2014: New Jersey Deer Control, and Condurso’s Nursery.


We have also invited contractors among other guests. Many of our members who are ‘design only’ look to hook up with a good installer. Our hope is that these contractors/installers might also become our sponsors or new members.


This year’s event will be held in the Parish Hall at Christ Church, 66 Highland Ave., Short Hills – the same place as last year.
Hopefully everyone will be attending again this year. We have already started making arrangements and need to know ASAP whether or not you are planning to attend.


Thank you once again.

Jane Derickson-Friar

APLDNJ Chapter President


Beth Riley

Sponsorship Chair


Send your reply back to:

Greenwoods Garden Tour by APLD-NJ members
On a clear, brisk fall evening, eight members of the APLD-NJ met to enjoy the delights of the both the new and ongoing renovations of the historic Greenwood Gardens in Short Hills, NJ.  Over the last century, the property was owned, and loved, by two very different families, which is evident in the gardens themselves.  The self-made multi-millionaire Joseph P. Day established the gardens as a private pleasure ground for his large family. His architect, William Whetten Renwick, laid out the garden on strict axes, divided into garden rooms bound by stone walls.  He created garden beds that were full of lush annuals and perennials, and the landscape was punctuated by stone teahouses, pergolas, reflecting pools, grottoes, and terraces. The Days sold the property, after which followed several years of decline.  In the 1950s, Peter P. Blanchard, Jr., a lawyer and gentleman farmer, and his wife Adelaide Childs Frick, a pediatrician, purchased the property and added to the Days’ landscape an overlay of evergreen formality and whimsical sculptural ornamentation.  In 2000, heirs to the property began the process of establishing Greenwood Gardens as a nonprofit conservation organization, reaching out for guidance to the Garden Conservancy, a national organization based in Cold Spring, New York. Greenwood Gardens is now one of 16 exceptional gardens in the country endorsed by the Garden Conservancy.

Several pieces of the original gardens have been renovated and recently reopened to the public, including the forecourt of the main house along with garden terraces to the rear.  These rear terraces overlook three terraced gardens, as well as a staggering view of the vast preserve of forest and meadow surrounding the property.  Talk about your ‘long view’!  Greenwood Gardens is a contemporary garden rooted in the Arts & Crafts and Classical approaches to garden design, with Italianate garden terraces, grottoes, meandering moss-covered paths, allées of sycamore and spruces, ornamental trees and shrubs, and wildflower meadows, among other features, occupying over 28 acres. Our walk encompassed the Tea House, the statuary that fills the walkways and nooks, the Garden of the Zodiac, and more.  There are many interesting cultivars of plants being used which are purported to be low maintenance and high performance, part of the Gardens ongoing efforts.

We left with the setting of the sun, as deep shadows filled the walkways.  We retreated to The Boxcar, Short Hills’ renovated train station, for some burgers and libations.  An enjoyable evening over all!

Provided by Susan Bergeron

Winter Workshop
Great event held at Frelinghuysen Arboretum on Thursday, February 27, 2014
The day started with a meadow presentation by Larry Weaner, so great to look at his gorgeous slides with a grey, cold winter day outdoors.  Over lunch we learned the details and importance of APLD Certification from Susan Cohan, APLD, and Marti Neely, APLD; it was recommended that with changes coming to the certification process, that any member who is thinking about moving ahead with this should do it as soon as possible.  After a nice sandwich and salad lunch, we had lots of inspiration from Stone Man Dan Harney.  The talk was both artistic and practical, noting not only design applications and slides but of good stone techniques.
Stone Man Dan!
Captivated Audience!

APLD Leadership Conference
Philadelphia, PA
…photo from Susan Cohan

Four Good Books
     by Jeannie Marcucci
One of the nice things about winter (yes, there are some…) and it being too cold to do much outdoors is the opportunity to catch up on some overdue reading, especially if you had the good fortune of gathering a few new items at the holidays.
Starting my winter reading is Design in the Little Garden by Fletcher Steele.  This charming small book is published by the Library of  American Landscape History, the frontispiece a black and white photo of the author taken in 1930 in a three piece suit sitting in what appears to be a highly uncomfortable but tasteful carved stone garden chair.  In the introduction we read that it was the mission of Mr. Steele and colleagues to “educate ..homeowners in matters of taste” (p. xiii) as they left the city and moved into the suburbs. How good of them to take this on…

In Chapter II we read, ” It would not be surprising in this upside-down modern world if the next important step in garden design should be developed in cities and spread to the country” (p. 11.) The same could be said today of designers like Lynden Miller whose efforts transformed many derelict spaces in New York City but whose own garden had been featured and inspired many from the pages of Fine Gardening magazine. In Chapter V we feel as sense of nostalgia –or maybe cringe, or maybe laugh —with the “best bedding [list:]

  1. Box edging
  2. Alternate ageratum and Souvenir de Bonn abutilon
  3. Pink begonia
  4. Whitish pink begonia interrupted by one yellow calceolaria every fifth plant
  5. Red begonia and ageratum alternately
  6. (Middle line) standard roses 10 feet apart: halfway between, one large yellow calceolaria —the rest heliotrope

5,4,3,2,1 repeated” (p. 43.) I am glad I have available to me a larger plant palate …
Moving to the contemporary, is Michael Pollan’s Second Nature, a Gardener’s Education which I bought at City Lights Bookstore in San Francisco last fall.  A great book from a great bookstore.  It was published in 1991 and I managed to miss it even having read some of Pollan’s more recent books.  I remembered along with his writing some of my early experiences as a gardener, and the influence–both good and bad– of parents and grandparents on this endeavor.  The book is divided into sections by season, and Pollan takes us through his garden and hence his own gardening education, trials and successes. In the Summer chapter we red about roses and the author’s preparation for some heirloom roses brought by post as bare root. “As Gardener’s are fond of pointing out, the modern rose industry appears to have modeled itself after Detroit. Each year it introduces a handful of ‘exciting’ new models, many of them in improbable neon and metallic shades better suited to a four-door than a flower, and bearing a loud hypey name dreamed up on Madison Avenue and duly trademarked.   Chrysler Imperial is actually the name of a rose. So is Sunsation. And Broadway ( a two-toned wonder gaudy as a showgirl.) hoopla Hoop. Patsy Cline. Penthouse. Sweetie Pie. Twinkie. Teeny Bopper. Fergie. Innovation Minijet. Hotline. Ain’t Misbehavin’. Sexy Rexy. Givenchy. Graceland. Good Morning America. And Dolly Parton (a rose with, you have probably guessed, exceptionally large blossoms.)” (p. 83.) All true to Pollan’s witty style…


…..continued below sponsor page…..



Beauty of Bulbs
     by Bruce Crawford



One of the great pleasures of bulbs is their ability to provide the element of surprise!Whether the bulbs were planted this past fall or 10 falls past, we always forget where they are located and their colorful arrival is a welcomesurprise each year.  One of the other benefits is the longevity of bulbs, as many will not merely survive, but multiply and perhaps even naturalize in the garden.  Of course, the great challenge of their covert existence is the recollection of where they are located, since the element of surprise also means they can be dug up or damaged during those months when they lie dormant!


Interestingly, what gardeners and catalogues often lump under the heading of bulbs may not in fact be a bulb at all, but rather a corm or rhizome!  A true bulb consists of swollen leaves or leaf stalks, which are connected at the base by a modified stem called a basal plant.  The outer layers of a bulb are modified leaves called scales.  Scales contain the necessary food reserves to sustain the bulb during dormancy and during the early stages of growth.  The outermost scales become dryand form a papery covering called a tunic, which serves to prevent desiccation and predation.  At the center are embryonic flowers, leaves and stems while the roots develop from the basal plate.  Examples of true bulbs for the garden are Tulipia (Tulip), Narcissus (Daffodil), and Allium (Flowering Onion).


Corm is yet another type of ‘bulb’.  A corm is a swollen stem that has been modified for nutrient storage.  Eyes or growing points develop on top of the corm from which leaves and flowers develop.  Similar to bulbs, roots develop from the basal plate and it is covered by dried bases of the leaves or the tunic.  Examples include Crocus, Gladiolus and Colchicum (Autumn Crocus).  The last ‘bulb’ is a tuber, which is also a modified stem, but it lacks a basal plate and an outer tunic.  Roots, shootsand leaves emerge from eyes and it is nearly impossible to determine which side is up from down.  Examples are Cyclamen, Eranthis (Winter Aconite) and Anemone blanda (Wind Flower).


Most spring bulbs are native to drier regions of the world and these modified leaves or stems allow the plants to remain dormant and endure extended periods of extreme heat, drought or both.  Typically, they develop ‘true’ leaves, flower and set seed during spring when there is ample moisture and the temperatures are conducive to growth.  As the growing conditions become more inhospitable, dormancy quickly ensues!  In general, ‘bulbs’ are easy plants to grow, requiring full sun, good drainage and moderately fertile soils with a pH near neutral or even slightly alkaline. Bulbs with large underground structures of one inch or better are termed ‘Major Bulbs’.  Tulips, Daffodils and Hyacinths are good examples.  ‘Minor Bulbs’ have underground structures smaller than one inch, with Galanthus, Crocus and Chionodoxa serving as examples.  In general, ‘bulbs’ should be planted to a depth of 3x the diameter of the bulb.  If they are planted too shallow, they will produce numerous bulbets (small bulbs) or cormels (small corms) which are often too small to produce flowers.  This is the primary reason why older planting of bulbs only produce green foliage and not flowers.  As a general rule, bulbs are best transplanted before the old foliage has vanished or planted as early as possible in the fall.  Consider large sweeps of bulbs for the best possible impact in the Gardens.  For the major bulbs, think in terms of multiples of 50 and for the minor bulbs, anything under 300 will be underwhelming!  Typically, I plant the larger bulbs one to a hole, but for the minor bulbs, a more natural effect is achieved if 4 to 6 bulbs are planted per hole – hencethe need for at least 300!


Although unsightly, do not remove the bulb foliage until after it has completely yellowed or become dormant.   The foliage is producing the carbohydrates necessary to increase the size of the ‘bulb’ and correspondingly, the flower display for the following year.  Minor bulbs should be allowed to seed as they often naturalize beautifully.  Many bulb seeds have a small white starchy appendage called an elaiosome.  Ants are attracted to this appendage which usually has aromatic compounds and is rich in sugars, amino acids and oils.  Ants will abscond with the seed and consume the elaiosome or feed it to the developing young.  They will either just drop the seed if it is not in the ant hill or discard it in their various ‘Compost Bins’.  In this manner, the seeds are distributed far and wide and the plants naturalize!


Both major and minor types of bulbs can easily be accommodated in the mixed border or in meadow setting.  In perennial borders, use clumps of the larger (major) bulbs such as Allium, Narcissus or Camassia (American Potato) as they will be planted deeper and less likely to be disturbed.  The smaller (minor) bulbs reseed and are easily disturbed during division of the perennials.  However, this ability to reseed makes them great candidates for naturalizing in areas of the garden that will not be disturbed, such as areas beneath shrubs and in lawns.  In fact, many of the minor bulbs can be easily grown – and with luck, naturalized – in shrub borders or mixed borders beneath leggy and still slumbering deciduous shrubs.  Before the shrubs leaf out, there is adequate sun for the bulbs to flourish and mature.  Plus, the area beneath the shrubs is usually dry in the summer, creating the proper conditions for the bulbs to thrive.  If planting into lawns, select the earliest blooming bulbs, such that the foliage will have withered sufficiently by the first cut of turf.  Narcissus is best grown in areas with full sun, but not in lawns since this foliage does not become dormant until mid to late June or in moist years, July!


The challenge always becomes which bulbs to plant?  In general, I stay away from Tulip hybrids; they perform admirably during the first season, but subsequent years yield fewer and small blooms.  However, it you have a warm, sun drenched and dry location, consider some of the speciestulips, such as Tulipa tarda (pictured above).   As with Magnolias, the outer sepals and the inner petals appear identical and are therefore called tepals.  Appearing in May, the tepals are white with a yellow center and appear atop 8-10″ long stems. The back of the outer most tepals are blushed with purple, making it an attractive flower in both bud and bloom!


…..continued below sponsor page…..


Our  Sponsors…. 



Brock farms logo

Bartlett logo
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Walpole Woodworkers




Continued…Beauty of Bulbs
     by Bruce Crawford



For those gardeners with deer, Tulips are best avoided, since they are a deer delicacy!  However, there are still many choices that deer do not prefer.  One of my favorites for late February and early March is Eranthis hyemalis or Winter Aconite (above). Native to woodlands of France east to Bulgaria, this member of the Ranunculaceae or Buttercup family has bright yellow flowers that literally sit atop the foliage.  They will slowly naturalize and over a course of 50 years will spread throughout both shrubs and turf.  Obviously not ideal for those that prefer the perfect lawn, it is a refreshing sight come the end of winter and the plants are not deterred by mowing starting in April!  This plant is best moved about while it is still in leaf during early May, but if ordered from a catalogue, make certain that the tubers are soaked for 6-12 hours before planting.  Rehydrating the tubers is paramount to its success!


Another great bulb for those in deer country is Galanthus, commonly called Snowdrop.  From the Greek Gála for milk, ánthos for flower.  There are a number of different species from which to select, but they are all winners!  Plants typically start to bloom in late February, or as soon as the snow-pack melts. Galanthus nivalis, (picture above) is readily available in most bulb catalogues.  It too will readily seed into turf areas and is a delight to behold.  Unlike the tulip, it is the outer protective sepals that are enlarged and resemble true petals, while the petals are much reduced and are typically streaked with green.


The number of additional ‘bulbs’ is enormous, but I would be greatly remiss if I did not mention Crocus tommasinianus or Tommasini’s Crocus (pictured below).  Found growing on limestone hills in Dalmatia, plants bloom in late February into early March.  The straight species is one of the best for seeding and naturalizing into lawns as the foliage is very slender and does not look offensive in turf.


Bulbs, Corms and Tubers are a vast group of plants, but with their minimal maintenance requirements and number smiles of surprise they provide come spring, they should be far more common in the landscape.  My hope is that more of these treasures find their way into your garden and your spring will be filled with lasting smiles.



Continued….Four Good Books
     …by Jeannie Marcucci

The Power of Trees  by Gretchen Daily and Charles Katz, Jr. is a photo journey in black and white, “trees define our lives and the future of humanity” (page last.)Gretchen Daily is Bing Professor of Environmental Science at Stanford University; Charles Katz is an active photographer as well as a lawyer and business executive. He serves on the board of directors of the Nature Conservancy of Washington.

According to the authors, “after trees, Earth waited 165 million years before the first mammals appeared. And another 145 million years before the first monkey-like creatures swung from branch to branch in treetops.”


Last, I loved Vegetables: A Biography by Evelyne Block-Dano.


I learned that butter was once considered peasant food, the aristocracy preferring animal fat as a spread for bread; how the evolution, so to speak, of vegetables in diet came along with the evolution of cuisine and the acceptance of aristocracy to eat them, thus elevating them to a new status.  Thankfully!  This charming little book is a blend of history, like Pollan’s books, a peek into the human fascination for plants not only to eat, but for other things they provide us as they capture our senses and describe our culture and our time. The author includes many references to literature as well.  This from Samuel Beckett’s novel First Love: “I like parsnips because they taste like violets and violets because they smell like parsnips. Were there no parsnips on earth violets would leave me cold and if violets did not exist I would care as little for parsnips as I do for turnips, or radishes” (p.56.)

The book is also populated with a variety of recipes that correspond to the chapter.


A Call for Submissions….
Anybody looking to submit articles or photos for future newsletters please send your questions and material to:
Jeannie Marcucci
Jeannie Marcucci
APLD New Jersey Chapter Writer
Copyright 2013 Association of Professional Landscape Designers, New Jersey Chapter, All Rights Reserved.