Planting the cottage garden of your dreams
- 30 of our most popular cottage garden selections
- Cottage gardens provide whimsy to your yard
- Perfect for feeling like you are inside of a serene painting
- Mix and match for an informal look
What makes a cottage garden unique?
When people say cottage garden, generally they are referencing a distinct style that utilizes informal design with dense plantings that include ornamental and edible plants. The style is English in origin and relies more on charm, whimsy, and grace than formal structure and grandeur. Basically, it's a garden with creative charm, playfulness, and softness. Yet, it is not quite the wild, free flowing look of a wildflower garden. There is some structure to a cottage garden, but it is a soft structure with plenty of grace, charisma and resplendent color.
The original cottage gardens were first planted by British laborers who had very little land and no real desire for flowers. Their goal was simply food for their families, and herbs for medicine. Some Flowers were incorporated for fragrant purposes (due to the lack of bathing facilities in the home), as well as for the purpose of warding off insects that were eating crops. Ironically, at the end of the 18th century, some members of the wealthy gentry came to idealize cottage life, thus creating their own, more lavish versions of cottage gardens. That is the point in which what we now know as cottage gardening came to be.
The best flowers for cottage gardens
Our Cottage Garden Flower selection is a great place to start when you are looking to embark on planting your very own cottage garden. Alliums, catmints, foxglove, lavender, sweet peas, and purple coneflower are all incredibly popular choices. However, the possibilities are endless. Remember, it's your garden, so plant the flowers that will bring you the most joy when strolling through them, sipping on your afternoon tea. So long as you have a romantic jumble of bulbs, flowering shrubs, annuals, and perennials that is not too carefully manicured, you are on your way.
Tips for planting a cottage garden at home
For the best results, have a loose idea of where you are planting, what you are planting, and the individual plant requirements. It can be helpful to draw out a garden plan. Invest in quality soil, and try to avoid high-maintenance plants that will require special care.
When selecting and planting your garden, remember to group plants with similar water, soil, and sun requirements together to ensure proper growth and ease of maintenance. Refer to the individual species planting guides for detailed planting instructions.