February 19, 2012

The Garden...Create What You Love

I am actually jumping ahead and planning for the new Texas garden. There is one thing I don't care for in gardens, and that is a manicured, formal look. I like to toss caution to the wind, and feel more at home in a relaxed design.

I am an English Cottage Garden girl!

Cottage gardens don't look designed. In fact, they're usually exuberant, free-flowering, and sometimes even unrestrained. To get an informal look, avoid planting in straight lines or defined patterns. Let plants cascade over paths and weave through each other. It adds to their charm. And grow self-seeding plants that pop up in unexpected places.

Most cottage gardens have a romantic feel. Part of that feel comes from the flowers. Look for blooms in soft pastel shades. Also look for plants packed with petals, such as peonies and old roses. As an added bonus, many of these varieties are also wonderfully fragrant. The biggest rule is that you create a look you love. Don't get caught up in trying to follow "the rules." Plant what you like and how you like it for a delightful cottage garden.

Bellflowers: This tough perennial produces spikes of white or blue blooms in early and midsummer. Like most cottage garden plants, the flowers are great for cutting. Full sun or part shade. Grow to 3 feet tall. Zones 3-8

Coralbells: In spring and early summer, Coralbells produce sprays of pink, red, or white flowers. These flowers are a top choice of hummingbirds. Part shade and well drained soil. Grows up to 3 feet tall. Zones 4-8

Foxgloves: This woodland biennial reliably produces beautiful upright spikes of bell-shape flowers in shades of purple, pink, and white. Note: While most common foxgloves are biennial, they often self seed and appear each year in the garden. Partial sun and well drained soil. Grows 2-6 feet depending on the variety. Zones 3-8

Hollyhocks: Among the tallest of perennials, hollyhocks bear flower spikes up to 8 feet tall. They bloom in a wide range of shades -- from nearly black to red, purple, yellow, and white. Full sun and moist well drained soil. Grows 4-8 feet tall. Zones 3-9.

Hydrangeas: shrub of incomparable beauty, hydrangeas produce large clusters of pink, blue, or white flowers in early summer. They're great for cutting, if you can bear to take them out of your garden. Partial sun and moist well drained soil. Grow up to 6 feet tall. Zones 4-9

Peonies: With their petal-packed blooms, peonies are some of the most romantic plants. They not only look great, but they bear a wonderful fragrance. And they're virtually pest free and quite drought tolerant. Full sun and well drained soil. Grow up to 5 feet. Zones 3-8

Phlox: One of the most brilliant plants of the late-summer garden, phlox produces stunning clusters of white, pink, lavender, and red blooms that bear a delightful fragrance. Full sun and moist well drained soil. Grows up to 4 feet. Zones 3-8.

Violets: With their edible and fragrant blooms, violets are among the most charming flowers for the cottage garden. These cool-weather lovers start in spring and often bloom again in fall. Partial to full shade. Grows up to 1 foot tall. Zones 4-8

My Inspiration...Appears to be the pefect meditation spot

1 comment:

  1. Lovely! I have spring fever so bad, this week I'm starting some seeds in my mini greenhouse. Texas was an eye opener for us, had to re-learn gardening in South Texas. We were so lucky to have neighbors who were native Texans and filled us in on what would grow in He double LL!


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