Selecting plants for a cottage flower garden will give your home greater beauty and value, while making you a proud homeowner. If you have always dreamed of having a splendid flower garden from the ground up, now is the time to put your plans into action. Before you apply backbone, muscle and spade to soil, take a few days to measure, plan and research. And remember, you can always choose to move plants around if you are not satisfied or your plants don't do well with your first attempts.
What to plant
Obviously, you will want to begin by improving your soil so that it is moist, but well drained, and nutritious. Start by adding composted manure or plain compost. Begin planting annuals as they are not too challenging for beginners and easily obtained. Following planting directions regarding sun , spacing and fertilizing requirements will aid in planting a successful cottage garden.
For either full sun or partially shaded areas, choose perennials and annuals as bedding, potted or hanging plants and provide your cottage garden with instant colorful arrays of flowers. Plant selections that will bloom from early spring to late autumn such as:
Begonias. With their brilliant white and pink flowers, these are easily one of the best heat tolerant plants and make beautiful, colorful additions to any garden area.
For low-growing border plantings, try Setcreacea Blue Sue. Not only is this plant dazzling in containers, its pink and contrasting purple and blue-tinged foliage make for wonderful flowering borders.
Another excellent choice for border planting is the two-tone dark lavender flowers of the Cuphea Plum Mist.
Bearded Iris, Daylilies, Lavender, Peonies and Geranuims are fast growing plants and also do well in hanging pots.
For shaded areas that receive less sun, try your hand at planting various ferns, Hosta, Metallic or Burgundy-leafed Heucheras and Silver Artemisia.
Plants With Low Watering Requirements
Climbing plants that do not require much watering and provide wonderful flowers and color are a plus to any cottage garden. Choose from:
Banksia Rose Rosa produces excellent masses of gorgeous yellow and white blooms throughout spring.
Carolina Jasmine, from the family of evergreens, has glossy, deep green leaves with bright contrasting yellow trumpet flowers, which also bloom throughout the spring.
Chinese Wisteria, vigorous and easily established as a climbing plant, produces heavy masses of lilac flowers and is extremely drought resistant. This climber has heavy production and needs a strong support system.
For beautiful clusters of brilliant purple or white flowers, blossoming and welcoming spring, try Native Sarsparilla Hardenbergia Violacea. This climber also requires low watering, but does need plenty of light.
To provide color and structure over the long term for your cottage garden, choose flowering evergreen shrubs for magnificent color and hardiness. Select from:
Blue Hibiscus which produces stunning mauve colored masses of flowers.
Balearic Island Sage. Easily cultivated in cottage gardens and produces a pink flowering shrub.
The many varieties of Geraldton Waxflower produce huge clustering of white-pink-red flowers over winter and spring.
Wart-leaf Ceanothus is a dense green shrub with blue flowers produced during spring, adding magnificent color to your garden