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5 Elements of a Cottage Garden

Today, we’re sharing 5 elements of a cottage garden!

It’s been fabulous weather in Florida lately and I’m so excited to get outdoors to soak in every ounce of sunshine.

Especially now, as we transition into Spring.

Making Time to Tour Local Gardens

Each year we try to be intentional about spending an entire uninterrupted day touring the grounds of various museums and attending garden club events too.

It’s something we look forward to every year.

Garden tours provide fantastic outdoor living ideas through color combinations, flower or shrub variety, the layering of texture and use of space.

It’s also a fun way to meet other locals and fellow garden enthusiasts.

Planning the Elements of a Cottage Garden

Thankfully, you can grow a garden with a small patch of land or even in containers. It doesn’t have to be anything really elaborate just something you can maintain that brings you joy.

Cottage gardens are great because you can start small and expand over time.  They don’t have to be perfectly maintained like formal gardens and the best part is that they’re usually budget friendly too!

Every time I spend a day touring local gardens it makes me want to head straight for the nursery to pick up gobs of plants!

I love flowers and I know that many of you do too. Over the past few years, we’ve really enjoyed our outdoor spaces and I hope this year to enjoy them even more.

It’s definitely a dream of mine to have a large cottage garden one day. I know that takes a bit of researching, planning and plenty of time to devote to maintaining healthy plants.

Here’s a look at the 5 top elements of a cottage garden:

Create an Informal Design with Curved Pathways

When planning a cottage style garden, create an informal and whimsical design with curved pathways.

Utilize plants, flowers and shrubs that are free flowing and will add cascading or unrestrained charm.

Grow Heirloom Flowers and Plants

Cottage gardens are filled with heirloom blooms.  So, while you’re planning be sure to make room for flowers like:

  • Peony
  • Foxglove
  • Snapdragons
  • Lily of the Valley
  • Pansy
  • Camellias
  • Roses
  • Gardenias
  • Hydrangeas
  • Lilacs
  • Phlox
  • Lavender

Choose Soft Romantic Plants in Complimentary Color Combinations

Choosing plants is complimentary color combinations is always so hard for me because I want to bring them all home ?

Plant flowers in soft shades of pastel in small pockets throughout the garden or on arbors.

Climbing roses, rambling roses, jasmine and wisteria not only smell good but also make a visually beautiful statement.

Use Structures with Vintage Charm

Remember to add interest, texture and height to your cottage garden by using structures with vintage or antique charm.

Pieces that have been reclaimed, salvaged, or have well-worn patinas are quirky and unexpected and will ooze cottage charm.

Select an Eclectic Mix of Outdoor Furniture

Part of what makes a cottage garden so much fun to enjoy is incorporating an eclectic mix of outdoor furniture.

For example:

  • Wicker
  • Painted or patinaed metal
  • Chippy woods

These seemingly mismatched pieces are the perfect complement to a cottage garden.

Elements of a Cottage Garden to Keep in Mind

As you’re creating a cottage garden remember to plant close by crowding perennials, annuals, vegetables and foliage.  This will help to promote the informal feel cottage gardens are known for.

You’ll also need to keep the soil well fed, healthy and continually maintained which means you’ll need to use both rich soil and mulch.

Take your time planning for your specific zone and water requirements.  But don’t feel like you have to be super strict and follow all the rules.

Cottage gardens are meant to be wild, whimsical, overflowing and informal so remember to have fun while you’re creating!

Let us know if you’re planning a garden this year! We’re always curious about what you’re planting.

Additional Garden Pots and Planning Posts You Might Enjoy:

Until next time, I’ll see you on Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest.

Many blessings,

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  1. I love flowering trees! We don’t have any on the property but I would love to have some cherry blossoms or some dogwoods. They always make for a show-y display. Hugs, CoCo

    1. So glad you like these cottage garden ideas, Josiah. Spring is one of our favorite times of the year to get our hands dirty and to plant all sorts of gardens. Can’t wait to follow along and see what you’re planting this season too, CoCo

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