Flower Gardening

What Is a Cottage Garden and Should You Grow One

By Nina Koziol

You Don’t Need a Cottage to Grow a Cottage Garden

 Photo by Nina Koziol

Victorian gardeners treasured scented flowers and you can enjoy them, too, whether you live in a bungalow, ranch house, Tudor or Queen Anne. Dozens of annuals, perennials, bulbs, vines and shrubs offer sweet or spicy scents. The cottage garden is all about exuberance.

Beginning in spring, hyacinths and daffodils fill the air with honey-scented blooms. Viburnums, lilacs, mock orange and lilies-of-the-valley soon follow. Clove-scented carnations, sweet alyssum, sweet peas, roses and lilies continue to perfume the air through summer, and in fall, sweet autumn clematis cloaks fences and arbors with flowers that smell like almond and vanilla. Think abundance.


Learn More about Cottage Gardens

Smithsonian’s Archive of American Gardens

Cottage Gardens in the United Kingdom

America’s Romance with the English Gardenby Thomas Mickey

‘The Well-Designed Mixed Border’, by Tracy DiSabato-Aust

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