Plants for a traditional cottage garden – blues

We love our outside space here at Cosy Home, and we’re particularly fond of a traditional cottage garden. This is a look you can recreate in pretty much any size or shape of garden by putting in the right plants – you could even use planters or pots to transform a small yard area. The colours in a cottage garden are predominantly blue, white and pink with a focus on herbs and flowers. Here’s what to plant:

1. Lavender

Lavender Image: Pixabay

Everyone’s favourite, including the bees, lavender is surprising hardy and thrives in poor oil. It prefers a sunny, sheltered position and will grow to to 30cm in height, with a mass of slender, very fragrant bluey purple flowers in the summer. Outside flowering season, the silver-grey leaves are pretty too. It’s easy to care for – just cut it back in the late summer to remove all the dead flower stems and a little of the current year’s growth. The flowers are lovely to use for drying or cooking.

2. Borage

Borage. Image: Pixabay

Another very pretty, traditional plant, borage can grow up to a metre in height so is best planted towards the back of the bed. It prefers full or partial sun, and has a coarse, hairy stem and bright blue flowers. The flowers are lovely added to salads or frozen into ice cubes to add to drinks.

3. Rosemary

Rosemary. Image: Pixabay

lthough better known as a foliage plant, rosemary also has a great number of tiny purple flowers in the summer, and bees love them. Another plant that prefers a sunny position, rosemary has many uses around the kitchen for cooking and also looks attractive used for foliage with cut flowers.

4. Forget-me-nots

Forget-me-nots. Image: Pixabay

hese sweet little blue flowers will grow pretty much anywhere, and will add a touch of colour to beds and tubs. A word of warning though – they grow like weeds, and have a tendency to spread themselves lavishly not only over your own garden but also that of your neighbours and even the whole street!

5. Iris

A Japanese iris. Image: Pixabay

Irises come in a whole range of sizes and colours, but we love iris laevigata or Japanese iris which have gorgeous deep blue flowers with yellow and white flashes at the base of the petals. They spread quickly, and look spectacular when flowering. They also make lovely cut flowers for the houes.

6. Periwinkle

Periwinkle makes excellent ground cover. Image: Pixabay

Periwinkle’s a quick and easy choice for filling a bed. It thrives in most conditions from full shade to full sun, and has attractive dark green leaves all year long. A low, quick growing plant, it flowers with a profusion of blue flowers from mid-spring to late summer.

7. Harebells

These harebells look fragile but are actually quite hardy. Image: Pixabay

Otherwise known as campanula, these plants grow in clumps like bluebells and have pretty bell or star shaped flowers that appear in early summer. They prefer a semi-shaded position, and are very easy to look after.

8. Hyacinths

Fragrant hyacinths are among the first flowers of spring. Image: Pixabay

Great for adding a bit of early colour, hyacinths are bulbs with broad leaves and columns of bell-shaped flowers that smell wonderful. They can grow up to 30cm in height so are fine for the front of a bed, tubs or dotted among other plants. They look spectacular when flowering in the spring, but die off quickly after flowering – you can help this process along by cutting off the dead flowers.

By Sara Walker

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