The Q&A Archives: Cottage Gardening

Questioner's Location: Patchogue, KS
Date: January 4, 1998

Question: I'm planning a cottage garden on the east side of my house. Most of it won't get 8 hours of sun (full sun). What plants do you recommend?

Answer: There are many options available to you when planning a cottage garden. I am of the opinion that a good cottage garden contains some or even better, all, of the following: Hollyhocks, Lavender, Black Eyed Susan, Cosmos, Primrose, Zinnia, Salvia, Foxgloves, Columbines, Cottage Pinks, Canterbury Bells, Poppy, and of course, roses (preferably a shrub rose or a climber). What type of sun do you receive if not 8 hrs. of full sun? Are you right on the edge of regular sun in that area or is it more of a partial shade environment? If it is closer to partial shade you may need to reconsider the "classic" cottage gardens. Most of the plants in a classic, traditional cottage garden will require more sun than a partial shade environment provides. Absolutely, we can put together a collection that will look like a cottage garden that will thrive in a partial shade environment, you just may not be able to use some (some of the above would work though) of the classics listed above. Let us know if you need any further information on sources, site preparation, or different selections for partial shade.

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