The Happy Cottage

Small Garden Inspiration

This blog was started in Jan. 2017 on a cold bright winter day in my 1945 cottage home.  Photos of the Spring 2016 garden inspired me. Winter is after all, the perfect time for gardeners to daydream of Spring.

Join me for small garden inspiration interspersed with lifestyle.   Please share some of your ideas too!


Many older posts include slideshows, so give the first photo a click to start the show. Categories have been added below Archives to allow easier viewing of past posts: Artful Combinations and Pollinators may give you some good ideas for your garden.  Checkout the Butterfly and Moth Compendium for a catalog of sightings.

My gardening/lifestyle ethos: support Mother Earth and yourself by being as natural as possible.

Don't use synthetic chemicals and weed instead of spray. Include host and nectar plants for pollinators. Favorite garden medium:  organic mushroom compost. It's the soil that mushrooms were grown in.       

Full disclosure:  We do use biological mosquito dunks.


My gardening style has evolved over twenty years to include scent, food for butterflies, pollinators and birds 

and shelter for small creatures.  A multi-dimensional garden will bring you years of enjoyment!



February 26, 2017

In my 2017 quest to get healthier, I've added fruit infused water to the list.  This summer I had melon infused water at a hotel in Columbia, SC and found it to be a really nice touch. The warmer days here have encouraged me to try a couple of combos at home.  I have a...

February 23, 2017

I'm sure that the Piedmont in NC is setting a record for several weeks of warm weather in Feb.  I'm accustomed to the odd day of warmth here and there, but not a string of them.  This morning I noticed my forsythia is already sending out green leaves.  Normally, the fo...

February 19, 2017

I've often admired my neighbor Carol L.'s rose bush.  Once it starts blooming it keeps coming.  It appears to be unfazed by our summer heat.  A couple of years ago she had a pet name for this tremendous bush, Maleficent.  Remember the Angelina Jolie fantasy film? Today...

February 11, 2017

Julie B., a longtime friend and former work colleague sent me a packet of columbine seeds enclosed in my Christmas card this year.  I will pot the seeds today as it is in the mid 70's here, if you can believe it.  Don't worry,  I"ll bring them in for nightfall.  We hav...

February 4, 2017

About twenty years ago, I discovered barkcloth fabric and fell in love. 

I indulged in a few throw pillows and have had them ever since. Recently, the guest bedroom decor was in discord for awhile with the purchase of the wingback chair.  Once again, my love of prints p...

February 1, 2017

The Gaelic tradition of Imbolc or Saint Brigid's Day marks the halfway point between Winter Solstice and the Spring Equinox around Feb. 1st.  We have an expected high of 65 degrees today!  I'm looking for signs of growth in the garden.  Flora and fauna assure me that S...

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