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!



September 28, 2017

So, if you've noticed a slow down on photos, here is why.  The North Carolina Drought Management Advisory Council has confirmed that we are indeed classified as Abnormally Dry.  We've had a fairly gentle summer until mid-August, so that was great, but we haven't receiv...

September 26, 2017

Have you ever had mixed feelings about an unknown weed in your garden?  This year I found what might be a tomato seedling in the front yard sun bed and transplanted it into the herb bed in the back.  Voila!  I have dry-grown cherry tomatoes.  I noticed the fruits this...

September 22, 2017

Autumn Equinox found me at a garden center.  The traditional planting of pansies in pots is here.  Photos will follow soon.  In the meantime, one of my favorite grasses has started to open, Pink Muhly grass.  I have a collection of five next door and one is way ahead o...

September 9, 2017

I finally have some photos of hummingbirds.  As mentioned on previous posts the Black and Blue Sage is a favorite of theirs.  I was fortunate to catch a photo of a female using the Obedient plant, physotegia virginiana and the Black and Blue Sage....

September 6, 2017

Salvia is a great choice to keep your garden going into late summer and early fall.  I deadhead all of these with the exception of the pink annual Salvia.  The annual will keep going until November some years.  I hadn't realized how many of my latest bloomers are Salvi...

September 4, 2017

Some of my longest bloomers in the garden require deadheading to extend the show: Salvias, Butterfly Bushes, and Roses to name a few.

Here's a few photos to prove it is worth the effort.

Black and Blue Sage.  I trim these rather than deadhead.  

Salvia  Again, I trim...

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November 30, 2019

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