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!



October 31, 2017

May you receive only treats today.  We have a gorgeous day here in Durham, bright, sunny and cool.   Being a young woman in the 80's, here's a photo of one of my favorite Halloween decorations.  This is in my neighbor, Dorrys's  front yard.


October 24, 2017

Enriching the soil:

May 31st, I posted "Two small additions to the garden with big impact".

Well, the Red Riding Hood Penstemons are doing great.  In fact, they have already spread.  On the flip side, the lovely dwarf blue phlox, from the Flame series is definitely no lo...

October 18, 2017

As we approach the end of the flower garden season for 2017, I've decided to summarize some of my garden lessons learned in the next few posts.   Here are some of my favorite performers for mid to late season blooms:  Cosmos, Salvia coccinea (pink), Black and Blue Sage...

October 8, 2017

Twenty-three days without measurable rain fall.  On Oct. 7th glorious rain came down on Durham in the evening.  I haven't posted photos for most of this period.  The abnormally dry conditions caused a drought in my garden spirit.  We've been watering periodically to ke...

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November 30, 2019

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