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Starting a new cottage garden

13 years ago

We live out in the country in NC. I've had a veggie and flower herb garden a little ways away from the house for many years and it was fine. We had a dog that stayed outside and she saw to it that the deer and critters stayed away from my gardens.

Well 2 years ago Cosmo passed away, and for a number of reasons, I haven't had a garden for the past 2 years. But I did notice how the Deer were decimating many of my perennials and blue berries. Last fall we put in a picket fence by our front door and after mulling it over all winter, I've decided that I'm going to convert that area into a cottage style garden.

It's not terrifically big, about 15X60 running north south, with a slope along one of the long sides. All of the garden will get full sun for at least part of the day and then the northern 1/2 will get shade.

Right now there's nothing in that space except grass and wire grass. My plan is to spend this weekend de-sodding the entire area. Then I will try to hand weed as much as possible to remove the wire grass and clover. Then I would till and amend the soil. I figure it'll be early April before I'm at this point. Last frost date here is April 20th. I've got lots of seedlings started and also have plants that i will be transplanting. I also have purchased some plants that I would like to add to the garden. One of my goals is to create something that even in winter will provide some interest and structure.

Plants include roses, daylillies, crinums,gardenias, false indigo, rudbeckia, painted daisies, ornamental grasses, echinaceas, rosemary, stock, balsam, holly hocks, shasta daisies, lemon balm, oregano, thyme, cockscomb and probably some others I've forgotten. I also have lots of annual vines like cardinal climber, moon vine, coral bean climber. Of course my veggies will also be planted in here somewhere.

Does anyone have any immediate advice on the plan above???

Is there a better way to do this?? Are there definitive not to do's that I should know about?? Any and all advice is welcome.



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