I still consider myself a fledgling gardener and as such, I’m open to ideas and inspiration from other, more experienced gardeners.  I admit I have an aesthetic preference for gardens on the wilder end of the spectrum — country and cottage gardens, woodland walks, open meadows.  I’m not a fan of the contemporary or modern look with its straight edges, manicured shrubs and often minimalist plantings.  Instead, I love mixes of color and texture and lots of it.  I love the tried-and-true cottage plants: shrub roses, climbers, hollyhock, foxglove, sweet rocket, daisies of all types, pinks, and peonies, all interspersed with herbs and other edibles.

My goal is to create a garden that melds into its natural surroundings, not one that is in a constant battle with them.

To that end, I have a couple of go-to favorite gardeners.  I’ve written about both earlier in this blog.  The first, Tasha Tudor, an eccentric, American illustrator who spent 20+ years creating a wondrously wild garden on a mountain top in Vermont.  The second is a more recent discovery – a fortuitous one – that added the concept of permaculture to my vocabulary and introduced me to a new way of gardening for nature, not against it.  Colette O’Neil, owner and creator of Bealtaine Cottage, in Ireland, has also created her own little slice of heaven from 3 acres of once barren, over-worked land.  Follow the links to learn more about both.

2 thoughts on “Inspiration

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  1. I too love a wild garden. We live in rural Japan and on my walks I’m privy to an abundance of riotous cottage gardens tucked just about everywhere. You rarely see a home without some sort of little patch growing vegetables and seasonal flowers. You named two of my most beloved gardeners. I’m also a fan of BBC gardening YouTube videos. They have some lovely ones. Spring will be here soon. We can start planting a few things next month already. Our zone is subtropical.


  2. The area you live in sounds delightful! And I also thoroughly enjoy watching BBC gardening specials. I have several favorite DVDs that I watch over and over again, especially during the blahs of February (I wish I could start planting outside in February, but alas that doesn’t happen here until late April, if we’re lucky).


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