Country flower gardens are informal and often have curving paths, benches, ponds and birdbaths scattered among the flower borders. Also known as a cottage garden or English country garden, these gardens are full of colour and fragrance. Country gardens allow you to be creative with your plants. Perennials and self-seeding flowers are ideal flowers to add to borders. When choosing plants, be sure to match the plants to your conditions, whether they are full sun, partial sun, shady or a mix of the three.
Plant bulbs in your country garden in the fall, and you're guaranteed to have some colour in the spring. Daffodil, iris and tulips all bloom in the early spring months, while daylilies and dahlias blossom a little later in the season. Plant gladiolus bulbs at varying times instead of all at once, and you can have gladiolus blooms all summer long. If you want colour in the fall, plant fall crocuses, autumn daffodils and hardy cyclamen.
Self-sowing perennials add low-maintenance colour to a cottage garden. Some choices include petunias, forget-me-not, black-eyed Susans, four-o'clock mix, alyssum, columbine and garden phlox. Depending on your taste, you can plan colours by carefully choosing seeds or starters in certain colours, or you can have random colours mixed together. Plant these perennials among the bulbs and you can have an ongoing show of colour in your garden for most of the warm-weather months.
Vines like morning glory, sweet pea, clematis and climbing roses add colour and texture to buildings, fences and trellises in a cottage garden. Most vines can be easily trained to climb with fabric or pantyhose ties. Varieties of honeysuckle and ivy can be grown as either climbing vines or ground cover.
Large clumps of colour help fill in borders of the country garden. For the best impact, plant several of each variety in clumps throughout borders. Good options include hollyhock, foxglove, purple coneflower, cardinal flower, zinnia, cosmos and sunflower.
You can add fragrant and useful herbs to your country garden borders. The purple of lavender and sage, yellow of chamomile and red or pink bee balm add colour, while herbs like anise hyssop, sage and thyme can add fragrance to your garden.