Plants / Seasonal

Planting my cottage garden




Biodynamically grown lemon mint, angelica, and lily of the valley

The garden was quite bare when we arrived in Devon last year, with just three unpruned and very sad looking lavender plants, a sparse and wonky bay tree, and a columbine not yet in flower, in a bed full of rubble. In one corner a bright pink blossoming cherry tree clashed with purple flowering lungwort at its base. With very little to spare in the funds department, and knowing we may not be there for long, I decided it was my duty to make it beautiful.


Against my husband’s wishes I moved the oddly placed paving slabs from the bare strip where they served no purpose, and built a path. I shaped the bay tree and watched it fill out over the summer.


I performed my first lawn transplant, and in no time it grew in seamlessly. Hubby was quite impressed by my skillz…




Caraway thyme

A good reason to identify weeds before removing them, the columbine was about to go as I had never seen one before and was unfamiliar with its leaves. Knowing it may soon flower I let it stay in the hope of being able to identify it. So pleased I did.


Pink columbine also known as aquilegia



White lupin – enjoy them while they last – the snails ate them down to nothing, caraway thyme in flower



Froggie kept me company through the summer, nestled among the lungwort, then one day he left and didn’t come back


Summer rain

The dark corner with the oddly placed cherry tree wasn’t the prettiest, but I decided to go with it and create a woodland area, letting it grow wild and depositing piles of prunings in the hope that hedgehogs would make it their home. I planted foxgloves, which are a little scary, but I think added to the strange but ecologically sound collection in the corner. I planted two hostas hoping they would fill in the gaps with their huge glossy leaves after spending ages researching appropriate woodland plants….however, just like the lupins, the snails devoured them and there was nothing I could do.


The white spotted lungwort made it even more magical for me, in a creepy fairy tale way

Thank you garden, thank you Devon…it’s summer now and I’m hoping the next family have added to what I started. As I prepare for a move to the tropics, I’m imagining the thyme path has grown to fill all the cracks, and I’m hoping the woodland area has been added to…maybe froggie has come back? Maybe someone has read my mind and planted clematis, wisteria and climbing jasmine to spread along every wall… it’s time to let it go. My next posts will be full of palm trees, mangoes and pineapples, and if I’m lucky, a humpback whale or two. I’m in the process of renewing my teaching status as a diving instructor, so stay tuned for some marine inspired adventures, and my latest culinary finds!


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