If you are interested in plants, or enjoy exchanging gardening ideas and experiences with fellow gardeners, why not join The Cottage Garden Society?
You don't have to live in a cottage, or even in the country. Cottage gardens can be created in the small plots of modern houses or in the narrow gardens of older terraces. The traditional, informal style lends itself to any situation, rural or urban, large or small.
Originally, the purpose of the cottage garden was to provide food. It contained livestock, herbs, fruits and vegetables. Flowers were an optional extra and tended to be ones that had some practical value, such as seasoning food or repelling bugs. The cottager's small plot did not allow for any wasted space, so the garden was abundantly packed, but well tended.
The cottage garden later moved away from being an utilitarian space and became an area to be enjoyed. These days, food-crops and chicken-keeping are returning and environmental concerns are being incorporated by the conscientious cottage gardener.
Although there are no hard and fast rules as to what should be grown, the hallmarks of this style are informality, abundance and diversity. That means lots of colour, scent, bees, birds and butterflies, not to mention fruit, herbs, vegetables, frogs and hedgehogs!
Are you looking for unusual vegetable seeds, plus stories to go with them? A member gives talks on his trips to collect seeds and offers a selection for a small donation.
Tue 4th Mar 2014, 20:22
Information on members' Open Gardens can be found here. Please send more information for this list.
Join Nick Hamilton and Rutland Group members on April 22nd at 6.30. Click here for more information.
Many thanks to all who have volunteered to man the stand at Tatton - all places are now full.
Won't be long before the AGM event takes place. It's on June 22nd in Hemmingford Abbotts Cambridgeshire, with visits to two wonderful gardens. Click here for details and book soon.
Click HERE to download a CGS poster to advertise the Society at your events
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In April 2013, a new EU regulation sought to bring in a directive that would have prevented gardeners and farmers from exchanging seeds and growing heritage varieties. Garden Organic has been fighting this with some success. More information can be found on their website and Facebook page (29th & 30th Jan 2014 posting). Please help by following their suggested seven steps. If this legislation goes through, our seed exchange could no longer go ahead.