But the a smallish garden surrounding the cottage consists mosty of potentially flammable rosemary and dried out lavender, and she's started the difficult task of removing those plants and the potentially more fun task of planning a new garden.
Here are the requirements:
- Herbacious. We want green plants close to the house, dried twigs are great for starting a fire but not for a cottage garden.
- Deer resistant. We know nothing is truly deer proof, but some plants are like candy for bambi while others are more like brussel sprouts are for most humans.
- Not a native that isn't locally native. Ms Country Mouse is working hard on avoiding cross pollination from natives that aren't locally native, so we can't use those.
- Sun lover. The cottage garden is in full sun, so some plants just won't work out.
Here are my suggestions.
- Kniphofia - I originally thought of an aloe as one of the main plants for the area, but can't find one that grows to 4-5 feet and stops there. Kniphofia is better behaved, and beloved by the hummingbirds. And we know this plant works - it's already around the corner on the side of the cottage.
- Herbacious salvia - Salivas are great in deer country, but many get woody fairly quickly. However, some of the salvias from more tropical locations stay leafy, and, with some water, will still tolerate sun. Flowers by the Sea specializes in salvias, and one only has to select the flower color and then pick the plant. I could see the sages mixed in with Kniphofia along the back of the border.
- Sun-loving succulents - For the middle of the bed, some sun-loving succulents might work. I'm happy to hand off more of the Cotyledon that really likes it in my garden, but some lower-growing aloes might be good choices as well - and would feed the hummers in winter.
- Pelargonium - Ms. Country Mouse expressed some reservation about pelargonium, but their deer resistance, heat resistance, and fleshy leaves make them a logical choice. It might work to pick white pelargonium to offset the warm colors of the other plants.
- Daliahs - It might be possible to put some Dalia's in the back of the border for extra color. They're not the deer's favorite food, and will enliven any garden.
Ah, nothing like planning the delights of the next summer as the days get shorter. And it's even more fun when it's somebody else's garden - now I'm curious what will really happen!