34 Charming Cottage Garden Flowers

Today we are sharing over 30 stunning cottage garden flowers to add whimsy and beauty to your flower beds. 

Imagine quiet lane with a winding graveled path, blooms spilling over the edges in pastel pinks and purples…  bees humming happily.  Grab a picnic basket and fill it with cut flowers, then relax on a sunlit bench and enjoy the calming aroma of fresh lavender. 

A cottage flower garden is a reprieve from the hustle and bustle of the modern world.

yellow roses, a wonderful cottage flower added to this quiet garden.
A beautiful Julia Child rose welcomes you to a quiet garden resplendent in roses. Photo @ Green Garden Cottage

It may seem the cottage flower garden is a product of a bygone era, but it’s really only a few flower seeds away.  A restful garden- not too perfectly manicured yet saturated in blooming flowers is yours to be had.  

What Is Cottage Gardening?

A cottage garden style is a charming garden style with a free-flowing variety of flowers, herbs and shrubs.

It includes a heavy emphasis on seasonal blooms that attract pollinators and fragrant flowers that bloom throughout the season for cutting and sharing.

While modern gardening styles feature clean lines and well spaced plants, a cottage garden has an abundance of climbing vines, colorful shrubs, and fragrant flowers that create a layered, cozy look.

34 Best Cottage Garden Flowers

From over the top blooms to cascading foliage, here are over 30 of the best flowers to grow for a perfect cottage garden aesthetic.

Petunias

Spilling over the sides of pots and hanging baskets, petunias are a popular choice for cottage flower gardens.  They come many colors: pink, yellow, purple and white flowers. These easy to grow flowers also attract hummingbirds and butterflies.

Calibrachoa

Calibrachoa, often referred to as million bells, are cascading flowers that pair well with petunias. Plant them in window boxes, planters and hanging baskets.

Enjoy them all season long by gently removing spent blooms. The trailing habit of these plants are perfect for cottage-style gardens.

Passionflower

passionflower is an excellent climbing cottage garden flower.

No cottage garden would be complete without this purple vine climbing towards the sky, blooming in beautiful star-like flowers.  

These perennial plants are resplendent in purple blooms and are fairly easy to grow. Give them well-drained soil and lots of sun. Pair vines with low-growing ground covers such as Blue Carpet Phlox underneath for a full, romantic look

Cosmos

Cosmos bloom all season long with romantic flowers in many colors.  These low-maintenance plants can be scattered throughout the garden for lots of charm.

With delicate blooms and strong stalks, cosmos need sun but can thrive in poor soil.  Scatter cosmos throughout your garden, then feature them indoors as cut flowers!

Zinnias

Zinnias, like cosmos, make excellent cut flowers.  They are a fun, colorful flower with rich green stalks and foliage.  This charming annual is especially popular with children.  

Cheerful and sweet, zinnias will fill up your cottage-style garden with lots of color.  Give them a sunny spot and fertile soil in which to grow.

Snapdragons

snapdragons-grown-as-perennials-1-3

Snapdragons are a charming flower available in a wide range of colors.  These traditional cottage garden plants feature dragon shaped flower faces along long stalks.

As short-lived perennials they may offer a second year of blooms.  Snapdragons enjoy cooler temperatures, so give them partial shade for a longer growing season!

Learn how to grow snapdragons in pots or containers here.

Pansies

Pansies are a late winter flower that make their appearance with bright upturned faces.  These beautiful flowers are easy to grow.  They make wonderful border and container flowers and can be added to the flower garden in spring, adding color and charm when it’s still chilly.  

Get our complete list of purple spring flowers here.

Violas

Don’t be fooled by their sweet appearance, violas are a cold-hardy flower that will add charm to your cottage flower garden during winter!

With fragrant blooms available in many colors, violas do well in borders, planters and window boxes.  Give violas fertile, moist soil and deadhead them regularly for more blooms.  Learn more about these colorful flowers here.

Miniature Sunflowers

Dwarf sunflowers bloom in the summer months and are a charming addition to cottage garden designs.  They add vibrant color all summer long and the seed heads will attract birds in fall.  

You can add regular sunflowers if you like as well!  Get more inspirational sunflower ideas here.

Delphinium

Delphinium bloom in elegant purple and bloom stalks that tower over the rest of the garden. These deer-resistant plants look charming growing along a fence or layered behind shorter flowers.  

Delphinium are an early bloomer and will bring color to your garden in late spring.

Hellebore

With dusky green leaves and rich petals, hellebore are a popular winter flower.  Garden lovers should take advantage of hellebore’s early bloom time to brighten up late winter and early spring.  

A romantic flower found in pink, dusky purple, and white blooms, you’ll want to plant hellebore in a shady area.   Get more winter flower ideas here.

Iris

A mid spring bloomer, iris are elegant and unique perennials available in hundreds of colors. They add charm and beauty to an informal garden, perfectly suited to romantic cottage style gardening.  

These tall plants can be grow in sun to part shade, and are lovely mixed with peonies and hellebore.  

Daffodils

Charming and colorful, daffodils are a welcome addition to any spring cottage garden.  These perennials are easy to plant and offer vibrant blooms in early to mid spring. Consider adding tiny tete a tete varieties throughout your yard for spring charm.  

Read our guide on what to do with daffodil leaves after blooming here.

Ranunculus

ranunculus in a  cottage flower garden

Ranunculus look like fluffy marshmallows sitting on top of green stems.  Whimsical and fun, they complete the cottage garden look in your spring garden.

Weekly Inspiration
Get weekly flower projects, beautiful photos + garden advice.
Featured Image

Ranunuculus have layered petals that look like small peonies, and they make great cut flowers.

Tulips

Tulips make wonderful cut flowers, brightening up both the garden and the home.

Famous for their bold colors and long stems, tulips bring beauty to early spring. They make a perfect addition to cottage flower beds and compliment daffodils perfectly.

Sprinkle them throughout your beds or plant them in clumps for an impressive show in early spring. (Get our tulip planting secrets here).

Hyacinth

Hyacinth are fragrant and colorful perennial that will bring charm to your landscape in the early months of spring. They can be planted alongside daffodils, tulips and hellebore for colorful cottage flower beds in springtime!

Campanula

Bell shaped flowers in sweet shades of white, blue and pink, Campanula is the perfect cottage flower. Plant them in sun or part shade.

Salvia

Red lips salvia.

With tube-shaped flowers in bold colors, hummingbirds are a huge fan of salvia. These flowering herbs are deer-hardy and come in many colors, from purple with dusky green leaves to red and white.

Peonies

Are you looking for a flower with lovely fragrance and oversized blooms?  Look no further than peonies!  These showy flowers make a beautiful spring focal point for cottage styled gardens.  Peonies bloom in late spring and make an excellent cutting flower for the cottage gardens.

Learn how to cut peonies for a vase here.

Lupine

Often found naturally on mountainsides and fields, lupine are a stunning wildflower that add height to your flower beds.  Pair Lupine with other wildflowers, such as daisies and phlox for a lovely summer wildflower feel. 

Lupine have a romantic look when planted in clumps, stagger the colors for added drama around your home.

Dahlias

Dahlias feature bright, oversized flower faces and lots of color. From dinner plate dahlias to petite mixes, dahlias come in many colors and varieties and are wonderful cutting flowers. When deadheaded properly, dahlias will bloom throughout late summer and early fall.

Foxglove

Peppering wild country hills with their bold colors of purple, white and yellow, foxglove are an iconic cottage flower. Tall and elegant, foxglove can grow in shade or sun. A word of warning- foxglove flowers are toxic when ingested, so you may want to avoid this flower if you have small children underfoot.

Cottage garden tip: Plant strategically to ensure blooming flowers adorn your garden from late winter to early fall. You can do this by adding a variety of bulbs, flowering shrubs, annuals and flowering trees.

Shasta Daisies

Shasta daisies mixed with lupine and phlox.

Perhaps more than any other flowers, Shasta Daisies represent the free spirited, relaxed cottage vibe. With their cheery faces and simple beauty, daisies go well with many other wild flowers. Don’t be too picky about where your daisies go, they truly are they life of the party in any flower bed. As tender perennials, these flowers will return in many zones.

Bleeding Heart

Bleeding heart is an excellent cottage flower for shade areas.

Quaint and romantic,, bleeding hear have tiny heart-shaped flowers that thrive in full shade.   Add bleeding heart to the shade portion of your cottage garden beds alongside hosta and hellebore.  These perennials will bring sweet blooms to your cottage year after year.

Camellia

Camellia are an evergreen perennial shrub bold splashes of red, white and pink flowers.  They are sweet and romantic, reminiscent of simpler times.

While many camellias bloom in late winter and early spring, there are some varieties that will also bloom in late fall.

Hydrangeas

With dark green foliage and pastel blooms in pinks, blues and purples, hydrangeas feature large, heart-shaped petals that stay beautiful all summer long. Give them morning sun with afternoon shade and lots of water.

Butterfly Bushes

Floral and fragrant, butterfly bushes add a bold dash of color in early summer.  Subdued sage green leaves add calm during the hot summer months.

Plant butterfly bushes in a sunny location with well-drained soil.   With their cone shaped flowers, butterfly bushes and are a favorite for attracting bees, butterflies and hummingbirds.

Azaleas

pink azalea shrub

Azaleas are a low growing shrub that can add a bold and dramatic splash of color in early spring.  As evergreen perennials these cheerful shrubs add color and dimension to the yard year round.  For best results give these beautiful shrubs morning sun with afternoon shade.  

Dogwood Trees

Dogwood trees are the perfect addition to a cottage garden.  Blooming in late spring, dogwoods add an element of beauty and drama with their unique flowers.  

If you have limited space, adding a dwarf dogwood in on corner of the yard can add interest and charm to your cottage garden.

Roses

No cottage garden would be complete without a rose bush. From climbing roses to miniatures, there are options for every space.

Roses add a classic and romantic touch to your garden and attract pollinators. When deadheaded, many rose bushes will bloom all summer long.

Lilacs

Resplendent in purples, pinks and whites, lilacs add sweet aroma and romantic, vintage bloom to the garden.  Lilacs bloom in mid spring, adding fragrance and beauty to your cottage aesthetic.  These fragrant bloomers do well in full sunlight and keep their beautiful green foliage well into fall.

Learn how to grow beautiful lilac bushes here!

Catmint

A bumble bee enjoying a cottage flower.

Catmint is a beautiful flowering herb that mimics lavender in color and texture.  With long purple spikes and soft sageptoned foliage, it’s a perfect pastel for borders. Catmint compliments daisies, foxglove and gladiolus.  

Lavender

Lavender is iconic for its calming fragrance and beautiful purple flowers, and is the perfect herb for the cottage garden aesthetic.

Plant lavender in full sun and enjoy its soothing scent, and harvest lavender stalks to dry in your home to bring the aura of of the garden into your home.  Lavender is especially wonderful for attracting bees and butterflies.

Lavender not blooming?  Read why here.

Sage

sage is a beautiful cottage flower to embrace in the garden.

I think sage is the most underrated cottage garden plant!  Sage offer fragrant blooms that bees absolutely love.  The edible leaves can be added to soups, bringing flavor and health benefits to your table.

I hope these cottage styled design ideas have inspired your as your own cottage garden!

Remember, cottage styled garden is full of relaxed whimsy and charm.  So set aside the perfection and plant  a yard overflowing with irresistible blooms.

Similar Posts

8 Comments

  1. So many great suggestions! I am definitely going to add some of these to my flowerbed. I dream of creating a cottage garden someday!!! Fantastic post! Thank you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *