February 7, 2010

Garden Walls and Fences

From the beginning, I knew that I wanted a cottage garden fence. In fact, I had the architect draw the fence on the blueprints for our home. I fell in love with two features on the front exterior of our house - the tall, stone chimney and the steep and swooping "cat slide roof" with a gable gate. These elements say cottage to me!

We used stone corners for our fence to coordinate with the stone foundation and front chimney. We selected bronze aluminum fencing to match the bronze light fixtures and door hardware. The materials are very low maintenance so that the fence will last a lifetime.

The L-shape formed by the garage and house provides cedar shake walls on two sides of the cottage garden. It just seemed logical to me to use the space for a front yard garden.

The cottage garden fence also separates the space from the two acres of open meadow in front of our house. Of course, I've expanded the gardens all around the front and side of the house, but I can grow plants inside the fence that are out of reach of the deer.

I love garden paths, gates and arbors!

Cottage garden front gate Cottage garden gable gate

The cottage garden changes with the seasons. Many of my favorite flower combinations grow inside the fence.

In spring, annuals such as larkspur, poppies and nigella provide color with perennials such as cottage pinks, lavender and allium. Shrub roses line the front inside the fence and Lady Banksia graces the trellis over the gable gate. Tree form azaleas provide an evergreen accent on the big garage wall that will someday be backed with a trellis of flowering vines. A cut-leaf Japanese maple is a brilliant burgundy with new growth.

The summer blooms include the shrub roses, daylilies, agastache, salvia, echinacea and phlox. Zinnias bloom summer into fall as the azaleas and roses repeat blooms in the company of salvias, sedum and mums.

Although winter can be cold, this south-facing sheltered garden can be enjoyed on sunny days. The evergreen foliage of dianthus, heuchera, scabiosa, azaleas, roses, rosemary, thyme, hollies, arborvitae and hawthorne keep the garden interesting.

Our walls and fence work in harmony to enclose the cottage garden, making it our sanctuary.

Words and photos by Freda Cameron, Defining Your Home, Garden and Travel. This story is a response to the Gardening Gone Wild Design Workshop for February 2010 .
Freelance travel writer. My current fiction writing projects include a completed manuscript and several works in progress.

By the way, my name is pronounced fred-ah, not freed-ah. Thank you.

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