Serving the landscapes of Buckinghamshire, Amersham, Aylesbury & High Wycombe
Hyde Heath, Amersham, Buckinghamshire
This article contains affiliate links
Cottage gardens are mostly associated with traditional villages and the glorious English countryside.
When thinking about cottage gardens we instantly think of larger borders full of colourful flowers. However, as many cottage gardens reside within a temperate climate they are prone to cold winters.
This means there is always a high probability cottage gardens can look bare for half the year! With good planning and planting evergreen plants this does not have to be the case.
Using a combination of evergreen shrubs and perennials cottage gardens can look good all year round.
Below I have listed and summarised 12 evergreen plants for cottage gardens.
6 Evergreen shrubs for cottage gardens
Box or Buxus sempervirens is a large shrub with small and glossy, dark green leaves. This evergreen shrub can be clipped into low lying hedges or topiary. It is very common to see Buxus clipped into balls for more formal cottage garden displays.
Well known for its place in herb gardens but less well known for its use in the cottage garden border. Rosemary has wonderful evergreen and densely textured foliage. This makes it perfect for low hedges and shaping into forms. The creeping version of rosemary also makes a fantastic, evergreen, groundcover.
Sweet box, also known as Sarcococca Japonica is a fantastic medium sized evergreen shrub. This shrub has very dark glossy green leaves, so much so, it looks almost artificial! Native to Eastern China and Japan it is very hardy and tolerant of most conditions. Even better, it provides scented white flowers in winter followed by decorative black berries.
Even without their aromatic leaves and culinary uses bay trees would still be exquisite for borders. In cottage gardens bay trees are normally clipped into formal shapes such as lollipops. These can look very effective in large clay pots either site of doorways.
Pieris are compact evergreen shrubs with attractive spring flowers. Not only are flowers beautiful but new, emerging foliage can be brightly coloured! This shrub is hardy and tolerant of most conditions including partial shade.
Camellias are famous for their decorative leaves and spectacular, rose like, flowers. Originating from sub tropical regions of Asia they prefer a sheltered and shady spot.
Camellias will need a more acidic soil so may be best to grow in a pot with ericaceous compost. They are known to be a little fussy but are well worth the effort!
6 Evergreen perennials for cottage gardens
Bergenia is a low growing, evergreen, perennial with large leaves and attractive pink flowers. Although it does best in a humus rich soil it is generally not fussy of position. In the cottage garden it works well as a groundcover to the front of borders.
Also known by its Latin name 'Heuchera' is both a vibrant and low maintenance plant. There are a few different varieties which have varying coloured foliage. This can help to create drama and contrast within cottage border displays. Like Bergenia, it has a low profile making it perfect as an evergreen groundcover plant.
Hellebores are beautiful and exotic looking evergreen perennials with strikingly beautiful flowers. The best thing about Hellebores is they flower during winter and early spring. This makes them perfect for injecting some interest into your borders early on in the season. These will come up year after year offering early season nectar to pollinators.
This compact and evergreen perennial is known for its light coloured foliage and originates from southern Europe. The plant is extremely architectural looking with tall stems and long, grey leaves. Its unusual flowers creates spikes of circular flowers which can really light up the flower border.
Also known as 'Lilly turf' Liriope muscari is a low growing, evergreen perennial, native to Asia. It has thick grass like leaves which can create an effective groundcover to borders. In late summer it sends up vertical flowering stems with lavender like flowers.
Red hot poker
Also known by its Latin name 'Kniphofia' this evergreen perennial has grass like foliage and large, attractive, flowers. The flowers look very much like hot pokers with colours fading from yellow to red. Native to Africa Kniphofia likes a warm sunny position but is generally quite tolerant.
Thank you for reading our article on the best evergreen plants for Cottage gardens. If you are planning a new cottage garden do not hesitate to contact us.
We are experts in building a variety of garden styles including cottage gardens. Below we will link to some other cottage garden articles you may find useful.
'As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases'
Hyde Heath, Amersham, Buckinghamshire