Adventurous gardeners everywhere, welcome to our website for 2013. In business for 28 years, and gardeners for many more, we are a well known and family owned, popular destination nursery in southwestern Illinois specializing in plants that grow well in the hot and humid summer climate of the lower Midwest. Enter our website for truly unique plants, many introduced to the greater St. Louis area by us. Unlike the X-Marts, we seek out the new and unusual and our passion is displaying them in creative and innovative ways.
Our plant list continues to grow, trial tested in containers and display beds throughout the nursery area. We adore nature friendly plants that attract beneficial insects and birds, and our list reflects that passion. Cottage Garden is also well known throughout the country for our hummingbird plant collection that includes a large number of rare salvia.
A word about our plants. We grow on and finish all of our plant material here on our prairie nursery in the beautiful countryside of Macoupin County. Perennials are exposed to a hardy outdoor climate year round, and will not require fussy acclimating when you take them home. Plant them our directly and watch them take off. Annuals and tropicals are greenhouse grown and acclimated by us to cooler temperatures in spring before you purchase them. They should be planted out when night time temperatures remain above 50 degrees. We do not use growth retardants on any of our plants, so you can expect a fast and vigorous ‘take off’ when you plant them in your own garden.
WHAT’S NEW FOR 2013!
We work very hard to find great plants with tremendous ‘wow’ appeal and durability for your own garden. This year we have over 80 new varieties of tropicals/annuals and succulents. Close to my own heart is Clerodendrum ‘Pagoda’ resembling an orange flowering hydrangea…a perfect pot plant for that hot and sunny spot in your garden! Colocasia ‘Noble Gigante’ is a colossal elephant ear growing 6 feet, with huge and thick pewter-gray leaves, a head-turner perfect for large containers or garden beds. Colocasia ‘Puckered Up’ boasts seer-suckered leaves the color of dark chocolate, growing into an impressive full clump topping out at 5 feet in height. Both are sublime for a long season of eye popping, living architecture in summer and fall. We recommend pairing them with brightly colored coleus, lantana, or wave petunias. Other heat tolerant tropicals include Tecoma x stans ‘Bells of Fire’ bearing red-orange trumpet shaped blooms, and Tecoma x stans ‘Lydia’, both celebrated new hybrids of trumpet bush with a more compact habit, blooming at an early age. Salvia ‘Sao Borja’ offers jewel tone mulberry purple blossoms that cover the plant spring through fall, morphing into a three foot wide and high clump of emerald green leaves. This S. splendens selection adapts to sun or semi-shade beautifully and is a Cottage Garden exclusive! We have four selections of the new Salvia ‘Heatwave’ series, all S. microphylla types hardy to USDA Zone 6a. The series includes Heatwave ‘Glimmer’, ‘Glitter’, ‘Sparkle’ and ‘Scorcher’, all luminous colors that would be gorgeous planted together in groups, and great for luring native pollinators.
Our new Sun Perennials collection offers heat and drought tolerance, many derived from American native plants. Phlox paniculata ‘Peacock Cherry Red’ is a compact summer phlox in a brilliant new hue that is disease resistant. Penstemon ‘Prairie Twilight’ has luminous lavender-pink blossoms irresistible to butterflies and hummingbirds. Amsonia ‘Blue Ice’ bears dramatically dark lavender blue flowers in spring over handsome two foot mounds of narrow dark green foliage that take on brilliant gold tones in autumn. Shade gardeners will appreciate Dicentra spectabilis ‘My Valentine’. This new selection of old fashioned bleeding heart astonishes with deep red flowers, a twist from the usual pink lockets that appear all spring long. Another shade dweller offered this spring is Helleborus x ballardiae ‘Gold Collection Pink Frost’. This beautiful new hybrid is considered one of the finest selections of this immensely popular shade plant.
We are often asked ‘When are all plants available?’ Availability fluctuates since plants grow at their own pace. We suggest you call or email for availability on specific plants before visiting. Availability peaks mid to late April and onward. We look forward to seeing you all this spring and summer!