Exuberant Cottage Garden

Text By Vicki L. Ingham

Within the formal structure of a suburban landscape, Jon Martinez creates an exuberant cottage garden.

Jon Martinez, owner of Bloom flower shop in Birmingham, Alabama, approaches gardening much the way he does floral design. “I use things in groups,” he says, “but in the garden, I tend to put things in groups randomly. I don’t plan at all.” Anything that catches his eye—whether flower, fruit, vegetable, or herb—gets added to the mix. “Then I bring it all together with a focal point, something vibrant, like pots of red geraniums,” he explains. “The background is loose and airy, with no concentration of colors, and the red provides the focus.” The result is casual and unstudied yet contained—but sometimes just barely.