gardenandgem, Updated: 2 min read75 views
We are back in Houston, TX, after three weeks at our cottage on Orust, Henaan in Sweden.

There is always some mixed feelings for our cottage holidays back home. We do look forward to that we can be together with family and friends, but we kind of dread what could have happened with the cottage and its garden surroundings after the long absence.

This year it had been a thunderstorm a week before our arrival which had knocked out the refrigerator, the internet connection, and some fuses in the house.

The lightning strike had been so close that it had also shaken up the underground well so that the water was murky and unclear.

The first five days we fixed the errors in the cottage, weeded weeds, cut the lawns, hedges, washed, aired and prepared food and beds for six of our closest friends who were arriving the first weekend back home.

When our friend left our children arrived with spouses successively overlapping in the last two weeks. And the garden just got some finishing touch with mulch and some water.
Despite being frequently visited with deer and moose, the garden itself is looking surprisingly well.
From lawn to meadow_
This was a lawn last year. Now it’s a meadow.
Yes, there are loads of weeds, the lawn is more like a meadow, the roses look incredibly tired and gnawed, the moose has broken a lot of branches on the apple trees and the surrounding forest is kind of creeping closer.

But still. The garden only gets some weeks of attention every year, minimal pruning, some mulch, and almost no fertilizer (because of the short summer in Scandinavia).

Leaving the cottage_
Cutting the lawn paths, weeding and prune some of the keenest shrubs makes a difference.
I think I have some pretty good tips on how you can prepare your cottage garden for long absences.