Enlarge (credit: Tom Mendelsohn) Welcome to Ars Cardboard, our weekend look at tabletop games! Check out our complete board gaming coverage at cardboard.arstechnica.com—and let us know what you think.

Sometimes, as serious gamers living through a golden age of board game invention, you want to sit down to a three-hour cardboard extravaganza of cards, dials, miniatures, tokens, custom dice, and two-volume rulebooks.
But other times, you just want to play something fun that doesn’t involve 20 minutes of set-up—and something that your mom can understand. Cottage Garden is precisely that game, an hour’s worth of gentle, intuitive loveliness in a box.
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