Do you envy your neighbor’s beautiful flowerbeds, but find that you don’t have the time to do justice to your own garden? Why not consider window boxes that will add color to both the outdoors and indoors?
They are a great means of adding a little bit of nature to your living space. Whether you live in a city apartment building or a country farmhouse, window boxes provide growing areas for your favorite flowers or herbs.
Window boxes can be as simple as mounting flowerpots on a frame that gets fastened to the bottom of the window. They can also be a bit more complex in design. The decision is yours based on how much you want to spend to add a beautiful touch to your home.
Window boxes are made from a variety of materials, including metal, plastic, wood, terra cotta, stone, ceramics and fiberglass. It’s a good idea to choose models made from rot and insect resistant materials. Treated lumber will last a long time outdoors, but you should not plant anything you intend to eat in these chemically treated containers.
Sunshine does take a toll on plastics and fiberglass. These containers are most apt to crack and break because the sunlight breaks them down.
Caution should be taken to insure that the proper mounts are used to attach the boxes to the sills of the windows so that the weight of the boxes is adequately supported.
When buying window boxes, be sure to first measure your window sills to insure that the boxes will fit. Choose ones that you can customize by painting or staining to match the exterior of the building in which you live.
Choose boxes that provide adequate space for plant growth. Boxes that are at least eight inches wide and eight inches deep work well for planting most varieties of flowers.
Planting Window Boxes
There are three basic ways you can plant widow boxes. One is to place plants directly in the window box containers. Another option is to put the flower pots containing the plants in the window box and fill around them using bark, moss or lightweight materials that can withstand the elements outdoors. A third option is buy liners and plant the flowers directly in the liners.
Selecting the right plants is the key to making your window boxes attractive. A mixture of plants that trail and grow upright is a good start. Bulbs and filler plants can be included.
Choose plants that contrast with the building. Pale flowers against dark brick walls make a dazzling display. Bright plants against a light background add a dramatic touch to the building.
Both annuals and perennials can be planted in window boxes. Dianthus, geraniums, impatiens, lobelia, pansies, petunias and sweet alyssum are good annual plant choices. Permanent plants such as varieties of dwarf bulbs, ground ivy, English ivy and miniature roses are good choices if you don’t want to replant every year.
Want to learn more about gardening with window flower boxes?
Interested in directions on how to build your own window box?
Visit this site for general information about window boxes.
And, check out these urban garden ideas.