I have recently discovered a love for window boxes. During my summer vacation, we toured 10 states and visited many Botanical Gardens. Seeing how many ways there are to dress up your home with window box planters was inspiring. They are a fabulous way to create curb appeal and are easy to take care of.
Window boxes give you the opportunity to combine flowering plants with contrasting foliage plants to add color to all the windows on your house. And with the right type of planter, you can also create the same effect on porch rails and deck edging.
We have all come across the picture perfect house with a narrow painted box that perfectly matches the house trim, overflowing with ivy, and geraniums. all perfectly matched for best effect.
But there are dozens of other ways that are not so much of the cottage garden style that will add a wonderful look to your house and give you instant street appeal.
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Dressing up your home with Window Box Planters
Adding a slash of color to the outside of your home is just the beginning of the talent of a well planted window box. They can bring flowery aromas indoors and give those inside a glimpse of the outside up close. Window boxes are very versatile, so pretty to look at and can be planted in a wide variety of ways.
Tips for planting Window Box Planters
Mix Plants Combine plants that are upright with those that have trailing softer growth habits. this pretty window box uses snapdragons, pansies, variegated ivy, petunias and a buttercup type of plant. The colors coordinate well and there is both height and trailing habits to the box. And how cute is it that it is used on a door, not a window?
Combine sizes. Be sure to mix in plants with large, medium, and small leaves for best affect.
Color Schemes Choose a few colors that match well or those that go well with the colors of your home design for best curb appeal.
Compliment your house details Choose planters that blend well with the other details of your home design so that they coordinate nicely.
Make your own window box If your window is an odd size, you may have trouble finding window boxes to match. The answer is to make your own window box. This design from The Scrap Shoppe Blog is easy to make and very effective too!
Maintenance of window box planters Window boxes made from treated wood or hardwood are easy to paint or stain and this makes them easy to maintain. Plastic tends to fade and metal will tarnish. Terra-cotta, or concrete boxes are aesthetically pleasing, but are harder work with.
Choosing plants If you want the least care, choose plants that will last all year long. For splashes of bright color, annuals are best but need replacing as the seasons change.
Size Matters A window box looks best if it is nicely proportioned to the height of the window. Window boxes that are at least 8 inches wide will also hold water longer. In the photo below the planter covers half of the window. This not only makes the window look small, but it also blocks light coming into the room from the outside.
How to care for the planters. Check the soil regularly, especially in hot weather, and water when it feels dry about 1 inch down into the soil. Nutrients will wash out of window boxes, so they will need regular applications of fertilizer. .
Keep conditions in mind. If your window is north facing where the sun is not so bright, you’ll have less care. But if it faces squarely south, you’ll have more care but can plant more color.
Types of Window Box Planters
Do you need a large house to have window boxes?
It is all fine and dandy if you have a large house with lots of matching windows that just cry out for window boxes. But what if this is not the case in your home? This photo shows that they can be used even in apartments. Two matching apartment windows with outside ledges are the perfect spot for small rectangular planter boxes. Planted with a few colorful geraniums, they are the perfect color for these red rimmed windows.
Use trailing plants
Window boxes can often look bulky under a window, but adding trailing plants soften them beautifully. This simple window is enhanced with an overflowing window box that has ivy in the center and trails of purple wave petunias on the outside. It is maximum contrast for a striking look.
Metal Window BoxesSphagnum moss lines this metal window box that is beautifully planted with light and dark purple petunias. The yellow foliage plant compliments the yellow and purple pansies and trailling ivy is just tucked into areas of the moss for a fabulous look.
Keeping it Simple. Plain windows without shutters look great with a simple window box design. This pallet style window box matches the lines of the siding on the house and is simply planted with colorful petunias for a simple but very effective look. I love the cute picket fence look!
Dormer Window Boxes
Dormers add curb appeal to a roof line all on their own, but add a window box to them and you take it up an notch or two. The pink geraniums go nicely with the washed out green shingles on this dormer.
How dramatic is this look? Two matching windows have matching window box planters. The red geraniums are the perfect contrast the the stark white trims, dark green paint and oval seal to make instant curb appeal and add pizzazz to an otherwise stark look.
Create a window box illusion
If you don’t have, or don’t want, window boxes that are attached to your house, you can still get the look. In this photo, a window ledge is used to create a window box effect with the use of large terrracotta planters that blend well with the window trim. The stone ledge looks almost like a narrow window box, doesn’t it?
You can get the look of window boxes by using railing planters. These weather proof planters can be strategically placed on deck and balcony railings to give the illusion of window boxes from the street. They remove from the railings for easy care and are a nice alternative to the real thing.
Bring the look inside
If you are a person who has more of a brown thumb and forget to water your plants, this idea may appeal to you. Instead of having the window box outside the window, bring it inside on the window ledge, add a couple of watering cans and and you have an instant indoor home decor project. Green thumb in an instant with your watering cans right near the plants!
Making a Vignette with window boxes
If your windows are lower to the ground, you can use the area below them to stage a vignette. In this photo, two wooden wheelbarrows are part of one over all scene. I love the look!
Adding window box planters to your window gives color, softness and extra dimension to the look of your home. These beautiful miniature gardens are the perfect way to spruce up any window.
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