Friends, let’s talk about window boxes for a second and then I’ll show you how I put mine together. These days, window boxes are a rarity. In fact, when looking for supplies, I wound up having to buy my stuff online because local garden supply stores were either out of their limited supplies or didn’t even carry any.
Here’s what I think. If you have a simple house (kind of like mine- a square box whose builders kept it simple when it came to details and ornate accents), this is the perfect way to add life and appeal. It’s a good way to cover up and distract from stuff you don’t like about your home front too. If you don’t have any yard, it’s a way to add fresh flowers to your space.. And, another cool hack is to use them year round for decorations during the holidays (fall, winter, and spring).
There are some things to consider when planning your window boxes:
1. Where are you going to put them
Can you even water them from where you’ll put them? If putting them on second story windows, the windows can’t swing out to open otherwise they’ll be too troublesome to water. Hosing them from he ground can be done if you live in a split level but I don’t think you could effectively water from the ground if any higher. Since they’ll probably be partially covered from rain by the roof/gutter, they’ll need watered everyday. So, this is important.
2. Does that part of the house get daylight all day, part of the day?
This will dictate what you can plant inside of them. My boxes get partial sun, so I put a mix of plants/flowers that do well in part sun/part shade in them. If your boxes will be in sun all day they’ll do best if packed with flowers that yield lots of blooms and are watered and fertilized often. Boxes that are in shade most of the day will do best with shade-loving plants like coleus.
3. What boxes do you want? Plastic, wood, aluminum, fiber.
All boxes need to have a way to drain otherwise there’s potential for mold and mildew to grow around the box and your home. Most boxes have drainage holes but if you are making your own, don’t forget this aspect. Plastic is cheap and easily replaceable (my boxes cost me $18 a piece). Wood is heavier and less durable. Aluminum and metal frames are great. If using fiber, they just need replaced yearly.
4. Box sizes
Your boxes need to be at least as wide as your windows, any shorter and they look disproportionate. The wider the box, the heavier it’ll be, any wider than 3ft and you’ll probably want to support it with 3 brackets.
I struggled the most with hanging my boxes. I don’t have great advice for this. I purchased 2 sets of brackets ($15 a piece) and used a stud finder to hang them. I couldn’t get them to hang right on the front of my house where I wanted them to be so I tried along the side of my house along the “sunroom addition” and they hung without any issue. I have no idea what the problem was. Sigh.
This is the planter as it hung, briefly, on the window in the front of the house. I watered it soon after and it fell off because it was too heavy. I believe the studs are directly underneath the edges of the window and my box was not wide enough to be hung here securely.
I moved them to the side of the house. The windows are more narrow here and was able to secure my brackets securely to the studs. I love how it turned out. I just dug this area out this spring, so everything here is brand new!
. P.s. those are hollyhocks popping up in the center between the windows, I planted the bulbs in the spring. The tiny bush to the far right of the photo is an azeala I just planted 🙂
Here are some vague directions on how to put the boxes together.
2. Pick your flowers and arrange them in the box. My boxes hang in partial shade. I chose a mix of vine-y greens (vinca vine, ace of spaces, and silver mist), wave petunias (purple and white), and flowers of different heights (purple heliotrope, white begonia).
3. Plant your flowers and hang your brackets.
4. Water, fertilize, and enjoy 🙂