window box

Add Color to your Home with a Window Box

Colorful window boxes add a touch of beauty and cheer to your home or office.

Creating your own window box is a delightful hobby, giving rich benefits. The basic funda is to create a color concept that matches the décor and theme of your home.  A combination of colorful flowering plants and those with attractive foliage in your window boxes can make a huge difference to your balcony, deck and window sills.

Here’s what you need to create a window box

The design concept

  • Select a color scheme that complements the décor of your landscape.
  • Mix foliage plants with large, medium and small leaves and flowering plants that grow straight up, are trailing or fluffy.
  • Create an intelligent riot of colors in your window box. Bright pink, red, orange, yellow and white look good from distance and from close range, dark green, blue and purple create a better impact.

The wonder box

For your window box, you need to select the right container based on the space available. Keep these points in mind:

  • Containers should match your décor and space.
  • Look for containers that are at least 8” wide and deep.
  • Containers should have draining holes or you should be able to create them.
  • Ideally the window box should be a few inches smaller than the width of the window.
  • Window boxes must be anchored securely under windows with L-shaped brackets screwed in securely.
  • For decks and porches, choose pretty hang boxes.

The right potting mix

  • Select the right potting mix for your window box with greater water-absorbing and retention properties. Do not use garden soil.
  • The ideal potting mix should contain peat or ingredients that improve drainage, has water-retention capacity, provides aeration and fertility.
  • Half-fill the window box with the potting mix and ensure it is wet.

Planting technique

  • Choose perennial plants and those that bloom in all seasons for your window box.
  • For foliage, choose plants with broad leaves and those with variegated texture.
  • Keep the tallest plants like geraniums at the back of the box and hang trailing plants in the front and sides.
  • Fill the rest of the window box with fluffy plants like pansies and impatiens. The latter prefers more shade than sun.
  • Add soil mix in the space between the plants and water them to settle the soil.
  • Keep a distance of about 2”- 5” between the plants after determining the size they would grow to.
  • Gently remove the plastic wrap around the soil of the plant you got from the nursery or remove from pots carefully along with the mother soil and plant them.

How to water

  • Depending upon where you live, you need to water the plants regularly.
  • Window boxes need frequent watering.
  • Water just so that the soil is completely soaked.

Maintaining the plants

  • Once a week, add a water-soluble flowering plant fertilizer following the instructions on the package. You can also use slow-releasing plant food pellets.
  • Remove dead leaves and flowers from your window box.
  • Replace plants if they crowd the box, are dead or look tatty.
  • Do not use plants that need frequent watering.
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Swati Amar calls herself ‘the write person’ precisely because she claims her brain starts functioning only when her fingers dance over the computer keyboard. Gripped by an obsessive compulsion to write, her day is incomplete until she has ‘keyed’ in a few lines. Moving from counting money as an erstwhile banker in State Bank of India, Swati has been counting words for more than fifteen years. She has contributed copiously to various print and online publications in English and Tamil, numbering over 15K articles on varied subjects. Swati Amar swears allegiance to the Chennai Press Club and prides on her experience as a media entrepreneur and consultant, never losing a ‘write’ opportunity. Swati’s favorite pastime is to watch News on television, read, revel in melody, doodle and dawdle and follow the footsteps of global chefs when time permits. She believes that a good laugh peps up one’s life! And the write words too…