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Farmers Almanac
The 2014 Farmers Almanac
Farmers' Almanac

Fabulous Flowers for Winning Windows!

Fabulous Flowers for Winning Windows!

Cheer up your windows this spring with an inviting, colorful window box treatment! These tiny gardens introduce a charming addition to your home, whether you live in a sprawling country house or one-bedroom apartment in the city with no outdoor space. That’s the beauty of these arrangements–you can showcase them anywhere you find a window.

To create the most interesting, thriving arrangements of the season, follow the golden rule of window boxes. Make sure to plant a filler flower (to add fullness), a focal flower (to add height) and a falling flower (to overflow along the sides). Stick to those three guidelines when you plan out which plants to include, and you’re nearly guaranteed a great-looking grouping.

Need a little more guidance? These tips will help make your window boxes the envy of your entire neighborhood.

- Color your box carefully. Select blooms that will pick up colors from your house or that complement your shutters. Pull together the same flowers that make up part of adjacent gardens or landscaped areas, which helps maintain a cohesive look.

- Don’t plant your flowers in a row along the middle of the box. Plant in a zig-zag pattern to help create depth. Fillers are best toward the middle, focals are best toward the back and falling flowers work well in the front and along the sides of your box. This pattern will help your box appear full and lush with beautiful plants.

- For easy upkeep, pick flowers that require similar sunlight and watering requirements. This will make caring for your box simple as can be, since each flower will need the same amount of attention. Narrow down your plant choices based on window location. Two to four hours of sunlight suits a shade-loving flower, four to eight hours of sunlight is best for blooms that require partial-shade and eight to twelve hours of sunlight keeps full sun plants happy.

- Paint the actual window box to accent your blooms and your home. An exterior latex paint will add durability, so your box will withstand those springtime storms and penetrating sunlight without damage. Add some interest by choosing a contrasting shade to the home’s shutters or that coordinate with the window’s trim. A bold, bright color is a great choice for those window boxes that hang against brick.

- Set the mood with your arrangement. In the hot summer months, flowers that are lighter in color evoke a feeling of coolness. In the fall, warm up your windows with darker blossoms and deep green foliage.

- Add some variety to spice things up. The foliage in your arrangement can make all the difference. Opt for a diverse shades–the color in your window box shouldn’t just be limited to the flowers.

- If you have one long window, think about installing several shorter boxes along its length. Alternate colors and flowers in every other box to add visual interest.

5 comments

1 Prairiehome { 05.22.14 at 7:47 am }

Can you give us the names of the flowers in the window box in the photo? It’s beautiful!

2 Katie Frasier { 04.26.12 at 3:57 pm }

Ginger, Here’s a link of some annuals that flourish in partial shade, organized by color: http://home.howstuffworks.com/annuals-for-part-shade.htm

DDDinah, Thriller, Filler, and Spiller is a great way to remember this! Thanks for sharing!

Janice, I think any color would look great against red brick. Choose a bold color to really make it pop!

3 Janice Heck { 04.26.12 at 1:45 pm }

I have red brick and gray siding on the house what would you choose to put in the
window boxes and what colors.

4 DDDinah { 04.25.12 at 3:37 pm }

I think this flower description would apply to the flower box and easy to remember. You need a thriller (for height) a filler (for fullness) and a spiller (for your cascading plants. Thriller, Filler, Spiller…..makes it easy to remember. Enjoyed your article. Thanks

5 Ginger { 04.25.12 at 1:08 pm }

I love your suggestions for planting window boxes. What flowers would you suggest for a window box that is in partial shade?

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