Planting the Summer Windowbox

by Josh on May 15, 2008 · 4 comments

in garden,Projects

In my last post, I mentioned that I had planted my bungalow windowbox for the summer. For some reason the windowbox plants never grow as well as I expect them to, but by using a completely new selection of plants this year I hope my luck will change.

In the past Ms. Bungalow and I have agreed on classic annuals like geraniums, pansies and snapdragons for the windowbox. This year, I got to pick all the plants myself. I chose to highlight the color and texture of the leaves and just use flowers as an accent. The new book, Container Garden, Vol. 5, that I picked up from Taunton was a handy reference for plant and design ideas. (Props to local garden store star, Tangletown Gardens, for getting featured in the regional section of that book.)

Bungalow Windowbox 2008

My summer windowbox contains a textured mix of chartreuse, silver, and purple:

  • Creeping Jenny– This chartreuse green trailing plant will soften the container edge and contrast with the brick.
  • Flowering Kale– This is a popular container and landscape plant because of its dark purple, highly-textured leaves and robust size.
  • Dusty Miller– Its light silver leaves are similar in shape to the kale, but the color contrast will help the windowbox pop.
  • Flowering Sage– The tallest plant in the windowbox, this produces tall spikes of purple flowers over full green foliage.

The plants are small now, but I have been watering them faithfully (from the rain barrel, of course) and I hope it won’t be long before they fill up the windowbox. Light is a challenge in this spot because it receives full sun in the morning, but after noon, the sun has moved far enough overhead that the house and overhanging eaves completely shade the windowbox for the rest of the day. All the plants I picked require part sun, so I think they should do alright, but if these plants follow the pattern of windowbox disappointment from recent years, I’ll have to try a shade-loving arrangement next time.

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Kristen May 15, 2008 at 10:08 am

I really like this combination – what kind of sun exposure do these get? I’m always looking for things that do well in shade.


Josh May 15, 2008 at 10:52 am

Thanks, Kristen! These plants all prefer full to part sun and my windowbox gets part sun. There aren’t many places in my yard that are truly shady, so unfortunately I don’t have any easy shade-loving plant suggestions from the elsewhere in the garden either.


Sandy May 15, 2008 at 5:49 pm

The window box looks so nice. I just love Dusty Millers…


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