What Went Wrong With My Windowbox

by Josh on November 20, 2008 · 4 comments

in Gardens,Ideas,Journal

Windowbox Fail

I had such high hopes for my summer windowbox this year.  But by early August, I was forced to concede that it was best to just remove the few plants that weren’t already dead and leave the windowbox bare until the time to decorate it for winter.

Along with my vegetable garden, the windowbox remains a perennial source of disappointment.

For now.

But next year I will get the windowbox right– and so can you–thanks to some advice from my green-thumbed friend, Megan.  Megan is a long-time gardener whose home gardens have been featured in a regional home and garden magazine.  If she can’t help, I don’t know who can.

The challenge:

Plant a gorgeous container garden that will thrive in the intense morning sun and deep afternoon shade of an east-facing windowbox.

The solution:

Properly amend the soil and plant dependable heat- and drought-tolerant, container-friendly plants.

Starting with the soil, Megan recommended amending with both composted manure for fertilizing and a product called Soil Moist.  The Soil Moist crystals absorb moisture during waterings and slowly release it as the soil dries out.  This is especially useful for drought-prone containers like a brick windowbox which can act like ovens in peak heat.

Once the soil is improved and ready for the rigors of summer in a container, Megan suggested filling it with proven heat-tolerant performers, including:

  • Sweet potato vine
  • Lantana
  • Rock rose
  • Nasturtium

With winter just settling in for real around here, it will be a while before I can put Megan’s advice to use.  But at least now I have a plan for what to do with the window box in the spring– along with the hope that–finally– I can have a windowbox garden to be proud of.

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Stacy November 21, 2008 at 12:35 am

Josh, so glad I found your site (from Tammi T’s). I have a bungalow as well and while it hasn’t been lovingly restored, my intent at the moment is not to destroy it until such a time as I have the time, money and talent to do it right. Stacy (from Calvary)

Reply

Josh November 21, 2008 at 10:22 am

Thanks for dropping by, Stacy! And don’t sell yourself short– I’ve seen how lovely your house is and talked with you about your work stripping wood trim. You’ve got skills. As for time and money, what parent of young kids has much of these to spare? Not me.

Reply

Will November 21, 2008 at 5:13 pm

You will like the nasturtiums, they took over my yard this year. I used them to fill in while the prairie get’s on its feet. We’re going to put up some cedar window boxes next summer and FILL them with nasturtiums… but first we need the outside put back on the house!

Reply

Josh November 23, 2008 at 12:38 am

Thanks, Will. If the nasturtiums are as vigorous as you say, I’ll be pleased indeed.

Reply

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