November 1, 2011

Window Box How To: What is the Recipe?

Large window box is jam packed with flowers, foliage, and small evergreens. Thriller, spiller and filler to the max!
I love my window boxes, I really do. Nothing adds charm and fairy tale romance to a house quite like a window box. Apparently, Bubba at SOUTHERN LIVING thinks so too as this was his topic of choice for this last photo shoot.  So between the two of us (with a heavy dose of 'Bubba Chic'), we composed and planted this luscious fall window display.

Flats of pansies and dwarf Alberta Spruce await their new home.
The list of ingredients for this profusion of color and billowy loveliness?

  • Pale and dark yellow + orange pansies and violas (blue, lavender and white flowers were vetoed at the front end.....too busy).
  • Three Dwarf Alberta Spruces (not so expensive that they can't be replaced if OK summers toast them.)
  • 4 inch DARLING little ruffly purple kale (yes, Ralph, you found them and can take all of the credit for their inclusion).
  • Ivy and Asian Jasmine and gold money wort and trailing gold euonymous to spill over the sides and add wonderful texture and softness
and.......hidden from view:  baby ruby cabbages, golden feverfiew and tete-a-tete miniature daffodils that won't make much of a statement until spring when this whole halleluia chorus comes together.

Textural contrast and sheen of spruce, Asian jasmine and pansies/violas.

Frontal view

If you're thinking about adding a window box to your home, here are some tips:

  • Build it large enough to make a real statement and support all of the textures and heights and color gradations of a small garden.
  • Repeat an architectural detail of your home in its facade and consider painting it or staining it to match the existing color scheme of your home's exterior.  This makes it look like an integral part of your home's design and personality...not just an afterthought.
  • Support it with some formidable brackets at the base (though the box itself is also attached to the wall), as it will be QUITE heavy
  • Make sure you line it with something to prevent the wood from rotting.  I had a metal liner made for the inside, though a very heave plastic liner would work....make sure to give the box itself and the liner appropriate drainage holes.
No detail was overlooked in making the images look perfect.  Every spent bloom was removed (faces forward, violas!), storm windows were removed, wooden windows washed, living room visuals inside perfectly arranged, tuteurs placed-then removed-then placed-then removed, and on and on.  SOUTHERN LIVING standards, after all.  

An appreciative skeleton enjoys the tableau and adds to the fun
These spectators, at least, seemed to appreciate our efforts.  Hopefully, you will  too when the story comes out (Lord willin') next fall. 

One more little editorial correction.  Bubba pointed out that in my last post I wrote ''Alexander", instead of 'Anderson' below Ralph's (SL's photographer) picture.  To which I responded in my email:

"Of COURSE it's Anderson, of COURSE I know that, but if a girl just finished reading a blog 'alexandra's kitchen', of COURSE Anderson becomes Alexander.  Duh!   It is why I garden and blog and why I DON'T do brain surgery.  Just little details like that."

So, to Ralph, I apologize, and to YOU out there, I say

Read alexandra's kitchen, a blog you can access here and which I think you will enjoy immensely.  :)  Belated Happy Halloween, everyone.  Oh, and don't forget to tune in to KFOR's 4:30 show to see Ralph's interview.


  1. I love the window boxes and the decorations! I hope you had a fun Halloween. Soon it will be Thanksgiving and then all the end of year holidays and new year celebrations!

  2. GORGEOUS window boxes! I love them too. A mix of herbs and bright annuals is my favourite.

  3. Hey Linda! Where did you go? I miss you!! :o)
    Helen in CA


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