Summer Shorehouse Projects: How to Create a Statement Window Box

With plans to spend a lot more time this summer at our shorehouse, I couldn’t wait to get started on a few simple projects to upgrade our outdoor space.

Earlier this year, the backyard of our shorehouse underwent a major overhaul with the construction of a gorgeous brand new deck and the purchase of a hot tub. But, as with any major renovation, a project is not complete without the fine details to make the space truly special. So, I couldn’t wait to turn my style and decor attention to outfitting the deck – beginning with flower window boxes to bring life and color to the otherwise neutral space and to change the vibe of the current landscaping. High on my priorities for the shorehouse is a general landscaping refresh, but given the magnitude of the construction that was just completed, I decided to focus on accent plantings for the season (the major landscaping project will likely have to wait until next year).

Have you ever been to Savannah, Georgia or Charleston, South Carolina? Well, if you have, and you’re anything like me, than you must have fallen in love with the spectacular window boxes that adorn the windows of classic homes in those southern cities. Ever since my girls trip to Savannah a few years ago, I’ve been dreaming of having a stunning window box of my own. Unfortunately, our high-rise Manhattan windows simply won’t permit. So, when building out the deck and a storage room add-on constructed to look like an extension of the house, I couldn’t wait to ask the contractor to hang two classic white window boxes. Thankfully, the idea came to me before planting season was underway and I was able to purchase two 36″ Mayne Cape Cod Window Boxes from Home Depot that have been sold out everywhere since. Not only are the window boxes perfect for the seaside aesthetic, but they are fantastic quality and contain a reservoir for self-watering – particularly important as we are not around for daily watering.

Before heading to a local garden store and nursery, I spent some time researching and pinning to come up with an overall color scheme and aesthetic. To create dimension and volume, I would need to incorporate both hanging vines and grasses to primary flowers of purple, white and yellow, but was not set on any specific flora. After all, I figured it was best to leave the final decisions to what was available at the nursery. Thankfully, the nursery had just received a shipment the week we were shopping and the options were amazing!

Ultimately, I decided on classic white and purple impatiens, yellow marigolds for a pop of color, becopa to fill the entire planter with trailing white flowers, bear grass for a bit of height and vinca vine to cascade off the ends.

Now, it was time to assemble the window box and I was fortunate to have Mom, the ultimate greenthumb, to help guide me through my first foray into gardening. We began by filling the planter with fresh potting mix. Then, we carefully arranged the plants, beginning with the marigolds in the center for a dense pop of color, followed by the vinca vines and becopa at the two ends and last, filling the remaining gaps with purple and white impatiens. Finally, we gave the newly planted babies a thorough soak. Gardening trick: To easily remove the plant from its pot, simply squeeze the pot to release the plant with potting soil intact.

The final window box arrangement!

With a thorough soak approximately once weekly and ensuring the reservoir is full prior to my departure from the house, the flowers and vines have grown in beautifully and with very little maintenance. Here’s a photo taken just short of one month from the photo above. I just love how all of these flowers bloom continuously. How glorious!

Did I mention what a beautiful backdrop a window box makes for summer photos? It’s all about creating the right ambiance and approaching every project with purpose and style.

Happy gardening my friends!

I can’t wait to show you what else I’ve done to the deck in my next blog post.


Here are some more photos of the process and the other window box located on the back side of the storage room.

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