Using window boxes is a wonderful way to add vibrant color and visual interest to your home. But what kind of window box is the best? Below is an in-depth look at each kind of windowbox, including each type's pros and cons so you can make the choice that is right for your home.
1. Wood window boxes
Wooden window boxes are easily the most readily available, easily customizable and commonly utilized options on the market. Their versatility allows window gardeners a true sense of flexibility when designing their window boxes. This enables the customer to create the specific aesthetic that they consider to be the best one for the exterior of their home.
Most window box retailers make use of wood, with many specializing in custom designs fashioned out of this traditional window box material. Though wooden window boxes are incredibly popular and very versatile, there are some perceived drawbacks that you should know about before making your purchase.
- Wood is more easily customizable than most other material types.
- There are a variety of wood options that impact grain pattern, color, and durability.
- Unfinished wood boxes allow the customer to create their own designs with minimal effort. They can even be painted to perfectly complement the exterior of the home!
- Wooden window boxes can be made to fit any size window.
- Wood is highly aesthetic and suits any home’s exterior.
- Softer wood materials are more prone to rot, like pine. Cedar, redwood and other substantially harder woods should be considered for this purpose.
- A plastic liner should be implemented inside of any wooden planter, to prevent rot and water damage.
- Wood window boxes are heavier than other types of window boxes.
- All wood is vulnerable to damage caused by insects. It’s in an owner’s best interest to inspect their plants and the window box for signs of damage periodically.
Above is an example of wooden window boxes, fashioned by CYS Excel. This cedar window box planter showcases the simplistic and natural beauty of this material. CYS Excel sells this eye-catching window box in a variety of sizes, so you can find a solution to fit nearly any window space.
Additionally, this window box comes equipped with a removable liner. This liner helps to protect the integrity of the wood and safeguards it against rot and water damage.
Collection By Tiffany
These stunning, rustic window box planters from Collection by Tiffany are made out of natural wood that invites a down-home barn aesthetic. For those fond of a classic look that will make their herbs, succulents, edible plants and flowers stand out in distinct contrast, options like this can make for a great touch in any window space. They are sold in a variety of sizes, so you can craft your window garden to your exact specifications.
2. Metal Window boxes
It is possible to create a multitude of looks through the use of metal in the creation of window boxes. Aluminum and copper are the gold standards for metalwork window boxes, and they look beautiful when they are packed with flourishing blooms. Many window gardeners use copper, aluminum or other metals when they want to invoke a classic European look with their window boxes.
Copper infuses natural nutrients that encourage healthier soil for happier plants. Aluminum offers durability that is unmatched by most other materials that go into the creation of window boxes.
Beautiful and timeless, metal window boxes have a laundry list of benefits that you should be aware of. Of course, every window box material has pros and cons. Let’s see what metal can bring to your window – and where it may fall short.
- Metal is incredibly beautiful and can be shaped into any number of designs.
- These window boxes are incredibly sturdy. They will generally last longer than window boxes of other types.
- Copper window boxes actually nurture the soil planted within them.
- Metal doesn’t rot as wood does, so this is never a concern.
- Metal window boxes aren’t prone to the type of damage that insects can cause to wooden window box planters.
- Metal is not easily customizable, unlike wood.
- Rust is a very real problem, especially for metal window boxes that have no shelter from the rain and other elements.
- Metal window boxes are typically much more expensive than wood, terra cotta, fiberglass, and plastic window boxes.
- Like anything else made of metal, these window boxes can become dented or scratched.
- Darkly colored metal boxes can get incredibly hot, which can harm plants over time.
This metal window box by copper-loving brand H Potter is a testament to the beauty of metal when it’s used to house plants. Made of raw copper material, the window box above is a large fixture that is sure to draw the eyes of anybody who walks past your window.
The beautiful construction of this window box lends itself to any number of aesthetic choices. Whether you want to go rustic or more modern, metal enables this with minimal effort. All you have to do is add the plants!
Window box retailer Achla offers this galvanized steel window box. This design is unique and beautiful in a way that can only be detailed through beautiful metal. The embossed floral decoration on the rectangular window planter is something unexpected but still classically beautiful, which can really ramp up the aesthetics of any window garden!
3. Terra Cotta window boxes
This unglazed clay material has been used throughout human history to create any number of fixtures and even buildings. When used to make window boxes, terra cotta offers a natural, simple-yet-elegant home for your succulents, flowers, and herbs.
Terra cotta can be complicated for some to use, especially for those who live in a part of the world that has long, cold winters. If you have the ability to bring your window box indoors for some months of the year, however, terra cotta can be a very good window solution for you.
If you choose this material for your window box ventures, you should soak the item in water. This helps to prevent the porous terra cotta from absorbing the water you will use to water your plants.
- Terra cotta simply looks beautiful, usually without many frills and embellishments.
- This material is quite breathable, which minimizes the risk of rot and water-logged plants.
- These window boxes are quite durable, but only if you know how to properly care for them.
- Though terra cotta can be expensive, it is much less pricy than buying metal window boxes.
- Terra cotta window boxes are typically more expensive than wooden and plastic window boxes.
- Window boxes fashioned out of terra cotta can be quite heavy, especially when purchased in larger dimensions.
- Because of its porous nature, terra cotta dries out pretty quickly.
- If watering your outdoor window plants during the winter, terra cotta can crack.
- If you live somewhere that winters reach freezing temperatures, your terra cotta window box must be brought inside to stave off damage from the elements.
This self-watering terra cotta window box by Gardener’s Supply Company provides a bright and beautiful look for larger window areas. To combat the issue of over-watering, this planter has a deep, 5-quart water reservoir to keep soil healthy so that plants may thrive.
4. Plastic window boxes
Plastic is one of the most versatile materials available today, so it should be no surprise that plastic window boxes are as varied as the uses of plastic itself. Plastic window planters are utilized often by beginner window gardeners who want to use an inexpensive window box while they learn the finer points of this type of gardening.
Plastic window boxes can be sturdy or flimsy, large or small, simple or ornate. The sheer variety available when you choose plastic for your window box is a compelling enough reason to consider this popular option.
- Plastic is far less expensive than other window box material options, even for the largest of window box planters.
- Some plastic window boxes are made with other materials as well, to bolster their durability.
- Plastic window boxes are very lightweight, making them easy to install.
- Plastic does not face the issue of rot, nor can insects cause extensive damage to it.
- Because of its low price point, plastic window boxes are a great option for first-time gardeners who don’t yet want to invest in a more expensive type of window box.
- Even the most durable of plastics don’t withstand against the elements as well as some other materials used to make window boxes.
- Plastic is susceptible to cracking and peeling due to exposure to the elements.
- Plastic window boxes don’t offer the kind of aesthetic appeal that many people want when they create a window box garden of their very own.
The window box by Mayne shown above reveals that plastic doesn’t have to equal plain. This modern-yet-classic take on the window box is very aesthetic and high in quality. It is designed to stand strong against the elements that it will undoubtedly be exposed to, a fact backed up by a competitive 15-year warranty.
The word “plastic” often invokes images of cheap, unappealing window boxes. But this doesn’t have to be the case. Molded plastic window boxes can be durable and beautiful, as well as reasonably priced.
Plastic also affords consumers a rainbow of colors to select from, as this 10-inch window box planter by Tabor Tools showcases. A colorful mini planter like this one can add a touch of something unexpected and highly appealing, at a price point that nobody can argue with. The fun, bright color of this window box also makes for a great project for children and others who flock toward vibrant hues.
5. Fiberglass and Resin Window boxes
Resin and fiberglass are both used as modern alternatives to wood. This works out very well for window box gardeners who want a window box that looks natural but isn’t susceptible to rot and insect damage. Resin, in particular, effectively mimics the visual effect of terra cotta. When you choose resin for your window box, you get the beautiful aesthetics of terra cotta clay without the fragility and heavy weight of the actual material.
- Resin and fiberglass are both very lightweight, so they’re easy to install.
- These window boxes are available in a wide array of colors, sizes and styles.
- Some of these window boxes are made with fiberglass or resin, plus added clay or another material for enhanced durability and strength.
- Fiberglass and resin window boxes can readily be painted without worry that the paint will immediately begin to peel (a common worry with plastic, for example).
- Because of the light weight of both resin and fiberglass, these window boxes must be secured very strongly. In the event of a storm or heavy winds, they can easily fly off and become a projectile.
- Resin and fiberglass are often more expensive than other material types that are used for window box construction.
- Adequate drainage needs to be ensured by the owner, as fiberglass and resin are not porous materials (unlike wood or terra cotta).
This fiberglass window box by the brand Windowbox offers a very modern and sleek alternative to more traditional window box designs. It will not rot or shatter, no matter what you or the elements put your window box through. The straightforward design makes it easy to craft your own window box dreams into reality, while the black color provides a beautiful contrast against colorful foliage.
The resin window box offered by T4U offers a more traditional look that invokes cozy summer cottage vibes. It is reinforced with plastic for added durability and weight, but it doesn’t look cheap or flimsy like some plastic window boxes do.
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