Thinking Outside of the Window Box

Good Morning!

It will be a short and sweet post today, as I will be heading out of town for the weekend. It’s going to be a beautiful, sunny weekend for us, though I wish we would get some more rain. Western New York is “abnormally dry”. Our lawn is brown!

And because we have had so little rain, we need to water everything– most importantly, container plants– window boxes. ( That was a pretty good segue, I think!)

Of course, this leads me into the subject of the post– window boxes. For the first time, I received Proven Winners gardeners idea book for some ideas on how to change things up in my window boxes.

pw pic

I was not let down– I pretty much wanted to copy two different window box ideas in the book, but couldn’t find some of the flowers– they were sold out!

So, I improvised. And it was great anyway!

*Do not be afraid to try different combinations of plants for your window boxes.*

We are so used to going to our local nursery and getting the same things — geraniums, marigolds, creeping jenny, spikes (don’t worry, I purchased the last two anyway because I love them). And if you like those plants, there is no need to change them! We as gardeners tend not to look beyond the same, familiar flowers just by habit. We don’t look past the “norm” and see all the great, different plants you can put in your window boxes!

That’s why I love this idea book from Proven Winners. It gave me insight on plants I would never think of putting in a window box.


My window boxes for the front of my house contain:

L to R: Coleus (Alligator Tears), Chenile (the red fuzzy plant), Sweet potato vine (yellow leaves) and capped off with another Coleus.

The red fuzzy plant called Chenile I actually saw at the Farmer’s Market in a basket. I was browsing the nursery a month later and found them in packs. I just HAD to add that. So different!

I have discovered the great shade/part sun annual Coleus this year. There are so many varieties at your local nursery. I recommend them to anyone with lots of shady spots in your landscape!

The window box I have on my daughter’s swing set contains:



Bottom to Top: Coleus (Kong Red); Sweet Alyssum ( tiny purple flowers); Black Sweet Potato Vine. I have each of these plants in this particular box as every other. 

So please, take a look at some different flowers for your window boxes if you haven’t already done so. It’s amazing the beautiful combinations you can make it look beyond your typical flowers!




The Great Vase Brigade

Good Morning, everyone! I hope you all had a fantastic holiday weekend. I know I did. It was good to relax and get away for a couple of days. We have been doing so much work on our house, along with just being busy in general! It’s hard to relax when you know something has to be done. Even getting away to a hotel or somewhere for one night forces you to relax.

Now that the holiday is behind us, it’s time to get back to work!

When you think about putting flowers in a vase, what are some of the first flowers that come in to mind for you? Roses? Carnations? Daffodils? Yes! And they are all great flowers! I personally love fresh cut flowers around the house in the dead of winter. It makes things so cheery and bright!

Well, how about thinking outside of the box when it comes to flowers in your vase?

Rule #1Carry a pair of small clippers with you at all times. You never know when you will find the most perfect branch of blossoms, or grass! I have a pair of Fiskars I bought especially to keep in my car so when I am driving by a wooded area of road, (that is NOT anybody’s property), I can pull over quick and snip a few.

Rule #2Always have at least two vases full of your finds around your house. The more, the merrier! Don’t be afraid to be creative!


We have a good mix here. L to R: Hydrangeas, Grass, Iris’

Above are three vases full of things that really caught my eye.

Vase #1– Hydrangeas — I bought these at the supermarket. I like cutting seasonal flowers, but unfortunately we don’t have these in bloom yet, so I just purchased them!

Vase #2 — Grass — I saw this grass on the side of the canal bike path. It looks a lot like wheat to me! I was so intriguing, I just had to cut a few stems. So simple and beautiful.


Vase #3 – Iris

The yellow iris’ are literally right from the canal, next to the fuzzy cattails. I couldn’t help myself and cut a few stems. I liked that they were something you couldn’t find in a flower shop.


Another great option for a vase are Bachelor’s Buttons. These babies grow like crazy! I cut some for a couple of vases. They last forever!

cut bachelors buttons

Vase #4 – Lilacs. I just love them, so they have to make a cameo.


So, I hope this post gives you some ideas on being creative when it comes to the vase. Anything can go if you like it!

One more pic, totally unrelated to vases, only because it’s my favorite landscape to photograph:


Have a great rest of the weekend!