Create Your Own Herb Garden Window Box
A herb garden window box is a beautiful way to inject colour, fragrance and wildlife into the smallest of outdoor spaces. Mine is conveniently located outside of the kitchen door, in a little courtyard area.
My name is Lee and I’m a herbaholic, not by the Urban Dictionary’s definition! I am obsessed with herbs, over 20 different verities adorn my garden. I’m always on the lookout for new and exciting herbs to experiment with.
Herb garden window boxes are cheap and easy to make, require minimal upkeep and will provide you with delicious herbs to liven up any dish.
Things to consider when planting
Some herbs spread like wildfire. Mint and lemon balm are particularly invasive, they will easily get out of control if you don’t keep on top of them.
If you have minimal space choose herbs you use regularly and are compact in size. Herbs, such as fennel, rosemary and lemon verbena will grow over a metre tall, so they aren’t ideal for a window box.
Scent is very important if your window box is located in a small area. I once planted a curry plant in a high traffic area and people would often comment on a strange smell. Burnt cat pee is not the most inviting aroma! Try a culinary lavender, such as Vera. This pretty and compact variety is highly fragrant with deep purple-blue flowers.
Ideally you’ll want the window box in easy reach of the kitchen. A sunny sheltered spot is ideal for most herbs, check the growing instructions of your chosen herbs when considering the location.
Window boxes are ideal for a herb garden as they can be installed in a convenient place, are a good size and have excellent drainage. Other containers such as troughs, Belfast sinks, pots and hanging basket also work well.
In summer rainfall alone is not enough to keep your little herbs happy, you will need to water daily during sunny spells. During extreme periods of cold weather you may want to cover with a fleece to protect your plants from frost and snow.
Mix it up:
You don’t have to stick to herbs, create a diverse kitchen garden by adding edible flowers and fruit. Edible flowers, such as pansies, will add a splash of colour to your herb garden and brighten up dull salads.
Herb Garden Window Box
You will need:
– Herb plants
– A window box, complete with liner
– All purpose slow release plant food
– Hand trowel
– Watering can
Once you have purchased your herbs and selected a location, you’re ready to fix the window box and start planting.
1. Give your herbs a good watering.
2. Fill the container with compost to the level of the base of the largest pot.
3. Mix the plant food into the compost. Follow the manufacturers instructions for quantities.
4. With the herbs still in their pots arrange them to create a striking display. Remember to place larger herbs to the back.
5. When the display is to your liking, remove the herbs from their pots and put back into position.
6. Fill the gaps with more compost, firm down and water.
The herbs in my window box:
Above I mentioned that mint spreads like wildfire, I’m not too concerned as I use it so frequently it will not get a chance. Salads, soup, sauces, new potatoes, teas, desserts, mojitos and water infusions are all delicious with the addition of mint.
Is my go-to herb when I need a Mediterranean fix in my salads, pizzas, pasta sauce, meats and fish. It is also a crucial ingredient for Cajun spice and my beef chilli!
Although I have lavender in the garden I have never used it in my cooking. This was an impulsive purchase as I knew it was a good culinary variety. You can add the flowers to salads or make lavender tea, however I’m more interested in experimenting with cakes!
Common Compact Thyme:
This pretty little herb is highly scented. In summer a hue of pink-purple flowers attract a variety of wildlife. I’m in love with it’s floral flavour and I use it in almost everything, from stews to desserts and drinks to my Creamy Lemon and Herb Overnight Oats.
I already have strawberries in the garden but I thought these small scarlet berries would add a flash off colour to the herb garden window box and who can resist a freshly picked strawberry?
A herb garden is a lovely and creative gift for that special chef or gardener in your life.
What’s your favourite herb? I’d love to hear from you, please leave your comments at the end of this post.