How to Make Window Boxes

LAST UPDATED: Oct 19, 2020 | PUBLISHED: Apr 01, 2013 | By:

Learn how to make your own planters with this easy step-by-step tutorial to make window boxes that will add color and charm to your home. These DIY boxes are simple to make and even simpler to fill with beautiful blooms!

DIY wood window boxes on the front of a house filled with spring flowers

Simple Window Boxes

When we originally purchased our house, we knew the existing window boxes (actually shelves for planters) were victims of wood rot. I’ve been anxious to replace them, since I knew they would add so much charm and color to the front of our home. I’m already dreaming of ways to fill them for each season!

Simple white window box on grey brick house

I like to give a lot of detail in my how-to posts to guide readers through any questions. If you’re just here for the printable how-to guide, feel free to click “jump to how-to” right under the title of this post and you’ll head straight there!

These window boxes are a simple DIY project that you can do in a weekend. Chris and I picked up the supplies one night and got to work immediately the next day.

While window boxes are usually the same length as the window they are hanging below, ours will be 6″ larger on each side to conceal damage that the existing ones will leave.

How to Make DIY Window Boxes

First, you need to decide how big you want your window flower boxes to be. We built our window boxes 62″ long {just a bit longer than our windows} after assessing the damage the originals left. This ended up being a blessing in disguise, because I actually love how they look.

A white diy window box filled with spring flowers.

Supplies Needed

  • Wood (We used Pine but Cedar is ideal)
  • Nail/Staple Gun
  • Clamps
  • Exterior wood screws
  • Trim (3/4×1-3/4″ accent colonial shown)
  • Waterproof wood glue
  • Sand paper
  • Primer
  • Paint
  • Drill
  • Weed barrier

Instructions

make a box for the planters

1. Using a nail/staple gun adhere 5 boards together to form an open-top box. Use clamps to hold them in place if needed.

adding screws to the window box

2. Use screws to ensure they are secure.

A wooden window box in the process of being made.

3. Clamp accent trim pieces to the top, bottom or both.

nail trim to accent the window box

4. Use a nail gun to adhere the trim.

sand the edges of the trim when building is finished

5. Use waterproof wood glue to give it a perfect finish along the seams before sanding (for an even edge).

drill holes for drainage

6. Prime the wood boxes inside and out to reduce wood rot before painting.

7. Drill drainage holes throughout the box.

staple weed barrier over the holes

8. Staple weed barrier over holes to keep soil from draining through.

DIY window boxes hung on the house

9. Hang!

Tips to Fill Planter Boxes

  • Use empty aluminum soda cans or pine cones to fill the bottom of planter boxes without adding a lot of weight.
  • Use potting soil, which is much lighter and includes fertilizer for plants, versus top soil.
Empty aluminum cans lining the base of a window box for a lightweight filler before potting soil.

Planting Window Boxes

For these window boxes, I chose to add an edible garden. Some of my favorite edible flowers include begonias, carnations, chrysanthemums, clover, day lilies, lavender, lilacs, pansies, peonies, impatiens, and tulip {petals}.

A homemade white window box filled with blooming lavender.

Since I was planting in early spring, I knew I could rely on pansies and lavender, knowing that the colors would compliment our home and landscaping plans well.

As you may already know, I love lavender for its beautiful aesthetic, fragrance and versatility. Click here for some of my favorite lavender uses. I chose pansies because they are great for garnishes and salads, plus the height of the lavender balances the pansies.

Close up image of purple pansies in a window box.
DIY wooden window boxes on the front of a house filled with pansies and lavender

Free Garden Printables

  • The Garden Journal – designed to keep record of what you have planted, whether it requires sun or shade, water requirements, the height it will reach, when it will bloom & care it requires
  • Garden Guide – a sketch of what you have planted that correlates with your journal
  • Garden Plans – a place to sketch your overall design
  • Notes – detailed care, changes you may want to make in the future, etc
DIY wood window boxes on the front of a house filled with spring flowers

More Garden Inspiration

window boxes attached to red brick house with spring flowers

Now that we’ve completed this project, I’m excited to get started on the rest of our landscaping!

You can see our “completed” home here.

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Easy DIY window planters - create your own planter boxes with these simple step by step instructions

How to Build a Window Box

Yield: 1
Prep Time: 1 hour
Active Time: 2 hours
Additional Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours 30 minutes
Difficulty: moderate
Estimated Cost: $20.00

Learn how to make your own planters with this easy step-by-step tutorial to make window boxes that will add color and charm to your home. These DIY boxes are simple to make and even simpler to fill with beautiful blooms!

Materials

  • Wood
  • Screws
  • Trim (3/4×1-3/4″ accent colonial shown)
  • Waterproof wood glue
  • Sand paper
  • Primer
  • Paint
  • Weed barrier

Tools

  • Nail/Staple Gun
  • Clamps
  • Drill

Instructions

  1. Using a nail/staple gun adhere 5 boards together. Use clamps to hold them in place if needed.
  2. Use screws to ensure they are secure.
  3. Add trim to accent at the top, bottom or both.
  4. Clamp it to the window box and use a nail gun to adhere it.
  5. Use waterproof wood glue to give it a perfect finish along the seams before sanding {for an even edge}.
  6. Prime your wood boxes inside and out to reduce wood rot before painting.
  7. Drill drainage holes throughout the box.
  8. Staple weed barrier over holes to keep soil from draining through.
  9. Hang!

Notes

Tips to fill planter boxes:

  • Use empty aluminum soda cans or pine cones to fill the bottom of planter boxes without adding a lot of weight.
  • Use potting soil, which is much lighter and includes fertilizer for plants, versus top soil.
Disclosure

mini loaves of bread gift wrapped