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Summer is in full swing! It’s time to get outside and improve our home’s curb appeal. Window boxes are a fun way to dress up the exterior and bring colors from the garden to the fore. Here are a few ways to make your windows “bloom.”

First things first, inspect your windows. Make sure they are clean and well sealed. You can amp up the shine of your windows by cleaning them with an eco-friendly natural cleaner like a quarter cup of white vinegar mixed with one gallon of water. Use a rubber squeegee—it’s infinitely more effective than cloth. Remember to work from the top down to avoid streaks. If you can see a “fog,” when you are done, it may be due to a failed seal, which indicates the window’s functionality is compromised. If that be the case, contact a window specialist. You don’t want to miss any sunlight during New England’s short summer!

OK, now the fun part—designing the boxes. Follow the “Thriller, Filler, and Spiller” rule—doing so will give you that “wow” factor. Head over to your favorite nursery and find colors that speak to you and make sense for your home.

Start with a tall plant that steals the show (the thriller). Consider a splashy grass or bold geranium, and plant it in the center. For the filler, consider things pansies, petunias, and Heliotrope to add pop. 

To the front of the box add the spiller plants—those that cascade, like Senecio or Lysimachia. Make sure to fill the whole box, don’t just plant into the corners. 

Remember that there should have a few drainage holes (standing water will rot both the plants’ roots and the boxes). You can always use a drill to make some if the boxes you are using do not come with holes.

When all is said and done, open those windows and let in some fresh air (perhaps fragranced by that Heliotrope)!