When it comes to flower boxes, the first thing that comes to mind may be those unsightly plastic rectangles you can get at the dollar store. Thankfully, the classic flower box has gotten some serious upgrades over the years—it's not just window boxes anymore.
From sleek and modern metal planters to natural and boho boxes, here are flower box ideas we can't wait to try in our own gardens this year.
Go the Traditional Route
Window boxes may be the first thing that comes to mind when you think of flower boxes, and there's nothing wrong with that. If you live in an apartment, this is the perfect way to spruce up the view you have of the building next door. If your outside sill is large enough, simply place a flower box on it and plant whatever you'd like in it. We're partial to trailing plants that cover up basic-looking boxes.
Embrace Desert Vibes
To add dimension and interest to your yard or patio, try creating a terraced look. Here, platforms serve as different zones for lounging, dining, or even just laying out. The cacti and rock-laden flower boxes separate the spaces with a lively touch of green, keeping things from looking too matchy-matchy with the wood. Plus, if you live in a hot and dry climate, this means you don't have to worry about watering a lawn. Simply give your plants a quick drink every now and again and you're good to go!
Use decorative rocks to fill empty space in your planters. It not only adds a different texture, but uses up any awkward space you may have left.
Use Your Balcony
No yard? No problem. If you're a city dweller who has a balcony, hang flower boxes off the railing. Since they aren't permanent, it's a renter-friendly solution that spruces up the small amount of outdoor space you have. It's the perfect way to grow your own herbs and spices.
Protect Your Flowers From Critters
Raised growing spaces aren't just for fruits and veggies. If you live somewhere where deer or rabbits are likely to munch on your flowers, putting some wire or netting around your plants is key. Kristen Guy of Dine x Design created wood frames that fold up around her plants to keep animals out. The mesh wire allows sun and water in but keeps unwanted critters out.
For those who have done a recent reno project, it's pretty normal to have some leftover supplies. If you've got any pavers or stones sitting in your stash, consider stacking them up to create a flower box of your own. Not only does it use excess materials, but it's also cheaper than buying flower boxes at the hardware store. We love the way the stone wall blends in with the rest of this outdoor setting and creates room for a ton of different varieties of plants.
Create a Modern Look
Sleek, modular boxes will look great in any yard or garden that has a modern vibe going on. These concrete-look planters add an industrial touch to the outdoors, and the white stone pops against the gorgeous green plants. Plus, when things get chilly outside, you can bring the boxes inside and they'll look just as stylish.
Reuse Organic Materials
If you had to chop down a tree or move a fallen one from your yard, why not make the most of it? These tree trunk slices have been repurposed to create a retaining wall, complete with room for flowers on top. Imagine how gorgeous this would look with trailing blooms in the Spring!
No room for a retaining wall? Consider hollowing out part of a tree trunk to create a planter instead. Or, simply stack some wood together to make a plant stand.
Cover Your Railing
This fully customizable option can be used indoors or outdoors. For an easy fix, you can buy flower boxes meant to fit over a handrail at your local hardware store. Or, if you want something different, you could build your own. Create contrast by using a box that's a different color than your railing, which will add a little extra "oomph" to your space.
For a California cool feel, try a concrete (or stone look) box. The industrial material beautifully contrasts the organic nature of plants, and it's also durable in just about any kind of weather. You can opt for a permanent option that lines your yard or fence, or you could even stack some cinderblocks (that could be moved if need be) for a similar aesthetic.
Placing a flower box on a wall is the perfect solution if you're low on space—or if you just like the look of a vertical garden. There are tons of planters you can easily hang on a wall, many of which include any needed hardware. Plus, you can opt for styles that have multiple boxes (like the one above), or you can stick with smaller ones to home just one plant.
Line Your Stairs
Put some literal pep in your steps by adding plants to either side of your outdoor stairs. Stairs are essentially just a terrace anyway, so why not use the extra space for some greenery? Tall grasses are super easy to care for and add height to your garden, making them the perfect pairing for a set of stairs.
Do Some Stacking
For plant parents who are running out of room, stacking flower boxes is key to maximizing space. For a leveled look, use boxes of different depths to house your greenery. Chances are, your foliage will spill into one another, creating a gorgeous mixture of textures and heights.
You can use shelving of various heights to create a similar effect. Simply gather your pots and plants in one area and stack away!
Use Unexpected Vessels
For a rustic-inspired flower box, opt for an old barrel or bucket instead of a wooden or brick box. Complete the look with a small seating area and fire pit, where you can get cozy all year long.
Create a Border
For maximum entertaining space, consider lining the border of your yard or garden with planter boxes. We love the way the greenery balances out the bold black walls of this patio area. The contrast makes the space modern, but the plants keep it from feeling cold and lifeless.
Balance is key. Mix natural materials (like wood or rock) with more polished ones (like metal) to create a look that's modern and lively.
Use Stone Boxes
Not all plants need (or like) a deep container to grow in. Shallow dishes made of polished stone or marble add a glam element to your décor, indoors or outdoors. For a super low-maintenance flower box, add a variety of mosses to a shallow planter. They need minimal water and sun to grow, making this an easy way to add some green to your space without a ton of effort.
Repurpose Boxes in the Winter
If your plants die when winter rolls around, why not repurpose your flower box for something else? A long, wide concrete flower box could be used as a fire pit if you'd like. Just be sure you're using non-flammable materials as your vessel—this is not the time to get creative. Stone or metal is your best bet. Plus, fire pits are pretty easy to make yourself.
Spruce Things Up with Paint
Add some pizazz to an otherwise neutral outdoor space by painting a geometric pattern to your wall or flower boxes. It's a quick update that can be done in one afternoon. The best part is you're in control of the colors and design you use, so it can literally be whatever your heart desires. Can't decide on a color? There are apps for that.
Elevate the Look (Literally)
Already got some flower boxes and not sure how to make them feel new? Try elevating them—literally. You can make a DIY plant stand to prop them up, or you can even set them on an old stool or step ladder. Bonus: If the stool or ladder is wide enough, you can add two or three flower boxes to complete the look.
Use Your Sill
If you're confined to the great indoors, you can still add a planter box to your space. Thankfully, window boxes are wonderful for window sills, meaning you can enjoy greenery all year long. The narrow boxes save space and help elevate your plant babies so they can get the sun they need to thrive.
Hang it Up
If you're short on ground space, try going vertical! Succulents are a great plant to put in shallow, hanging boxes. Plus, thanks to online tutorials (like this one from Rachel Metz), you can easily create a custom flower box to match your personal décor style. Got a black thumb? Thankfully, there are plenty of faux plant options to choose from, too.