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How to Create a Windowsill Garden

4 min read

What Is a Windowsill Garden?

A windowsill garden is a variety of plants grown on the sill of a window. Windowsill gardens can be planted indoors or outdoors, as long as the sill has enough space. Give your home’s windows a refresher with a windowsill garden filled with your favorite herbs, vegetables or flowers! 

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Plants to Include In Your Windowsill Garden

Whether you’re utilizing your windowsill for fresh herbs or your prized succulent collection, knowing what you’ll plant beforehand will keep your container garden organized. Consider choosing plants that belong to the same biome, like an arid desert or tropical rainforest. In doing so, you’ll create a windowsill garden that’s cohesive and requires similar amounts of sunlight, fertilizer and water.


Access to fresh herbs is essential for the home cook looking to spruce up everyday meals. Most herbs require similar amounts of water and sunlight, meaning you can easily optimize your windowsill garden with a delectable selection. Regardless of where you plant your windowsill garden, the herbs will need 6-8 hours of direct sunlight, moderate temperatures and well-draining soil. 

Allium Vegetables

Onions, garlic, leeks, shallots and scallions belong to the Allium genus and are fundamental to cuisines around the world. Each of these vegetables provides complex flavor and adds depth to any dish—and what’s more rewarding than using home-grown ingredients? 


Microgreens are wildly popular as an addition to salads and sandwiches or as a garnish on pizza and pasta. Not only are microgreens versatile, but they’re also jam-packed with nutrients and minerals. With sufficient water and sunlight, you can grow microgreens in your windowsill garden in as little as two weeks. 

Leafy Greens

Make your own salads with homegrown leafy greens—right from your window! Leafy greens like spinach, kale, arugula and lettuce can all be grown indoors under the right conditions. Avoid head lettuces, as they require more space to grow than a windowsill garden can provide. 


Your windowsill garden doesn’t have to include edible plants, you can incorporate your favorite houseplants too! Succulents are thick, fleshy and native to arid climates where retaining moisture is crucial. Succulents are extremely diverse and grow in a variety of shapes, sizes and colors. Keep your succulent garden in an area with 6-8 hours of sunlight to see them thrive. 

Small-Root Vegetables

While small-root vegetables are typically grown in outdoor garden beds, they can be grown in a windowsill garden with enough sunlight and water. Common small-root vegetables that are worth growing include:

Small-root vegetables can be tricky, especially without maintained soil. Be sure to provide your soil with enough potassium and phosphorus for your small-root vegetable garden to flourish. 


Beans come in two varieties: bush and pole. It’s possible to grow both varieties indoors, as long as you have the appropriate container size. Choose a container that’s at least 15 inches in diameter before planting your beans; a smaller container won’t provide the beans with enough space to grow. 


Short on space? Show off that green thumb with houseplants on your windowsill if you don’t have the floor space. Combine plants with varying growth patterns and colors, like the trailing neon pothos and funky Pilea peperomioides. 

Prepare Your Windowsill Garden

After you’ve settled on what plants you’ll want to incorporate, it’s time to put your windowsill garden together! 

Gather Your Supplies

To avoid making a mess, you’ll likely need a garden trowel for digging or mixing your soil. You’ll also need a container for your garden, as well as a watering can, soil and fertilizer (depending on plant type).

Select a Window

Most windowsill gardens will need 6-8 hours of direct sunlight, no matter what plants you have. Southwestern-facing windows are your best option since they receive the most sunlight throughout the day. Consider placing your windowsill garden in a larger window style—like garden windows or bay and bow windows—to maximize the amount of sunlight entering your home. Be sure your windowsill has enough space for your garden and isn’t at risk of being knocked down by wayward elbows or curious pets. 

Prepare Your Container 

After gathering your supplies, it’s time to get everything planted. Fill your windowsill garden container with soil and add any soil amendments, leaving 2-3” at the top for planting. Use your trowel to plant seedlings ¼” into the soil. Apply fertilizer as directed on the packaging, soak the soil with water and wait for your garden to thrive! 

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