From their fashion to their interiors, we're big fans of all things Scandinavian at the moment – so yes, you'd best believe we're heavily into the Scandi window box trend that we keep spying all over the place.
Now, bringing some Nordic flair into our gardens is nothing new; last year saw many of us take inspiration from the best Scandi garden design ideas around, whether that be rain harvesting or Sweden's pelargonsjuka look.
It makes sense, then, that we're all set to take our lead from the gardens of Bergen Old Town when it comes to our window boxes this year.
The Scandi window box
Minimalist and oh-so-stunning, the Scandi window box goes against everything we would usually consider when making up a planter.
That's right, you can forget the mixed arrangements that we favour here in the UK (although it's still worth keeping the top window box mistakes in mind when you set to work): instead, this trend is all about sticking to one striking flower or plant variety.
'This Scandi trend takes a minimalistic approach to window box planting by featuring a single plant like pink heathers, rather than a mixed collection,' explains Morris Hankinson, director of Hopes Grove Nurseries.
Morris Hankinson is the founder and managing director of Hopes Grove Nurseries Ltd, the UK’s only specialist grower-retailer of hedging plants, which he established after graduating with a Commercial Horticulture Degree from Writtle College, Essex in 1992.
'A single plant allows for a strong focal point, drawing attention to the beauty of that particular species rather than the mix of different plants that might compete for attention,' he continues.
'Additionally managing a window box with a single plant can be more straightforward in terms of care, which means it's generally easier to water, prune, and monitor the plant's health.'
Morris makes an excellent point, and there's no denying that the Scandi window box trend is an especially good option for colder periods, as you can pick from the sort of winter flowers for hanging baskets that thrive when temperatures dip.
Get the look
If you're looking to recreate the Scandi window box trend at home, you're in luck: you can buy a Scandinavian Red Wood Window Box Wooden Planter from B&Q in a variety of sizes – which means one is guaranteed to fit the space you're working with.
Once that's in situ, you just need to fill it with some gorgeous plants:
Producing an abundance of pinkish purple flowers from late winter to mid-spring, these gorgeous winter heathers are an excellent choice for your Scandi window box – not least of all because they provide an early source of nectar for bees!
Unlike any variety of winter viola we've ever seen, these violet-purple, speckled flowers (and the heart shaped, deep-green foliage) are sure to make a striking addition to your Scandi window box.
A twist on the trend
If you still prefer a mixed planter, don't despair: you can achieve the highs of the Scandi winter box trend simply by sticking to one colour, according to garden designer Annika Zetterman.
Annika Zetterman is a Swedish garden designer, as well as the author of the book 'New Nordic Gardens: Scandinavian Landscape Design'. She is also the founder of Zetterman Garden Design, and regularly gives lectures on garden design in both Sweden and abroad.
Noting that there are three things you can do to give your container garden ideas that Scandi look, Annika suggests that you start by using 'Pantone's colour of the year, "Peach Fuzz", for a truly Nordic vibe.'
Basically, try to look for those flowers with peach and apricot tones, such as hellebores, crocuses, and some winter heathers.
'You should also add things from the wild,' she continues. 'For a contemporary look and for height, add branches with character, such as Corylus avellana 'Contorta' from Crocus or dried Salix willow stalks from Beards & Daisies, as a hint that spring will be here soon'.
Finally, Annika advises that you try to 'work with colours and textures of green for a solid base, and use some perennials that drop down, over the windowbox, such as Vinca or Hedera, for a dynamic, soft and less formal expression'.
One of the easiest ways to achieve this? Make good on all the ways you can use ivy in your garden, and weave some of this beloved evergreen into your planting schemes, stat.
And just like that, we're off to create a Scandi window box of our very own. You'll find us at our local garden centre, our arms spilling over with winter heathers and potted ivies...
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Kayleigh Dray became Ideal Home’s Acting Content Editor in the spring of 2023, and is very excited to get to work. She joins the team after a decade-long career working as a journalist and editor across a number of leading lifestyle brands, both in-house and as a freelancer.
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