I’ve been a fan of window boxes in Paris since my first trip when I saw the iconic red geraniums at Plaza Athénée. When I returned to study abroad I posted a photo of the hotel façade on Instagram joking that it was my address for the semester. It took almost eight years, but I finally have my very own Parisian window boxes filled with geraniums.
Marché aux Fleurs on Île de la Cité
I had my empty window boxes for a week before I actually committed to filling them. I spent the week paying extra attention to the different flower options and potential color schemes, especially after Romain briefly dashed my geranium dreams by calling them “old lady flowers.” He quickly changed his opinion 😉.
When we walked up to the Marché aux Fleurs on Île de la Cité I had the same rush of joy and giddiness that I get from picking out a Christmas tree. There were just so many options and they were all so beautiful. But I think all along I knew geraniums were for me.
Why I Chose Geraniums for My Window Boxes
You see geraniums in window boxes all around Paris. While I don’t necessarily like to do what everyone else is doing, I’m new to gardening (I’m going to go ahead and call my window boxes my garden). I wanted to go with a sure thing that seems to thrive in a Parisian window box. Also, geraniums don’t require a ton of water which means I won’t have to worry about them as much when I leave for short trips.
In my mind I’d narrowed down my color options to red and light pink. I decided to leave the red geraniums to the Plaza Athénée (and Le Saint Germain) and ultimately chose hot pink. It’s fun, it’s bright, and I have pops of hot pink all over my apartment already, so why not add another?
I never could’ve imagined how much I like looking out the window and seeing flowers. They really break up the otherwise very neutrally colored view (that I’ve been staring at now more than ever recently).
I originally bought three window boxes thinking I would put one in each window of my apartment. I didn’t remember that my air conditioner needs to vent out of one window, so I ended up hanging two boxes filled with herbs from one window and one box of geraniums from the other – initially. I’ll definitely be adding a second box of geraniums. My mom told me to wait a couple of days and see what I think, but I’ve waited a couple of hours and I’m already ready for more.
My Herb Selection
Last but not least, I’m equally as excited about the boxes with herbs. I bought chives, parsley, thyme, and basil and I moved my cayenne pepper seedlings into a box. I wanted to get lavender too because it’s so pretty, however, I’m allergic and decided maybe that wasn’t my best idea ever.
When I go back for my second round of geraniums I might add in a little layer of purple verbena like my grandmother suggested and something green to cascade over the side. But for now I’m very content just having my very own Parisian window boxes.