Who said there is nothing much that can be done to save your garden in colder climates? If you have delicate plants that will find it hard to adapt to the cold, then you can simply move them indoors. In fact, you can add a garden window to your house to accommodate the growth of plants throughout the year.
But what exactly is a garden window? What are the benefits of a garden window? Also, how do you go about a garden window replacement project? Can they help in aesthetic improvements? We have answered all the questions in your head below.
What is a Garden Window?
A garden window, also known as a greenhouse window, is an architectural-like construction on the exterior of houses. They are usually built above the kitchen sink.
One can use it as a display space for plants, or also use it to store climate-sensitive herbs and plants throughout the year. This is because the indoor garden window will provide protection from the weather, but will yet allow sunlight.
You can also consider building a stamped patio that has a design in sync with that of your garden window.
Benefits of a Garden Window
We have curated a list of benefits of installing a kitchen garden window:
- Aesthetically, garden windows have a lot to offer. They bring a unique vibe from the outsides and insides of the house.
- Owners and gardeners are gifted with a beautiful view of their backyard from their homes itself. If you have a slanting top glass plane then you also get a view of the skies.
- Gardeners cum cooks who love preparing gourmet masterpieces have a lot to gain from garden windows. This is because they get access to fresh herbs growing on the window itself. You may want to use gardening gloves to keep those muddy hands away from your food.
- Garden windows usually come with 4 glass panes. What better way to bring natural light into your kitchen?
- Garden windows bring plenty of conveniences when it comes to watering the plants, as they are placed above the kitchen sink. You can even use the space to add objects that give your kitchen an aesthetically rich appeal.
What is the Best Material for a Garden Window?
The best materials for garden windows would be:
These materials are easy to be tightly fitted, thus they are ideal to eliminate external air and moisture.
Remember, the size of your glass is directly proportional to your garden window’s energy efficiency. Make sure your kitchen garden window has double-pane glass with low-emissivity coatings.
Step-by-Step Guide on How to Install a Garden Window
Make sure to double-check your requirements and window design. Different patterns can throw light in different parts of your kitchen and some can even be opened from the sides. Take your time and look for the most suitable option.
Once you are ready, follow this step-by-step guide for installing a garden window:
1. Order the Window and then Perform Inspection
Choose the amount of shelf space and number of glass panes you want on your garden window. Also, make sure you have ordered a window after accurately taking measurements. In case you had a window already attached there, double-check the measurements you have taken with the existing window.
Once you receive your garden window you need to perform a thorough inspection to avoid future discrepancies. The nailing fin should be undamaged and have no form of deformities. Any issues here would make your window unstable and you could face the risk of damage to the potted plants.
Have you chosen windows that can be opened? If yes, then verify that the weep holes are durable and exhibit spot-on water-resisting capabilities.
You can carry out a test by cleaning the window with vinegar and water. If you observe any liquid seeping through then you know what has to be done. Order for a new window – don’t make any compromises.
2. Dry-Fit the Window and Ensure Sealing is Perfect
Get another person along for this step. While your partner holds the window on the position you want it installed, you must carefully check around the rim to look for any gaps and issues that can make the installation process difficult for you.
Consider using a level (a tool for establishing a horizontal plane) to confirm that the window is leveled.
Whatever the present condition of your garden window, your inspection should ensure that there is no form of structural damage to its casing.
Do you notice any cracks or warps? Fix them right away or you will notice post-installation that moisture has a route to seep through and attack your plants.
3. Apply Flashing on the Corners and Opening
For gardeners, the primary purpose of a garden window is to keep their plants safe from extreme weather conditions. What is the point if sufficient measures are not taken to keep moisture and water out? For this reason, one has to place metallic flashing on the joints of the window.
Read more: 15 Apartment Patio Design Ideas on a Budget
This addition assures that water cannot seep into your window and you have a foolproof weather-resistant structure. You have to place the flashing such that it cannot be seen from the backyard or the kitchen.
If you are performing garden window placement then you can follow the marks of the previous flashing material.
Use adhesives when you are flashing the opening region of your window space. You should even place diagonal strips for double-layered protection.
4.Place and Attach the Garden Window
If you are doing a garden window replacement project then this step will not require as much precision due to the existing window marks.
But if you are installing a window for the first time, it would be wise to get an additional person’s help. It is critical that you place your window with accuracy to avoid any indoor gardening mishaps.
Before placing your window you have to apply plenty of adhesive above the flashing. This helps to add further stability to the window before you begin to hammer nails in. Once adhesives are applied, you and another person can fit the window in its assigned position. Double-check the plumb and the level.
2 important points to consider are that your flashing must be completely covered by the window. Any visible flashing could be hard to remove and ruin the attractiveness of your kitchen garden window. Secondly, the insides and outsides of the window must be checked attentively to avoid breaks in the seal.
5. Hammer the Nails
Now that you have placed the window and verified the level, it is time to drill or hammer nails through the nailing fins. It would be better the user a simple hammer and avoid a power nailer.
Be cautious so as to not hit the nails too hard as this can spoil the structure of the nailing fin. These kinds of damages can easily expose the insides of the window to outside weather.
Sensitive plants can die even via mild exposure to unsuitable weather. Thus you want to be careful with the nails and not apply too much force.
Also, if this a garden window replacement project then do not get confused with previous nail holes. Mark them with a colored marker to avoid incorrect installation of your new window.
6. Adding a J-channel
A J-channel is used at parts of the window where two ends meet. Or basically at spots where angles are created. You need to slide the siding panel where the J-channel lies.
Avoid skipping this step as this assures a professional and elegant finishing to all edges of your window.
Make sure the J-channel is installed on the bottom and top sides of the window.
7. Re-Attach Siding
Finally, if this was a garden replacement project, you need to replace the old siding with a new one. The side perimeter of your garden window must have siding for a good look and also to keep extra moisture and noise from entering the kitchen area.
Attaching a siding is just another required safety measure to fight external weather and keep your plants in a controlled environment.
What size should my garden window be?
- The size of your garden window can be decided by comparing the maximum height that your indoor plants can grow. If you have a smaller garden window then you would face limitations with respect to what you can grow. Thus, the larger the better.
- The length and breadth of your garden window area are important. Because the more surface area your window offers the more plants you can place.
- Consider having maximum glass panes with the least materials that block sunlight. The more glass panes, the better it is for your plants. If your purpose is to increase the beauty of your backyard/kitchen then you can choose a design with as many modifications and added materials as you like.
- Make sure that the sides, top, and front end of your window can be opened. This gives you versatility in usage and also allows clean air to enter on good weather days.
If you have a window above your sink that simply slides up and down, then consider taking up this garden replacement project to make better use of the space.
This is your chance to get closer to your garden. Besides how lovely would it be to have the smell of plants in your kitchen?
If you are a gardening enthusiast then you may want to see how to set up a raised garden bed.