Are Garden Windows Worth It?

Garden windows are a top pick for the kitchen. They allow natural light to flood in and give you a place to house your favorite plants.

Garden Window

If you love quick access to herbs or are crazy about greenery, you may have considered adding a garden window to your home. But, while these windows brighten a space, they also come with a few disadvantages.

If you’re ready to add a garden window, here are the average costs, pros, cons, and important details you should know.


What is a Garden Window?

A garden window is similar to a bay window. Both have three sides and extend past the exterior wall of a home. But, unlike a bay window, garden window panels are connected with a flat glass top that acts as a roof. 

The shape of a garden window resembles a box extending from the window sill, and the top panel has a steep pitch to encourage rain run-off.

The glass panels of this window promote a greenhouse-like atmosphere suitable for plants. Some garden windows have multiple shelves that you can line with greenery or decor.

What is the Best Size Garden Window for Over a Kitchen Sink?

Garden windows are smaller than most other windows. Depending on the manufacturer, you can find them in sizes ranging from 24″ X 24″ to 72″ x 60″. Two of the most common garden window sizes over the kitchen sink are 24″ x 36″ or  36″ by 36.”


Where are the Most Common Places to Install a Garden Window?

The most common place to put a garden window is over a kitchen sink. But, you can place these windows anywhere. Other popular options include the bathroom, laundry room, or office.

Can You Open a Garden Window?

Yes, many garden windows have side panels that open. These side panels are typically single-hung, which means the bottom part of the window slides up, or casement style, which means you can open the window with a crank.

There are many variations of a garden window, though. So if you want a window that opens on all panels or one that doesn’t open at all, you can find it. 


How Much Does a Kitchen Garden Window Cost?

The cost of a 24″ by 36″ garden window is from $2,000 to $3,000, depending on the frame material and brand. Since garden windows are prone to sag or leak when not correctly installed, you’ll also need to pay for installation. Installation can cost $100-$500 depending on the size of the window, your location, and the prep work involved.


What are the Advantages and Disadvantages of a garden window?

A garden window will give you a spot to house all of your greenery. But, when not well-installed, these windows pose many problems.

Pros:

  • Add character to a room – There’s no denying that garden windows are a stylish accent.
  • Provide a greenhouse atmosphere for your plants – The glass enclosure of a garden window acts as a mini greenhouse, giving your plants a place to thrive.
  • Lets in light – These windows are a great choice if you want natural light in your home.
  • Better views – Do you love standing at your kitchen sink and looking outside? If so, a garden window will give you optimal views.

Cons:

  • Expensive – These windows can be as much as ten times the cost of a standard single-hung window.
  • Not suitable for DIY installation – If you like to DIY, think twice before installing a garden window yourself. When not installed properly, these windows sag and leak.
  • Need proper clearance – Since garden windows protrude far past the exterior wall of a home, you need adequate clearance in the spot you’d like to install one.

How Do You Clean a Garden Window?

To clean the inside of your garden window, remove all plants and use a ShopVac or vacuum attachment to suck up any loose dirt. Then, use a glass cleaner and a lint-free cloth to wipe away dirt and grime.

You’ll need to clean the exterior of the window from the outside. If the window is in reach, use a glass cleaner and lint-free cloth to clean it. If the window is on the second floor, you’ll need a ladder to reach it.

If there’s a lot of built-up dirt or grime on the outside of your garden window, use a hose to spray it off before wiping it down with your cloth and window cleaner.


Are Garden the Same as Bow or Bay Windows?

Garden Vs. Bow and Bay Windows

Garden, bow, and bay windows all protrude from the exterior wall of a home, but each is different. Bow and bay windows are much larger and are often a focal point in the front of the house.

Here’s a look at some key differences:

 Garden WindowBay WindowBow Window
Typical PlacementOver the Kitchen SinkLiving Room,
Dining Room,
Bedroom
Living Room,
Dining Room,
Bedroom
SizeSmall to MediumMedium to LargeMedium to Large
Number of Glass Panels3 with a glass top3-54-6
Most Often Decorated WithPlants, small decorWindow SeatWindow Seat

Where are the Best Places to Find Affordable Garden Windows?

Garden windows are a type of specialty window, which makes them more expensive than a standard double or single-hung window. You’ll need to check around to find an option that fits your budget. 

Here are the best places to look for affordable garden windows:

  • Lowes
  • Home Depot
  • Menards

You can also get quotes or find a local distributor by visiting the websites of popular window manufacturers such as Simonton, Milgard, or Andersen.

What are the Best Plants for a Garden Window?

You can grow a mini herb garden above your kitchen sink, giving you easy access while cooking. If you’d like to incorporate houseplants, consider succulents, string of pearl plants, jade plants, snake plants, aloe vera, or geraniums.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)FAQ

Are garden windows in style?

A well-maintained garden window will never go out of style. These windows add character to a room and help indoor plants thrive. With the popularity of indoor plants, a garden window can be a selling point in a home.

How much weight can a garden window hold?

The weight a garden window can hold depends on the size and manufacturer. Some garden windows cannot hold more than 25 lbs, while others can hold over 100 lbs. In general, the shelves of a garden window will not hold more than 8lbs per square foot. Exercise caution when decorating your garden shelf – overloading it will cause it to sag.

Are garden windows safe?

The biggest safety issue is that since garden windows project outward they can break if someone bumps into them too hard. Otherwise, proper-installed garden windows don’t pose significant safety risks.

Can you put blinds in a garden window?

Most homeowners leave their garden windows bare. If you want yours covered, you’ll have a hard time finding blinds off-the-shelf that fit. Instead, you’ll need to special order them.

Does Pella make a garden window?

While Pella does not have a garden window option on their website, they do have garden windows available through the Lowes website.

Are garden windows energy efficient?

Wondering if a garden window will be energy efficient? It depends. Garden windows with thick glass panels and low e-coatings will be energy efficient. Those with thinner glass panels and no special treatments won’t be.

Final Thoughts

Are garden windows a good idea? A properly installed garden window can give you a space to grow plants or showcase your favorite decor. So, as long as you have the budget for the materials and proper installation, these windows pose no significant problems.

The biggest disadvantage to a garden window is that it’s much more expensive than a standard window. These windows are also much harder to DIY and can lead to sagging or moisture problems when not well-installed.