Monday, January 03, 2011

The Bottle Tree

Yes we installed the bottle tree on January 01. Harvested a dead cedar on our property and planted it behind the garden. The first location we wanted to place it, was a bust. I turned out when we regraded for the remodel the old back sidewalk concrete chunks were buried under the new grading and prevented me from digging any deeper than a foot. So we moved over 5-6 foot and I dug a 30 inch deep hole to set the tree into.
Here are two views of the new bottle tree which is around 11 foot tall. The tree is a little one-sided but I believe it gives it character. We still have to install a few more bottles to make it complete. I have more bottles they just need to be cleaned of the labeling. Meg wanted to let the weather remove the labels, she is still mad at me for taking down the bottles and cleaning them. I have one bottle that the remaining glue is burned onto the bottle and will not come off.

As many of you already know I have been recycling dumpster checking for blue bottles, this time of year seems great as lately I've found 1 or 2 bottles a visit.

The bottles are from Riesling, Vodka and Sherry bottles. I was given a gift of two bottles of Sake that I need to drink before using those bottles too. The light blue bottles are Vodka bottles.
 Here is our Helleborus niger that finally cleared of snow. This plant has looked pretty much like this during most of December. December in 2010 we had 27 days of colder than normal temps and 3 days that it dropped to 16 degrees. I think it was the third coldest December on record here!

23 comments:

Darla said...

I see these bottle trees on other blogs too. Guess they really haven't taken off here in the South. At least I've never seen one in person, they are cool. Ya'll have had some cold, cold weather, here's hoping for a little more sunshine!

Janet said...

Fun to have a bottle tree. I love Reisling wines.....my blue bottles have a small strand of Christmas lights inside and are a 'nightlight'.
I think getting those bottles up on the higher limbs would have been a challenge.

Ginny said...

Love your bottle tree! Not being symmetrical gives it movement and makes it all the prettier.

fairegarden said...

What a lot of character your bottle tree has, Randy. Well done! We have some dead small trees that could also work for this, and extra blue bottles. Thanks for the inspiration! :-)
Frances

Southern Lady said...

I love the bottle tree. I'll have to go out and check on my hellebores. It's a little early for them, however, our winter has not been normal. They may make an early appearance. Carla

Gail said...

I love it. At first I thought it was copper! But, cedar is the second best material! No hellebore action yet~But, now I want to check and see~I expect the hamamelis to bloom before any other flowers~ gail

Diana (Di) said...

I love your bottle tree! We have only 5 blue bottles that are on bamboo stakes in the garden. They are hard to come by here unless you drink some Riesling now and then. Everyone recycles here and as soon as bottles are taken to recycling, they immediately crush them.... gone.

A Happy and healthy new year to you and Meg, Randy. Many blessings!

Carol said...

I cannot believe you have Hellebores blooming. I know I should remember by now. Beautiful! I love their humble bowing heads so. Now, please tell me, for I am seeing this species of tree in other gardens in the blog world. . . do they have a special purpose . . . say attracting birds or are they just silly and pretty? I would love a bit of history?? Is there an original bottle tree? Your tree represents a good amount of fun times I would guess, with the amount of vodka and wine one had to consume so that you could have the empty bottles. Those are beautiful blues and your tree is a bit wilder than most I have been introduced to. Quite an artistic statement. It is fun!

shirl said...

Project completed there, Randy. I love the one sided look too. I’ve seen blue bottle trees on a few US Blogs, it’s not something I’ve seen here in the UK or Scotland. But then again, I’ve not noticed very many blue bottles here either ;-)

Just to say, I had a gardening friend who edged a path with bottles (neck down) leaving them bottom up through the soil by 4 or so inches. Don’t know if you’ve seen that yourself?

We’ve still snow covering most of our garden, it is slowly shifting. Looking forward to looking for signs of plant growth when it does – your wonderful pics have me in the mood for looking :-D

Kim and Victoria said...

Look at that.....blooms!
Love your bottle tree. The blue bottles are very pretty.

sweetbay said...

Nice bottle tree! A little drying out would be nice now wouldn't it?

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

The bottle tree looks great. I've only seen them on blogs so far, none around here. I would think they might catch on here when it's so gray and bare all winter.
Your Hellebore looks great! Everything is still covered in snow here, I'm hoping some more Hellebores are getting ready to bloom.

Phillip said...

I love it!

lkw said...

A blue bottle tree is perfect! And I like the elegant shape of your cedar.

(And I do think that taking the labels off first is the way to go, too).

Enjoy some of that German Riesling -- those blue bottles are nice, but maybe they're a bit long for your tree...
Lisa

Shady Gardener said...

I've not been such a fan of the bottle trees, although some peoples' look great in their gardens... but yours is original and more true-to-form. :-) Looking forward to 2011!

Meredith said...

I love it, Randy! I've often thought about putting in a bottle tree. I'm just waiting for the right "tree" inspiration!

Jennifer@threedogsinagarden said...

I love the deep shade of blue on your bottle tree. A bottle tree is a great way to brighten up a winter garden.

Just Jenn said...

Carol, In Africa the kongo tree altar is a tradition of honoring deceased relatives with graveside memorials. The family will surround the grave with plates attached to sticks or trees. The plates are thought to resemble mushrooms, calling on a Kongo pun: “matondo”/”tondo” [the kongo word for “mushroom” is similar to their word “to love”].

During the slave trade this tradition migrated to the southern United States where the slaves would place bottles in trees in hopes that the evil spirits would go into the bottles and be trapped. Once the evil spirits were trapped the slaves would cork the bottles and throw them into the river to wash away the evil spirits.

Randy, Yours is beautiful set in the winter landscape.

Toni-Shaklee Distributor said...

OK... I must have totally missed something... um... why pretty blue bottles on a tree?

Forgive me for not following...

Jayne said...

Bottle trees seem to be all the rage now! Love the deep blue. :c)

Thanks for stopping by my Journey Through Grace and for your kind comments.

Jayne

ryan said...

It's great. I really like bottle trees. I like the idea, too, of collecting bottles that are full. Kind of a switch on the usual reasons for not finishing a project. All my garden projects need something like a big hole dug or stakes pounded into the ground or plants transplanted. I'd rather I just need to drink the bottles dry.

icedgurl said...

TrEK mY SiTe tO WarM YoUr HeArT!

HaPpY NeW YeAr! CheErS tO EvErYoNe! :]

Andrea said...

Congratulations on your accomplishing the bottle tree, it is very beautiful and artistic. So what happens to the pond with blue bottles as sidings? Will the birds be perching on some of the bottles, i am curious!