Sunday, August 9, 2009

The Bottle Tree

I made a bottle tree this summer. The idea is not original, apparently it is something that has been done all over this country for years. I had never seen one until I stumbled across one on They have a forum called Garden Junk which allows readers to showcase junk items they have recycled into garden ornaments. That same forum is where I came up with the idea for turning an old grill we had into a planter.

The bottle trees I looked at made me think of the wine bottles we had saved because they were so pretty and because for a time Jim made incense burners from them. He would sandblast an image on the bottle and a small hole near the base for air circulation. They are beautiful and make a nice way to burn incense without getting the ash everywhere.
He can no longer get to his shop (downstairs) and the bottles were just sitting there.

I found some long nails and a hammer and set to work on my stump. I hadn't been at it for very long when someone asked me what was I doing. I looked up from my work to see my neighbor, Rodney, and his dog. He had the strangest look on his face.

I thought that I must indeed look strange. My hair was down instead of in its usual ponytail (it is waist length) and in disarray from my bottle and nail gathering expedition in the basement. I was hammering nails into a rotting stump and had a basket of wine bottles sitting nearby. Yep, Rodney was probably thinking I had stopped taking my medication.

"I heard you hammering and wanted to see what you were up too," Rodney said. He had an even stranger look when I told him I was making a bottle tree. "OK", he started backing away. "Is Jim around?" Jim had just came out onto his ramp and Rodney went off to talk to him. I figured to ask if I was OK.

Due to the poor condition of the stump, I had some trouble with my bottle placement. The end result is fairly decent though. I have another stump at the bottom of the garden and the fairies have assured me that it is OK to make them a bottle tree. I just have to find more colored wine bottles.

And, my status as the neighborhood eccentric has been assured for at least one more year.
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  1. LOVE IT. We just turned a wine bottle into a lantern for my kitchen table. I love the bottle we used, b/c not only is it my favorite color of blue, but the label has a dog on it. I will have to try and get a picture of it and send it to you. This is the second lantern doug has made me. It isn't just buy the wick and globe to go on it.
    Blessings, andrea

  2. You and I must have been related in a past life. The gardening, the love of being in the middle of the yard smelling the earth and sun. Have you ever noticed when you are in your garden sometimes even the sun has a certain scent? I want to try the bottle tree next summer. My neighbors think I am a little off anyway so why not confirm it. Thank you for your wonderful idea. Now I have a good reason to drink more wine.