Friday, July 23, 2010

Bottoms Up!


Bottoms Up!

In my native North Texas, we don't have a heck of a lot of trees. Live Oaks, mostly, with an occasional scraggly Magnolia, thrown in for springtime color. Oh, a few Mimosas & lots of scruffy Mesquite, too. The grass grows green during April gully-washers, then goes to dirt brown about 11 months of the year.

Our only saving grace down Dallas way is the Azaleas, which bloom with abandon once a year, especially by Turtle Creek and out near Mesquite. The town, just east of Big D, is otherwise aptly named.

And of course, my home turf is flatter than Kansas & drier than a sandstorm in the Sahara, most of the year.

Which is why this native Tejana was so surprised to learn about the art of the Bottle Tree. Up here in the lush, quite hilly foliage of the DC 'Burbs.

Bottle Trees, apparently, originated in the Congo, and the tradition was brought to the American South by slaves. The bottles, you see, are supposed to keep all "evil spirits" at bay.

So, I've just started "growing" my very own backyard Bottle Tree. I'm told that it will achieve maturity when it reaches its complement of 15 bottles. I reckon we're about 8 bottles short of changing our luck for the better. I wanted to get a better shot for Weekend Reflections, but the sun was not cooperating yesterday.

My fountain, whom we named Alicia, pours algae-stained water over & over again, out back by my newest garden acquisition. Maybe by the time my Bottle Tree fully blooms, I'll find a way to clean up Alicia's act.

33 comments:

June Freaking Cleaver said...

I think Alicia looks wonderful!

And this is the second blog post I've seen about the bottle tree...is this a new trend?

BLOGitse said...

LOL! I want to have a bottle tree! How about to put it in our balcony so that all our neighbors would have something to gossip about? :)

Linda said...

I just love the bottle tree. Very creative and yes a great something for the neighbors to talk about. I live in Michigan and I have plenty of trees. I would love to send you some of my extras.
Thank you for your comments.

LisaDay said...

I have read the beautiful bottle tree can grow in any condition and is perfect for a large backyard or an apartment balcony.

LisaDay

Jenn of PersonalFitCoach.com said...

Stopping by from SITS. What a lovely blog. I've been meaning to get a fountain in honor of my mom for our garden. You have inspired me.

Lora said...

I've seen these before and always wondered about them! I might have to start one of my own.

I can see it now...

"I have to finish all this booze because I need the empties to ward of evil spirits.

Yes, obviously I've been drinking, but I'm serious about the evil spirits.

If you take this rum away from me, we could all be haunted and it would be your fault!

Hey, where are you going? Bring that whiskey back! I need it to protect our famil-barf"

Jeanie said...

You have taken garden art to a great new level. I love the bottle tree and it's history.

Nance said...

"Live" Oak as opposed to what? A "Dead" Oak? What's the deal with that moniker?

faerwillow said...

~now thats the kind of tree i need in my yard...l♥ve it and alicia too...warm wishes and brightest blessings~

Sylvia K said...

Having been born in Dallas and having lived in Texas for a good portion of my life I can so appreciate the bottle tree!! What a terrific capture! I love it! Hope you have a great weekend!

Sylvia

Scott said...

What a cool find. So interesting. Thanks for sharing and I hope you have a wonderful weekend.

The Empress said...

i adore that bottle tree. garden art has always intrigued me, because it gives me such a peaceful feeling.

RuneE said...

What an excuse for having a bottle of wine! Why didn't I think of that :-)

michael said...

I love your bottle tree. I can see that it will be a magnificent specimen when mature. I need to go down to the liquor store and get me some seeds for my own.

Quasi Serendipita said...

The bottle tree is awesome!

blueviolet said...

I want to have my own bottle tree!

Carolyn Ford said...

I do too...I will be on the hunt for a bottle tree. This is a lovely scene!

Greyscale Territory said...

Adore your bottle tree! Very artistic idea and complements the beautiful Alicia so well!

Clytie said...

You talk about the Sahara ... then tantalize us with a picture full of green. And a bottle tree. and Alicia. I think maybe you are trying to keep a secret here???

Seriously, I have had a bottle tree for some years now - the hardest part is cleaning out the bottles every now and then with a brush. and picking them up after a heavy wind knocks most of them off the tree. Sigh.

I like yours better - the symmetry is better.

Rachel Cotterill said...

Love the bottle tree! We have plenty of trees here, but there aren't any like that ;)

EG Wow said...

Oh, this is lovely. I have seen one in blue bottles...but I have no idea where anyone would get blue bottles anymore!

VioletSky said...

I love this. And when you are bored, you can simply move the bottles around for a whole new tree!

Tara R. said...

I love your bottle tree! Are you sure Alicia isn't emptying a few of those bottles for you?

Betty Manousos:cutand-dry.blogspot.com said...

That one is incredibly beautiful and artistic tree! I have not ever seen something like it.
I want to have that bottle tree!
What an idea!
Big hugs!
B xx

Michelle said...

Cool idea w/ the bottle tree. Why Alicia? Any meaning to the name?

Nefertiti said...

ca c est original ;O)

Sorta Southern Single Mom said...

LOVE it!

I just went to my first Pampered Chef party in years and now they have this yard stick that you put in the lawn to hold your wine glass and bottle - FABULOUS!

Thanks for visiting Single Mom in the South!

Kristin said...

I want my own bottle tree!

Lucy said...

OMG! I now have the perfect gift idea for my husband's partner!! Cool!!!

yonca said...

What a cool idea! I've never though of it. Happy Sunday!

paige said...

What a great idea! That looks really nice. I love it.

Kaibee said...

Bottle tree.. wow.. What a unique idea. It's the first time I have heard about it.

And Alicia looks wonderful too. :D

miss jo said...

Love the yard art ! You could make an Xmas tree out of small Rolling Rocks !....Looks like Alicia is relieving herself of all she drank building the tree :p

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