I know that glass bottle trees, those folksy garden sculptures based on three thousand-year-old Arabian folk tales, aren’t every one’s cup of tea. But there are thousands of them scattered across gardens worldwide including botanic gardens.
And I know that every one is truly unique. And I know that the Wade Wharton bottle tree in the Huntsville, Alabama, Botanic Gardens is 21 feet tall.
But when one of my cedar trees, which was starting to tangle with overhead utility lines, and needed removing, I decided to leave the main trunk up and use it as the base of Mississippi’s tallest bottle tree.
We drilled holes in the ends of lopped-off branches and the trunk, tapped foot-long pieces of iron re-bar into each one, and gently slid a freshly-cleaned bottle over each one.
A neighbor (who was actually pleased) promptly called it giganteus so my official Latin name for it is Silica transparency ‘Gigantea’. For repetition and to help the tall one seem less gawky, I added an eight-foot metal bottle tree and a second, chest-high one, and plan on planting some vines on the giant one next spring.
I’ve seen an inspiringly big bottle tree in Carrollton and two whopping ones out from Florence. And a guy named Tony Loomis (pictured below) has a nearly fifteen footer.
I sincerely hope that eventually mine comes in an honorable second or even third place.
Click here to go to my main page on bottle trees, their history, and dozens of examples of others in my own garden and around the world (and a few surprising examples of other “garden glass”).