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pots for the garden

updated tue 30 apr 96


John Jensen on sun 7 apr 96

I'm offering a little class this spring on Pots for the Garden. I'd Appreciate
any Ideas of things to make. Besides flower pots, I have wind chimes, toad
houses, birdhouses, and birdbaths....I need More, More, More.

HELP..John Jensen In Annapolis,

Jeremy/Bonnie Hellman on sun 7 apr 96

Other ceramic things for the garden can include Plant Markets which would
at least have a glazed (lightly colored) writing surface for a "permanent"
magic marker. These are used to label plants until they are large enough to
identify on their own.

Some people might think that a garden can be indoors, so plates which sit
under pots would be something else to make.

Some plants can be dried for use all year, so the class could include
containers for potpourri (sp). This opens up zillions of possibilities.

And don't forget vases to hold those plants that have been picked. And
bowls to serve those veggies you have grown.

Sounds like an interesting approach to ceramics. Good luck. Bonnie

Vince Pitelka on mon 8 apr 96

John -

The first of these is obvious - FOUNTAINS! The second is not - Japanese-style
garden lanterns. In three thickly thrown sections you can make really
wonderful garden lanterns like those heavy stone or concrete ones that are so
popular. The base is like an upside-down bowl, with sections cut out giving
the impression of feet. This is in fact a wonderful way to make a base for a
really special pot - kind of like those beautiful wooden bases you see under
some Chinese and Japanese imperial pottery. The bottom of the "bowl, which
becomes the top of the base, can be trimmed to fit the next section of the
lantern, or the pot which is going to be placed upon it. The second section is
like a covered jar, with openings carved in the walls to let the air in and the
light out. The third section is the lid, which generally has a considerable
roof-like overhang, and sometimes a chimney-like opening in the center. If one
is clever one can throw and alter to give a four-sided or six-sided form, and
when one starts embelishing things get really interesting. I have seen
lanterns made by this method up to 36" tall overall, and textured on the
outside to look like stone. The lanterns can be set up to burn candles or
contain a kerosene light, or can be electified. For some really good
inspiration for spectacularly appropriate form and surface embellishment for
garden pots, look to ancient forms - Chinese bronze ritual wine vessels,
Japanese Jomon pottery, Mesoamerican funerary censors, etc.

- Vince
Vince Pitelka -

Steve Bliss on mon 8 apr 96

>----------------------------Original message----------------------------
>I'm offering a little class this spring on Pots for the Garden. I'd Appreciate
>any Ideas of things to make. Besides flower pots, I have wind chimes, toad
>houses, birdhouses, and birdbaths....I need More, More, More.
Try lanterns.... oriental influence.... we use ours to burn citronella
kris bliss ( it snowed 3 inches last night)
Bliss pottery
Anchorage, Ak.

LOWELL BAKER on mon 8 apr 96

I must be doing something wrong. I have all kinds of pots in my
garden. Big ones little ones the boat that was in CM, and other
mixed media pieces. You seem to presume that the pot must have a
"function" to reside in the garden. Mine are just there and I think
they make the garden a more interesting place.

The University of Alabama on mon 8 apr 96

Hi, John in Annapolis,
This assignment would send me running to my 'ideas' files and the library.
Check out the flower catalogs, magazines, garden stores.

Humm---wall plaques with quotes--original or not, are wanted by some
people. House numbers and names too.

Sundials, birdbaths, hermit bee houses, butterfly houses, bat houses,
stepping stones, hummingbird feeders. Um, what's a toad house?

How about small planters that would wedge into the new design of concrete
stone walls? What about lanterns for the garden?

How about specially designed pots for certain plants? Like a 'dry' pot and
a 'wet' pot--placement of the water pan and holes is operative here.

How about a getting someone to design an aesthetic slug trap!

Steal the Chia Pet idea and grow seed on the roof of a 'fairy house'.

House-key hide-ers. Garden plant markers--writable--erasable with a china

A couple of years ago, I did a commission for the Northwest Garden Show
that was a gargoyle/water fountain, wall mounted. I didn't know just how
the exhibitors were going to mount it and attach it to the wall, so I made
it in two pieces--it was a bearded man's face. The upper part of the face
ended with the mustache and the lower part was the lower lip and a beard.
That way they could adjust the opening to accommodate the tubing for the

How about a friendly "House Guardian Spirit"? Nombes?-- Nah! Fence and
ditch Trolls would be fun. : )

Jeanette Harris
Poulsbo, WA on mon 8 apr 96

How about wall plaques with flowers--pansies, iris, rose, etc--or trees or
ferns or, to get away from the garden theme, stars, moons or even angels.

Lynn from L.A. (and , by the way, after reading the NCECA reports, here's
one person who has made the commitment to go next year. Saving those
quarters, also, but haven't decided if they'll be for the trip expenses or
the slots. Oh, yes, I saw the comet and the eclipse and my hot tub is fixed.
Life is good!)

Richardkerbes on tue 9 apr 96

John, may I suggest gargoyles around your garden...

Eveline in Saskatoon where our first pellican arrived today!!!

John Jensen on tue 9 apr 96

I have gotten dozens of posts on this subject with plenty of great
suggestions..Just what I needed and thanks to you all..I bought a book on pots
for the garden and didn't get half as many Ideas...
In my own garden I put just about everything I have that I'm not going to sell,
from large chess pieces and innumberable figure sculptures to bowls and broken
mugs. For the purpose of this class, I wanted some Ideas for projects which were
specifically oriented to normal uses of a garden. But gee, Lowell, I may have
"seemed" to be presuming...but really...I wasn't!
A partial list includes: Butterfly houses, bird houses, fird feeders, bird
watering bottle, fountains, herb markers, candle holders, sconces, tiles, tool
holder watering cans, dishes for outdoor dining, Sundials, potpourri pots,
vases, flower pots, and generally anything that looks good or interesting
Thanks to all...John Jensen in Annapolis on tue 9 apr 96

Hi John. One thought I have for your garden project is Gargoyles. They seem
to be the rage right now and they're fun to make either hand build or wheel
thrown and altered. As someone else mentioned there are many garden
magaziness out there that sell garden decor as well as garden supplies that
should give you some good ideas. I have one that has a variety of gargoyles,
angels, bird baths, etc., etc., etc. E-mail me if you want the name and
Ginger in Germantown, MD where I'm sick of snow and this winter that won't
quit!!! on fri 12 apr 96

I have just had two days of great pleasure in my studio as a
result of Vince pitelka's post on garden lanterns...It was
exactly what I needed to get me
challenged after being deprived of my usual spring burst of
creative energy..this year winter just wouldn't let put away my long johns and am going to make more
lanterns tomorrow for the salt kiln..what
larks...Elca Branman