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Trash to Treasure: Any ideas how I can use this old birdbath in the garden?

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pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

August 19, 2012
6:36 AM

Post #9246347

It's been disintegrating for years now but I still love the look of it. I've tried turning it upside down but then some of the beauty of the base is lost.

Height on high side: 20
Height on low side: 17
Width of top: 15 (must have been 18" originally)

It's about 30 years old. I bought it for a former garden in a former home but couldn't leave it behind. The disintegration hasn't stopped entirely but has slowed down considerably since the thinnest portion of the top fell off in chunks years ago.

It is very heavy!

Any thoughts or ideas on how to use it in the garden would be appreciated.

Thumbnail by pirl   Thumbnail by pirl   Thumbnail by pirl
Click an image for an enlarged view.

ifantail

ifantail
Englewood, FL

August 19, 2012
10:46 AM

Post #9246623

With a little " clever" cement work you could turn this into a planter or plant stand,or a pedestal to hold a statue, sundial or what ever turns your fancy. It's too beautiful to let it rot away.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

August 19, 2012
11:30 AM

Post #9246664

Guess I'm just not that clever. I did balance a piece from a cut tree, part of the trunk, but it looked ridiculous. The beautiful large, round piece of marble I tried on top looked so out of place.
dahtzu
Henderson, NC
(Zone 7b)

August 19, 2012
1:45 PM

Post #9246784

If it has deteriorated enough to have drainage, I would fill it with Hen & Chicks.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

August 19, 2012
6:30 PM

Post #9247030

Thanks for a good idea but it has no drainage at all.
ItsMeChrissy
Union Grove, WI
(Zone 5b)

August 20, 2012
4:03 AM

Post #9247232

You could take a sledge hammer to it and use the chunks to make a pathway :-) But if I had it I'd probably just tuck it back in some corner amongst some taller plants or small bushes so that the 'good side' peaked out. Or maybe plant some 'viney' (is that a word?) ground cover around it that would some day creep up the sides.
bellieg
Virginia Beach, VA

August 20, 2012
4:43 AM

Post #9247259

I had a 4 tier fountain and the bottom tier got cracks and the paint was peeling so DH hammered it to pieces and scattered it in one of the beds. I used some in some of my bonsais.

Cementing it might give you few months.

Belle
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

August 20, 2012
5:09 AM

Post #9247282

I really like your idea, Chrissy, and think that's exactly what I'll do. I have plenty of places to tuck it in among shrubs so only the good side shows. Thank you so much. I'll skip anything viney (it's a word to me!) since I want the base to show. It's very pretty.

Thanks, Belle, but like all gardeners, I have plenty to do without hammering it to pieces. I'd have cried doing that!
gingerlily
Paxton, FL
(Zone 8a)

August 20, 2012
10:13 AM

Post #9247683

I would do what Chrissy suggested, just turn the bad side toward some taller plants, maybe some medium size plants to the sides(not too big though). It is a gorgeous piece.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

August 20, 2012
11:25 AM

Post #9247803

Thanks, gingerlily. I will do it this week. I need a cool morning because it's very heavy and I'd pass out trying to do it in the heat. I just might weigh it for fun.
moxies_garden
Batesburg, SC
(Zone 8a)

August 20, 2012
11:35 AM

Post #9247817

My place here had an old piece of a birdbath...with 3 seahorses as the bas. The bowl was long gone, but the base I set up by a spigot, to hopefully train some vine on. At least we won't mow over the spigot now, that was at ground level.

Thumbnail by moxies_garden   Thumbnail by moxies_garden
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pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

August 20, 2012
12:06 PM

Post #9247849

Great idea. Not hitting the spigot is terrific.

You could also use a plant that spills out of the top piece if it has drainage or if a hole (or three or four) could be drilled.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

August 20, 2012
8:01 PM

Post #9248429

Chrissy and Gingerlily,

Thanks so much for a great idea. It all worked out so well.

I just couldn't wait and got it done before dinner.

Thumbnail by pirl
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Samigal
(Pegi) Norwalk, CA
(Zone 10b)

August 20, 2012
8:47 PM

Post #9248457

Perfect setting for that old bird bath, love it.
JasperDale
Long Beach, CA
(Zone 10a)

August 20, 2012
9:16 PM

Post #9248474

Well Well ! Now THAT got solved easily enough, didn't it ?
I was going to suggest a nice big pot of Houttuynia set in the center and spilling down over the edges...but rumor has it that you're not too fond of the stuff. grin
ItsMeChrissy
Union Grove, WI
(Zone 5b)

August 21, 2012
3:52 AM

Post #9248573

The birdbath looks perfect there, can't even tell that led long life and has been thru some rough times, great job!
bellieg
Virginia Beach, VA

August 21, 2012
4:27 AM

Post #9248589

I like it too!!!
Good job!!!
Belle
Jan23
Salem Cnty, NJ
(Zone 7b)

August 21, 2012
4:52 AM

Post #9248607

Woot, woot!! Looks great
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

August 21, 2012
6:02 AM

Post #9248676

Thanks, Samigal. I love the setting, too.

Chrissy - you made it possible so my thanks to you.

Thanks, Belle and Jan. I love it there.

Now for you, JD! You are such a tease!

Yes, it was a quick solution thanks to Chrissy and Gingerlily. I kept thinking of putting something on top of it, not just moving it. Odd that you mention Houttuynia, a little known plant except for this property! Perhaps a bowl of plastic Houttuynia would work.

When I used the dolly to move the birdbath it went more smoothly than if I had tried to lug it 50 feet. I got it to the spot and moved it a few times before it looked okay but then wanted it farther into the shrub but couldn't quite do it. There was a clump of Houttuynia under it! NO grins about it.

For the sake of sanity, if anyone who reads this post gets tempted to buy Houttuynia cordata 'Chameleon', probably the most beautiful weed I've ever seen, just don't do it. Here it's horribly invasive and JD was a huge help to me in eradicating it but it took 8 and 12 hour days (for many months) of digging a foot deep, scraping the bottom of big old pine roots, working with my head underground and assuming odd positions.

Here's the Plant Files page on it: http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/2164/

I especially enjoyed the comment by Jim -

On May 11, 2012, jimtomczak from Mobile, AL (Zone 8a) wrote:

I was given this plant at a nursery as a freeby with the other plants for my yard. I told a very wise woman named Pirl,(N.Y.) I was puttin it in one of my flower beds. She did not let me go until I told her It was on its way to a landfill. Not the first time she has saved this novice. Hope it isn't the last. She sent pic's of complete beds she dug up and was still praying that It wouldn't pop up again. I lit a candle at St. Judes for her. JIMT. Mobile Al.

Thanks, everyone, for the help and JD for his humor.

Here's a photo that show the evil plant at the lower left corner. I told you it's beautiful!

Thumbnail by pirl
Click the image for an enlarged view.

psychw2

psychw2
(Pat) Kennewick, WA
(Zone 5b)

August 23, 2012
6:37 PM

Post #9251693

Oh my... that is a BEAUTIFUL sneaky little plant!!
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

August 23, 2012
6:39 PM

Post #9251695

I'm not 100% sure but I think using the undiluted concentrate of Brush B Gon has killed it. I'll check again tomorrow.

It is beautiful, Pat, but spreads far and wide underground and causes misery. I had to dig up hundreds of daylilies just to clear both fields to put down the black plastic.

psychw2

psychw2
(Pat) Kennewick, WA
(Zone 5b)

August 23, 2012
8:23 PM

Post #9251809

Yes, I've had my share of invasive beauties so I'm grateful you shared your knowledge and hopefully I can avoid this lesson. "Learn from other people's mistakes; you won't live long enough to make them all yourself!"
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

August 24, 2012
10:48 AM

Post #9252260

You're right. No doubt about it. Sadly, it's sold with only a general type warning, in tiny print, "may be aggressive".

psychw2

psychw2
(Pat) Kennewick, WA
(Zone 5b)

August 24, 2012
9:40 PM

Post #9252851

It ought to read "CAUTION, will take over the WORLD, beginning in YOUR back yard!! " LOL
biddy52
BROOKFIELD
Australia

August 27, 2012
5:17 PM

Post #9256195

pirl wrote:Chrissy and Gingerlily,

Thanks so much for a great idea. It all worked out so well.

I just couldn't wait and got it done before dinner.


That looks like it should be there! Perfect! I didn't like the idea of smashing it either, and I do that a lot with mosaics. Love your hydrangea's too. They must have looked superb in colour! I was also going to suggest on the areas that are deteriorating, to perhaps mix some cement and touch up the areas and when dry, spray on some sealer to give it protection. It was a beautiful piece - treasure!
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

August 27, 2012
5:26 PM

Post #9256219

Thanks, Biddy. That hydrangea is gorgeous but the heat this summer was too much for many of mine, even those in shade. When I look out the kitchen window and see it there I think of my DG friends. That makes it twice as nice.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

January 19, 2013
6:46 AM

Post #9389969

A big thank you to all who posted and helped me with the old birdbath. I spend many winter hours going through old photos and my computer guy transferred 36,988 photos from the old computer to this new laptop, so I have many more hours to go before I'm done.

I really was fortunate to find this old picture when I put a few plants on the old birdbath in its former location and think I'll look for plants that match the hydrangea this year. It has been such a pleasure to look out of the kitchen window and see the birdbath in the right spot, thanks to Chrissy and Gingerlily.

Thumbnail by pirl
Click the image for an enlarged view.

DavidofDeLand

DavidofDeLand
DeLand, FL
(Zone 9b)

January 19, 2013
3:11 PM

Post #9390434

Hey Arlene,

I think its beautiful like it is. If it were mine I would love it for the history its had,...most likely go into my paints and blend up a shade of green similar to the mossy natural looking green it has, and brush it heavily into the chipped areas so it looks equally aged, and then brush it all over the whole thing to unify colors and of course do the faux finish wipe it all off before it dries thing. Antique it as is! A great piece it is. I can see a pretty little pot of Violas sitting in it for Spring... Its a treasure never worthy of the trash!
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

January 19, 2013
3:29 PM

Post #9390442

Never did I ever consider trashing it, David. It's just too pretty in my eyes, to do that.

I will put a low pot (so nobody sees the pot) of something on it but not big enough to obscure it.

DavidofDeLand

DavidofDeLand
DeLand, FL
(Zone 9b)

January 19, 2013
3:47 PM

Post #9390455

I never even was imagining You would even consider trashing it! I was was agreeing with you it was a treasure...

I have already said how beautiful I thought it was. You did ask for ideas...right?
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

January 19, 2013
5:15 PM

Post #9390555

Yes, I did. Now that it has the perfect spot, thanks to Chrissy and Gingerlily, I was just showing them how I had used it in a different area but I like their thoughts so much that it will stay put forever exactly where they suggested.

Thanks, David.

DavidofDeLand

DavidofDeLand
DeLand, FL
(Zone 9b)

January 20, 2013
8:17 AM

Post #9391082

I have since looked at all the amazing photos you have posted and am in awe of your daylily, and on and on plant collection. your gardens are amazing!

I just always think in paint terms a lot because I paint a lot,... I even painted my house like T2T!; to look country cottage even though its a block ranch. You can see a little of the house paint in the new Cottage Garden forum pics I posted this morning if you like.

I should have looked at your beautiful garden pics and answered location instead of paint concepts! Ha!

psychw2

psychw2
(Pat) Kennewick, WA
(Zone 5b)

January 20, 2013
8:21 AM

Post #9391088

David, would you link your post to here? I'd love to look at it.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

January 20, 2013
10:11 AM

Post #9391249

Ditto to please posting a link.

Thank you for all the compliments!

DavidofDeLand

DavidofDeLand
DeLand, FL
(Zone 9b)

January 20, 2013
11:02 AM

Post #9391311

I don't know how to link forums to forums on DG Arlene and Pat. In my newness to DG, I thought one just had to go to forums and click on the forum to see it?





pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

January 20, 2013
11:30 AM

Post #9391334

Here it is: http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/1294499/

DavidofDeLand

DavidofDeLand
DeLand, FL
(Zone 9b)

January 20, 2013
12:56 PM

Post #9391443

Thanks Arlene. I'll learn more in time...
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

January 20, 2013
1:27 PM

Post #9391478

We all learn step by step, David.

psychw2

psychw2
(Pat) Kennewick, WA
(Zone 5b)

January 20, 2013
2:38 PM

Post #9391542

It's really easy, do you know how to cut and paste? You just go to the thread, highlight and copy the thread at the address line. Go back to the thread where you want to leave that address for a link. Edit, or create a new post. right click and paste. Viola.. link. if you need a more detailed instructions, let me know.

When I asked you to link your post, I was not aware how easy it was going to be to FIND your post!! Sometimes it can be difficult.
pirl
(Arlene) Southold, NY
(Zone 7a)

January 20, 2013
2:44 PM

Post #9391552

Pat - I just clicked on David's name and went to "threads David has started" and selected the one on Cottage Gardening.

psychw2

psychw2
(Pat) Kennewick, WA
(Zone 5b)

January 20, 2013
2:47 PM

Post #9391561

Yes, I found his thread, I didn't know it was going to be so EASY!!!

You cannot post until you register and login.


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