Monday, March 19, 2018

Our Bottle Tree

She knew that there could be a spell put in trees, and she was familiar from the time she was born with the way bottle trees kept evil spirits from coming into the house — by luring them inside the colored bottles, where they cannot get out again.
Livvie, by Eudora Welty

This is our bottle tree. The picture was taken after a snowfall this last January. While we are aware of the legend that the bottle tree traps evil spirits, we just like the added color to our garden. Some people hang bottles of all colors, but we liked the blue bottles, especially when we see them in the snow and reflecting under a winter moon.

The bottles are hung upside down on the tree branches with the neck of the bottles facing the trunk. The legend says that at night the evil spirits enter the bottles and become trapped. When the morning comes, the spirits are destroyed by the heat of the sun.

I have read that the practice of setting up bottle trees to ward off evil spirits was brought to America during the slave trade. Bottle trees have been very prevalent in the southern states for hundreds of years.

For my husband and I, the bottle tree brings us beautiful color to our garden. We enjoy the way it sparkles in the moonlight and shines in the sun.



  1. I've never heard of bottle trees before, other than the one Gloria Dump has in Because of Winn Dixie. Your tree looks pretty in the snow.


  2. I found some bottles for my mom when she lost a tree in her front yard and wanted to make it into a bottle tree. I wonder if she knows the story. If not, I know she’ll love it!

  3. Sweet piece! I love the way you start with the quote, tell about yours and give some history and lore.
    I also love bottle trees- maybe I'll start collecting for one :)
    I never considered how they might look different in different seasons...

  4. I never knew the story behind a bottle tree - although I see them often. (and like Jennie I remember the tree in Winn Dixie as well. I may need one for both your reasons. Thank you for sharing.

  5. Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The words in your post
    seem to be running off the screen in Ie. I'm not sure if this is a
    format issue or something to do with web browser compatibility but I thought I'd post to let you know.
    The design and style look great though! Hope you get the
    issue resolved soon. Cheers