I have wanted a bottle tree for years. My husband promised me one for my birthday in February and on Labor Day weekend, I finally got one from a local craft festival. It is not big, but that is just fine. I'll need another one, I would guess, in the not too distant future.
Bottle trees are just that, trees that you put bottles on. They can be made of wood, metal, or really any material. They look pretty in any garden. Traditionally you put blue bottles on the tree, however, if you use lots of different colors it makes them look like stained glass in your yard. Bottle trees entered this country with enslaved Africans. The decorated trees became part of Southern Appalachian culture and have become folk art. You can see them all over the US now.
I can hear you asking, "But why would people want bottle trees in the first place". They do serve a purpose. Blue is really the color you want because both the sky and the water are blue; the blue brings them together. The bottles are hung upside down and are appealing to evil imps and spirits who try to get in your house at night. The bottle tree is put near your home to catch those imps and spirits. Once in the bottle, it is difficult for them to get out. When the sun comes up and shines on the bottle the evil spirits fade away with the sun's rays. Blue paint on a door, a porch ceiling, or around window sills keeps out evil too, but that's another story for another time.
Bottle trees are quite popular with storytellers, but then why wouldn't they be? They tell such a great story! I love my bottle tree and it makes me smile. If it keeps evil away, well then, that gives me one more reason to get another one (like I really need a reason).