Weekly photo challenge: broken

Bottle tree capped with a rocking horse

For many gardeners, as for most modern artists – gardening is an art, isn’t it? – broken is just a good excuse to recycle. This week’s challenge took me back to the day when we visited two master recyclers, Elmer and Linda Long, at their Bottle Tree Ranch in the Mojave Desert.

At Elmer's Bottle Tree Ranch

They are perhaps the most hospitable people I’ve ever met. We were warmly welcomed and offered refreshments as they ticked off the different countries of their visitors so far that day. I was glad to be able to add England to a substantial list!

Sewing machine bottle tree

The bottle trees began as a way to use the antique bottles Elmer’s father had collected. Each tree is capped by some kind of found art, often broken or no longer wanted. The Ranch is already a forest of trees, but Elmer showed us his treasure trove of many more found objects, all waiting to be placed at the top of their tree.

Bottle Tree Ranch sign

Please take a look at the other entries in this week’s photo challenge – if you like art, you’ll also enjoy the introduction about Chinese artist Ai Weiwei’s resonant celebration of freedom on Alcatraz.

“When you constrain freedom, freedom will take flight and land on a windowsill” Ai Weiwei

Bottle tree with found object

7 thoughts on “Weekly photo challenge: broken

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