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Sunday, June 9, 2013

Modern landscaping: Garden orbs

For several years, glass garden orbs have been popular landscape decor. While you might think of them in the context of more traditional yards, they've been making an appearance in modern landscaping too.


Glass orbs in a planter
karlgercens.com

Glass orb fountain
pinterest.com

Many mid-century homes in my area have been using old bowling balls to brighten their flower beds, as in these photos.


Painted bowling balls
pinterest.com

Ceramic orbs with bowling ball edging
pinterest.com

Large ceramic orbs are also popular, as seen in combination with bowling balls in the previous photo. Fellow blogger Rebecca of Mid-Century Modern Remodel recently posted about her trip to the Bauer Pottery Showroom and her purchase of ceramic orbs for her newly landscaped garden. Be sure to check out her post to see her beautiful photos.


Ceramic orb in bed of grasses
pacifichorticulture.org

Bauer orbs
debraprinzing.com

Lately, I've become enamored of concrete garden orbs. I love their texture, durability and the possibility of such interesting color variation...or no color at all.


Concrete orbs
earthandvessel.blogspot.com

Concrete orbs
pinterest.com

I found a great tutorial on Design Sponge for making concrete orbs. It's so simple that I'm surprised no one had thought of it sooner. I'm going to try making some for my own yard.


Concrete orb made from light fixture globe mold
designsponge.com

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19 comments:

  1. The painted bowling bowls are ingenious and I really like the idea of recycling. But if I ever had a garden to landscape, I'd definitely go for the concrete balls. You're right, the texture makes a difference.

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    1. I think the textured concrete orbs would look better in my yard, and they would definitely hold up better to small boys hitting them with sticks. :)

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  2. I just have images of your lads having a great time with bowling balls!!. they certainly wouldn't stay in the garden long around here. but the concrete orbs are fab...I was given four huge concrete planters and they could do with an orb or two to partner up with...that shot of the blue orb in green grass is fantastic! x

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    1. I think it will be so easy to mix up a little concrete and pour it into a glass globe. How hard could that be? The only part you'd have to be really careful about is breaking the glass once the concrete hardened, but safety glasses and gloves ought to take care of that. I think it would be easy to pick up random lamp globes at yard sales and thrift stores.

      I shudder to think what my boys could do with bowling balls. You're right that they wouldn't stay in the flower beds. Beyond that, all sorts of mayhem could result. :)

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  3. OK, I have a confession to make. Orbs creep me out. I've ready too many science fiction books involving orbs. Very BAD orbs. You never know what kind of creature is growing inside of them:-)

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    1. haha Even better reason to do DIY solid concrete ones rather than the (supposedly) hollow ones. Now I'll never look at an orb again without thinking there's a terrifying alien inside just waiting to hatch!

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  4. I love the idea of the concrete orbs; will definitely try that if I can thrift some glass globes!

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    1. I can't wait to give it a try. I'm going to start looking for globes right away!

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  5. Thank you Dana, for this lovely post. I love orbs in the garden and we use some of methal to decorate our little water lily pool. But the concrete ones are wonderful to give some plantes an extraordinary touch!

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    1. Orbs are so perfect for water features. I'm sure yours are beautiful!

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  6. Great post, Dana! I must admit I'm a FREAK about orbs in the landscape and I've probably gone WAY overboard with them. I have them in just about every single landscape bed in the yard. We have aluminum ones, colored stainless, glass, lighted orbs, and of course the concrete ones (which we made). The concrete ones are really fun to make. We've made about ten of those and I posted about them on my blog. See it here >>>> http://www.agoodehouse.com/2011/06/cementball/
    Richie wants to make a giant cement one but I don't know if that's smart HAHA HAH! It would weigh a ton. We're definitely nuts over them. Love the ones you featured. GORGEOUS!

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    1. I hadn't seen your post about making them, and I'm so glad you left me the link. Now I'm even more excited about making them myself, since I know yours turned out so beautifully!

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  7. The Orbs remind me of the TV show "The Prisoner" that ran from 1967 to 1968. The white orb named "Rover" kept people within the village. Always wanted a Trylon and Perisphere from the 1939 World's Fair. Could see spray painting a bowling ball with textured paint.

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    1. I was amazed by all the photos on Pinterest of the creative things people have done with bowling balls...paint, texture, mosaic, mounting on stems to look like flowers.

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  8. Perhaps an orb as a focal point at the end of your concrete pads in the front and back yard and a bowling pin at the other ends.

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    1. The bowling balls are a little too kitschy for me. I think I'm going with groups of the uncolored concrete.

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  9. Well, you know I am NUTs for garden orbs. Great post!

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    1. Your gorgeous ones inspired this post!

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  10. Garden orbs create a beautiful effect on any type of garden landscapes. You can use it in your front yard garden to give the landscape a nice accent. It can transform your dull garden space into a modern-like garden.
    Jeremy Beauregard @ Flowers' Gardens & Landscapes

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