How to Make a Southern Bottle Tree for your Charleston Home

Have you ever seen a bottle tree? This artistic outdoor adornment is growing in popularity, especially in the south. Made from old bottles, often colored, hanging on the form of a tree, the bottle tree is an old African tradition that is said to ward off evil spirits. Evil spirits or not, they will brighten up any yard and give everyone who walks by something fun to talk about.

Want to make your very own bottle tree for your new Sabal Home? Here’s how:

Choose the material for your tree trunk and limbs. Copper tubing works well, as it’s flexible and shiny! You can also use a wood post, which you can paint any color you’d like. Another option is an actual tree, such as a crepe myrtle, or a dead tree that is still in the ground. We also love the thought of recycling your Christmas tree by trimming off the branches and cutting them to size.

Next, save up your bottles or head to the local recycling center for a wider selection. For fall, you might consider hues of orange, yellow and brown. Blue, however, is the traditional color used in bottle trees. Take off all labels, rinse them out and decide where you will place each one for maximum artistic effect.

Consider adding a string of white Christmas lights around the trunk and each limb before you hang the bottles for a special touch!

To hang the bottles, you can simply place them over a tree limb (there may be some trimming required), hammer in a nail or dowel to a wooden post or cut copper tubing to insert into holes you drill into the copper tubing base. If you create your own tree, make sure the limbs get smaller the closer you get toward the top.

Ta da! Bottle tree complete!

We’d love to see photos of your beautiful bottle trees and we look forward to seeing them throughout our Lowcountry communities.

For more information about building a new Charleston home, visit or call us at 843-388-8483.