05 April 2014

Spode and Spring Flowers and Plant Pots

 Bulb Pot,
Tower pattern, c1820
As a plant lover I am very fond of Spode pots made to hold plants as well as wares of all types decorated with botanical subjects, especially those made in the early 1800s.

Wares made specifically to hold certain types of plants include Garden Pots and Stands and Bowpots (sic). These are recorded in Spode's 1820 Shape Book (click here then search on Garden pots); large lily pans and oblong plant troughs are found from a later date in catalogues from the late 1800s and early 1900s.

Dessert services were decorated with botanical subjects from Curtis's Botanical Magazine in the early 1800s and, when orchids were just coming into the UK as new, exotic, rare and highly expensive plants, specialist orchid holders as well as pots decorated with orchids were produced in the mid-19th century.

At this time of year with spring flowers emerging it is nice to be reminded that there is actually little new to be found in plant pots. Even a specialist bulb pot was made by Spode in the early 1800s. Illustrated here is one made in about 1820 transfer printed in Tower pattern. The shape is identical to those still available in ceramic and glass.
New Shape Garden Pot & Stand (3 sizes) 1820 Shape Book 
Flower pots made at the Spode factory can be seen in a catalogue page of blue printed wares from the late 1800s/early 1900s. Lily pans (not jardinières) for water lilies, one with a Chinese style stand, can be seen as well as large plant troughs of the sort which probably graced conservatories of grand houses.
Catalogue page 'Flower Pots, Garden Seats Etc.' c1900
Dessert plate, Spring Crocus on Thyme sheet, c1815
Here are a few links to more on this blog about Spode and connections with spring, botanical subjects and garden pots: