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Wire frame, tulip

Object Details

See more items in
Horticultural Artifacts Collection
ca. 1860-1940
Victorian (1837-1901)
Accession number
Wire frame trellis in the shape of a tulip. The trellis has two wire legs, which could be inserted into the soil to keep it upright. It is formed by vertical and horizontal wire supports up the body of the blossom, which is pear-shaped. The top of the flower has a scrolled-end splaying outward on either side with a point in the center. This design is featured in the catalogue of M. Walker & Sons, of Philadelphia, PA as figure 33.
Label Text
A trellis is an open framework or latticed structure made of interwoven wood, bamboo, or metal for the cultivation and display of climbing plants and shrubs. There are many types of trellis suited to different plants, locations, and purposes, from agricultural pursuits such as growing grapes, to purely decorative garden features for growing plants such as ivy or climbing roses. Trellises can be free standing or attached and are made in a variety of forms including cones, spheres, fans, tree forms, geometric shapes, arches, turrets, and railings. Most commonly they are made in a lozenge type lattice pattern; however, various shapes and combinations are also made. Trellises have long been used in the garden to create internal barriers, structures, shaded areas of secluded spots. They were place against buildings or fences to create the illusion of walls made of vegetation.
Trellises have been used in the garden as far back as ancient Roman times and were a popular feature of the Victorian garden. In the Victorian era, roses, ivy, passionflowers, morning glory, grapevines, and shrubs in espalier were popular trellis subjects. When attached gallery facades and columns of structures they were decorative features that appealed to the Victorian love of nature, however they could also be useful. In the days before air conditioning, placing a trellis over a window was a popular way to gain privacy when the window was open while allowing the air to flow through the room. Furthermore, when the sun shone through the backs of the leaves it revealed their veins and structure which appealed to the Victorian’s rapt interest in the horticultural sciences and botany. Trellises were also used indoors to train vines to grow around the curves of the window and brought the outdoors inside.
Credit Line
Smithsonian Gardens, Horticultural Artifacts Collection.
Floral frames
frame components
Floral Accessories
Floral decorations
floral designers
Flower arrangement
Copper wire
22 1/2 × 9 1/2 in. (57.2 × 24.1 cm)
Data Source
Smithsonian Gardens
Restrictions & Rights
Floral frames
Record ID
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