Bulb pot/bulb bowl collecting
-While not actually Suibans , some bulb pots can indeed
be used as Suibans for Suiseki
During the Chinese Song and Yuan Dynasties and later during
the Qing Dynasty bulb bowls (or bulb pots) were used as
containers for flower bulbs, such as narcissus. Narcissus blooms
were particularly popular around the time of the lunar New Year
(late January - February) when the Chinese celebrate the coming
of spring. They look a lot like bonsai or Penjing pots in their
architecture due to their shared characteristic of usually
having feet but the similarity between the two types of vessels
stops there, as bulb pots do not contain drainage holes.
Bulbs were planted in these pots and then forced into bloom
using only a medium of gravel and water. The bulbs sat on top of
the gravel and water was added to a level just below them
assuring the bulbs did not rot but encouraging root formation
Bulb pots although sharing similar architecture to bonsai
pots (as stated above) are usually made of porcelain often
featuring Polychrome enamelled decorations of one sort or
another. The motifs encountered on these pots often feature
Chinese figures and reflect the type of day to day activities of
the period. Of course these attributes only increase the delight
provided the collector of bulb pots.
Some of the Bulb Pots here were part of the
collection of Vaughn Banting (VB)who was a well known American
Bonsai artist and Bulb Bowl authority. I was fortunate to meet
Vaughn during on my visits to N'Awlins where he lived. At that
time I was both speaking at the New Orleans Bonsai Club and
another time I was there photographing Vaughn's student, the
internationally respected Bonsai Master Gary Marchal for my
book, Bonsai Masterclass.
Double walled porcelain mesh design with a poem inscribed to
the owner of the Pot (in Chinese)
Purchased in 1995 from a well known Bonsai
Master in Texas.Sold-See below for a similar pot
Exquisite antique Chinese porcelain flower pot for narcissus.
Rare .Size:19*6.5*2.5 cms
plus shipping Sale price now £180 including
Meiji Era 1860-1900, this pot is circa 1880.
Thank goodness past owners left the old staple repair alone
on one foot of this stately 19th century Bulb Bowl. ( Suiban as well and
Ikebana -a tray for live flower arrangements). First of all it
is quite unobtrusive, but more importantly it is one of the
better clues to accurate dating of the piece, which otherwise is
in uncommonly good condition for its age. At first glance the
swirling Sometsuke (under glaze blue on white) pattern brought
to mind a Chinese early Quing Dynasty narcissus bowl, but the
distinctive feet are historically more consistent with Japanese
designs for such porcelain forms, including the related bonsai
pot. A most distinguished example of the porcelain arts. SIZE: 9
3/4 x 6 1/2 inches. CONDITION: Very good. Slightly uneven stance
due to hand potting and staple repair on foot has been offset
with a felt pad, as shown. Expected small firing flaws. Minor
water staining inside. No other damage observed.
plus shipping Sale price now £210 including
Very big Pic-click
1: A 19th century Chinese Bulb bowl of unusual almost
quatrefoil form With a scene of children playing and
a Poem on the back £325 plus shipping-Now reduced to £185
A late 19th century Chinese Bulb Bowl with Plum blossom for
Spring bulbs and on the other side a chrysanthemum for summer to
autumn bulbs.-Now reduced to £85 including shipping
2: A 19th century Chinese Bulb bowl of
unusual form With a landscape scene depicting
spring and therefore for spring flowering bulbs and with a
spring Poem on the back -£245plus shipping-Now reduced to £145
3: A 19th century Chinese Bulb bowl of unusual
form With a landscape scene with children playing a
Poem written on the back -£245plus shipping-Now reduced to £145
Jingdezhen (King-ke-tching) is the birthplace of the
Chinese porcelain industry and has been famous for manufacturing
porcelain since the Northern Song Dynasty (960-1127). During the
Ming Dynasty (1368-1644), the Imperial Porcelain Depot was
established in the city and Jingdezhen became the porcelain
capital of the world. Henry Wordsworth Longfellow (1807-1882)
wrote of King-ke-tching in his poem Keramos:
Oer desert sands, oer gulf and bay
Oer Ganges and oer Himalay,
Bird-like I fly, and flying sing
To flowery kingdoms of Cathay,
And bird-like poise on balanced wing
Above the town of King-te-tching,
A burning town, or seeming so, -
Three thousand furnaces that glow
Incessantly, and fill the air
With smoke uprising, gyre on gyre,
And painted by the lurid glare,
Of jets and flashes of red fire.
A mid 19th century Chinese
famile verte Orchid Pot, circa 1850. It is 8 1/2" by 6 1/2"
by 3" high.
In good condition overall. There
is some very tiny
rim wear mostly along the inside edge from use.
Chinese circa: 1850
Floral motif on the top rim
This is a very rare colour gaze on pottery
There is a very slight loss of glaze but as you can see
this is really minimal due to its age
Size: 7.2 x 4.8 x 1.9 H Inches
plus shipping Sale price now £180
Antique Chinese porcelain bulb pot
circa: 1890-Seal stamp dates from this period and was required
for export into America.
Landscape painting & Calligraphy
Size: 8.25 x 6.2 x 3.25 Inches £225 -Now reduced to £85
Vaughn lived in New Orleans and was a teacher
of Bonsai to many folk including Gary Marchal. He became an
authority on Bulb bowls and we often exchanged notes and images.
I was happy to buy some of my favourites from his estate. He
was a friend and we all miss him.
Bulb pots from the late Vaughn Banting's
(VB) Chinese Double-Coin "Good Fortune"
hand-painted porcelain double walled bulb dish with narrow mouth
and wide brim. Double-Coin design invokes good fortune. Slight
texturing in porcelain of coins and floral designs. Top rim
features four panels of floral scenes set among the water and
wave background. Chrysanthemum flowers adorn each corner. Good
Feng Shui elements. A row of narcissus bulbs would look
outstanding in this dish. No Chips. Two hairline glaze lines in
well, but does not leak. This footed bulb dish (or bulb pot)
with no drain was designed as a dish for forcing bulbs. Circa
Width: 9.25" (23.5cm)
Depth: 5.5" (14cm)
Height: 2.75" (7cm)
£450 plus shipping Sale price £290
(VB)Japanese Antique Porcelain Bulb Tray
Bought in Shanghai for Vaughn Banting
Wonderfully vibrant colours on this hand-painted porcelain
antique bulb tray from Japan. Three figures are shown standing
on large leaves as they travel across water. Reverse shows
figures amid craggy rocks. Interesting geometric banding around
rim and base.There is a small potting cut on the inside of one
of the sides but this has in no way made this wonderful pot
damaged. It was part of the potting process when it was made. This footed bulb dish (or bulb pot) with no drain
was designed as a dish for forcing bulbs. Circa 1750-1800
Width: 9" (23cm)
Depth: 5.5" (14cm)
Height: 3.5" (9cm)
£575 plus shipping Sale price £330 including
(VB) Japanese Antique Blue and White Bulb Pot
porcelain "bulb pot" was designed for planting and forcing bulbs
to provide beauty in the home. It has a cobalt blue under-glaze
and is decorated with floral motifs with a white over-glaze.
Similar to a bonsai pot, but without a drain. No cracks or
chips. Circa 1800
Glazed Ceramic (Sizhuan)
Width: 7.25" (18.5cm)
Depth: 5" (12.5cm)
Height: 2.25" (5.5cm)
£495 plus shipping Sale price £295 including
Chinese Famile Rose Bulb
Pot c 1900
with no chips, cracks, or repairs. £475
plus shipping Sale price £300 including shipping
2¾ inch highx9.3 inch longx7 inch wide
This is a wonderful brush pot / censer or bulb bowl
which has been hand painted in a Prunus 'UME' blossom design.
unique thing about this marvellous pot is the beautiful shape of
the inner rim. Its signed with a three character mark on
The item is in fine order. Although
there is an expected amount of age associated wear , no chips , the
under well foot does have a pictured spider hairline on the glaze which
does not affect any of the pot sides and is in the middle of the pot
base.. This is reflected in the low price as this pot would normally be
in excess of £400 Now £210. Sale price £90 including shipping
Height at 4.5 inches, diameter is at 7
inches. This comes with a pot stand in wood.
Two lovely bulb bowls in a primitive rice bowl style with
under glaze kiln dust and a
bubble pop or two. Both examples are very pretty because they
are hand painted.
One is aqua green on both inside and outside rim, with
butterflies and pattern on foot.
The second bowl is aqua green on inside, with a
rooster/floral/dragonfly pattern on the white exterior. Red
swirl pattern on foot. Both are stamped China. This particular
mark was required by the US import authorities from 1891 dating these bowls to circa
Each is 6" diameter, 1 1/2" deep.
No damages, no cracks or chips/flakes.
£160 each or £320 for both including post
-Now reduced to £200 for both including shipping
A beautiful Chinese Bulb Bowl dating from
circa 1920. Decorated in shades of blue with a lotus blossom and
birds on water. 91/8 inches long by 61/4 ices wide and 31/4
In very good condition, no cracks chips or
Sale price now £85 including shipping
Fine old American Roseville pottery Bulb
Pot (Window Planter)
Apple blossom pattern #368-8 in pink
colour. Measures 10 3/4" x 2 5/8" x 3 3/8".
No chips or cracks. £195 -Now reduced
to £80 including shipping.
Please note that I have two of these pots to make a pair
and the pair will cost £150 including shipping.
Apple Blossom was introduced
by Roseville Pottery in 1949. Standard colours are green,
blue, and pink. Apple Blossom is marked with the raised
Roseville USA script mark and shape number. The pattern
includes baskets, bookends, bowls, cornucopias, ewers,
jardinières, vases, wall pocket, etc but the Bulb Planter is
a rare example.
The Roseville Pottery
The Roseville Pottery Company
was founded in 1890. Roseville initially produced simple
utilitarian ware such as flower pots, stoneware, umbrella
stands, cuspidors, and limited painted ware. In 1900,
Roseville Rozane became the first high quality art pottery
line produced by Roseville.
In 1904, Frederick Rhead became art director for Roseville
pottery. Rhead was responsible for the production of scarce
art pottery lines such as Fudji, Crystalis, Della Robbia,
In the early teens as demand for the more expensive,
hand-crafted art pottery declined Roseville pottery shifted
production to more commercially produced pottery.
Roseville's ability to nimbly adapt to market conditions was
one of the potteries' greatest attributes as Roseville was
continually able to produce the most popular patterns and
styles compared to their immediate competitors.
World War II necessitated another production change for
Roseville pottery. During this time period, Roseville
introduced such patterns as Fuchsia, Cosmos, Columbine,
White Rose, Bittersweet, and Zephyr Lily. While these
patterns were still the best quality art pottery in the
market at this time, it was not enough to save the company.
Roseville Pottery ceased operations in 1954.
Even to this day, Roseville pottery still represents the
most widely known and most collectible art pottery ever
Beware of Reproductions:
Roseville art pottery pieces are highly desirable, which in
turn has caused the pottery to be widely reproduced. But the
good news is that most Roseville reproductions are easy to
detect -- if you are familiar with the pottery. Educate
yourself before spending big bucks! Sometimes unethical
dealers will remove the made in China sticker and try to
pass it off as the real thing.
This is a genuine example
Large Blue and
White floral design typical of Chinese Bulb
Pots in the 19th
including post Now reduced to £80
Thumbnail Images-click for bigger picture
Chinese Polychrome glaze on a pottery double walled Bulb
Pot dating from the late Ming Period- 17th century.
Minor repairs have been made during the lifetime of this
pot. Some glaze delaminating as expected in a type and
age of pottery. There was some wear under the pot which
has been filled with some sort of clay at some stage.
This can be removed if preferred to allow a more
structural repair but I think it is fine.
walled - the outer wall being reticulated and glazed,
while the inner one (which holds the soil and the plant)
is left unglazed.
7.5" x 5.25"
£295 plus post -Now
reduced to £145 including shipping
Notes: Pottery stone could be fired at a lower
temperature (1250 °C) than paste mixed with kaolin, which
required 1350 °C. These sorts of variations were important
to keep in mind because the large southern egg-shaped kilns
varied greatly in temperature. Near the firebox it was
hottest; near the chimney, at the opposite end of the kiln,
it was cooler. Often such pieces were reserved for the
workers or local people. Decorated in simple glazes they
covered many different types of vessels. The better quality
vessels were sold to the merchant class or the aristocracy.
Similar to the polychrome colour of the Sancai ware:
Sancai wares were northern wares made using white and
buff-firing secondary kaolins and fire clays.At kiln sites
located at Tongchuan, Neiqui county in Hebei and Gongxian in
Henan, the clays used for burial wares were similar to those
used by Tang potters. The burial wares were fired at a lower
temperature than contemporaneous whitewares
Made from beige sandy clay (鍛泥; literally, "fortifed
clay"): stoneware that was formulated using various stones
and minerals in addition to zini or red sandy clay. This
results in various textures and colours, ranging from beige,
blue, and green (绿泥), to black.
Thumbnail Images-click for bigger picture
18th early 19th Century Famile Rose Bulb Pot with Qianlong
This colour palette is typical of Chinese Wedding Porcelain(
Items given as a wedding present) .This yellow & pink 'Nyonya'
Covered Bulb pot, finely decorated with pink chrysanthemum
and blue flower motifs. For the Chinese these are auspicious
colours of prosperity and good fortune. This pot has been
well taken care of. Nyona is the ethnic Chinese-Malays that
are called Baba-Nyonya from Malacca-Sold
Thumbnail Images-click for bigger picture
Bulb Pot mid 1900's Famile Rose Bulb Pot with Qianlong
No chips, cracks,
or repairs. It measures 23.5cm x 15cm x 8cm high.
of the shape this pot can also be used as a Suiban
-Now reduced to £285 including
The Qing Dynasty
Emperor Qianlong was
Emperor Yongzheng's fourth son. He was born in the 50th year
of Emperor Kangxi's reign (1711), and died in the 4th year
of Emperor Jiaqing's reign at the age of 89. He was the
sixth Emperor of the Qing Dynasty (1644-1911) and also the
emperor who lived for the longest time in Chinese history.
Qianlong showed his
talent when in his childhood. Because of this, his
grandfather Emperor Kangxi liked him a lot. After setting up
the rule of choosing successor secretly, Emperor Yongzheng
chose Qianlong to succeed the throne without hesitation.
Qianlong was 25
years old when he succeeded the throne. He learnt his
grandfather's and his father's ways of running the state
affairs. And he skillfully dealt with the relationship
between Manchu, Han and other ethnic minorities to
consolidated imperial power. His reign was the most
prosperous period of Qing Dynasty.
Qianlong was a keen
poet, writer and calligrapher: he produced three collections
of essays and five albums of poetry, making him one of the
most prolific poets and calligraphers in ancient China. He
was highly accomplished in painting and was fond of
collecting cultural antiques -- there were many examples of
jade carving, tooth carving, bamboo and wood carving,
lacquer art, enamel and porcelain art in his imperial study.
He also sponsored the compilation of Si Ku Quan Shu (Complete
Collection in Four Treasuries), which is regarded as the
largest series in Chinese history and a valuable treasure
representing Chinese culture. He was familiar with military
strategies and invented Shi Quan Wu Gong (perfect
gongfu). He was fond of hunting and traveling, and traveled
to Southern China six times for inspection. Almost every
autumn, he would visit Wutai Mountain in the west and
Confucius's Temple in the south.
that he would abdicate after ruling as an emperor for 60
years, because that his grandfather Emperor Kangxi's reign
lasted for 61 years, and Qianlong did not want to exceed his
grandfather. In 60th year of his reign, he carried out his
promise, and his son Yuyan (Emperor Jiaqing) became the new
emperor. Actually, Qianlong was still running the country. A
lot of important affairs was reported to and solved by him.
Qianlong took great
pride in his administrative style which ushered in a period
of great prosperity in the country. Emperor Qianlong's reign
marked the peak of feudalism in China and, together with the
reign of Emperor Kangxi, this period is known as Kang Qian
Sheng Shi (the Great Prosperity of Emperor Kangxi and
Qianlong). Unfortunately, however, in his old age he
appointed corrupt officials such as Huo Shen, and problems
of extortion and poor administration contributed directly to
the decline of the Qing Dynasty.
A Chinese republican period
porcelain Suiban/ Bulb Bowl, hand painted with enamels and
signed on the base. The Suiban is circa 1920 and in
excellent condition, no damage or repairs. It measures 8
1/4" by 4 3/4" by 2 1/4" high £455 plus
-Now reduced to £285 including shipping
A mid 19th century Chinese
famile verte bulb bowl, circa 1850. It is 8 1/2" by 6 1/2"
by 3" high. In fairly good condition overall. There are rim
chips, mostly along the inside edge. Guaranteed to be as
described. £445 -Now reduced to £285 inclujding
While not Bulb pots Suibans are also
containers without holes and are used for Suiseki and sometimes
for bulbs. Conversely bulb pots can also be used for Suiseki so
its reasonable to show both on the same pages.
A Chinese republican period
porcelain Suiban, hand painted with enamels and signed on the
base. The Suiban is circa 1920 and in excellent condition, no
damage or repairs. It measures 8 1/4" by 4 3/4" by 2 1/4" high
£455 -Now reduced to £285