Stonehenge in a Teacup, England in a Nutshell!

photo and henging by Caitlan Vandewalle, used with permission

My boyfriend went to Scotland for a month and saw the Pictish stones, and I did a reproduction of these amazing ancient stones for him. While I was at it I made myself a stonehenge in a teacup.” That’s how Caitlan explains her venture into the rarified world of megalithic mini-gardening, or pseudo-megalithic mini-gardening, or maybe minilithic teacup gardening?

But we like this: “These actually are balsa wood. Sorry. They’re in a teacup to add a glaring element of Britishness, or as my boyfriend put it “you can’t reduce an entire culture to tea and Stonehenge!” to which I replied, ‘well I just did, so… maybe you can’t.’

Well done! What are the English besides Stonehenge and tea? Although as one commenter suggested, it would work best if there is a picture of the Queen on the teacup!

We were tickled to see that the whole thing was inspired by the Stonehenge mini-garden built (planted?) by the inimitable Janit Calvo of Two Green Thumbs Miniature Gardens, a friend of the blog. One Stonehenge replica inspires another. Stonehenge has perfected a unique and successful reproductive strategy seen nowhere else in nature, that of mind infection, and we see it at work here.

It seems by the comments that most Brits were not offended, but actually liked the visual shorthand here proposed for their culture. Still, just in case, Caitlan offers a salve: “(I know that’s not all there is to the UK!!! Feel free to make a washington monument obelisk in a mcdonald’s fries carton, it would serve me right.)” It just wouldn’t look as nice on the windowsill, though, would it? Making it even more accurate as a representation . . .

Score for the teacup henge: 6 druids. It’s only two trilithons and a few stones thrown in, but it has charm and, of course, moss. We liked it the moment we saw it. Maybe we’ll make one ourselves and save the plane fare. It’s exactly like being there!

The Pictish stones garden made for the boyfriend, also nicely done!

Stonehenge Adventure Garden in Austria

photos from the Landgasthof Feichthub website

It has been a while since we found something to add to our list of large permanent replicas. Not only have we found one this evening but we’re delighted to add a new nation to the list. This Stonehenge garden is on the grounds of Landgasthof Feichthub country guest house in Austria.

A Stonehenge in the garden of a country inn may not sound interesting, but the designers and builders on this one have gone above and beyond the call of duty. They’ve placed a glass sun (we regret to say we have no picture of it!) 149 cm (almost60 inches) in diameter in the Stonehenge replica and surrounded it with minerals representing earth, air, fire and water, repeated 3 times so they represent the signs of the zodiac.

But that’s not all! A path around the Stonehenge with a diameter of 16 meters (about 52 feet) is used to represent the sun in a model of the solar system, with stone balls proportionally sized to represent the planets scattered about the garden. Of course it isn’t possible to make the distances proportional, but still we think this is a delightful bit of whimsy, used at no other replica we know of.

The Stonehenge itself appears to be built of sandstone of a similar colour to the Tasmanian replica and the one in Orem, Utah. It’s just a linteled circle with five or six uprights, but that’s better than a circle of trilithons, and this comes close to having Aubrey holes and a bank, sort of.

Score: 7 druids! That’s not for the structure alone but includes the educational and aesthetically-pleasing additions that provide several ways to contemplate the sun in its relationship to Stonehenge and its effects on our lives. The innkeepers seem justifiably proud of their Stonehenge, which was built by the stone design firm of Alfred Schnellnberger. (No, that is not misspelled–it’s just Austrian!) The inn may be his baby, too.

For a few more shots of the Stonehenge, check out this Youtube video, in German, of course, about stone building and design.

That’s how it is, folks. We thought (hoped?!) we’d run out of Stonehenges to post and then we run across this. We know there have to be more out there. Help us find them! Or just give us money and let us tour the world looking for them. Either one is fine with us!

Happy henging!