Here’s an interesting reuse idea: capture rain water from a freshly used umbrella and use it to water your plants. The halls of city apartments are typically cluttered with drippy umbrellas on a rainy day, the water left to evaporate onto the dirt-hiding carpet. Not only does this practice give rise to mildew and mold, it also fails to take advantage of free greywater. The Cavity Flower Pot is a simple design that puts unwanted precipitation to good use as well as helping out the typical inept resident gardener.
Cavity Flower Pot. Designed by Merve Sarisin.
Designed by Merve Sarisin, the Cavity Flower Pot holds four closed umbrellas with a centrally potted plant. The apparatus can be taken apart for cleaning and comes in a few color variations that are nothing special but would fit into most settings. In terms of practicality, the Cavity Flower Pot forces the umbrellas to be dried in a closed form, which is not particularly efficient. The quantity of water the plants would get from even four soaked umbrellas is questionable, but the design does solve the problem of the umbrellas dripping onto the nicely finished reclaimed wood floor you just installed.
I like this idea for public spaces more than anything. In a restaurant or office, the pot/umbrella holder works as both an attractive element and a functional one. Limiting the umbrella quantity to an average dinner party size also seems practical and could possibly discourage the umbrella stealers of the world. Fresh water is, and will continue to become even more of a valuable resource, and questions will arise about the value of a pretty plant using important resources. The Cavity Flower Pot, while not without its shortcomings, is a stepping stone for a dually functioning eco-design.