Title:
Field stand for a potted plant
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
A field stand used to support and prevent accidental toppling of potted plants in outdoor field applications is disclosed. The field stand uses a two piece detachable design, which includes a tubular metal boot and a detachable wire basket. The tubular metal boot is designed to be driven into the soil as an anchor for the detachable wire basket. The metal boot has an elongated tubular body with a pointed bottom end and an open top end for receiving the wire basket. The wire basket is constructed of three individual strands of a resilient metal wire, which are bent from the body of the basket and whose ends are bundled together to form an elongated neck. The neck extends into the open end of the boot to securely seat the basket atop the boot.



Inventors:
Jaworski, Christopher J. (Osceola, IN, US)
Application Number:
09/847385
Publication Date:
11/07/2002
Filing Date:
05/03/2001
Assignee:
JAWORSKI CHRISTOPHER J.
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A47G7/02; (IPC1-7): A47G7/00
View Patent Images:
Related US Applications:
20060042160Tomato stakeMarch, 2006Lipkin
20030221364Support system for trees and the likeDecember, 2003Mello
20030167687Plant holder for use with a block wallSeptember, 2003Trass et al.
20090031935TransplanterFebruary, 2009Faulring et al.
20090277083Modular structural system suitable for trellisNovember, 2009Barnes
20060248798Floral sleeve with decorative deployable flapNovember, 2006Weder et al.
20020148158Porta-wet watering systemOctober, 2002Anderson
20090064362PUMPKIN LINE HWN 130-1018TMarch, 2009Johnson
20100083405Method For Controlling Seed Germination In Non-Dormant Seeds And Use ThereofApril, 2010Lopez-molina et al.
20030009933Illuminator for plant growthJanuary, 2003Yoneda et al.
20090151798IRRIGATION SYSTEM EMITTERJune, 2009Harned



Primary Examiner:
ALIMENTI, SUSAN C
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
R. Tracy Crump (New Carlisle, IN, US)
Claims:

I claim:



1. A field stand for securely supporting a plant bedded in a potting container in an outdoor field to prevent the potting container from toppling, the stand comprising: a boot adapted for being partially driven into the soil; and a basket detachably connecting to the boot, the basket constituting means for restrictively receiving the potting container, and the boot constituting means for anchoring the basket in an upright orientation above the soil when the basket is connected to the boot and the boot is embedded in the ground.

2. The field stand of claim 1 wherein the basket including a body having an interior for restrictively receiving the potting container therein, and an elongated neck extending from the body for connecting the basket to the boot.

3. The field stand of claim 2 wherein the boot has an elongated tubular body having one end adapted for being driving into the soil and an opposite end having an opening therein for receiving the neck of the basket therein to connect the basket to the boot.

4. The field stand of claim 2 wherein the basket body includes a bottom and plurality of sides, the potting container seated atop the bottom and restrictively held between the plurality of sides when the potting container is received within the interior of the basket body.

5. The field stand of claim 4 wherein the basket body is constructed of a plurality of resilient metal wire strands bent to form the bottom and plurality of sides of the basket body.

6. A hand tool, which is used with a field stand that includes a tubular boot for securely anchoring the field stand and a potting container in an upright position above the soil and has an open end, for driving the boot into the soil, the tool comprising: a ram for driving the boot into the soil; a head mounted to the ram for guiding the boot into the ground and preventing the boot from damages as the boot is driven into the soil; and a weighted tubular sleeve slidably seated over the length of the ram for manually impacting the ram to drive the boot into the soil.

7. The tool of claim 6 wherein the head includes a shank for extending into the open end of the boot and an annular flange for overlying the open end of the boot.

8. In combination, a field stand for securely supporting a plant bedded in a potting container in an outdoor field to prevent the potting container from toppling, and which includes a tubular boot having an open end; and a hand tool for anchoring the boot into the soil, the tool comprising: an ram for driving the boot into the soil; a head mounted to the ram for guiding the boot into the ground and preventing the boot from damages as the boot is driven into the soil; and a weighted tubular sleeve slidably seated over the length of the ram for manually impacting the ram to drive the boot into the soil.

9. The tool of claim 8 wherein the head includes a shank for extending into the open end of the boot and an annular flange for overlying the open end of the boot.

Description:
[0001] This invention relates to a stand for a potted plant, and particularly a field stand for supporting and preventing the tipping of potted plants grown in outdoor fields.

BACKGROUND OF INVENTION

[0002] Growing plants in potting containers is widely practiced in the gardening and nursery industries. Growing individual plants in separate potting containers has several horticultural advantages. The potting containers prevent the plant from rooting into the ground. In addition, a potted plant will “air pune” its own root system (roots will not grow and extend outside soil) and stay contained within the potting container. Consequently, growing individual plants in potting containers eliminates transplant shock and simplifies harvest. This is particularly important for large plants, such as trees and shrubbery. Saplings and young shrubbery are often grown in potting containers in outdoor fields. Potted saplings and shrubs in outdoor fields are often toppled by wind and rain. The weight of the soil and width of the potting container often does not provide a sufficient base to prevent the potted plant from being accidentally or inadvertently knocked over. Obviously, the plants can be damaged when a potted plant is toppled.

[0003] Heretofore, a variety of stands have been developed to secure potting containers and support potted plants; however, none have been ideally suited for outdoor commercial use. In the nursery industry, potted trees and shrubbery are grown in large outdoor fields and are exposed to the elements. Wind and rain can easily topple and damage potted plants in a growing field, particularly saplings and shrubs. What is needed is a reusable device, which supports potting containers in field applications, and can be used with potting containers of various sizes and dimensions. In addition, such a device must be cost effective for use in large numbers and in outdoor commercial nursery applications.

SUMMARY OF INVENTION

[0004] The field stand of this invention is used to support potting containers and prevent accidental toppling of potted plants in outdoor field applications. The stand uses a two piece detachable design, which includes a tubular metal boot and a detachable wire basket. The tubular metal boot is designed to be driven into the soil as an anchor for the detachable wire basket. The metal boot has an elongated tubular body with a pointed bottom end and an open top end for receiving the wire basket. The wire basket is constructed of three individual strands of a resilient metal wire, which are bent from the body of the basket and whose ends are bundled together to form an elongated neck. The neck extends into the open end of the boot to securely seat the basket atop the boot.

[0005] This invention also includes a specialized tool (boot driver) for driving the boots of the stand into the soil. The boot driver is similar in design and operation to a conventional hand operated post driver used to drive fence posts into the ground. The boot driver includes a weighted tubular sleeve and an elongated ram. The ram has a head adapted for engaging the open end of the boots. The ram head includes an axial shank and an annular flange, and acts as a guide for driving the boot into the soil and prevents the side walls of the boot from flaring under the impact of the driver.

[0006] Accordingly, an advantage of the field stand of this invention is that the field stand is well suited for supporting potted plants and preventing accidental toppling of potted plants in outdoor commercial field applications.

[0007] Another advantage of the field stand of this invention is that it includes a tubular boot, which is driven into the soil to anchor the stand and a detachable basket for supporting a potting container.

[0008] Another advantage of the field stand is that the detachable basket is interchangeable with different boots, which allows convenient relocation of the baskets and potted plants between different boots in the field.

[0009] Another advantage of this invention is that the stand is constructed of a metal wire lattice and rolled metal, which is relatively inexpensive to manufacture and very durable for outdoor commercial use.

[0010] Another advantage of this invention is that the field stand can be easily employed in an outdoor field application using a specialized handle tool, which is easy to operate.

[0011] Other advantages will become apparent upon a reading of the following description.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

[0012] The preferred embodiments of the invention have been depicted for illustrative purposes only wherein:

[0013] FIG. 1 is a perspective view of the field stand of this invention with the basket and boot detached and showing a potting container in shadow;

[0014] FIG. 2 is side plan view of the field stand with the basket and boot detached and showing a potting container in shadow;

[0015] FIG. 3 is a top plan view of the field stand of this invention showing a potting container in shadow;

[0016] FIG. 4 is a perspective view of the boot driver of this invention;

[0017] FIG. 5 is a perspective view with a partial sectional view of the boot driver and a boot illustrating how a boot is fitted into the ram head of the boot driver; and

[0018] FIG. 6 is a perspective view of the boot driver and a boot illustrating how the boot driver is manually used to drive a boot into the soil.

DESCRIPTION OF THE PREFERRED EMBODIMENT

[0019] The preferred embodiment herein described is not intended to be exhaustive or to limit the invention to the precise form disclosed. It is chosen and described to best explain the invention so that others skilled in the art might utilize its teachings.

[0020] This invention comprises a field stand 10 and a specialized tool 40 for conveniently utilizing the stand in an outdoor field application. Field stand 10 is designed to securely support a plant potted in conventional potting containers 2. Potting containers 2 are illustrated in shadow in each figure. As shown, potting containers 2 are depicted as having a conventional design with a circular base and tapered conical side walls, which diverge to the open mouth. Both embodiments of the field stand of this invention are design to accommodate potting containers of various sizes, which will be explained in detail hereafter.

[0021] As shown in the figures, field stand 10 includes a tubular boot 20 and a detachable wire basket 30. Boot 20 has a pointed bottom end 22, which is adapted for being driven into hard soil, and an open top end 24 for receiving basket 30. Boot 20 has an elongated tubular body constructed of a rolled non-corrosive sheet metal suitable for outdoor use and exposure within soil. The length of the boot can be varied within the scope of this invention to provide sufficient anchoring of basket 30 and any potted plant supported therein.

[0022] Basket 30 is constructed of three individual strands of a resilient metal wire, but may be constructed of any material suitable for outdoor use. The wire strands are interconnected and bent to form the body of the basket. As shown, the ends of the wire strands are bundled together to form a neck 32 and the middle portions are bent to form the body of the basket having two radially divergent bottom segments 36, two vertically extending side segments 37, and a substantially horizontal top segment 38. Bottom, side and top segments 36, 37, 38 form an interior 39 for receiving potting container 2. The ends of the wire strands are bound together by welds or other means to securely connect the strands together in the basket configurations. The dimensions of the basket body can vary within the scope of this invention to accommodate potting containers or various sizes and dimensions.

[0023] As illustrated in the figures, boot 20 is designed to be driven and embedded into the soil with the detachable basket 30 seated within the boot resting above the ground to support potting containers 2. As shown, once boot 20 is embedded into the soil, basket 30 is seated atop the boot, with neck 32 extending into open end 24. With neck 32 inserted down open end 24, basket can securely support a potting container 2.

[0024] FIGS. 4-6 show a tool (boot driver) 40, which is used to manually drive boots 20 into the soil. Driver 40 is similar in design and operation to a conventional hand operated post driver used to drive fence posts into the ground. Driver 40 includes a weighted tubular sleeve 42 and an elongated ram 46. Sleeve 42 has two handles 44, which allow the sleeve to be easily grasped. Ram 46 is extensibly seated within an open end of sleeve 42 so that the sleeve can manually slide down the length of the ram. As shown, sleeve 42 has a closed end, which is weighted and impacts ram 46 when the sleeve is slid down the ram. Sleeve 42 has a long longitudinal slot 45. A pintle 48 extends through slot 45 to secure ram 46 within sleeve 42 while allowing reciprocal movement of the sleeve up and down the ram. Ram 46 has a head 50 for engaging boots 20. Ram head 50 has an axial shank 52 and an annular flange 54. As shown in FIG. 5, when a boot 20 is seated on head 50, the side walls of boot 20 are interposed between shank 52, which extends down open end 24 of boot 20, and flange 54. Ram head 50 acts as a guide for driving boot 20 into the soil and prevents the side walls of the boot from flaring under the impact of driver 40. As illustrated in FIGS. 5 and 6, boot 20 is driven into the soil by manually raising and lowering sleeve 42 to impact ram 46.

[0025] One skilled in the art will recognize several advantages of the design and operation of the field stand and boot driver of this invention. The two piece design of the field stand provides a more versatile and convenient potting container support for outdoor field applications. Driving the boot into the soil provides a secure anchor for the detachable basket, which supports the potting containers. The length of the boot is suitable for providing a secure anchor in the soil for the basket and a potted plant. The boot can also be manually pulled from the soil with relative ease for relocation and reuse. Since the boots and baskets are detachable, the field stands are very convenient for large field applications. The boots can be implanted in various configurations and locations and individual baskets can be moved between multiple boots as desired to relocate the potted plants within a field. This feature is often convenient for irrigation, lighting and display purposes. The boots can be left permanently in the soil, while the baskets can be collected for seasonal storage. Alternatively, the boots can be easily pulled up and collected for reuse in the following growing season. Since the basket is constructed of simple metal wire strands and the boot of a rolled sheet metal, the field stands are relatively inexpensive and durable for heavy commercial use.

[0026] One will also note the advantage of the boot driver. Although the boots can be driven into the soil using a hammer or other manual tools, the boot driver provides a convenient tool for driving the boots into the soil. The shank and flange of the ram head act as a guide and prevent the side walls of the boots from collapsing and being damaged as the boots are driven into the soil.

[0027] It is understood that the above description does not limit the invention to the details given, but may be modified within the scope of the following claims.