Old stone troughs

Stone troughs (often called stone planters) have been in existence for very many thousands of years. There is no real way to date them; however a very worn and weathered one can give some indication of age. but only then to indicate if is old, or really very old.

The commencement of industrial casting of iron in about the year 1813 started the decline in making stone garden troughs. It was about that time that the cast iron types started to emerge. The art of Bessemar casting in England and Wales came about because of the great and increasing need of cannon balls for the Napoleonic land and sea battles. Iron troughs and many other cast iron items followed quite quickly and the need for 'tedious cutting and chipping out' of stone troughs ceased.

Stone garden troughs were made for many reasons, the greater number were used for animal feeding and drinking. The Horse troughs now seen in many gardens and village centres are often now used as large 'Planters.' Troughs were produced as kitchen sinks in medieval times and up until almost 1820.

The Romans sometimes used stone coffins, we had one in the yard a few years ago. Though found in Somerset (empty) the stone (Pennant stone) actually came from Mid Wales, obviously brought by the Romans from Wales by horse and cart. The round style of garden troughs are mostly used as a 'pestle and mortar' for crushing grain or fruit to pulp or flour. The 'D' shaped troughs were used at water wells for collection of water.

Stone troughs do not rust away as iron does, they therefore live on for centuries. When you next cast a glance at a stone trough, then perhaps imagine that it may be older than the Roman invasion.

At Wells Reclamation we have a large number of troughs and planters in stock, and of all sizes and shapes from 300mm square to the very large eight foot long horse troughs.


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