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Publication numberUS2601658 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateJun 24, 1952
Filing dateFeb 19, 1952
Priority dateFeb 19, 1952
Publication numberUS 2601658 A, US 2601658A, US-A-2601658, US2601658 A, US2601658A
InventorsBussert Clarence E
Original AssigneeBussert Clarence E
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Immersed floral display
US 2601658 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

June 24, 1952 c. E. BUSSERT Y IMMERSED FLORAL DISPLAY Filed Feb. 19, 1952 IN V EN TOR.

6 m n W nlnllltl Patented June 24, 1952 UNITED STATES PATENT OFFICE IMMERSED FLORAL DISPLAY Clarence E. Bussert, Melrose Park, Ill.

Application February 19, 1952, Serial No. 272,341

8 Claims. 1

' For nearly half a century the art of making water bouquets has been practiced sporadically on a small scale. Such displays comprise an inverted glass container filled with water and flowers mounted in the container and immersed in the water. They last a few days or weeks before the decomposition of organic matter renders them unsightly and they are discarded or renewed.

The primary object of the invention is to prepare a display of a similar nature that will approximate the perfection of the original plant at the peak of its beauty, and remain unimpaired in condition and appearance indefinitely.

advantage of the invention is that it is possible to employ a source material that would otherwise be thrown away and produce substantially permanent and exceptionally attractive immersed displays. The process of producing such a product involves but few steps, and is simple and quick.

In the accompanying drawing:

Figure 1 is a cross-section of a display accord ing to the invention; and

Figure 2 is a more or less diagrammatic section, on a greatly enlarged scale, of a portion of the blossom.

Source material In proceeding according to the invention, I employ source material selected from the class comprising bushes, trees, tubers, grasses, and

, fungi. Specific embodiments may include but liums, toadstools, mushrooms, and puffballs.

An outstanding advantage of the invention is that the source material can advantageously be processed at the time when its natural beauty is at its peak. In the case of floral displays this means that the source material is no longer salable in the ordinary channels of commerce through retail florists. This is because flowers retailed by fiorists must be in condition to reach theirbest appearance several hours or days after the customer has taken them home. If they were in the condition of best appearance when delivered to the florist, none of them would be fresh enough to be salable.

Integument Source material of any of the types enumerated,having its full original natural shape and configuration, and usually its original natural color unimpaired, is procured in a clean and good-looking and dry condition and overcast with a substantially continuous and substantially impermeable and opaque integument. This seals the physical structure permanently with its original internal moisture content substantially intact and its original "raw cell structure substantially unaltered by any material heating or cooking action. If the sealing process happens to involve a brief heating analogous to that required forpasteurizing milk, such heating does no harm at all, but experience seems to indicate that such is not essential.

Accordingly, an applying instrumentality is provided selected from the class. comprising baths, flowing streams, pouring streams, and jets, said applying instrumentality consisting of material selected from the class of chemically inert opaque coating materials having melting points low enough not to injure or dehydrate the plant tissues.

Suitable integument materials may include Montan wax, Gersthofen wax, I. G. wax, carnauba wax, honeycomb, micro-crystalline petroleum wax, and white synthetic waxes such as amido esters, having the formula:

R-CO-NH-R'-O-COR where Rr-CO is a fatty acid radical containing from '7 to 17 carbon atoms, and R is an alkylene radical having from one to 6 carbon atoms; such as stearamide ethyl stearate and his (stearamide ethyl) adipate and diamides having the formula Pv-CONHR'--NH-CO-R where R and R are the same as in the amido esters abovementioned, such as methylene distearamide nary mineral oil, and the resulting blend solidifies into a homogeneous and stable solid.

When using paraifin, it is possible to buy different kinds having melting points up to about 180 deg. F. or more and as low as 130 deg. F. In one illustrative example I have used two and one-half pounds of a paraffin certified to me to contain less than 1 oil and moisture, which melts at-from 130 deg. to 136 deg. This weight, when melted, has a volume of one quart. To this I add two quarts of a conventional water-white mineral oil having a viscosity of 95 to 100 Saybolt Universal, a color of 10 to 12 Saybolt Uni versal, and a minimum pour point of 30 deg.

and secure a homogeneous blend with a slight tendency to form a skin when the mass is at Application The prepared specimens, themselves at room temperature or below, are quickly subjected to a 110 deg. F. and stands in air: at room temperature. melting point, but solidifies gradually without segregation of its ingredients over a considerable I range; from 110 deg. F. down to at least 100 deg. F. However, the thin coating formed on the finished display does not flow enough to spoil the display attemperatures as high'as 105 deg. F. V At ordinary room temperatures, the coating It is" eifectively solid but rather flexible and tough, compared with being brittle. It does not crack, even after prolonged water immersion.

After only a short period of practice, it is easy foran operator to coat and assemble such plants sary to get a dye that is really permanent under exposure to light when embodied in an extremely thin integu-ment layer and immersed in water, as hereinafter described. The integument may be made a close color match with the actual plant if desired, but a great advantage is that source material of the best shape and size can be selected, and finished in colors several shades darker or lighter than the original flowers. Where the final: exposed color is a not unnatural one for the type of source material employed, the precise tint of the original becomes immaterial. More, where aesthetic aims'are secured thereby, it is possible to present blue roses and other beautiful and attractive combinations unknown in nature.

As a specific instanca for the petals of a typical red rose, we employ as a red coloring dye, D 8; C #18 Bed of the Calco Dye Company of Bound Brook, New" Jersey. A four-quart batch of integument material needs about three grams of this particular dye.

Preparation Preparation of the source material involves only selection of suitable specimens and enough drying; to eliminate sensible moisture on the surfaces which are to receive the integument. Any coim'riercial flower raiser finds it necessary to raise enough plants to have a fair margin of safety with respect to fluctuations in demand,

It can hardly be said to have a definite 'brie'f' application of integument material.

When a quiescent bath is used, the mass of integument is kept just warm enough so that no skin forms onthetop surface exposed to the ambient room temperature, and the entire specimen to be overcast is quickly but gently plunged into the molten mass for a second or two and then as quickly lifted" up above the molten mass: and twirled or shaken gently to dislodge all but a very thin' film of solidified integument. Insertion, withdrawal and shaking off excess liquid, need only. take:

about three seconds, about'at fast as the hand can operate. Very eilective'control'of thickness is by varying the bath temperature. thickness results when the bath is as cool as it can be kept without forming a skin on thesurface that interferes with manipulation. Raising; of

When the applying"instrumentality is'flowing:

stream, the immersed plant can be twisted around in the stream so that somewhat better penetration into deep crevices canbe secured. A poured stream can fall on the'plant with a little more speed and exert a little more penetrating power. Av gentle j'et directed upwards can deliver any desired velocity of impact,'but because:

the integument material is moving against gravity, the jet can be made to give the mostthorough interpenetration of all, not. so much because of' the available jet force, but because gravity will assist the operator in presenting the plant with its individual petals, bracts and leaves fanned to a perfect seal at the bottom of every individual crotch and crevice of the plant, but nearly all the crotches are completely sealed, and the remaining crotches are all nearly sealed. E'xperience has shown that access of a liquid according to the invention to the few limited and shielded areas not completely sealed, does not cause deterioration of the finished display for at least a year or so. It is believed this possible cause of aging will not become significant for much longer than that, but atthe time of filing this application the invention has not been in use long enough to state that as a proven fact. .All surfaces that are exposed to View in any direction can easily be covered, and discoloration of parts that cannot be seenwouldmean nothing if it did occur.

Because of the low temperature of the bath,

stream, or jet, the operator has no need to take enclosed in a hollow, inverted transparent sphere it. The mounting may include a bottom closure comprising a base having an outer flange 20' for Maximum contact with the supporting surface, and a center cup 22. The sphere i8 is formed with a neck 24, and spiral threads 26 may be provided on the neck 24, and at 28 in the cup 22 to enable the user to screw the parts together so that the liner plate 30 is clamped down against the gasket 32. The plate 30 may carry an anchor 34 having serrations 35 to secure a grip on a block of spongy material 38 into which the stems I2 of the flowers may be thrust.

A suitable material for the block is sold on the market under the name Styrofoam. This is a composition of styrene which is usually manufactured by heating aniline, and paraldehyde and hydrochloric acid. The Styrofoam is of a rather fluffy, spongy cork-like appearance, very light in weight, having a low density and has the physical property of capturing and holding the stem of a flower or of a similar plant by merely pressing the stem into the Styrofoam. Some force will be required in order to remove the stem so inserted.

In assembling such a display, the block 33 is fastened in place, and the flowers dipped and mounted on it. Then the sphere is inverted with its neck uppermost and filled with liquid, and the flowers are gently worked in through the neck into the position indicated in Figure 1, while the entirety is inverted. After the parts are fastened together, the display can be placed in the position of Figure 1 and is ready to use. In filling the sphere, care should be taken to leave at least a little air clearance, which will appear at 40 at the top.

The mechanical means for immersion are purchased by me on the open market and are no part of my invention.

The liquid used in the sphere has a material effect on the appearance of the assembly. I prefer to use distilled water combined with a pre-- servative. One preservative that has been found very effective is a one per cent water-white solution of formaldehyde in distilled water- With such a liquid, the fluid retains a nice water-white color, and the surfaces of the treated leaves and petals appear to have about the same fiat color,

or light-reflecting property, as the natural plant has in air.

Another filling that is equally effective so far as permanency i concerned, is obtained by mixing the water with 1-2-propane diol up to about twelve and one-half per cent. With such a glycol solution, the surfaces of the leaves and petals are highly reflective and glisten quite noticeably, like an oil film. The completed assembly is well protected against injury by freezing. It will be apparent that by the use of the different liquids I am able to suit the tastes of the purchaser by a difference in appearance very similar to that between a glossy photographic print and a flat photographic print.

One of the best preservatives we have used so far is plain sodium bi-sulphite, NaI-ISOs. A good concentration is four grams to one gallon of water.

Another effective preservative is merthiolate. Used by itself, best results seem to be with 0.016 gram per gallon, but from 0.008 to 0.024 is effective. Merthiolate is a powerful fungicide, but does not have a strong deoxidizing action, whereas sodium bi-sulphite is a strong deoxidizing agent. It is believed optimum results are obtainable with both preservatives present. The quantity used should be sufficient to prevent oxidative attack on the plant tissues and to maintain the germicidal and fungicidal properties of the liquid,

with a margin of safety to take care of possible absorption. For instance, with three good sized red roses in a gallon of liquid, approximatelyas indicated in the drawings, a pint of glycol gives good results, but if the liquid volume is cut in half without reducing the amount of plant material present, it is best not to reduce the glycol material. Pulpy flowers need somewhat more preservative than those where the plant structure is relatively hard and compact.

Similarly, with three good sized red roses in a gallon of liquid, I prefer to use four grams of sodium bi-sulphite and 0.008 gram of merthiolate, or the equivalent in other anti-oxidants, germicides and fungicides-but good results are obtainable when the above quantities are increased or reduced by about fifty per cent.

Others may readily adapt the invention for use under various conditions of service by employing one or more of the novel features involved or equivalents thereof. I have recently discovered that the attractiveness of displays of this type may be greatly enhanced by incorporating a minor fraction of phosphorescent material. in the integument. In daylight, or in a lighted room, the presence of a phosphorescent material goes unnoticed, but in the dark the plants are visible and constitute a very beautiful thing to look at.

The provisions of a molten bath or jet cool enough to permit the operator to work bare handed is a material advantage, and imposes a top limit of about one hundred thirty degrees F. for the bath temperature. I have found that even when the plant would stand a much higher temperature, materials melting at one hundred thirty degrees F. or below give as good an integument as can be obtained with higher melting mixtures. So far as I know, the most delicate plant structures suitable for processing according to the invention can stand at least one hundred fifteen degrees F. and usually one hundred twenty degrees F.

As at present advisedwith respect to the apparent scope of my invention, I desire to claim the following subject matter.

This application is a continuation in part of my copending application Serial No. 181,164 filed August 24, 1950.

I claim:

1. A submerged natural plant display comprising: natural plant members with their internal moisture content and cell structure substantially intact; a thin, impermeable, opaque, chemically inert, water-proof coating adhering permanently to the surfaces of said plant members exposed to view and sealing said surfaces; said coating also substantially covering all plant surfaces accessible to liquid enveloping the plant members; a container enclosing all of said members; and a filling of clear transparent liquid in said container and enveloping said members; said liquid being substantially pure water and a solute therein adapted to retard deterioration of said members. 7

2. A display according to claim 1 in which the solute for preventing deterioration is sodium bisulphite up to a concentration of about one part in nine hundred.

3. A display according to claim 1 in which the solute for preventing deterioration is propylene glycol up to about twelve and one-half per cent.

4. A display according to claim 1 in which the solute for preventing deterioration is sodium 7 I ethyl'mercuri thiosalicylate' up to about 0.024 gramtper l gallon.

5f A display according to claim 4 in which the solute/includes also'sodium bisulphite up to about one part in nine hundred;

6. A display according to claim 1' in which said coating is' colored'and certain of said members have coating of a color I difiering from that of said'other members.

7'." A display according to claim 1 in which said coating is of para'flin blended with mineral oil.

- 8; A submerged natural plant display comprising: natural plant members with'their internal moisture'content and cell structure substantially intact; a thin, impermeable, opaque, chemically inert, water-proof coating adhering permanently to the surfaces of saidplant members exposed to view and sealin'gsaid surfaces; said coating also substantially covering'all'plant surfaces accessibleto liquid'enveloping the plant members; a 20 container enclosingall of said members; and a filling of clear transparent substantially pure water in said container and enveloping said members.


REFERENCES CITED 1 The following references are of record in the file of this patent:

UNITED STATES PATENTS Number Name Date 1,450,408 Brooks Apr. 3, 1923' 1,788,058 Jyumie Jan. 6, 1931 1,935,706 Joffe Nov. 21, 1933 2,057,413 Bridgeman Oct. 13,1936 2,105,688 Fessenden Jan. 18, 1938 2,174,771 Bender Oct. 3, 1939 2,226,951 Simpson Dec. 31, 1940

Patent Citations
Cited PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US1450408 *Jun 19, 1922Apr 3, 1923Brooks CharlesArt of preserving apples
US1788058 *Mar 6, 1929Jan 6, 1931Jyumi MotogoLamp
US1935706 *Jun 15, 1928Nov 21, 1933 Art of preserving biological
US2057413 *Apr 20, 1934Oct 13, 1936Innis Speiden & CoTreating plant material
US2105688 *Apr 17, 1936Jan 18, 1938 Method of preserving the natural
US2174771 *Nov 26, 1938Oct 3, 1939Bender Edward AFluid-sealing closure base for floral display globes
US2226951 *Jul 27, 1939Dec 31, 1940Simpson Robert WFlower holder
Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2724213 *Nov 28, 1952Nov 22, 1955Weil Lewis PFlower holders
US2759285 *Apr 23, 1953Aug 21, 1956Bussert Clarence EFloral display
US2774187 *May 18, 1954Dec 18, 1956Smithers Vernon LPackage for transporting cut flowers
US2917856 *Oct 4, 1957Dec 22, 1959Robert WellsOrnamental plastic block
US3000722 *Jun 23, 1958Sep 19, 1961Tufflite Plastics IncComposition for supporting and extending the life of cut flowers
US3765995 *Jan 25, 1971Oct 16, 1973Perrin J BFlower bowls
US3995396 *Nov 17, 1975Dec 7, 1976Applied Research Commodities Industries, Inc.Inflatable terrarium assembly with replaceable domes
US4188425 *Apr 14, 1978Feb 12, 1980Rohm GmbhDouble-walled shaped plastic articles
US4221078 *Sep 27, 1978Sep 9, 1980Latham John FSealed globular display device
US4286409 *Oct 22, 1979Sep 1, 1981Taylor Neil JTree stand
US4597574 *May 7, 1985Jul 1, 1986Wolfe Henry SToy apparatus simulating hunting or combat
US4771902 *Apr 29, 1987Sep 20, 1988Teng Hsieh YihSealer-type container and display means
US4887385 *Dec 7, 1987Dec 19, 1989James Naylor LimitedConnecting means for frangible and/or friable articles
US5110636 *Feb 5, 1991May 5, 1992Giftec, Ltd.Decorative display device
US5775529 *Dec 6, 1996Jul 7, 1998Lo; Szu WeiDecorating glass vessel filled with water
EP1790257A1Nov 24, 2005May 30, 2007Veldhuijzen van Zanten, Johan Karel WilhelmOrnamental object comprising a transparant container and a plant accommodated therein
U.S. Classification47/41.12, 428/13, 504/114, 47/69, 504/115
International ClassificationA47G7/00, A01G5/00
Cooperative ClassificationA47G7/006, A01G5/00
European ClassificationA01G5/00, A47G7/00G