Nichols Bros Stoneworks’ cast stone urns and vases
can be quite heavy. Upon delivery, make sure to have ample personnel available to
unload and install them. Medium to larger vases will require a forklift vehicle
for installation. Nichols Bros Stoneworks’ cast stone is very durable but damage
can easily occur if not handled properly. Make sure to not mishandle during
installation. Remember, they are a cast stone product and not a natural stone.
Whence installed, they are typically safe from any possible damage but there
are a few common sense measures that should be considered. For example, the
cast stone products will not hold up to skateboard trauma and this sort of
activity will void its warranty.
It is important that the container(s) be placed onto
a flat level surface with some attention to where the excess water will flow.
Matching saucers for many sizes of the urns and vases are available (please
inquire). The cast stone urns and vases are supplied with small square cut
rubber spacers (rubber feet) to elevate it and allow water to drain correctly
(see figure 1).
If you are planning to install your vase on top of
a column or wall pylon, that has not yet been constructed, then you have the
option of incorporating a drainage pipe into the column or wall design using a
PVC pipe drain (see figure 2).
Many of the Nichols Bros Stoneworks’ cast stone urn
and vase designs, are made up of 2 to 3 sections. For example, many of the
Frank Lloyd Wright urns and vases have a cap that is separate from the bowl or
base. The base can also be separate from the bowl section. During assembly, the
sections should be secured together using a standard mason’s waterproof mortar,
epoxy, or landscape adhesive. The sections can be heavy so this may require
more than one person. Some customers prefer not to use an adhesive when
assembling the top or cap in the event that the vase may need to be moved in
the future. Sometime its sheer weight is enough for securing into place.
Nichols Bros Stoneworks’ cast stone products are
manufactured using a dry-cast stone material that ages and behaves much like
cut sandstone. You will find that it will age or patina naturally over time.
Due to its natural porosity, mosses, lichen and algae’s will find the material
a great place to live and within just a few years, the container will look like
they are quite old. If this is a look you find desirable or compatible with its
environment, then you can accelerate the process by applying a wash of yogurt,
beer, or moss to the outside surface of the stone and keeping the stone wet for
some time. If you prefer to keep your container(s) looking as new as possible,
then applying a clear stone waterproofing sealant to the exterior of the stone (when
new) and periodically cleaning it with a bleach and water solution will prevent
the growth of vegetation on its surface. The use of a “low-pressure” pressure
washer can be used but with much care. Do not hold the pressure washer wand
nose close to the surface. A very high-pressure washer of commercial grade is
not advised. Acid based masonry cleaners should be tested in an inconspicuous
location of the container before its full use. An acid based masonry cleaner,
if used full strength, can dissolve the cast stone material. If concerned about
cleaning the surface of your cast stone product, then first try using a mix of
baking soda and water with a soft brush and rinse. This may work for you just
Be aware! We have noticed that some of the new
premium potting soil mixes, which contain high levels of fertilizer, have a
tendency to stain the outside of the cast stone products in a brown stain.
Nichols Bros Stoneworks’ cast stone products are
capable of withstanding freezes without damage provided some measures are
taken. It is possible for water saturated root and soil balls to freeze, expand,
and fracture the container from the inside out. For this reason care should be
taken in geographic areas where temperatures become very cold to prevent this
from occurring. Consider removing any root balls from the container during
dormant winter months. Many of our customers who do not decorate the planters
will create covers for them and decorate on top of the cover as a precaution.
In cases where the cast
stone is subjected to wide extremes in temperature, you may notice the
development of small hairline cracks in the stone. These cracks are normal and
due to expansion and contraction within the walls of the container. Some of
this can be minimized from placing the cast stone container(s) in areas where
they are not in direct sunlight (and heat up) or near sprinklers that can cool
them down rapidly when hot. Care should also be taken to not wet the cast stone
container down with cold water when the cast stone is extremely hot as cracking
can possibly occur from thermal shock.
To view all Frank Lloyd Wright urns and vases.