Drainspotting: Just Don’t be a Manhole

March 28, 2010 by


Palo Alto, California manhole cover

When I come across a beautiful sewer drain cover, I feel a little flicker of joy seeing an object covering a not-so-pleasant space bringing a bit of beauty to the environment.


Matsimoto, Japan

In Japan there is a tradition of decorating these drain covers. The storm drain plates in New Orleans are so loved that a whole cottage industry of products has emerged incorporating images of them. When I was in The Big Easy, I bought a set of rubber coasters and a tee shirt graced with cool reproductions of the municipal water company’s cover designs.


New Orleans coasters from Old Town Praline & Gift Shop


Miniature Manhole cover planter from Generate, by Nobushiro Sato

Some could be planted quite nicely. Hmm, a bit of guerrilla gardening on the horizon?

  • http://faroutflora.wordpress.com/ Megan

    Oh my gosh! The Japanese drain cover is awesome!!!!!

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