Flowering trees of four by fours

I’ve always loved this simple idea. For the impact it provides, how cheap & easy is this? Found on the Parkside Garden Tour in the garden of Steve & Connie. They are on the Parkside Garden Tour, but are also on the Garden Walk Buffalo committee. They are some of the many that are on our committee that do not live in the Garden Walk area. You have to appreciate people that so willingly give of their time & energy when they don’t even get a chance to show their own garden.

I have to figure out how & where to put these flower poles. In the Harry Potter Garden might be good. I would probably stain them, beat them up a bit, and round the edges off. Or, maybe this is a chance to add more color to the garden by painting them. Although I dread the use of paint outdoors. It just means sometime down the road, it’ll need panting again. It would take just a few hours to do. I already have the post-hole diggers, and the concrete to set them in.

Do you have a simple cheap idea I can steal?

I have a long-time garden blog, a popular garden on America's largest garden tour, and have co-written a book on garden design titled, "Buffalo-Style Gardens: Create a Quirky, One-of-a-Kind Private Garden with Eye-Catching Designs" When I'm not doing all that, I am an advertising designer always out looking to design things to promote your business. Look me up at #jcharlier.

13 comments on “Flowering trees of four by fours

  1. That is an interesting idea Jim. I’m a little confounded though as to why they were put where they are? Was the gardener trying to screen a view or create some type of focal point? I think I would also like them better if the wood was painted. It is great however, to see people’s creativity in action!


  2. I’m always looking for new ideas, for ‘upright’ gardening, since my lot is small and i have a dog. i think i would like to paint the poles to give them more omph or to blend into the background. if you stagger some that would give some nice architectural interest too.


  3. Pam,I'm not sure why they are where they are. It's not blocking much of a view over that chain link fence! It does add height to this area that only goes as high as that fence. As far as a focal point, it doesn't quite achieve that – as there are other focal points in the yard (they've got some VERY happy & healthy plants in the yard. It does “fill in” what would otherwise be a blank spot.B&g girl,We urban gardens are always challenged by small spaces. I would want the posts to add color, or look more “wood” colored than the yellow-ish they are now. I'd also want to cover up those metal 4×4 brackets at the bottom, if I had them. Staggering and having different heights would work best for me – and maybe in odd-number quantities. The post I've always wanted to add to my garden was the “city distances” post/sign from MASH. I'd like to have a beat up post with a mix of hand-written/painted signs with destinations that are important to us– like to grandma's house, favorite vacation destinations, friends houses, favorite gardens and so on.


  4. I’m afraid I don’t have any ideas as clever as that, but if I did, you would be welcome to steal them!Those flower poles are as cute as a button.


  5. I thought I was going to see a truck full of flowers :)Those turned out pretty. I like the idea of painting them a nice rich color.


  6. Anonymous

    The flowers are beautiful. I agree with you and the other posters that the wood needs work. Left to the elements the patina would age to gray which works for hanging rusty tools and miscellany. But my immediate thought was to surround them with pliable fence wire and grow vines up them. I think they would look better planted within taller plants. Keeping them the same height you could add a cross beam to make a pergola of sorts. Staggering the heights would look great. I think placement is key, as for any focal point. Trial and error…


  7. Susan,I bet if I saw your garden, I could steal something.Catherine,Any chance to add more color, I’m all for.Grace,The wire fence wrap for vines is a great idea. Taller plants – maybe even something spiky, and other plants, more drippy, would be great too.


  8. Sounds like you’re ready to start digging, unless of course the ground is still frozen there. I’d like the look of rustic “flower poles” but also think jazzin them up a bit with some colorful paint might be fun. What about adding a few “branches” to your “flower poles” for a hanging basket or hummingbird feeder? (You might also need an extended watering nozzle.)


  9. Nice and inspirative posts, thank you for sharing!


  10. TC,Still frozen, although the snow is gone and I can see green (or a derivation thereof). I’ve thought of branches too. I may have to consider that. My knowledge of engineering and construction is usually surpassed by the persistence of gravity.Jana,Thanks for stopping by and commenting!


  11. Your blog is delightful and so full of good ideas, and I might just “steal” or adapt/adopt some of them myself. I agree that these 4 X 4s look a bit naked. Maybe the folks are hoping they will weather to a nice brown color? Who knows? I would be too impatient to wait for that and would paint or stain them brown or green or perhaps the color that matches the trim of their house. Even white paint would look better than that raw sawmill color. Whatever..it is a cool idea and they are off to a good start.Jon at Mississippi Garden


  12. Well, Jim, one variation they – or you – could consider is putting up some nice strong “angle iron” or shelving braces for hanging baskets at the lower levels. The notion of the flowers at the top like that is just gorgeous – I love that. I have used 4 by 4’s and even 6 x 6’s for similar purposes although, I have to admit, doing the top is the one thing I always left out. LOL, go figure. Honestly, imagine the color possibilities, you could even do more intense reds or blues as you went up or down in a small series. But we often hang baskets off arbor posts or fence posts and they serve to soften the lines and produce riotous color for surprising spots. (By the way, I like supplying drip irrigation to those baskets. That way they’re always watered, a primo consideration with baskets which tend to dry out quickly and become labor intensive.)


  13. Jon,Thank you for the compliments. PLease – steal any idea you can from this site. I write the site I would most like to read. hence it’s a bit of travel, garden design, garden tours and projects on the cheap. Some of the ideas I see in gardens are just a start – intended for me or someone to make a riff from – to make something their own. Steve,Drip irrigation. Now that’s a project I know will be in my future at some point. Especially on a project like this. I can see myself either not watering enough, or watering with water running down my entire body as I pour.


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