Avid gardeners and green thumb enthusiasts can envision a new flower, shrub, tree or garden in almost every corner and space available. An outside stair railing, a corner of the backyard or 2 feet of space outside an entrance will easily accommodate a few plants or flowers. A lightpost outside a front porch or at the end of a driveway presents an irresistible opportunity to plant a mini garden or grow a climbing plant. Consider the immediate surroundings when choosing plants. For example, in cold climates a location close to the street may expose plants to road salt.
Clematis is a slow-growing, climbing, perennial that produces flowers that are white or that range form blue and purple to pink and red. It requires rich, well-drained soil, which has a covering of mulch, and regular watering. If the soil around the lamppost is hard packed or sandy, add organic matter like compost and topsoil before planting. Clematis climbs so the leaves will be exposed to sunlight. The lightpost needs to be head high or higher so leaves are well off the ground. Train the clematis vines to grow up the post by placing shoots against the post and securing them with soft garden twine. Feed clematis regularly with plant food for flowering plants.
The queen of the garden is a beautiful ornamental plant that provides a showy display. Choose a rose in a favorite color in bush variety to plant in front of the lamppost or a climbing variety to grow up the lamppost. Roses require rich soil and regular feeding and watering. Put thick mulch all around the planted rose to protect it from the elements and keep the roots moist and shaded. Watch for blemishes and abnormalities on the leaves and take care of them as soon as they are observed.
For a different look in front of your lamppost, plant ornamental grass. Many grasses have clean upright growth habits that complement the vertical space of a lamp post and unusual seed heads or leaf patterns. Plant two or three of the same grasses or select a couple of different varieties. Examples of ornamental grasses include Blue Oat Grass, Golden Japanese Forest Grass, Mexican Feather Grass and Prairie Sky Switchgrass. Grasses need little care and provide visual interest well into the winter months. Most ornamental grasses are perennials that return every spring, but some are annuals, which grow easily from seed.
Lilacs are favorite shrubs for their lavender blooms and delicious fragrance in the springtime. If you have a tall lamppost, a dwarf Korean lilac bush planted in front of a lamppost adds springtime flowering and pretty leaves until autumn. This variety of lilac reaches a height of 4 to 5 feet. Avoid regular lilac, which can reach 15 feet in height. Lilacs do best in humus-rich soil with good drainage and plenty of sun.
Daisies and Baby's Breath
A nostalgic combination of daisies and baby's breath creates a pretty picture all summer long. Two inexpensive plants from a greenhouse or garden center planted at the base of the lamppost or in a large planter create an attractive, white-flowering display. Baby's breath requires alkaline, well drained soil and good sun exposure. You may want to grow these plants in a raised bed built at the base of the lamppost.