Although there are quite a few communities that do not have utility poles, I still think of them as a common issue (and challenge) in the landscape. Utility companies are not being design conscious when they place them – they can’t be. It’s a matter of support for their wires and they can’t be thinking about how their pole fits aesthetically into the landscape.
Here’s one strategy I’ve used quite a few times. Climbing Hydrangea, although deciduous, works wonders as a vigorous climbing plant that in a relatively short time will wrap around the pole with lush, glossy green foliage. As a bonus it will also flower in early summer.
Here, to your left, is a recent project currently underway with the woody plant installations – additional perennials and groundcovers will follow.
While trying to blend the landscaped property with the neighboring woodland, we have this utility pole smack dab in the mix. It’s kind of a blatant statement of civilization. So at the pole’s base we plant a young climbing plant (Hydrangea petiolaris, 5 gal. install size).
This climbing hydrangea has been planted by this pole for about 3 years now. It is pruned every year just to keep it trained on the pole itself and not to grow much beyond the height you see.
Earlier I mentioned how vigorous a grower this is – and I’m not kidding. It would eventually grow right up the entire pole, but with a little attention you can keep it in check.
I think this climbing plant does a great job of camouflaging the pole without taking up too much space at its base. This plant happens to be a favorite of mine and I’ll continue to show you why in future posts.