Here is something I have done a few times. The client will have a
couple of posts from an arbor or upstairs balcony that are either rotting
away or just unattractive and they want to spruce them up. First,
if needed, replace the part of the post that is rotting away.
Connect the new wood to the old wood from above
with a metal bracket. Wrap the lower post with either thin
CMU blocks or backer board. Then cover that with
either a stucco finish (upper photo) or a stone facade (lower photo).
Top the pillar with either tile or stone and now
you have a perfect place to put drinks at your next party.
Photo by Doug Kalal, taken at client's gardens in Carlsbad and Rancho Penasquitos