Pergolas

Pergola

Outdoor living spaces are currently very popular. The design and use of outdoor furniture, cooking areas and even entire outdoor rooms are often featured in magazines and television shows.


One effective way to define an outdoor room or space is with an overhead structure. Though there are several types of these structures, a pergola is one of the simplest ways to add class and style to your patio or yard.


A pergola is a garden or yard feature with vertical posts or columns and an overhead framework of wood beams and lattice that create an open canopy. The wood components can range in size and spacing depending on the desired look. The vertical posts can be wood, stone, brick or concrete. Closely related outdoor pergolas include gazebos and arbors.

 

While some pergolas are designed to connect to the house, your pergola will likely be constructed as a freestanding unit. Though the relationship to the home is important, it is nice to put some space between a main building and outside features. They can then be viewed better from within the house and will become an outdoor destination, encouraging use and activity in the yard.


At the same time, your pergola should not be located too far from the house. Especially for eating and cooking purposes, the outdoor area should be convenient to related functions within the house.

Buying an Outdoor Pergola

A variety of pergola types can be purchased from big box stores, garden centers and websites. They usually come as prefabricated kits that are reasonably easy to assemble. If you purchase from a local supplier, they may be able to provide delivery and assembly services.

Building Your Own

For the experienced do-it-yourself homeowner, building an outdoor pergola can be a fun and rewarding project. There are numerous plans and guides available in books and on websites. Building your own custom canopy allows you to design the exact size and style, that best fits your yard and meets your needs.

Final Touches

Be sure to add some creative and personal touches to your pergola. Lighting is a particularly nice addition. Hanging lights or candles, fixtures integral to the pergola or freestanding lights are all possibilities.


Flowering vines planted near the posts can provide seasonal color and additional shade. Selecting a paint color or stain that relates to your house will help your pergola fit into the landscape.


Whether it is for outdoor eating, cooking or just a place to gather, socialize and relax, a pergola can be a fun, stylish and functional addition to your home and garden.