Garden Pergolas

Pergolas were originally designed as frameworks for climbing plants and grapevines. Many were constructed on a massive scale, with strong brick columns and sturdy overhead beams. Most structures seen in modern gardens are a much more compact version. The width of a pergola should depend on the space available and the effect you want to make in your garden; a minimum width of about five feet allows two people to stroll comfortably through side by side. Always remember that the uprights, beams and cross beams that form the roof all need to visually balance with one another.

A pergola covered with plants can be very heavy which means that the uprights supporting the horizontal beams, which also hold the plants, must be very strong and therefore need strong foundations. Small pergolas are not quite so leisurely in feel but are more suited to most gardens than over large structures, which are better for grander sites.

Pergola posts or uprights are usually more visible than the overhead beams so the material and style you choose for them contributes most to the pergola’s character. Wood, metal, brick or stone can all be used to match nearby or existing garden architecture or to provide their own unique look. You can end up with a beautiful garden feature that is elegant, rustic, traditional or contemporary - the choice is down to you. Whatever you decide on you can be sure a pergola will enhance your garden.

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