K's Garden

Building a large garden on a budget

Pergola Project Sunday 1 August 2010


  • Moving the Pergola to Chez Nous (this page)
  • Photo Gallery (Scroll down)

We have a length of flower bed where we want to grow climbing roses, and have discussed (in a creative sense!) having a Pergola along the bed. Our thoughts have all been rather utilitarian – ornateness was being traded for cost and time-saving during construction. I suppose the fact that we were not happy with our mental design, in a creative sense, is why construction had not started. Good thing too! Whilst taking down a barn I had bought at an auction I got the opportunity to “take down and take away” a pretty little pergola too.


After waiting for Listing Consent to be cleared I went over one sunny day in July to de-construct it.

August 2009

Day One

Remove the plants. Grapes intertwined around the frame, and through the trellis, and looking like they’ve been there for 20 years or more!

Pergola Overgrown

Once they were removed the structure and form were revealed more clearly. Thank goodness we didn’t knock together the pergola of our own dreams! it would not have been a patch on this.

Pergola with Plants Removed

Day Two

The pergola is very solidly constructed – all mortice and tenon joints, none of that nail-together-stuff that is my forte! The top is rain-proofed with lead sheet.

I try to use a reciprocating saw to cut through the screws that secure the uprights, but after blunting several blades I resort to knocking a wedge in and using my trusty angle-grinder in the gap.

Pergola Deconstruction

Pergola De-constructed

December 2009 – Reconstruction

Pergola in Position - Dec '09

Some pieces laid out as a trial, ready for imminent reconstruction …

Pergola Ready to Construct - Jun '10

Come June 2010 and still raring to go …

Pergola Grass Mowed

24 June and had to move the Pergola so I could cut the grass. But still raring to go … I bet you are relieved that I’m not your spouse!

Pergola Footings

Dug some holes for footings and used 9″ drainage pipe to create a vertical collar of concrete to the footings below. Hopefully this has enabled me to get a good level between section, and will enable me to hide the footings with soil

Pergola Erection Day One

At last! Erection starts …

Pergola Ready to Build

Pergola Erection Day Two

Pergola Day Two Aerial View

Pergola Day Three - July 2010

There was some time consuming and somewhat tedious painting during the Summer. The trellis is fiddly to paint, but I managed to find something called “Barn Paint” which can be thinned with water for a primer / undercoat, and then used as a topcoat, which covered the existing paint in one coat, and new wood in 2 ~ 3 coats – a lot less effort than the 5 or 6 coats of Dulux that would be needed.

Gallery of Growth

Pergola - 2011

Next: Fruit and Nut Walk, or return to Projects


2 Responses to “Pergola Project”

  1. John Kane Says:

    A super job Kristen, can’t wait to see the climbing roses.

    • kgarden Says:

      We threw the Roses in during May I think – they had been “heeled in” in the vegetable patch for 3 years 😦 We did water them well, but I wasn’t hopeful; May had only 25% of average rainfall and June and July only 50% … but the roses are half way up the trellis already. My DW took a bet with a visitor (back in May when they looked dead) that they would be at the top of the trellis by next year; I hope she agreed on a lottery-sized prize!

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