Pergola Plans

Pergola Planning and Design

A set of pergola plans can quickly turn anyone into a craftsman of garden decor. A pergola is a centuries old gazebo-style structure which is typically made of wood. Pergola design uses a crisscross lattice structure which is supported by four support columns. At first glance, a pergola may look like an awning or gazebo, but it actually has openings in the top. You may wonder what good a pergola is if it can’t keep the sun and rain out. The lattices are actually designed to support vines plants such as Honeysuckle or Wisteria, both of which are flowering vines. The plants create shaded protection as they grow thicker on the top. A fully complete pergola with vines can make for an exceptional garden structure, whether it is placed over a pond, near the pool, or directly in the garden.

Building with Pergola Plans:

The basic design and construction methods for pergolas do not vary much, as pergola design is quite simplistic. The simple design makes them relatively easy to build. Users can tweak the plans to create a pergola of any desired width. Most are square in shape, but can also be rectangular. The installation process starts with four wooden beams, usually made of or sheathed in cedar. Securing the beams to your pre-poured concrete foundation is done using steel base post anchors. If no concrete base is present, the posts must be set into the ground securely.

Once all four pergola beams are in the ground, two support beams must be attached to each side with screws. The beams are attached at the same level, with the posts sandwiched in between. After cutting the curved notches on the end according to the pergola plans, clamp the beams to the posts and use a level to ensure straightness. Secure the beams with screws. Now, cross beams will connect the two sides together. A dado blade or table saw is required to cut notches into the cross beams which will allow them to fit snuggly over the support beams on either side.

After cutting notches on a series of top slats, they can be nailed over the top as cross sections. Wood toppers will be nailed to the corners for added stability. You can then apply stain if desired, followed up by a coat of weather sealer. Take a look at one of many pergola pictures on the internet to help gauge the type of pergola you want to create.

Pergola Kits Make Things Easier:

With pergola kits, you do not have to seek out all the supplies for building a pergola. These precision-made kits give you the wood, mounting hardware, and even elaborate brick support columns, depending on the design. Painted models are weatherproof, saving you the time of sealing the wood. No cutting tools are needed, as the lengths and notches have already been cut for you. Holes are pre-drilled in exacting locations. These kits are designed to withstand intense wind and load, a feat that cannot be guaranteed with homemade designs. All sizes are available, ranging from small 8×8’s to 14×14-plus. To save on shipping and completely eliminate weather damages, some manufacturers make fiberglass beams. They never rot, rust, or need maintenance, and they can be re-painted to any color you desire. For more information to create the perfect outdoor living experience with FREE lifetime updates click here.

If building your own pergola from scratch is your goal, there are kits which include only the hardware. Mounting brackets, toppers, nails and screws are packed in kits which give you everything needed, minus the beams.


Pergolas may not be that great when it comes to rain and sunlight shielding, but they have a design which leaves your garden feeling open and airy. Enclosed shades can make your garden feel small and dark. They are commonly placed over walkways or on top of structures such as garden statues, fountains, ponds and flower beds. They are the perfect combination of natural architecture and nature, combining vine plants with an earth friendly wooden design. It is a popular practice to grow grape vines on pergolas, acting as fine decoration, delectable eating or home wine brewing. Flowered vine plants can add wonderful color.

Build a pergola hardware and stencil kit. This Kit is designed for the weekend craftsman with easy to follow instructions. Comes complete with the hardware to make a 8×10, 10×12, or 12×14 garden pergola. (does not come with lumber) Build the pergola shown or choose any other lumber you decide. Save hundreds of dollars on shipping and manufacturing. This kit comes with wood stencils not cheap paper stencils. All you need in tools is a jig saw and a drill. The only wood you need to purchase is the 4×4's and the 2×6's. Example of lumber needed: 8 2x6x10's 4 2x6x12's 4 4x4x8's

Add elegance to your outdoor living with this airy pavilion. Easily sized to fit any space, this versatile pergola will enhance your deck, patio, or yard. The one shown here occupies a 111×148" "footprint," but you'll learn how to increase or decrease its dimensions as needed.

About WOOD Magazine downloadable plans

  • For error-free construction, each downloadable plan includes a bill of materials, a cutting diagram, a detailed supplies listing, and, when necessary, a mail-order buying guide for hard-to-find hardware.
  • For a clear idea of how our projects go together, each downloadable plan includes an exploded-view drawing with helpful details. All drawings are done professionally by the WOOD Magazine staff of woodworkers and illustrators.
  • Large color photos and step-by-step instructions show exactly how we built the project in the WOOD magazine shop. We build each project ourselves to work out any bugs before you ever get the plan.
  • Detail drawings and step-by-step illustrations provide necessary dimensions and machining processes you'll need to make the building process as straightforward as possible.

Note: This is a downloadable woodworking plan. All other materials must be purchased separately.







Add elegance to your outdoor living with this airy pavilion. Easily sized to fit any space, this versatile pergola will enhance your deck, patio, or yard. The one shown here occupies a 111×148" "footprint," but you will learn how to increase or decrease its dimensions as needed.

• Detailed, illustrated plans for building a variety of styles• More than 50 garden structures included, with construction drawings and lists of materials

• Expert construction advice-how to use tools, prepare sites, buy lumber, and apply outdoor finishes

• Selection tips for plants compatible with the structures featured







This title offers both the history of the pergola – how it has been used and enjoyed over the centuries – and a manual of design and planting for today's gardener. It begins with chapters featuring the various periods when pergolas and arbours have been key elements in the garden. It then looks at four of the very best pergolas found today. It also looks at the principles of design and the choice and care of suitable plants, before giving detailed drawings for six structures. The book seeks to be both fun and instructive.

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