How to Build a Pergola

with Twigs, Branches or Driftwood

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Learn how to build a pergola in your garden, and add value and charm with pergola designs that enhance your garden style.


Depending on your soil type, drainage and whether you’ll find bedrock close to the surface of the soil, here are some ideas for building your pergola.

I use a system of rebar pieces pounded into the ground, and a post with a hole drilled up the center of it set over top. This eliminates the problem of digging and pouring footings of cement, and also as an added bonus, is somewhat flexible under stress.

With careful measurements (as always) and string lines to make sure your posts will be square and plumb to each other you can pound the rebar into the ground.

Rebar can be found in most hardware stores, or online at Amazon.

If you only need the shorter lengths, such as for this project, you can find Steel Rebar at Amazon.

Make sure you have each one the right distance into the ground to give enough support for the poles.

If you are pouring cement for another project, use the excess to make some footings - a nursery pot or other container with some rebar or length of metal inserted in the cement before it dries, and you have some footings ready to use.

Magical twig gazebo in the forest...

The end of the wooden post should be held off the ground by a few centimeters, ensuring that it won’t rot in contact with the soil.

This makes it last a lot longer.  Some of my structures are still in place and going strong even after several years of weather.

Once each of the rebar pieces is in place, and the uprights installed over them, plumb each one – you can use a spirit level for this.

Attach some cross members to hold it all together with wire.

This kind of wire is my all time favorite. Since I discovered it and how nicely it rusts (perfect for my kind of crafts) I rely on it almost exclusively. Here is some economical and easy to find ReBar Tie Wire. Each piece has to be firmly attached in several places to resist wind movement.

Flooring can be simple, such as soil cement, or diy patio blocks, flagstones or poured concrete.

Plant climbing vines like Clematis at the foot of each post to climb up and eventually cover your perfect outdoor pergola.

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