In our experience here at All Seasons Outdoor Spaces, many people want to use their outdoor living areas more but struggle to do so for a variety of reasons. Maybe whenever you try to spend time on your patio, you get bitten by insects, or maybe your patio lacks shade from the sun. Our team can provide solutions to both these issues and more, but in this article, we will focus on the second problem.
One way we can give your outdoor living space some much-needed shade is by installing a pergola over it. For those who don’t know, a pergola consists of vertical support posts topped by a decorative open lattice, and pergolas are traditionally used for growing climbing plants such as grapes or wisteria. In this article, we will go over some key information you should know about pergolas in order to decide if they are right for you.
- Pergolas vs. Other Outdoor Structures – One thing we want you to know about pergolas is the ways they differ from other outdoor structures, such as arbors or gazebos. Arbors are typically freestanding, while pergolas are attached to the home, and arbors also tend to be simpler and lacking in decorative flourishes, while pergolas usually have such decorative touches. Gazebos, on the other hand, are also freestanding, but unlike both arbors and pergolas, they are not intended for climbing plants, and they have a solid roof rather than an open lattice.
- Pergola Covers – Another key thing to know about pergolas is that they don’t provide complete shade by themselves. As we mentioned above, pergolas have traditionally been used as supports for climbing plants, which then form a canopy over the top, which greatly increases the amount of shade provided. Suitable plants to use include wisteria, climbing hydrangea, bougainvillea, grapes, and other vines. However, if you want greater protection from the sun (and from the rain), you can choose to cover your pergola with a retractable shade canopy instead of or in addition to the plants.