Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Pergola, pergola

While our first focus is going to remain on the front of the house, putting our best face forward in a literal sense of the phrase, we don't want to neglect the back yard this summer. In fact, in some ways, the improvements we want to bring to our back patio will be even more welcome than those we plan for our front porch and lawn. We love our barbecue, we love our garden, and our summer plans are full of lazy evenings with burgers around a patio table.

Unfortunately, at the moment, our patio is far from being a relaxing space. 


Admittedly, this is a very old picture that doesn't actually give you the best sense of what the space looks like at the moment. There may or may not be an old door stuck over the window, an available scrap used to board it up when we decided to leave it out of our bathroom plans. There's a few cheap patio chairs scattered around and scraps of wood and renovation mess against the garage. It's just... not pretty. 

Thankfully, we have vision. 

We'd love to do away with the patio stones and lay down some beautiful interlocking brick. We'd love a proper fence to cut our view off from the side of our neighbour's badly chipped garage wall. (This will involve bringing in a surveyor to remove any confusion about where his property line ends and ours begins.) Most importantly, we'd love to fill the space between our garage and the edge of our property with outdoor living space. Specifically,

Ana Williamson Architect traditional patio

In the process of my research, I've learned that these overhead trellises of vines are called pergolas. So, it's official. We want a pergola stretched over our patio space. Preferably, we will fill the space beneath it with a nice long dining table, or maybe an outdoor sofa or two. It will be a comfortable place, perfect for relaxing in dappled sunshine, watching the garden grow, nibbling on fresh greens and juicy burgers. 


image via My Paradissi via Mirabeau

There is a possibility that I am highly idealistic. 

Strike that.

I am highly idealistic. 

15 comments:

  1. I love the idea!

    I'm not sure what the laws are in your area, but here I think you have to keep structures about 5 feet away from the property line. But obviously Grumpy Man's garage appears closer to the line than 5 feet, so... who knows! Having a surveyor out definitely seems like the place to start. Good luck!

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  2. Oh, we definitely don't have any laws like that here. Our house wouldn't fit on our lot if we did!

    The surveyor is absolutely required. We've lost a full foot somewhere between our property assessment papers and our tape measure. To keep things diplomatic and friendly, we'll let a surveyor figure it out!

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  3. Ah, Nette, anything is possible. I think a pergola is a wonderful idea. Growing some vines and adding some containers would really green up the space. I'm looking forward to seeing your progress!

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  4. That first picture is lovely!

    If you can't hide your neighbor's garage wall, can you paint it bright white, put up some lattices, and then run some bouganvilla or something? (Not sure with your climate what would work.).

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  5. barbara @hodge:podgeApril 19, 2012 at 1:00 AM

    I love pergolas and they ambience they create!

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  6. A couple of years ago, we built a pergola (actually a very easy and straight-forward project). Grape vines grow on top and it's so lovely in the summer! So yeah.. I love pergolas and the atmosphere they create. :)

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  7. Thanks Meg! After the husband saw this post he wanted to get started right away, so hopefully there will be some progress before too long. But, holy crap, wood is expensive! Will keep you posted!

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  8. We probably won't be able to hide it completely, but we're going to approach him about building a fence which will also go along beside it, so it will be covered 3/4 of the way at least!

    There were grape vines that we gave our neighbours permission to chop last summer - they were getting intrusive. But, we may be able to coax a few of the remaining ones to flourish and grow over it. That's my hope anyway!

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  9. Me too!

    Though, to be honest, I'm not sure I've ever seen a really pretty one in person...

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  10. That's exactly what I want! Fingers crossed we can pull it off soon!

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  11. Wood is very expensive at the box stores. You need to look outside of them and the good thing about being in Toronto (or Ottawa as I am) is that there are a lot of small wood lots around where you can get nice cedar for less than the box stores. Go for eastern white cedar, you won't pay for the shipping from the west as you would for western red cedar, plus it is becoming more rot resistant that the red due to more red being plantation grown. While it will still be a chunk of change it will still be less.

    Janet
    www.ottawacedarfurniture.com

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  12. Having pergolas on your home makes your stressful day turns into a relaxing day. The ambiance is nature friendly.

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  13. There's a huge improvement on house's outdoor design. The designer did a pretty good job in using all the available space. From how I see it, permacast round columns would fit in perfectly here.

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  14. That looks very cozy, I'm sure that you'll feel relaxed there, thanks.
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