Saturday, March 7, 2009

Our Own Private Pergola Spring

Spring will not come fast enough after such a hard winter. Ok, I've become spoiled living in Florida after moving from Colorado, but for Florida it was a hard winter! So I got the idea to bring Spring to you by highlighting a project from last Summer.

It all started with a picture... I stumbled upon a picture of a pergola that looked so inviting it became an obsession that haunted me day and night. Having one would be my oasis, my hideaway, my retreat from all the pressures of the day.

I wanted to turn this:

Into this:

I don't think I told you but my friends tell me that I am cheap, I call it frugal, but either way I don't part with a dollar easily. That said, I almost had a heart attack when the workman told me the cost to have a pergola built. But I refused to be denied, and decided to build one myself!

Did I also mention that I have never built anything? But, hope springs eternal (no pun intended) and I did what I always do: I went to the library and read everything I could on building a patio pergola. Fool that I am, I was now ready to tackle the home improvement store Lowes to begin purchasing the wood and setting up the foundation. I will give Lowes a lot of credit. They provided lots of guidance and cleared up a good deal of confusion from my reading.

This part looks simple but you have no idea the work required to get to this point. I had to dig six holes, that seemed like they went to China, and then pour the concrete that would support the posts. Doing this in July didn't help either. But, I patted myself on the back after getting it done.

Next, I got the idea to put in railing for extra seating and the thing really began to take shape. So much so, I bought a few flowers and set them where they would be when the project was finished. Ahead of the process I know, but pushing myself to the point of being able to plant those flowers was the thing that kept me going.

I never realized how difficult painting could be. I tried doing it by hand until my arm almost fell off. Another trip to Lowes and bought a small paint gun. What took hours by hand was done in fewer hours with the paint gun. Isn't technology wonderful!

Next came the lattice on top and it was now coming into shape. Cue the James Brown music "Take me home Maceo!"

I regret that I don't have any photos of the pergola right after the concrete was poured. I say that because as soon as the required time the workman suggested had expired (yes..., I don't do concrete and parted with the dollars) I threw on the table and chairs.

I even put in lights so we could sit out under the stars late into the night...

And, remember those plants...?

And now I have this...

and this

Knowing what I now know and all the work that was involved... I would do it all again! But, I will admit it helped that I didn't know ! So, Spring may not be here just yet but looking at those photos made me feel a lot better...


  1. It looks lush and inviting. Can I come and visit?

  2. Főfüge, not certain where you are from (to use google translator) but I think I got the sense that you are saying it is a great pergola. And thank you!

  3. Great work you did there, Cherrie !... and a well deserved reward you've gotten too for all your efforts ! I can imagine you sitting there enjoying a lovely summer evening (no gators around, I hope... :)

  4. JLBO, no gators. I live on very high ground and a gator would have to travel far to get to my house. But, a gator steak sounds pretty nice right now! Just kidding!!

  5. awsome pictures you got there

  6. Gorgeous, Cherrie! You inspire me constantly!

  7. i saw this post linked to your current one on Spring..omg, is that wisteria hanging thru your patio cover? I can't believe u did all that did a wonderful job...

  8. Chrissy,
    Yes, I did most of the work myself and I felt proud when it was finished but it was back breaking work! The pergola is now my refuse after a long hard day. And right again on the Wisteria.