The Gated Community

Here is my pergola.  Some assembly required.  I’m not really a pergola guy, and I never envisioned myself making one, but I had an empty space at the end of the deck and some kind of garden structure seemed to be the best fit for it.  The garden area needed something with height, some kind of third dimension, to make it into the kind of outdoor space that we like.

I followed very professional and detailed plans.

And here’s the cedar I’m going to use for the raised beds.  80 cubic feet of wood right there.  As I started carrying them, they didn’t seem all that heavy, and I figured it was nothing I couldn’t handle.  But the pieces on top had been roasting in the sun for a few weeks, and the middle pieces were sopping wet.  Those pieces were easily twice as heavy.  I’m so glad I lift weights.

Biggest nails I could find.

All put together.  The pergola goes very well with the garden space.  It ties into the fence and the gates around it, and (most importantly) keeps the fricking deer out.

Outdoor living space is really important to us.  The pergola and the gates will open up into a small patio area (which is about 1/3 finished right now) and the garden with the raised beds.

It’s all traditional joinery holding this thing together.  I even got to do some wedged tenons, my favorite!

The raised beds make the foundation of a tight little planting area with lots of paths like little streets and avenues.  I might even name them.  Put in a traffic signal, some stop signs, etc.  Most of this area gets full afternoon sun but we have some shaded areas as well, and once we get things planted and growing it should make for a nice place to spend time.  The fence in the back is temporary, I’ll put in a good post and frame fence now that the beds are in place.

It’s still a bit of a war zone.  We probably won’t start planting things until next year.  Need to get gravel, dirt, sand, all sorts of landscaping things.  At least we have rock, as much as we could possibly want.

The view from the deck is nice.  The pergola right now is just a skeleton, a frame of what it’s going to be.  We’ll add pots and plants to it, maybe hang some kind of artwork, put in some patio furniture inside (somewhere to sit and roast marshmallows, maybe).  It’s just going to be another space that we can enjoy.

I’ll probably call it the Garden of Seven Gates when it’s all finished.

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