Adding a pergola to your deck, over an outdoor kitchen, a fireplace or near a pool provides several benefits. It can provide better shade, design an outdoor living room, and serve as easy place to hang plant or train vines. These wooden structures are becoming popular among homeowners who want to improve the aesthetic of their yard and improve the function of their deck.
Pergolas, architectural garden adornments popular during the Italian Renaissance, can be a welcome respite from a midday summer sun. At its heart, the pergola is simple: Made of sturdy cedar boards and crossbeams, it's touched up with lattice and sometimes vines. Pergolas can be free standing or attached to a home or other structure.
The term pergola comes from a Latin word, pergula, which means projecting eave, and the English variant of the word appeared as early as 1654. Older-style pergolas were usually sets of wooden beams supported by columns, whereas modern versions typically include four posts supporting two joists, with a set of crossbeams running between them. The result is an open-roof structure that provides moving shade as the sun's angle changes.