Everything You Want to Know About Pergolas

Looking to add beautiful architectural charm to your backyard, porch, patio or deck? Then a custom pergola is just what you need to create a stunning highlight to otherwise plain outdoor areas. Pergolas also add shade to your deck, porch or patio to make spending time outdoors in hot, sunny weather more comfortable.

Interested in learning more? We’re here to give you the full story on pergolas and tell you how to get the ideal, maintenance-free pergola to suit your wants and needs.

What is a pergola?

An outdoor structure comprised of columns that support a roofing grid of beams and rafters, pergolas are either attached to your house or they can be freestanding. Although they do not provide complete, covered protection from the elements like a screened-in porch would, they do offer wonderful shade options that are perfect beside pools or over outdoor dining areas on decks and patios.

These structures were more common in desert regions for many years, since coverage from the rain isn’t a big issue in these locations, though having access to shade is. In more recent time, pergolas have been growing in popularity across the U.S. This is due to their stylish, shade-producing nature and the fact that pergolas also blend in with the surrounding landscape better than most other backyard structures. Think of a pergola as the perfect combination of a classic garden arbor and a pavilion — they are also great hosts for vining plants to grow over and create natural beauty.

Pergolas are an easy addition to almost any outdoor relaxation space, and can even be built in places you may not have thought a new structure could go.

Even though these structures are never screened in, there are multiple ways to give your pergola more cover, such as adding curtains, shade canopies, lattice and privacy walls. However, you decide to customize it, there are an abundance of ways to make your pergola into your very own unique masterpiece.


At Elite Outdoor Expressions we create all of our pergolas by custom-designing them so that they are built specifically for your porch, patio, deck or backyard needs. Our first step in building you the pergola of your dreams is that we measure the accommodated space to determine the sizing you will need for your pergola construction. Porch, deck and patio pergolas are joined to your current structure to produce a seamless visual effect, while maintaining the allure of your backyard space.

Quality options available

We build all our pergolas with high quality, maintenance-free materials that can consist of the multiple choices listed below:

  • 3 color options are available; white, ivory or clay.
  • Choose from 4×4 posts, 6×6 posts or round columns.
  • We offer 2×6 beams and rails with designed ends or flat ends (2×4 rails are also available).
  • Roofing options are as follows; 7/8” x 3” slats on top spaced 3” apart for shade or lattice sheets for the most shade.
  • Whether you choose 2×6 beams, 2×6 rails or square posts they are all filled with treated wood for structural strength. Our round columns come equipped with aluminum pipe inserts.

Whatever custom design you choose for your new pergola, we can mount it onto a deck, a concrete patio or we can install it right into ground.

Garden vines love pergolas

Pergolas have traditionally been used to support vining ornamental plants. The reason climbing vines can be so easily trained to these structures is due to the crisscross pattern design supports their growing habit perfectly. Latticework can be used overhead and added on the sides of your pergola to give the vines something to cling to as they climb up.

Eventually, vines can form a canopy over a pergola, offering wonderful shade in the summertime season. If you select a large, vigorous vine for this shading purpose, perhaps choose from the following:

  • Clematis
  • Climbing roses
  • Hardy kiwi
  • Climbing hydrangea
  • Wisteria
  • Bougainvillea

If you are looking for complete shade cover and protection from the weather, you may decide to fully cover your pergola. Some owners have used fiberglass for this purpose, but a smarter choice may be a retractable shade canopy.

The right vision and planning

white vinyl pergolaA pergola is generally the perfect answer to an addition or to complete an outdoor living area. With the right vision and planning, a pergola can wed the indoors and outdoors on your property. Pergolas are an exceptional way to add privacy and shade, or construct a transitional area, all while maintaining a sense of openness to the sky above. Pair your pergola with outdoor furniture to really invoke a sense of coziness within your new space.

Interested in learning more about these wonderful structures? Contact us today to discuss adding a pergola to enhance your backyard space for extra enjoyment and entertainment possibilities!

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