How to Build a Freestanding Arbor for a Garden Patio
An arbor is the simplest way to add glamour to your garden patio. Easy to make and low on maintenance, an arbor will change the look of your patio almost entirely. While they come in a large variety of designs and styles, a simple freestanding one is great on the appeal quotient as well as easy on the pocket. Arbors add privacy and are a good way to liven up the entrance of your home. You can build it over a weekend by yourself and save on charges of construction as well.
Step 1 - Setting up the Foundation
Fasten metal anchors with nails to the patio base. You can also choose to cement the base of the arbor frame with Thinset mortar. For this, dig a hole at least 2 feet deep. Since the arbor is free standing, you need not pay attention to securing it at the top. Install the posts to the bases so that it fits firmly and does not wobble.
Step 2 - Supporting Beams
Attach the supporting beams by nailing them to the posts. The supporting beams are available, ready to attach from any good hardware store. Make sure that you give the store manager a proper measurement of your arbor size as well as a good idea of its design. You may also bolt them to the arbor boards. Insert rafters for the arbors at the top portions of the beam for extra support. The rafters simply have to be screwed to the posts. Ensure that they sit symmetrically and do not get displaced during insertion. You may take the help of a friend or family member for this step.
Step 3 - Mounting the Walls
Take the wood or ply sheet that has been sawed according to the size and pattern of the arbor and attach it to the posts by drilling holes and then screwing them up. For the overhead portion, simply screw up at the corners where the top board meets the side boards. The ply must be moisture resistant and termite proof. This will heighten the durability of the arbor. If you plan to use wood, then it should preferably be cedar or pine as these are pressure treated and sold at shops.
Step 4 - Finishing Steps
For a neat look, you could sand up the wooden boards and round off any sharp edges that may be found. Make it a point to wear safety goggles while working. You could also apply wood stain or varnish on the arbor to enhance its beauty. Now twine any plant or even install rope lighting strings over the arbor for a bright look. Your freestanding arbor is all ready and that too at almost half the price you would have to pay for a market made one. If you wish to make any particular pattern at the side frames of the arbor, purchase a wood stencil and mark the outline of the pattern. Then cut through the part using an electric wood cutter. This allows you to add personal touches and is an added advantage of building a garden arbor at home.