What Is The Point Of A Pergola? Explained.

what is the point of a pergola explained and demonstrated next to a pool

When considering your backyard design there are many considerations. It can feel that there are seemingly endless variables to weigh. Do you want to build a gunite pool? What about a water feature? Do you want to have a large patio space near the outdoor kitchen for dining? What is the best place to put that sculpture you inherited? You may find yourself considering a shade structure. One of the most popular options will be a pergola. You may notice the pergola is mostly open which brings up the question, what is the point of a pergola?

What Is The Point Of A Pergola?

Traditionally, pergolas are structures meant for growing vines on. They are open to allow the vines to grow up the posts or wall lattice, and then slatted open above to allow the grapes to hang down if they’re grape vines, or wisteria flowers to hang down if they’re purely decorative. Although, there are many people who now will put up a pergola without the grape vines, or the wisteria and instead use them as a decorative structure in their backyard.

Maybe the backyard design is reminiscent of Tuscany, and there is a grand palisade lined with Italian cypress and a pergola placed at the end with the outdoor dining table underneath. Whatever the design, a pergola can add an interesting place to sit even though it’s not completely out of the sun.

What Is The Point Of A Pergola Shown In A Garden Hanging Lights

How Long Do Pergolas Last?

These traditional pergolas are usually built of red or white cedar and are left untreated outdoors. Traditional pergolas will last 20 years or so without much maintenance in most climates. You may want to consider using heavier longer lasting wood like Ipe. The downside of Ipe shows itself when you look at the price difference.

What Is The Point Of A Pergola Made Of Aluminium?

There are other alternatives to using exotic wood species to construct your pergola however. Depending on your aesthetic, you may want to consider them. These are the aluminum pergolas. Companies like StruXure and others have been reimagining the traditional pergola.

How Do Aluminium Pergolas Work?

These aluminum pergolas have rotating louvers. The louvers can be programmed to automatically close in rainstorms. They are completely waterproof when the louvers are closed. This way you can have shelter from the rain in your garden space. However, they also will protect you from the sun if you desire. Additionally, you can integrate lighting and heaters, as well as automatic retractable insect screens at the openings. However, you cannot plant vines to grow on these pergolas.

outdoor aluminium pergola in backyard with lounge furniture

Aluminum Vs. Traditional Pergolas

The aluminum pergolas have a far more chic and modern look than the traditional pergola. They may not be the right installation for every project. The traditional wood pergola still has its place in the grand scheme of design. Though it should be weighed side by side with the aluminum pergola if your project’s design can stand some modernity.

The long term functionality of the aluminum pergolas are unknown. They will likely require some maintenance over the course of 10-20 years. Given their modular nature however, they will be easy to repair and motors will be easy to replace over time as needed.

traditional pergola in backyard showing what is the purpose of a pergola via outdoor dining table

What Is The Point Of A Pergola Summary

So what is the point of a pergola? Pergolas are just another way to express yourself in the landscape. It can be the home of your backyard dining table and other lounge furniture. Or, if you’re traditional, maybe it’s just where you grow grapes or wisteria. We’ve explained more about pergolas in this article, if you’re interested.