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A very versatile pergola design is the basic, square, four post detached pergola. A free standing structure, the cost is not much more than a two post attached pergola since just a few more pieces of wood are needed for the added posts. This simple design can be set anywhere in a yard to meet many needs. It can frame an eating area such as this one and still provide plenty of light by attaching the roof pieces further apart. A clear stain has been applied to give the wood a very natural appearance. Properly pre-treated and stained wood can last a very long time through any weather. While this particular example is square, rectangles and even shapes with more than four posts are very possible. There are many creative multi-sided pergolas decorating people’s back yards. An intriguing solution for a small yard would be a triangle shaped pergola with just three posts. The one thing that needs to be properly considered is simply to make sure the spans are properly supported. So, if you choose a pergola that will span more than 16 feet in beam length, then you should consider using three posts across to support it instead of just two to prevent sagging. These are things to consider when you are drawing out your pergola plans. Always check with a contractor, handyman or expert at a lumberyard to get assurance on your dimensions and that you are accounting for that proper roof span support.
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If you’ve decided that you really want to add a pergola to your property, then your next step is to check out our Guide to Building a Pergola in One Weekend.