"Landscaper Know How" ~ Classic Cedar Pergola - Notching the post


Pergolas and arbors have made their way in to the hearts of most gardeners and home owners. They can add so much to a space by creating the 'Outdoor Room' feel. When constructing a landscape structure it is important to incorporate strong joinery. Cross members that can rest on the post give the greatest strength. This allows the post to carry the load (weight) of the cross members and purlins, not just the fasteners. Diagonal bracing is also very helpful (we'll cover that in another post).
Making the notch can be made a little easier with some 'Landscaper Know How'...
Measure from the bottom of the post up to mark your line on each side. This will give you the exact same height on all of your post. Use a quick clamp and a speed square as a jig to keep your bottom cut straight and square. Use a circular saw and make cuts approximately 1/8 inch apart all of the way through the notched area. The remaining slats of wood can be easily snapped off. The use of a large wood chisel is recommended to clean the remaining. A quick run of a wood rasp finishes up the joint and you are ready to assemble.
Hopefully you will be adding a Pergola or Arbor your yard or garden. Follow the link to see a short video of how to notch the post: http://switzersnurseryandlandscaping.wordpress.com/2013/04/15/landscaper-know-how-crafting-the-classic-cedar-pergola-notching-the-post/
Thank you for your visit and best wishes....
Pergolas and Arbors can add so much beauty as well as adding function to a space. Hanging baskets grace this clean and simple Classic Cedar Pergola.
Patterns and Jigs... when ever possible make it easy to replicate any process in the construction. Use scrap pieces of wood to make patterns to trace out details.
Strong joinery is important for years of enjoyment. The cross members can rest on the post which carries the load. The fasteners hold the joint nice and tight in place.
Notching out the post with a circular saw. Clamp a speed square to the post for a guide to a square cut. Make several cuts and remove the small pieces by hand.
Cleaning up after the cuts. One side of a notch post is almost complete.
The post assembly... when possible work inside in a controlled setting. Line up the cross members and post and check to make sure they are square before drilling and securing.

Top Hometalk Projects

Quick Easter Egg Ideas That Are Just Too Cute
These Herb Garden Ideas Will Make You Want To Start One Of Your Own
Get The Party Started With These Perfect DIY Decor Ideas
30 Jaw-Dropping Decorating Techniques You've Never Seen Before
30 Fun Ways To Keep Your Home Organized
These West Elm Knockoffs Are Pretty Unbelievable
30 Essential Hacks For Cleaning Around Your Home
30 Of The Best DIY Mirror Projects Ever Made
31 Coastal Decor Ideas Perfect For Your Home
The Best Nautical Home Decor Ideas To Try Right Now
3 Gorgeous & Easy Projects to Help You Decorate for Fall
20 Ways To Make Your Own Personalized Clock
27 Gorgeous Update Ideas For Your Bedroom
30 Unbelievable Backyard Update Ideas
Valentine's Day Is Getting Closer! Get Ready With These Lovely Ideas

Have a question about this project?

Join the conversation

1 comment
  • Douglas Hunt
    on Apr 16, 2013

    I love a pergola (and am very happy to have one). These are excellent points. Thanks for posting them.

Your comment...