Ideas for Pergolas

Outdoor structures like pergolas bring you outdoors to enjoy the garden and warm summer evenings. Use the pergola for simply relaxing after a long day or for an inviting spot for an evening meal with family. Add colorful containers filled with your favorite flowers and herbs around the perimeter of the pergola. Herbs like basil and thyme can create beautiful containers and can be used in your favorite meals.


Add a flowering vine like creeping hydrangea or wisteria along the posts of the pergola and over the top to create a shady tunnel. Plant the vines at the base of the post to creep up and over the structure or use a container for planting the colorful blooming vines. Jasmine and honeysuckle, with their fragrant and stunning flowers, add a colorful design element to the pergola and begin their blooms in early spring and last through the summer months. Both vines are also perennial, sprouting back each year fuller and thicker, and over time will completely engulf the pergola for a lush and green design.

Outdoor Living

Use the pergola as your outdoor living and dining area to enjoy all year round. Situate a patio set under the pergola to use for entertaining friends and family. During the warm summer months, the shaded area in your landscape will help to cool you down on a hot summer day. Add accent tables around the patio for added space to use for eating outdoors. Under the patio set, lay a one- to two-inch layer of pebbles. Soft under foot, the pebbles help to add texture to the space and design and can remain cool even during the warmest months of the season. Colorful accessories like pillows jazz up the space and help to create a comfortable area. For an added layer under the dining table, lay down an outdoor rug. Outdoor rugs come in a variety of designs and sizes to fit any sized pergola structure.


Nothing is more inviting than a set of twinkling outdoor lights attached to the ceiling of the pergola. Nestled within the foliage of the vines, outdoor lights create a well-lit ceiling to the pergola structure. String them around the posts of the pergola for added light in the evening hours. Outdoor lights also come in a wide range of sizes, colors and textures, making them an ideal accessory to match the existing colors found in the garden. Paper lantern lights, which are enclosed within a thin piece of paper, look particularly lovely strung from the ceiling of the pergola, as do metal enclosed lights and ball lights that have a small twisted vine.

Keywords: pergola ideas, pergola vines, outdoor living

About this Author

Callie Barber is a writer and photographer in North Carolina. Her work has appeared in Forbes and Automotive News magazine. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in international studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.