There are lots of great cheap pergola ideas that are an easy option for providing shade, accessorizing a party, covering a hot tub, providing a frame for planting or adding definition to your outdoor space to make it more of an outdoor living space.
An inexpensive pergola can be freestanding or attached to the house or an existing wall, and is often installed over walkways, patios, hot tubs or decks. There are a wide range of shapes and styles to buy including kits and pop-ups or you can try building a simple one of your own as a simple weekend DIY project.
A stylish new pergola can also help inspire your plans for a garden makeover, especially if you want to make the most of the space to embrace outdoor living whatever the weather.
When the thing is certain – you don’t have to spend a lot of time or money to add an inexpensive pergola that will make a real impact. So if you’re looking for cheap garden ideas, we’ve rounded up our favorite budget pergola looks to get you started.
CHEAP PERGOLA IDEAS TO TRANSFORM YOUR SPACE ON A BUDGET
If you’re interested in adding some stylish pergola ideas to your outdoor space for a budget-friendly backyard update, there are a few things to keep in mind before you get started.
“Whether you’re an avid gardener looking to expand your outdoor space, or a homeowner looking for a stylish place to relax, building a pergola is the perfect way to upgrade your garden,” says Gian-Carlo Grossi of Roofing Megastore ( opens in new tab). ‘The first step is to decide where you want it to go. Before purchasing any material, you should make sure that the selected area is large enough and located in a safe place for construction. Make sure the pergola is built or erected away from large tree roots and does not obstruct buried underground utilities.’
Once you’ve sorted out the practicalities, it’s time for the fun – planning your cheap pergola design!
Use natural reed screens to make a stylish pergola roof
(Image credit: Mark Bolton Photography/Alamy Stock Photo)
It’s a good idea to add a roof or cover to a basic pergola, especially if your garden is a sun trap so there’s somewhere in the shade to escape the heat when you need to.
If you’re looking for patio cover ideas, you’ll love this simple idea. Choose durable and natural reed, willow or bamboo screen ideal for use over pergolas and pergolas to create a softly shaded area underneath.
The woven design lets light through and the gaps between the canes allow air to pass through so the space doesn’t get clogged. It’s one of the best cheap pergola ideas, as the materials are widely available on rolls from hardware stores and garden centers, and can easily be attached to existing pergola posts with wire or cable ties for a budget solution.
LOOK FOR A SIMPLE PERGOLA STRUCTURE TO SAVE THE COST
It pays to keep things simple when it comes to cheap pergola ideas because using less wood means the construction will be cheaper. You’ll be looking for a beautiful, durable wood that will stand the test of time, but tropical hardwoods like iroko mean you’ll be splashing the cash, so it’ll probably exceed your budget.
Consider more affordable options for your cheap landscaping ideas instead. A European green oak pergola will frame a garden perfectly with its natural aesthetic and light straw color. Another popular wood for a pergola is western red cedar with its beautiful reddish brown color. Other affordable options include untreated English larch and Douglas fir, both of which are widely available in pergola kits.
3. PUT ON A CHEAP PERGOLA ROOF
If luxury pergola awning ideas are out of your budget, try simpler options like using fabric to create an impromptu sunroof instead.
Voile is a fantastic lightweight fabric that can be used in all sorts of ways for your cheap pergola ideas. This lightweight fabric is extremely flexible and versatile, while looking great.
It’s also worth considering using one or more voile panels on the sides of your pergola as they will look so elegant when the wind catches them, plus they can help create a subtle garden screen for a touch of extra privacy.