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Pergolas 101: Components & Styles

The sunshine state is the perfect place to live if you want to enjoy your outdoor living space year-round. Here at Florida Pavers & Pergolas, we are committed to providing our customers with the best possible experience. Honesty and integrity are the pillars of our business model, and we love coming up with incredible custom pergola designs that fit perfectly in our client’s yards.

There are a bunch of different types of ways to build and design pergolas, from the type of material used to location and size. However, before we get into all of the fancy features, let's break down the basic components of the average pergola.

Pergola Components

  • Columns: These are the main pillars that provide support for the roof of the pergola and create the framework for the entire outdoor living area. The number of columns depends on how large the pergola is that you are building.

  • Beams: These create the main support system for the “canopy” part of the pergola and normally run side to side, or along the width of the pergola.

  • Rafters: The rafters run across the top of the beams, which is what helps block out the sunlight.

  • Stringers or Purlins: These are the smallest cross members of the pergola and typically run along the entire length of the pergola, perpendicular to the rafters. They can also be used to increase the shade exposure beneath the pergola.

Now that we all know what components make up a pergola, let's talk about different types of pergolas. Pergolas come in a vast variety of styles, but the two main types of pergolas that Florida Pavers & Pergolas specialize in are stand-alone pergolas and attached pergolas.

Stand Alone Pergolas

Stand-alone pergolas are what they sound like, free-standing independent construction that provides you with a landscape feature that is separate from your home. You would utilize this type of pergola above an outdoor kitchen, over a garden, by a pool or fireplace, or just to create an outdoor living space that is away from the house.

Attached Pergolas

A pergola becomes an attached pergola when at least one side of the pergola is connected to the wall of your home. You would use this type of pergola if you wanted to cover a corner of space that is connected to your house, such as a deck or patio. The attached pergolas are ideal for someone who wants to make their home feel bigger, because they make it feel like a seamless extension of your home.


Florida Pavers & Pergolas services the following areas:

Orange County, Seminole County, Lake County, Osceola County, Volusia County, and Broward County. Our team commonly operates in Metro West, Doctor Phillips, Windermere, Kissimmee, Winter Garden, Gotha, Oviedo, Oakland, Apopka, College Park, Winter Park, Sorrento, Longwood, Altamonte Springs, Lake Mary, Heathrow, & Sanford.

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