There is something so whimsical and inviting about a rose covered arbor, isn't' there? The geometrically shaped floral abundance beacons one to walk through its fragrant portal, which gives the captivated viewer a framed glimpse of what is awaiting them on the other side. A rose covered arbor, I feel, is an essential feature to any quintessential cottage garden, and this is exactly what I have in mind for our front entrance from the street. Well, instead of a fountain as seen in this picture, you will see our front door with its recently constructed red screen door!
Now I realize that's pretty big for an arbor made from such small dimensional lumber. In hindsight, what looked okay on paper, looks quite different and some what squatty in real life. We should have used 4 x 4 x 8 posts, which would have been more in scale, and possibly safer. I guess we will find out if that was a major design flaw once the grape vine and climbing rose I'm going to plant on either side will prove to be too strong for the arbor's demure frame. Then it will be back to the drawing board!
This was not my son's fault, he did everything right, formula wise. Inexperience in three dimensional construction (as opposed to flat paper drawings) caused the error in his ciphering. The 2 x 3 ridge beam was not accounted for. After some hands on finagling, heated discussion and debate, the problem was solved. Well... sort of. Our angles were and still are not quite right. Personally, I blame the saw, it MUST be out of square!
Next, we rigged a way to assemble the arch on the work table so we could move it to the waiting arbor sides without it wracking. I wish I had taken a picture of it, but I was in the moment and forgot all about taking pictures. Basically, we attached two 2 x 4 x 8's to the end pieces to keep them in place (at exactly 74" apart) while we erected the rest of the arch. This may be hard for you to believe dear reader, but I don't verbally articulate the ideas in my head very well, so I need to use a lot of visual aide when constructing projects with my guys. My son is also at that age when he knows he knows more than I do, you know? He forgets that he is still learning that I actually know things -- a lot of things, and that there is a method to my madness. Somethings take time to do, and if you want to do them right, then the time must be taken! We had to make the supports for the arch, and that took time. Once he saw what I had in mind, he understood. Whew!
And as with most of our projects, we needed to call in the big guns, my husband, to help us finish the %$&*#@ arch! Thankfully my husband brings with him a certain familiar comedic relief when things aren't going right, and they weren't. He also knows a thing or two about building stuff, and our son listens to him a little bit better than to me. A little bit. Once we carried the arch to the front and secured it to the sides with four angle brackets, we were able to remove the supporting 2x4's. I put some decorative wood at the top to help stability too, as we designers know, form follows function.
All that we need to do now is plant the grape vines on the left, and some day, I will plant a Cecile Brunner climbing rose on the right. I will keep you posted of the arbor's progress. What embellishments will I add? Will I find the elusive and much desired Madame Alfred Carriere rose, or will I have to settle for the ubiquitous, all be it suitable, Cecile Brunner rose? Stay tuned to find out!