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Greening of a Pergola

Pergolas are space-forming structures which are greened and provide shade. Usually they are strong, frame- shaped constructions made of wood or metal, with wooden crossbars and/or tensioned wire ropes. Stainless steel ropes are ideal for greening your self-made pergola; you'll find examples below. This applies to roofs (canopies), side areas, and supports/columns. Please also note the examples for arcades/archways and grapevines. The next section under greening other structures will be about 'green roofs' (canopies) without frames.


Greening the Roof Area of a Pergola

Usually, roof areas of pergolas are greened like canopies. However, only climbing plants that can easily grow 3 m and higher are suitable. Grapevines are often an option. Learn more here: pergola-vines.

The following are also options: wisteria, Dutchman's pipe, clematis montana, kiwi, ivy, evergreen honeysuckle, akebia, roses, trumpet vines and wild grapes (grapeless vines). Systems that are designed with lengthwise and crosswise axes are ideal... in other words, systems that have grid forms with 30 - 50 cm meshes. Smaller meshes, like with nets or prefab lattices, require more maintenance because more dead wood and foliage has to be removed. Most pergolas have strong, parallel beams or rafters. Wire rope (d= 3 mm) is threaded crosswise through these elements and fastened with clamping rings KL 00034. As a solution, FassadenGrün presents the system 0060 in different versions. If you don't want to drill through the wooden rafters, the alternative would be to use eyelet screws (for example WH 07080) on the outer or inner side of the rafters and beams, along with staples and staple nails. This alternative is analogous to our easy/basic kits.

Greening the roof area of a pergola with grapevine. Crossing cables as the support system
A greening of a pergola. Upper part of the support system

Greening of the Side Areas

For privacy reasons, a pergola's sides are often greened, similar to carports. For this, English ivy or grapevines are planted, the latter usually as vertical cordons, fans, horizontal cordons, or trained in the vineyard style. Different wire rope arrangements (d= 3 mm) are thus necessary. System 0010 or individually designed systems similar to system 0010 are suited for vertical strands. With horizontal systems such as 1060 or even 1040, the distance from post to post is often too great and the ropes then sag. We recommend an additional vertical strand (a "hanger") in the middle of each field between the two posts. This wire is fastened in one of the upper beams or purlins with an eyelet screw (WH 07080). The horizontal and vertical wires are attached to one another via cross clamps (SK 03012) at the intersecting points. Many combinations of horizontal and vertical wire ropes are possible. See examples in the photo gallery below.

Greening of a side façade with English ivy. Stainless steel wire rope as a weaving aid/climbing support
Pergola with an ivy privacy screen

The Greening of Pergola Posts

Pergola supports are greened much like pillars and columns... so, with annual climbing plants, clematis-hybrids, or even roses. The necessary wire ropes (d = 3 mm) are laid vertically as with systems 1020 and 1030. Depending on the desired effect (one sided or all-round greening), you'll need 1 - 4 strands per post. In the case of rectangular supports with greater width, more than one rope can be laid per area, as with system 4020.


Most of the time, light and easy kits from FassadenGrün suffice. However, medium and heavy kits are often used to create more "fullness" by providing more wall distance. Massive kits are used for representative and design reasons. The choice of construction style depends on the material/wall type (with pergolas, mainly solid wood).

Greening of posts with clematis-hybrid on vertical cable
Posts with clematis-hybrid

Examples of greened pergolas...

A variety of different climbing plants are suitable for pergolas. Please click the photos. Find more special examples for grapevines under grapevine training on pergolas.

High pergola with grapevine: Roman baths in the castle park Sanssouci / Potsdam / Brandenburg. See the title photo of this page.
Grapevine covered pergola. Abbey Bernburg / Saxony-Anhalt.
The same pergola as in previous photo. Grapevine greening at abbey Bernburg / Saxony-Anhalt.
Grapevine growing on a wooden pergola.
Fruitless grapevine over a beer garden.
Round pergola with wisteria and small kiwi in the castle park Sanssouci / Potsdam / Brandenburg.
Pergola greened with wisteria in a nature park "Palmgartenwehr" Leipzig / Saxony.
Pergola made of metal (steel poles) and greened with akebia. Park in Ralswiek / Rügen / Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.
Wooden pergola with silver lace vine (Polygonum) as climbing plant
Small arcade / pergola with grapes
Pergola / arcade with three-lobed Boston Ivy.
Modern metal pergola with grapevines
Arcade with roses, Dornburger Castle / Thuringia.
Modern pergola over an underground parking lot. House entrance and garbage enclosure greened with wisteria and Dutchman's Pipe.
A beer garden's pergola greened with Dutchman's Pipe.
Steel pergola as a "green arbour" with wisteria
One side of a pergola greened with scarlet runners
A garbage enclosure, an ivy covered pergola
Ivy-covered garbage pavilion
Waste bins covered with a greened pergola: five-lobed wild vine (Parthenocissus quinqefolia).
Russian (silver lace) vine arbour covering a garbage area. Here you can see how hard it is to contain fleece vine.
Small canopy with Dutchman's Pipe.
Dense green roof of akebia. Steel pipe pavilion over garbage cans
Densely greened arbour of large-leafed Dutchman's Pipe.

Technical details of pergola roof areas...

Look here for visuals of pergola rafters and the reinforcement of the roof area with wire rope (so that climbing plants have an ideal surface to hold on to).

This pergola consists of only 2 wooden purlins; the function of the rafters is taken over by wire ropes
This pergola has heavy purlins and close-set rafters. Such a pergola roof can be greened without wire ropes. Here with grapevine.
Grapes on a pergola with close-set rafters
A prefab ('kit') pergola made of metal. This greening of the roof area becomes more difficult here since the roof bars are rather far apart
Metal pergola with wisteria. Such vigorous climbers can make do with more distance between the rafters.
In this roof-pergola, a wire rope was pulled between the roof struts to give the climbing plants more "grip."
The roof of this pergola consists only of a wooden frame and a reinforcing central strut. The cables on the eyebolts were strung in the same axial direction as the central strut.
An open garden house made of logs and greened with kiwi. Here, besides supports and purlins, the rafters were also made of untreated round wood. Wire rope can be fastened in concentric circles to make a climbing field for plants.
This green pavilion consists of a round frame and a central support. The "spokes" are formed from steel cables. Castle Park Sanssouci / Potsdam / Brandenburg
In these grapevine pergolas, the rafters were strutted crosswise to create wooden cases. Wire mesh was then placed on top. Crete / Greece
Modern pergola made of steel cables
This wooden grapevine pergola construction is made more compact by adding wire rope; analogous to our wire rope system 0060
Tensioned wires over an underground parking garage. Stainless steel wire ropes similar to system 0060 - clematis montana
For this steel pergola on a roof terrace, 3 mm steel wire rope and clamp rings KL 00034 were used, analogous to our system 0060.
This pergola will be greened with wisteria: 3 mm wire rope threaded through the rafters and fastened with clamp rings KL 00034
Self-built (DIY) pergola with U-shaped steel ropes (cable system 0060)
A combination of steel poles (scaffolding poles) and tensioned wire rope make this grapevine pergola.
Pergola with steel cables above a parking garage, clematis montana
This arcade with annuals has wire ropes pulled crosswise through the beams.
Garbage enclosure with English ivy. The wire rope was tensioned in a diamond shape.
Detail of pergola construction from previous photo
Garden pavilion made of steel pipes and wire rope- akebia in development
Metal pergola with steel frame made of double T-profiles. Due to the additional loads, the wooden formwork may need extra reinforcement (nailed or screwed in before installing the ropes).

Technical details of side areas and supports...

Here you will find examples for greening side walls and pergola posts. See similar photos under Carports und Columns.

On this garden pergola, conventional lattices were mounted on the side; clematis and other climbers are planned for greening. In the upper part, rope system 1030 is laid horizontally; our easy construction style
Here, individually planned trellises were used on the sides, which gives this pergola a particularly unique visage
This pergola made of larch wood is enhanced with classic wooden trellises on each side, greened with grapevines
Twining climbing plants (annual scarlet runners) on vertical cords
Greening of a wooden framework with vertical vine cordons on tension wires
Simplest climbing wires for vines (winter photo after pruning, vines trained to horizontal cordons)
Plant climbing system with horizontal wire ropes, eyelet screws WH 06061 and hardwood supports for wild vines
Horizontal wire ropes between two posts, each with a vertical strand in the middle fastened with cross clamps, for grapevines in fan-shape
Terrace pergola with horizontal wire ropes for roses; our medium "classic" construction style
Arcade with clematis; the wire rope nets are similar to our system 5050 and are attached to the bottom of the plant pots.
Lateral support rope for climbing roses, massive construction style
A post with two flanking wire ropes in accordance wot wire rope system 1030, massive style
Wire frame pergola with Dutchman's Pipe
Spacious trellis for Dutchman's Pipe and climbing roses