So after weighing all the options, plans, and ideas, you’ve decided that the next thing you need to complete your garden is the good old fashioned garden bridge. You’ve built your entire landscaping method around adding a bridge to your backyard, and only fate will keep you from incorporating this into your outdoor paradise. The only problem is you have no idea what your garden bridge needs to be made of. And with so many options out there, who knows what is best for your needs. How can you be sure that you’re getting the best investment for your money?
With the variations in construction of garden bridges out there, the best investment starts with doing the correct homework. Knowing what to expect, combined with where you live and the environmental hazards that go with your new decoration will ensure you’re getting the right thing at the right price.
One of the biggest things to remember is that garden bridges are not as easy to bring in during the winter months as the rest of your outdoor furniture. In some cases, once placed, your decorum becomes one with the land. This is something to consider when debating which one to purchase: not all materials handle the heat, rain, snow, dirt and debris as well as others. Furthermore, some materials are best to handle one situation or climate than others. Think very carefully before moving forward with a plan of action on how this will affect your bridge.
Now that you have debated the elemental problems that will plague your garden bridge, its time to consider the attack from below – how bugs will affect the use and life of your garden bridge. That’s right – bugs. Unlike the rest of your patio furniture, garden bridges spend their life attached directly to the ground, offering a home for pests of all seasons. Be careful of termites and other pests making a nice nest out of your garden bridge, as it will eventually be a health and safety hazard to your friends and family, and destroying the long life of a decoration you thought you would cherish for years to come.
With the weather and indigenous pests in mind, it is now time to consider what you want your garden bridge to be made out of. Three of the most popular choices of materials include cypress, cedar, and plastics. Cypress and cedar bridges give the charm and warmth that only wooden bridges can – they bring back memories of a simpler time, when trains and carriages crossed covered wooden bridges. These are excellent choices as well because of their density, the hardness of the woods, and their natural resistance to pests. Both cypress and cedar can withstand the harsh elements, and bring you joy throughout the year. Meanwhile, bridges made of plastics can last just as long, and guarantee you will not be dealing with a pest problem anytime soon. Made of recycled and synthetic materials, plastics will make sure you will be getting the best of your investment for years to come.
While getting a garden bridge seems like one of the hardest investments you will make, knowing what goes in them, and why they are a good choice for your home does not. A little homework on the right stuff will make your investment go a long way.
Joseph Kortez is a freelance writer with diverse interests including home and garden, outdoor furniture and backyard living, with an emphasis on garden bridges.
As a media professional, his work has been featured on CNN and the CBS Evening News. He currently writes for Adams Cedar Company.