|An attractive garden bridge can make an outstanding
all seasons architectural feature on your
property. More than just a means to cross
a small stream, a bridge can become an important
focal point for your lawn or garden. With
the right landscaping a bridge can turn an
unattractive drainage ditch into the most
charming part of your yard. The simplest
bridges are just sturdy wooden planks or
lashed together logs that span the waterway,
but more elegant bridges are a traditional
part of any garden plan.
If you are thinking of installing
bridge, consider the following:
- Decide what style of bridge you want. Oriental
designs have long been a favorite style in
American gardens, but bridges with Victorian
gingerbread or colonial railings may be more
appropriate for your site.
- The length of the bridge will be determined
by the width of the water way.
the bridge is long enough so
that it is firmly
secured at both ends. It should
be high enough
so that it will not be swept
away by periodic
rainstorms or seasonal flooding.
wide enough to accommodate
equipment, such as mowers and
The height of the railings
those crossing it from falling
in. When you
have finished your measurements,
the overall scale of the bridge
in your garden.
It should not overwhelm the
- Bridges are usually constructed from wood
or metal. A good quality weather resistant
wood will last for many seasons. Mahogany
and teak can be left untreated to weather
to a beautiful silver gray. Cedar can also
be stained or polyurethaned. Bridges made
from pressure treated lumber are usually
less expensive. The most formal style bridges
are almost always painted. Bridges made from
metals such as cast or wrought iron will
also need to be painted to keep them from
rusting. Stainless steel is more suitable
for modern bridge designs.
Finaly, make sure that you build
so that it can safely hold the
expected traffic, and then check
times a year for necessary repairs.