Build a Garden Deck to Enhance Your Home and Life

If you’re at a loss of what to do in these colder, quieter weeks of the year, then I’ve got Travis Wilson to inspire you. A carefully thought out deck or outdoor room can transform your garden, and as garden jobs are few and far between at the moment, you might be inspired to get building!


Spending time outside in a garden area or a well-maintained yard can be wonderful. But sometimes there’s not really anywhere to gather if we’re just talking about grassy lawns and garden paths. That’s why a lot of the nicer yards and gardens you’ll come across have been enhanced by decks and carefully designed outdoor rooms. That might mean anything from an elaborate, layered area or a simple ground-level deck that acts as little more than an extension of the indoor floor.

Whatever the specific design, the result can transform your yard or garden. One site featuring various types of decking explained that a the right deck can transform your outdoor living area, providing a new space for socialising with friends or spending time with family. And there aren’t many home improvements that sound nicer than that! The important question is how you go about building a garden deck.

Garden decking can be simple but stylish

A beautiful, yet simple, garden deck creates a gorgeous new space to enjoy.

Truth be told, this is a fairly involved project, but it’s still one you can do on your own if you have the right materials and tools and you carefully follow instructions.

The first step is to set up the area where you’re building your deck. This means measuring a space, clearing and flattening the ground, and then deciding how to lay your foundation. Either way, you will want to cover the space in weed control fabric (which will keep plants from sprouting up through your finished deck). After this step, you’ll either want to put down a layer of even gravel, or concrete slabs at corners and centre points, which will help to keep the deck just slightly raised off the ground.

Next, you’ll want to measure and assemble your frame. This is best done after you’ve already purchased your wood. You can lay out your frame (the perimeter of the deck) as well as the joists (the support structures running parallel to one another as the base for your decking), and then set up the decking panels on top so as to ensure accurate measurement before you actually start building. Keep in mind that whenever you’re assembling a structure like this, there will be recommended expansion gaps between decking panels, given that wood reacts slightly to atmospheric changes. You’ll want to check on the recommended gaps, either for the specific decking you purchase or for the type of wood being used.

Once you have your measurements figured out, it’s time to assemble the frame and screw the joists into place. You can find various tips as to what kinds of holes and screws will make for the sturdiest and tightest fit, but the general idea is fairly self-explanatory. You’re creating a rectangular frame with joists set at intervals along its interior.

The final big step is to lay the decking on top of the frame you’ve built. How you do this will depend on the type of decking kit you acquire. The simplest option is to purchase stabilizing clips that can be screwed into the sides and corners of your frame, which pieces of decking should slide into easily. You will also have small metallic fasteners that screw into the top of the frame and joists in between boards, and are hidden once the boards are slid up against one another. It all comes down to measurement if done properly. Rather than simply nailing decking boards into place, you should be able to fasten them to one another in a manner that’s largely invisible once you’re done.

That about covers the construction process! There’s more to do if you’re interested in adding a protective finish to the deck or painting it, but this should help to get you started.

About the Author

Travis Wilson is a home improvement and gardening enthusiast. When he’s not filling his free time working on one household project or another he contributes writing and photography to household and gardening blogs.

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I'm Geoff, and I'm a plant hoarder.

Like magpies collect bright shiny things, I can't resist plants. An exquisite flower, soft ferny foliage or a beautiful majestic tree - I love them all!

Here, I'll indulge in all things flora and share my passion. Join me as I develop my garden and hoard more plants without apology.