Garden Decks And Steps – A deck provides a perfect means of extending your house into the garden and giving you the opportunity to enjoy an indoor/outdoor lifestyle. By linking the house with the garden, your deck becomes an additional outdoor entertaining and leisure area. Ground-level and raised decks can be built to suit your site and connect with pathway, garden, carport and patio.
As decks are load-bearing and exposed to the elements, careful thought needs to be given to the selection of timber for the bearers and joists, as well as for
the decking itself.
Various decking board styles can be chosen, from herringbone to diagonal and parquet. Railings can be made of timber boards or panels (trellis, wired safety glass or exterior-grade plywood) and be designed to screen out winds, offer privacy or provide safety for young children. When you choose a railing style that complements your house and garden, it can be extended into the design of your pergola and steps (in the case of a raised deck). Selecting one type of timber (say, for handrails and pergola posts) provides a pleasing harmony.
The design of the steps will also be important, especially when a deck opens on to a patio or larger garden area. Narrow steps restrict, whereas a broad flight of steps gives a generous feeling, opening your deck out into the rest of the garden.
As with your deck design, remember to leave plenty of room on the steps for pot plants — and people.
A deck that stands on its own just a few centimetres above the ground is considerably easier to build than a raised deck. The simple design of a ground-level deck spares you the intricacies constructing steps, railings and structural bracing. And a freestanding, ground-level deck does not need to be securely attached to the structure of the house.
A ground-level deck can be situated just about anywhere adjacent to the house, or anywhere else in the garden that you would like to sit. Build one over an existing patio, or step two or more down a gentle slope.