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Blog 12. Making the Oriental Pagoda


2005 We wanted something really special – a statement!

It arrived in 175 sections – with no instructions, inventory or screws.

We then found out that we needed planning permission because it was over 3 metres in height! Seven coats of Sikkins varnish (both under and top coat) kept us busy for several weeks – drying conditions in March were very slow. Eventually, the instructions arrived, together with 950 screws!!!!

If ever the pagoda was burned down it would be a lovely area for the deck chairs!!!!

Of course, the way we wanted it to open was on the side that had the deepest drop onto the path. So we had to cut back some of the border and widen the path to accommodate the steps.

Our four children and their friends like to sit in it and play guitars long into the night!

Autumn – note the conifer that had to be cut into “cloud” shapes so that it didn’t get too big and looked right with the oriental feel. Don’t know what type of conifer it is, but it lends itself well to topiary.

Winter – well, actually it was 6 April!!!!



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Previous post: Blog 13. Making the Stream

Next post: Blog 14. 2007 - the wettest year on record!



It took us about two months to build the base and varnish the woodwork before assembly. And then about a fortnight to erect the structure.

23 Apr, 2008


It is obvious that you are nuts (bolts, screws, etc) about this garden, but it is truly awesome, whatever the season! fantastic project and commitment, folks!

23 Apr, 2008


A real labour of love and it shows I can well imagine the hard work getting your garden looking like that but you are rewarded ten times over by the stunning displays through each season.

It's great to know the kids enjoy it too and it also must be nice for mum and dad to do a little weeding while being serenaded by the

24 Apr, 2008


The pagoda has given a real focal point, and by keeping all the wood in the garden the same colour it has unified the theme. The dark colour is also a good backdrop for the lighter flowers.

27 Apr, 2008


i would like to buildone just like this can youj tell mewhereyou got your materials? plans?

23 Sep, 2010


Coltom - it came in a kit form from

24 Sep, 2010


Apologies. Missed this the first time round....but was rewatching Alan and his back garden and spotted your pagoda. Have just ordered one to sit beside the new pond/loch that I have yet to dig.
Many thanks for your blog. Very useful. And extremely Japanese in the context of your niwaki.

19 Oct, 2017

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