Yay, pergola post #3! Thanks for letting me share this journey with you. It's been so much fun recapping the entire process with you guys. This post is going to go over planting the herbs and some other little things we did to make the pergola cozier. Let's start with herb planting. I listed the herbs I used in the previous post. I also used potting soil and gardening gravel for drainage.
We went to a local nursery for all of our herbs and most of the other plants. We have a great one here in Springfield called Wickman's. Nurseries are great because the staff are usually pretty knowledgeable and can answer questions. Sarah and I love nurseries. Sometimes we go just to walk around. It's like going to a botanical garden, but it's free (super cheap date idea). I had a list of herbs I wanted to get, but after getting those, we just walked around and picked out plants that would fit in our space and/or just basically looked cool (i.e., we didn't over think it). Except I did want to add some color to the herb garden, so we got some hanging flowery plants called purslane.
I drilled some holes in the bottom of the the planters, then poured in the garden pebbles. I only wanted about an inch of pebble layer. Placing the herbs in their respective places was next. I wanted to keep the mint separate from the others, so on one side I planted tarragon and thyme. In the back planter I planted a ton of basil plants (I love basil, 'specially with homemade chicken phở) with rosemary in between them. On the remaining planter I put in chocolate mint and regular mint. The purslane made its way into the ends of the planters for some color. Purslane is pretty viney, so I'm looking forward to when they make their way down the posts.
After the herbs and plants were planted, it was just matter of placing a few pillows on the chairs and a candle here and there, and the space cozied right up. The chairs came with the house. I eventually want to put a little table with chairs in their place. We had a candle chandelier that Sarah picked up in Phoenix which fits right in. I hung some outdoor lights around the perimeter. I think that is an official policy; pergolas must have party lights. Another must was putting the grill nearby (I'm going to grill nonstop now). I'm sure we're going to get a bunch more plants (especially tomato plants), and the space will grow and evolve over the years. We're happy with it now, though. Sadie Dog even thinks it looks pretty good.