This week we have had a couple of e mails asking about decking versus paving so today I thought we would talk decks !

This deck is extremely high maintenance to keep it looking this spectacular year round

You have many many choices with decks – the only choice you don’t have is how you install it – it needs support it needs to be structurally sound ( no one wants to walk on a deck that is moving around with every step you take)

A structure being built to support the deck

You should remember a few things while building – especially building a deck on a rooftop.

Think about access to drains – wherever the drain or drains are on a rooftop you will need to access at least twice a year although ideally depending on how much use your deck gets monthly checks – to clean out anything that may accumulate and ultimately block the drain causing floods in the building your neighbors to hate you and a huge amount of costs as every man and his dog rush to sue you !

Wood decking can also age beautifully

Electrical outlets – you will want lighting, a Grill, music – anything that you can think of for entertaining on your rooftop deck that needs access to electricity will help with the planning of your deck. If you do not have an outlet outside – you really need to price putting one in before you start your decking project.

Water – even if you are not going to have a garden on your deck water is essential in a big city even just for washing dust off your deck or your furniture – or for watering your garden if you have plant material out there as well.

Access to drains can be subtle – this one is below the couch to the left if you look closely you will see that the panel has hinges for easy access for cleaning.

You have many many choices for what materials to use – Plant Specialists uses anything from synthetic woods such as Trex – which is made of sawdust, plastics such as shopping bags etc and re purposed wood products.

The beauty is that it uses recycled materials and it lasts for a very long time! Natural woods are also very popular although take a lot of up keep (sanding, oiling, staining, lacquering and replacing certain pieces over time.

A beautiful looking deck such as this takes regular maintenance.

Codes – all buildings in all cities have codes ( think a fancy name for rules ) you can’t just start building on a rooftop that is owned by many people – their are liability issues – so make sure you check with the building on what their rules are before calling Plant Specialists or running off to Home Depot or Lowes !