Wood Deck and Lattice by Archadeck

Wood Deck and Lattice by Archadeck

When you think about ways to block-off or disguise an unsightly open area under a deck or porch, do you immediately think of lattice?

Most people do.

And afterall, lattice IS a popular and cost-effective way to add skirting to any outdoor space.

But there are other attractive and unique suggestions to enclose and conceal the exposed space beneath a custom deck or porch addition.

So today, let’s discuss three skirting ideas from Archadeck.

1.  Lattice

Deck and Screened Porch with Lattice Finish, by Archadeck

Deck and Screened Porch with Lattice Finish, by Archadeck

Wild animals or loose pets will hunker-down in the dark places under a screened-in porch or deck; thus, many homeowners choose a lattice-type-skirting that’s critter-proof yet aesthetically pleasing.

Commonly used for a trellis or fencing, lattice offers many advantages as a border.

It’s inexpensive, provides adequate ventilation and masks ugly outdoor areas.  It can be tacked up, ‘picture-framed’ and even designed with access panels and storage.

Deck with Square Vinyl Lattice by Archadeck

Deck with Square Vinyl Lattice by Archadeck

Standard lattice materials are available in wood — natural, painted or stained – or in a low-maintenance vinyl material.

Traditionally, it comes in a diamond-shape created by criss-crossed strips.

Nevertheless, there are little-known, not-so-traditional types of lattice skirting too.

Did you know that lattice is available in square or oval designs, rust-proof metal mesh or specialized, decorative, stencil-like ‘cut-out’ panels?  Well it is!

2.  Solid Skirting

Front Porch with Solid Skirting by Archadeck, St. Louis Mo

Front Porch with Solid Skirting by Archadeck, St. Louis Mo

Another great option is a solid skirt edging for both slightly raised or completely elevated front and backyard structures.

A solid ‘hem’ provides a finished look for low-to-the-ground projects or a concealed storage area for an elevated design.

So if your under-deck space is tall enough, it can be transformed to a stylish stash-away for garden tools, wheelbarrows, toys or bicycles.

Solid Vertical Skirting Boards with Storage Space, by Archadeck

Solid Vertical Skirting Boards with Storage Space, by Archadeck

Deck boards can be used to construct a ‘wall’ around the bottom and may be positioned vertically, horizontally or even at an angle.

The trick is to ensure that there are small gaps for air-flow and adequate ventilation in order to prevent the build-up of moisture.

Other types of solid-skirt rimming we’ve seen from various Archadeck offices include real stone or faux stone panels, bamboo, and hardi boards – sometimes called hardi planks – which can be painted for various finishes, including a stucco-look.

Screen Porch by Archadeck, Stucco Skirt Finish and Landscaping

Screen Porch by Archadeck, Stucco Skirt Finish and Landscaping

But here in St. Louis, the most sought-after style of solid skirting is constructed with vertical planks that match or complement the house and the outdoor space.

3.  Plantings and Ground Cover

Another extremely popular ‘skirting’ option among St. Louis homeowners is landscaping.

So if you’re not particularly concerned about critters making a home under your deck or porch, you might want to consider plants and/or a decorative ground cover to camouflage the gaping space.

Deck by Archadeck, Plantings as a 'Skirt'

Deck by Archadeck, Plantings as a ‘Skirt’

For a year-round barrier, consider small evergreen shrubs.  For colorful and seasonal coverage, consider native grasses, herbs, flowers and vines.  Rock, bark and mulch provide weed control, drainage and a nice finishing touch too.

And if your deck is raised well above grade level, some customers turn the bare space into a beautiful garden filled with plants that thrive on shade and indirect sunlight.

Visit the Missouri Botanical Gardens website for terrific advice, tips and resources about the best plants for a dry shade garden with shrubs.

Key Takeaways:

Hardwood Deck with Unique Skirting, project by Archadeck

Hardwood Deck with Unique Skirting, project by Archadeck

Deck or porch skirting conceals the framing while it allows air to circulate under the floor to keep your structure dry and critter-free.  It’s an attractive and functional, easy-to-add feature for a finished-off look.

Folks might prefer a skirting style that boldly stands-out or quietly blends-in with their home using:

(1) traditional or non-traditional patterns

(2) standard or completely unique materials

(3) built with or without storage

And don’t rule out landscaping and ground cover, alone or together with a skirt!

These options will vary in price but each one is sure to give your project a beautiful, polished look.

Large Multilevel Deck with Lattice Framework by Archadeck in St. Louis

Large Multilevel Deck with Lattice Framework by Archadeck in St. Louis

Next Steps?

If you live in the Greater St. Louis area, please consider Archadeck as your contractor.  We serve all areas of St. Louis including St. Charles, St. Charles County and parts of Illinois.

If you’d like to talk with us or schedule a free onsite consultation, give us a ring at 636.227.0800.

If you’d like to learn more about Archadeck, read ‘About Us’ on this blog or visit our local website at west-county.archadeck.com.

On our website you’ll see project photo galleries, a ‘Special Offers’ tab to find current promotions with a link to our free, online magazine, Loving Outdoor Living.  On the homepage, you can easily submit the ‘how can we help?” inquiry form or send us an email, whichever you prefer.

And finally, if you live outside of St. Louis, Missouri visit archadeck.com to find other offices throughout the country.

Sources and Citations:

Archadeck Outdoor Living, Contractor Talk, eHow, Homeguides, decks.com, Acurio, Nextstone. This Old House, HGTV, Acurio Latticeworks. Archadeck in Austin, Archadeck Piedmont Triad in North Carolina, Archadeck of Coastal Connecticut, Archadeck in Charlotte, Archadeck in Iowa, Archadeck of Central South Carolina

 

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