Build a Wood Deck

Building a wood deck is simple with these easy-to-follow tips.
Building a wood deck is simple with these easy-to-follow tips.

Host Billy Derian and The Brigade transform J.T. Fox's bone yard backyard into a lush landscape of grass, plants and bushes culminating with a Wood Deck centerpiece. In just three days, The Brigade creates a freestanding redwood deck with a built-in seating that becomes a very attractive outdoor space to relax and entertain. They add to the environment by finishing a tile path, installing new sod, replacing old plants, painting the fence and creating a water feature to help drown out the nearby traffic noise. At the end of the weekend, there are no signs of the "Santa Monica Dump".

On this episode of Backyard Brigade, a neglected yard with no seating area is transformed into the ultimate relaxation zone, complete with a practical brand new tile walkway and an exotic variety of shrubs and greenery to border the yard. With the help of Karen from L.A. Handy Lady, the crew of family and friends breaks down the massive job into five simple steps.


Step One

The Redwood Deck is the focal point of the yard. To begin, lay out the frame line. To evenly set the foundation blocks, holes are dug every 2 to 4 feet around the perimeter of the deck. Next, place the foundation blocks. Build the frame and install the support beams using the appropriate brackets. Then screw down the redwood planks keeping the top of the screws level with the surface to ensure a sturdy foundation. Next, frame the seating area with 2x4's and drill in the screws for the benches. Remember, before sealing the deck, be sure to sand the redwood deck to give it a superior finish.

Step Two

To finish the partially completed tile walkway, smooth down a spread thin set and place the terra cota tiles down using spacers. Arrange in a diamond pattern for effect, and lay down the sod foundation next to the walkway to provide a natural border.

Step Three

Landscaping: Remove old plants, add new sod and plant a variety of new plants around the yard. Plants are arranged in a diamond around water area. Sod needs to be laid in a straight line quickly and evenly. Use a serrated steak knife to cut sod edges. You need to water new sod thoroughly and over seed it for the first two weeks. Always off set/stagger the joints so that the sod does not move easily and so that the seam lines disappear as fast as possible. To plant jasmine, dig hole of appropriate size and set the top of the root ball level with the ground, and make sure the shrub is facing the right direction before placing in the ground. Power trimmers are useful for trimming the larger hedges evenly and smoothly.

Step Four

To paint the fence use a combination of roller brushes and regular brushes. Be sure that the color you select matches both the style of deck and fauna you have chosen - in this case a relaxing, subtle green.

Step Five

For the water feature, set up a painted 2x4 post and a few terra cotta pots in the corner of the yard. Add a water pump to construct your fountain and a few ceramic statues for personality. This can be done on the cheap!