Wrap and Set the Posts to build a garden gate
Photo: Kolin Smith

Step 2: Wrap and Set the Posts

To prevent rot, wrap the sections of post to be buried with self-adhesive flashing, from near the bottom to just below ground level. Use the posts to tamp 6 inches of drainage stone into their holes; place them, and add another few inches of stone to hold them plumb. Pour dry concrete mix into one of the holes, filling it to just below the flashing. Add water until the mix is saturated, and stir it with a stick. Before setting the second post, use a board and a level to make sure the posts are the same height. Hold the board up to their faces to make sure they're not twisted. Allow the posts to sit undisturbed overnight, then sand and prime them.
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    Tools List

    • garden stakes
    • mason's line
      mason line
    • post hole digger
      posthole digger
    • tarp
      tarp to hold backfill
    • four-foot level
      4-foot level
    • 2-and-a-half-inch paintbrush
    • circular saw
      circular saw
    • drill
    • miter saw
      miter saw
    • combination square
      combination square
    • hammer
    • caulk gun
      caulk gun

    Shopping List

    6×6 treated posts Get two.

    self-adhesive flashing

    ¾-inch drainage stone

    fast-setting concrete



    5/4×6-inch deck boards to make the frame including the crosspiece, brace, and apron; 2×4s are cheaper but give you a thicker, heavier gate.

    3-inch stainless-steel screws to assemble the frame

    1×6 cedar for the brace1 5/8-inch stainless-steel trim-head screws to attach the pales to the frame

    1×3 cedar for the pales

    1 5/8-inch stainless-steel siding nails to attach the brace paint

    6×6 post caps Get two.

    adhesive caulk to attach the post caps

    reversible strap hinges Choose a size approximately one-third the width of your gate.

    latch hardware and stop