I'm personally just a lot more comfortable with setting posts IN the ground in concrete. While the Simpson ties may be adequate, I just can't help but feel posts in the ground is a far superior method. I built a pergola last year using fir/hemlock (standard grade building wood) but used copious amounts of the treatment stuff you get at Home Depot/Lowe's on the embedded ends to prolong the life of the wood that's in the ground.
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