Materials and Techniques for Landscape Edging

Landscape edging is defining a border within your yard, commonly known as garden edging. Landscape edging is anything that divides two distinct areas; having planter beds on one side and gravel on the other side is an example. Landscape edging or garden bordering materials are available at reasonable costs and provide for a plethora of styles. When choosing a border, your landscape, your budget, and your creativity should be at the forefront. When considering landscape edging, be sure to consider the design, as it can add another dimension of detail to the project.

Types of Landscape Edging Borders

row of red brick edging

Landscape edging consists of many types of borders, varying in material, size, shape, and color:

1. Iron Borders. Easiest landscape edging borders to install. There's no digging involved, you just shove the prongs right into the ground. Use where you don't have to worry about turf creeping into a bed.

2. Terra Cotta Pots. A quirkier option. Can either turn them upside down or plant a single plant in each and line them up. These borders add character. Use where you don't need to worry about turf creeping into a bed.

3. Plastic Landscape Edging. A nearly invisible border. It’s more practical than it is decorative. It's usually used to separate a lawn area from a mulched planter bed and will prevent grass creep.

4. Garden Wall Blocks. Very cost effective. They look like stone but are actually made of concrete

5. Stone. Comes in a variety of colors and sizes. You don't necessarily have to mortar them together because some shapes stack well.

6. Bricks. If you're not a bricklayer you can still edge with bricks without mortaring them together. Recycled bricks are sometimes available as well and they're much cheaper.

How to Install Landscape Edging

lawn and flower bed with edging separating them

Step 1 - Lay out the design with a garden hose.

Step 2 - Mark the outline with flour, spray paint, or chalk and move the hose out of the way.

Step 3 - For sunken edging, dig a six-inch deep trench along the length of your outline.

Step 4 - Remove large rocks, roots, weeds and existing sod in the way. The width of the trench depends on the border; it should be the width of the stone or brick.

Step 5 - If edging is next to a lawn, remove existing lawn six inches past the edge border so you can mow around it easily. Iron borders are easily installed by simply pushing the "feet" into the soil.

Step 6 - Level the bottom of the trench, using sand to fill in depressions. This ensures the border will be sturdy and look uniform all the way down the line.

Step 7 - Place your edging materials in the trench to create the border. Fill in the gaps with soil, making sure it's compact so the edging will stand firm.