If you’re into gardening, whether you’re new at it or a seasoned gardener, then you have probably heard of garden edging.
Whether you have or have not, however, it’s an important skill to have.
This technique can make your garden look so much better.
But, of course, you first have to know how to do it and what it’s all about.
Understanding Garden Edging
“Edging” may sound like a fancy term, especially to those new to gardening. But, don’t worry, it’s not. It’s actually exactly what it sounds like.
Edging is all about paying attention to how the edges of your garden look.
After all, no matter how much care and attention you give to the middle parts, if your edges don’t look good, the whole thing is just not going to come together well.
Edges are often decorative in nature to add visual interest to a garden, but they can also go a long way toward providing structure and support for the garden.
The goal with edging is always to get sharp, neat edges that appear even and set off your garden. There are many techniques for achieving this end result.
But no matter which technique you choose, having some basic know-how and also following some general tips can help you greatly. For that reason, we have provided some great edging tips for you to try.
How We Chose Our Ratings
Before we get into our edging tips, you are probably wondering how we arrived at them.
Rest assured that we didn’t come up with them out of the blue. We also did not design them in an effort to get you to go out and buy a particular product.
This is not a sales pitch.
Really, our only goal is to help you to create the best garden possible, no matter how you choose to do it and regardless of whether or not you buy anything at all. In fact, for some of our edging methods, you might not even need to make a purchase. Some types of edging are simple and can be done with tools you have on hand.
With that out of the way, know that we did lots of research and work to arrive at our tips – all so that you wouldn’t have to put in this type of effort. Thus, with this information in mind, we hope you will enjoy and get a lot of use out of our tips.
8. Invest in a Metal Edging Strip
A lot of the time, when it comes to edging, people think they have to learn some advanced technique or be some kind of a gardening expert to be able to do a good job.
However, that is not the case at all. With edging, sometimes, you can just go out and buy a simple product to take care of it for you. Sure, your results might not be as perfect as they otherwise would be.
But as long as the job gets done, does it really even matter?
- Installs in minutes - easy to use and fast installation
- Durable construction - constructed of galvanized Steel iron and made to withstand extreme weather, the Pure Garden lawn edging is stronger and more stable than wood or plastic alternatives
For the non-perfectionist, the best option is to just go out and buy metal strips specifically made for garden edging. These strips are tough, strong, and they stand up straight. When inserted properly, they keep your edges well-formed and in-line.
Fortunately, there are plenty of tutorials online, as well as some great YouTube videos, on how to use these strips. Typically, they even come with instructions of their own.
With a little care, you can easily create great edges with these strips. And, while it might not look like a pro job, it’s enough to satisfy most homeowners.
Therefore, we give this simple solution a 2 out of 5 rating.
7. Dig Your Own Trench
If you don’t mind getting a bit more “hands on” with your edging, then we suggest digging your own trench.
It’s actually quite a bit simpler than you might have bargained for.
To do it, you will want to equip yourself with a spade or an edger. From there, work to dig a trench, about six inches wide and six inches deep. If you’re working with a smaller space, you can scale the width back to about four inches without a problem.
No matter what you choose in terms of measurements, make sure that the actual edge stays nice and straight, but do taper in your border edge a bit.
This method can take a bit of practice to get right and, unfortunately, you’ll need to commit to regular maintenance in order to keep things looking neat.
Nevertheless, it’s still a pretty slick option, which is why we rate it 2.5 out of 5.
6. Try Using a Specialized Tool
While creating a trench with nothing more than your hands and a spade is possible, there are some tools that make the job so much easier.
One such tool is the Black and Decker Edge Hog, which features a circular blade and wheels. You push the tool forward, and it will cut an edge in the soil for you.
Thanks to the design of the product, making curves is super easy, and your edges should turn out exactly the way you want them.
This product is very affordable too, and there are others like it if you don’t like this specific model.
For those who don’t mind a small investment in their garden, these types of tools are perfect, which is why we score this option a 3 out of 5.
5. Use Some Pretty Pavers or Other Edging Stones
For those who want their gardens to have a rustic, natural look, using stones for the edging is a great way to go.
You can buy pretty pavers to line the garden edge. These often look like bricks but come in different styles and colors.
However, there are all kinds of stones that you can buy and use to edge your garden.
Being able to pick the exact stones you want, as well as their size and style, makes it possible to create exactly the type of garden you want.
Thus, no matter what look you’re going for, stones and pavers are ideal. Just make sure to make them as flush with the ground as possible and ensure each piece is six inches wide for easier mowing.
As long as you do it right, this choice gets a 3 out of 5.
4. Try Plastic Edging
If you’re looking for an affordable way to edge your garden, we suggest going with plastic edging.
This type of edging is super cheap, and, if you install it correctly, it can actually look quite nice. The key is to get the highest quality edging you can find – the thicker and heavier, the better.
- EASYFLEX NO-DIG LANDSCAPE EDGING: Create a beautifully landscaped yard without having to hire a professional - lawn edging that is easy to install with no digging required
- KIT INCLUDES: 100-foot coil of black landscape edging measuring 1.5-inches tall, 5 connectors to create a seamless border between different pieces of edging, and 30 8-inch spiral spikes to hold edging in place
Also, try to make sure the edging is at least 5 to 5 ½ inches wide. Once you have the right edging type, install it carefully, leaving only about a third of the material visible.
Just like with stones and pavers, how well this method works depends on you and your installation skills.
In an ideal situation, however, this method deserves a 3.5 out of 5.
3. Create a Raised Border
For those who like the stone method of garden edging, but who want something a bit more pronounced and noticeable, a raised border is a great idea.
- This pack includes 4 boxes of the Gardeneer Grey Stonewall Faux Stone Border Edge.
- The interlocking design allows you to create curves or angles.
- The hand applied, grey finish brings an artistic and individualized look to each piece.
You can actually create one of these pretty simply. In fact, if you use the same stones as you would when creating a basic stone border but simply stack them two or three high, you can achieve an awesome look.
There are even kits designed specifically to help you create a raised border, and the results are great.
We like this method so much that we’ve given it a 3.5 out of 5.
2. Give Aluminum Edging a Try
We have covered many of the different edging types. However, one we haven’t touched on yet is aluminum, and that’s because we were saving it for almost the end.
Aluminum wins out over many of the other methods because it’s so very easy to install.
Plus, you can use aluminum edging to make both straight runs and curves, which allows for easy customization.
- EasyFlex aluminum landscape edging keeps your garden and flower beds weed-free and blocks grass from growing into your river rock or mulch landscaping. Virtually maintenance free, Dimex metal edging will not rust, rot, crack, or degrade over time.
There are even some styles of aluminum edging that don’t have overlapped joints, making them easier to use and customize.
As long as you’re carful to choose quality aluminum edging, we think this simple method deserves a 4 out of 5.
1. Try Wood Edging
We have saved the very best for the very last. Our top pick for garden edging is wood edging.
We like wood edging because of how nice it looks and how cheap it is. You can buy it in precut sections. Choose a section that has the height you need, or have your sections custom cut to your exact specifications.
No matter how you have your edging cut, you’ll be glad to know that wood edging is incredibly durable and affordable.
Plus, you can choose from different types of wood, like cedar or redwood. This also allows you to customize how your edges turn out.
Our only suggestion is to treat the wood if it’s not pre-treated. That way, it will last for longer and keep your garden looking its best for longer
Overall, we give this option a 5 out of 5.
As you can see, all kinds of edging materials and tools are available formaking your garden look its best.
However, before you run out and buy anything, keep a few tips in mind.
First, when it comes to general edging materials, like stone, aluminum, or anything in between, you want to buy the highest quality materials possible. Look for materials that are thick and sturdy. After all, they are going to be outside and exposed to the elements for a long time, so you want them to be as hardy as possible.
If you’re buying edging tools, especially the more expensive machinery type, then you also want to look for quality and durability.
Try and choose a product that comes with a good warranty so you’re protected in case something goes wrong with the product.
Also, don’t be afraid to shop around and compare prices. You can often get a great deal on these types of tools if you are a careful shopper.
Have Fun and Be Creative
While being a good shopper means being conscientious, it’s also okay to have some fun and be creative.
We’ve presented a lot of simple tips and ideas for doing your garden edging. However, there is no law that says you’re bound to the basics.
Remember, it’s okay to think outside of the box, to get creative, and to have some fun. Maybe you want to edge your garden with colorful pots or pieces of pottery. Or, maybe you like the idea of edging with decorated rubber mats or colorful marbles.
A lot of those creative ideas can be combined with some of our more practical ideas for a result that is uniquely you. For example, you can do edging with a tool and then add in decorative touches.
As long as you do quality work that can stand the test of time, you’re free to experiment and have fun with the creative and design aspects of it all.
Remember, too, that you can always change up your garden. You don’t have to stick with the same type of edging forever. In fact, it’s really fun to shake things up every once in awhile.
Get Started on Your Dream Garden Today
Now that you have an idea of how to edge your garden, as well as some awesome tips to follow, what are you waiting for?
We encourage you to choose an edging method, get the tools and/or materials you will need, and then dive right in.
Before you know it, your garden will be looking great!