How to Edge and Border Flower Beds

Overview

Edgings around flower beds give definition to a garden design and serve as useful guidelines dividing garden areas. There are many types of edges materials for your garden. Choose wood or unshaped stones for an informal or rustic garden setting. Brick, block, or molded concrete edgings provide more formal additions to gardens. When edgings border lawn grass, keep a narrow (about 2 inches) grass-free strip to make mowing easier.

Step 1

Use 4-inch stakes and string to mark area where edging will go. Pound stakes at intervals into the ground, just deep enough to hold. Loop string around the stakes. This works well to mark flower beds with straight lines. If you want to create or you have a flower bed with curves, use white sand to mark where edging will go. Snip a very small section of the corner of the sand bag and pour sand out evenly.

Step 2

Dig a trench 3 inches deep where your edging will be. The trench should be wide enough for your paving material. Some terracotta, molded concrete, or plastic edgings require a narrow trench. For stone or rock borders, dig the trench 2 inches deep. Discard soil, or use it to fill in a low-lying area in your yard.

Step 3

Use back of hoe to pat down inside of trench. Remove any excess dirt and make trench bottom even.

Step 4

Spread a 1-inch layer of sand evenly in trench.

Step 5

Place edging material in trench. Use your hand or a rubber mallet to tap the edging lightly into the ground.

Step 6

Pack soil around edging material. Use your hand or back of the hoe to pack down firmly.

Things You'll Need

  • Wood stakes, 4-inch
  • String
  • Measuring tape
  • White or colored sand (5 -lb. bag)
  • Hoe
  • Spade
  • Sand (20-lb. bag)
  • Edging material
  • Rubber mallet
  • Soil (20-lb. bag)

References

  • "Garden Design: How to be Your Own Landscape Architect"; Robin Williams; 1995.
  • "Creating Beds and Borders"; Lee Anne White; 2001.
  • "Beds and Borders: 40 Professional Designs for Do-It-Yourselfers"; Ray Skibinski and Susan A. Roth, et al; 1998.
Keywords: molded concrete, edging, flower bed

About this Author

Carmel Perez Snyder is a freelance writer living in Florida. She attended the University of Missouri and has been a journalist for more than 12 years. Her work has appeared in the AARP Bulletin, the Oklahoma Gazette, the Amarillo Globe-News, and eHow.