Garden Edging Options

Garden edging provides aesthetic and functional purpose in the home landscape. Edging holds mulch in place while defining the line between garden and lawn. Edging often blends with the exterior home décor to enhance the property's appearance. Garden edging options include relatively cheap edging materials and more complex, permanent additions to beautify the home landscape.

Plastic Edging

Thick molded plastic edging offers gardeners the option of defining a line between lawn and garden. Plastic edging requires partial burial beneath the soil surface to secure the material in place at the garden edge. The product features 4 to 5 inches of flat plastic topped by a rolled edge. The edge remains above ground to keep mulch in the garden bed and limit grass incursion into the garden bed. Excessive freezing and thawing during the winter often dislodges plastic edging. Higher-grade commercial plastic edging features a thicker plastic that withstands extreme weather. Manufacturers sell plastic edging stakes and connectors for easy installation.

Manual Edging

Manual edging requires the purchase of a sturdy edging shovel to dig a trench to mark the line between lawn and garden. Using a flat-blade shovel forms a neat dividing line that resists weed growth and collects runoff mulch from the garden bed. Manual edging requires the gardener to angle the shovel at 60 degrees to create the trench and that garden edge. Remove the section of soil and place the shovel blade right next to the previous cut. Manual edging requires touching up during the growing season to keep the edge sharp as well as re-digging of the trench each spring.


Edging a garden often requires great expense. Using native rocks provides a great opportunity for the gardener to place material collected from nearby construction sites or the landscape. Select rocks of similar shades and sizes to edge the garden bed. Manufactures also sell stones as well as plastic faux rocks for edging garden beds. Stone edging blends well with other styles of edging and provides a transitional look when paired with decorative stones placed in the garden bed.


Pre-formed cement and brick pavers require planning and construction to achieve a pleasing look. These pre-cast edging materials come in rounded, flat, square and oblong shapes that allow each homeowner to create her own edging look. Place materials flat for a smooth transition between garden and lawn or on end to create a stark dividing line. Pavers require the landscaper to dig a level trench and provide stability with a pea gravel bed under the pavers. Homeowners often pour sand into the fine crevices of pavers to discourage weed and grass growth into the garden bed or between pavers.

Wood Edging

Wood edging provides a natural brown tone that blends well with any exterior home color. Wood edging takes the form of landscape timbers or pre-cut block banded together with wire. These sections of edging require minimal digging for installation other than a 2-inch trench to stabilize the wood. Wood landscape timbers require complete leveling of the site and stabilization using large nails. Use landscape timbers for straight line gardens or stacked in multiple levels to create a low-lying retaining wall.

Keywords: garden edging materials, garden edging options, landscape edging

About this Author

S.F. Heron is an avid gardener with three years of experience in online writing and a working background in aviation and earth and ocean sciences. She is published on various sites, including Helium, eHow and Xomba. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in journalism from the University of Maryland.