Flower beds add a grace note to any landscaping. Edging the flower bed gives it a finished look, keeps grass from growing into the flowers, and mulch from washing away. A mowing strip that is level with the grass makes edging the lawn an easier task. A number of materials make good flower bed edging.
A border of stones looks good and can be used in formal or informal gardens. Bricks lined up and sunk to just a 1/2 inch or so above ground provide a platform for a lawn mower's wheel and allows the mower to get up close to the edge. Bricks two or three high and mortared enclose the bed more formally. River stones look natural in a country garden. Stacked stones three of four high provide an old estate manor look.
Railroad ties used horizontally look rustic. Wooden poles cut to different lengths and sunk vertically work as well. Country gardens look nice with an edging of interwoven branches 4 or 5 inches high. Lattice, either homemade or purchased, is a good edging material when used as a short fence. Two by fours from the lumber yard provide an inexpensive edging that will age to a gray patina. Wood, unless treated, will have to be replaced every few years as it will rot.
Wine or Glass Bottles
Recycled wine bottles, soda bottles or food storage bottles make a unique flower edging. Sink the bottles upside down so that only about 4 inches of glass show. Another alternative is to sink the bottles vertically to be level with the ground to use as a mowing strip similar to bricks.
Plant nurseries and home improvement stores sell a variety of materials used for edging including wire fencing, PVC edging, wood fencing, and stake fencing. Edging stones come in different sizes, shapes including curved pieces and designs with scalloped or straight edges. Pouring cement strips a few inches tall and wide provide quite a few feet of edging for a gardener on a budget. Pouring the cement into a trench dug so that the cement is level with the ground makes a good mowing path.
Flower beds edged with a 6-inch wide strip of mulch, gravel, wood chips, or bark provide a border between the beds and other elements of a garden. Formal gardens often have clipped hedges as an edging to the flower beds. Short mounding flowers such as alyssum or lobelia provide color as well as an edging when used as a border for the flower bed.