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Lawn edging

1 October 2011
Lawn edging

Article courtesy of Amateur Gardening - Britains leading weekly Gardening magazine available each Tuesday.

Kris neatens up the lawn with an easy-install plastic edging...

WHEN I laid my lawn two years ago I had the best intentions of keeping the edging neatly shaped with a weekly trim using shears. While the lawn is an essential element to the garden, it’s all to easy to get distracted with other more interesting jobs in the garden, so the weekly job soon became a monthly occurrence, then nothing more than an afterthought.
There are many options when it comes to edging the lawn (see boxes), and it really comes down to choosing the right product to suit the style of your garden and/or your budget. I do recommend steering clear of the very cheap corrugated plastic types however – they are prone to frost damage, can become brittle and are so flimsy they can soon loose their definition.
If your looking to add a permanent edge to your lawn this autumn, consider the four materials described here for a long lasting solution, and you can think about selling on those edging shears!

Plastic
With plenty of curves to my borders I’ve opted for Emerald Edging (available from B&Q), a flexible plastic product that can be easily moulded to the shape of my lawn. Each four foot (1.2m) section clicks easily to the next and should last for at least 10 years in the ground.
It’s an easy installation compared to other materials; no digging is required and the sharp bottom edge means the strips can be quickly knocked in to position with a mallet. A rubber mallet is best to avoid accidental damage, but a metal one can be employed if a piece of wood is used as a shock absorber.
I have some shallow tree roots running out from my borders, using a plastic product made it easy to cut out sections to avoid root damage. I’d have been in trouble is I’d used a metal edge.

Wood
Wooden options range from a simple straight plank pegged in between lawns and borders up to more decorative options like the half-log roll pictured. While this is a common option, for those looking for a perfect cut on their lawn, it is difficult to cut into the curves of the wood pieces.

 Metal 
Park planting beds are often edged with a thin metal strip, most often steel or aluminium such as the Borderline edging from Exceledge, but there is no reason not to bring it into the home garden. If I had the time and budget this would have been my first choice, it offers a high-end finish and should last a life time.

 Stone and brick  
 Bricks are a common edging choice, being deocraitve and hard wearing, but there are many other stone options. I’ve seen curved roofing tiles employed and there are many ornate stone edging options available. Using wider paving stones to edge the lawn would allow border plants to overhang without killing off lawn grass, and planted pots can be set on them to act as seasonal focal points around the garden.

Article courtesy of Amateur Gardening - Britains leading weekly Gardening magazine available each Tuesday.