Front Yard Landscaping – Tips for Using Edging
Edging can truly enhance your yard and garden to create a beautiful focal point. Nearly any material can be used for edging. Wood, metal, pavers and stone are the most common materials. They can be found at most home improvement stores and garden centers. The type and material of the edging you use would complement rather than clash with the style of your home. Here are a few ideas for landscape edging that you can try for yourself.
Brick or Concrete Pavers
Brick or concrete pavers are one of the most common landscape edging choices. Usually you can find them in a variety of colors, from off-white to brick red, so it’s easy to match them to your home. They have a classic look and feel, they last for years, and they are fairly easy to install. Use them around existing beds or a new bed by digging a couple of inches down and clearing out the debris. A layer of sand works well as a cushion underneath and will help you to level them out. Be sure to butt them up next to one another with as little space as possible in between. Keep your pavers about one-half inch above the surface if they’re laid flat so that your mower will glide over them easily.
Stone for Edging
Stone is another popular choice for edging. Stones come in all shapes, sizes and colors, including rounded natural stones and stackable stones. Stone is the most natural looking edging. It is well suited for country settings and less formal front yards. As with all landscape edging, prepare the area before you start by cleaning out the grass, weeds and excess dirt with a shovel. Imbedding stone in sand makes for quick work, or you can set stones in concrete for a more permanent edging.
Wooden Landscape Timbers
Wooden landscape timbers are very easy to find, super inexpensive and a breeze to work with. You can use them in two ways. One way is to leave them long and use them as straight lined edging around a long squared off bed. Add a couple of layers, making sure to use landscape spikes to hold them together. Or, you can cut timbers into shorter (12″ – 18″) pieces and stand them on edge around the bed. Bury one end about 4″ or so into the ground. Alternate between taller and shorter pieces for a unique and interesting look.
Metal Landscape Edging
Metal landscape edging isn’t nearly as eye-catching as other types. Metal provides more of a subtle division between the bed and front yard, meant to keep the two separate. Most metal edging is either steel or aluminum. Both work quite well. Steel is very heavy, but over time it will rust and may eventually need to be replaced. Aluminum is much lighter and won’t rust, meaning it should last a lot longer. The concept is simple, just dig a channel for the metal strip, place it, back fill and start to plant. Be sure to wear gloves when you’re working with this material. It can be sharp and you could easily get a nasty cut.
Unconventional Edging Materials
If traditional landscape edging doesn’t really float your boat, consider using unconventional materials such as bottles, old garden hoses or bowling balls. Bottles come in a variety of colors: blue, amber, clear, green, you name it. Just dig the trench around the bed and insert the bottles neck-side down and back fill like any other edging. They’ll catch the light and add an interesting and unique flare to your yard and garden. Garden hoses can be woven around stakes to create a garden wall that’s eco-friendly and unique. Bowling balls are colorful and unique in and of themselves, but when bordering a garden, they add a vibrant burst of color.
No matter what style of home you have, you can find a landscape edging material to complement and enhance it. Whether you’ve planted one small flower bed or several, landscape edging around the borders will keep the beds where they belong and the lawn where it belongs. A well-landscaped and creatively designed yard adds curb appeal to your home for a fairly small amount of money. You don’t have to hire a professional to get it done, either. Most edging is easy to install and maintain. Get creative though, don’t just settle for brick, stone, wood or metal edging. Let your personality shine through with unique and unexpected materials and applications.