A stone edging that wraps your herb or rose garden is a low-cost way to add whimsy and beauty to your yard's landscape. Stone edging also serves a practical purpose--giving you a cleaner mowing and trimming line, providing a root barrier to prevent invasive lawn grasses from entering flower beds, and adding value to your landscape. Consider the decor, colours, and materials in your yard's landscape right now, and then choose stones that complement what you already have.
Select your stones based on what materials and colours you like. Survey neighbours' gardens. Visit home garden shows. Go on a tour of homes in your city. You can find many varieties at a stone quarry or landscape stone store.
Spread out your tarp in front of the garden and place your spade, hose or rope, stones, and other tools and materials on the tarp.
Set up your stone border. Set a few stones at the beginning of the garden's edge. Stretch out a long rope in front of the stone and all the way down the border. Using a long rope leaves room for you to add additional stones and helps guide your border around the garden. (See the photo example on the Reader's Digest page in the references.)
Trace a border around the stones with the square spade. Make the border about half an inch to an inch away from the stone. Dig a shallow trench.
Cut a strip of landscape fabric--used to prevent weeds--to fit the bottom of the trench. Line the trench with 1 to 2 inches of sand. Smooth it out with a trowel or with your hands.
Lay your stones on top of the sand bed. Set the stones tightly together so the tops and front edges are even and about 1/2 inch above the soil. Finally, fill any gaps between the stones with extra sand. The stones need time to settle. Eventually, they should sit closer to the ground's surface.