Adding edging to your garden beds provides a sense of balance to your yard and spotlights the beds in the same manner a frame does a picture. Edging also helps create pathways through the yard, hold mulch in the beds and make mowing easier. Cedar is a good choice for edging material, because it comes in many styles and sizes, is durable and rot-resistant, and provides a rustic element to the yard.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Things you need
- Pencil and paper
- Spray paint or lime
- Logs or 1-by-4-inch or 1-by-6-inch boards
- Optional cedar edging logs
- Optional spikes or stakes
Draw a scale model of your garden bed on paper. Plan on some curves for visual interest and possibly a raised bed.
Spray paint or use lime to mark where each bed will be.
Dig and prepare the bed before installing the edging. If the bed is already established, you can skip this step.
Dig a shallow trench around the perimeter of the bed. For the curved areas, cedar edging--where short, round logs are set on edge-works best. You can buy these in rolls strung together with plastic backing or make your own. Push these pieces into the ground and secure them with stakes. Nail the cedar to the stakes to assure they stay in place.
Place logs or boards into the trench and backfill with dirt. If you want to permanently embed the logs, pre-drill holes in the logs every 5 feet, then nail spikes through the logs into the soil to anchor them. If you are using boards, set the boards on edge in the trench and pound in stakes behind them at 5-foot intervals. Nail the stakes to the boards.
Use landscape timbers or sleepers for a raised bed, since they are heavy and usually 5 or 6 inches square. Bury half of the timber into the ground so it will stay in place without any additional reinforcement. Stack one more courses of timber on top of the first row, then fill with a mix of soil and compost.
Tips and warnings
- Fencing companies often throw away short pieces of cedar, so check with them for discounted materials.
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