Nothing is quite so "green" as gardening, and so it makes sense, when choosing an edging for your garden, that recycled objects should figure largely. Recyclable materials are everywhere, and since edging around garden beds tends to be low, it should be easy to find all you need with a bit of creative scrounging. Look for weathe- resistant items that contain no harmful chemicals for environmental and safe edging.
Probably the most plentiful recyclables you will find are ordinary glass bottles. If you cannot save enough yourself, enlist the aid of friends and family or check with local recycling facilities to see if they will allow you to haul off some of their excess glass. Make narrow trenches next to beds and bury your bottles upside down so that they protrude about halfway into the soil and halfway out. Mix and match sizes, colours and shapes for a varied and interesting border.
Sticks and Stones
Next time you have landscape work done on your home, do not automatically haul off those piles of rock or trimmed branches. Instead, use them to create a natural edging for your garden. Dig a trench as before, inserting 1- to 3-inch-diameter sticks about 12 inches long to the halfway point -- keeping them straight and close together. Intersperse large stones randomly along the stick path to keep it interesting and natural.
If you can get hold of an old fence before it goes to the landfill, try cutting sections down to edging size. Pound wooden stakes in the ground at intervals and screw the shortened fence sections to the stakes. This looks especially cute and countrified with a white picket-style fence. Cedar dog-ear fences yield particularly weather-resistant and durable boards that may be attached horizontally their full length after carefully dismantling them.
It may take a bit to get enough for really big garden beds, but if you haunt construction and demolition sites in your city long enough you should be able to come away with an impressive haul of old bricks and facing stones. Construction crews regular throw away such material or have it hauled as fill dirt. Being in the right place at the right time will provide you with a beautiful and extremely durable edging for your beds.
Rubber and Plastic
Recycled edging may also take the form of consumer goods made from recycled materials. If you are not a scrounger, but like the idea of supporting a healthy planet with smart, green purchases, consider rubber or plastic landscape edging made from soda bottles, tires and other postconsumer goods. It is easy to install, looks good and is durably green.
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