Building garden edges and raised beds

Whether it is flat or raised, garden edges are usually used to contain garden beds. They are also an integral part of the garden landscape and should be planned accordingly. To begin the project, you have to draw a detailed plan of your house and land. Each line that you draw will require some form of edge. The form may be a flat edge or a mowing step, a raised kerb to retain garden, or lawn, to control the flow of water, or raised garden bed. Next, decide on the edging material. Things that you should consider are the style of your house, the amount of money you have to spend, the degree of formality required and how readily the material is available.

Here are the types of materials that you can use to make for the garden edges and raised beds.

  • Stone

    Stone is an excellent hardwearing edging for the garden. You can choose the stones to be cut into regular shapes and the blocks butted closely together or mortared as for brickwork. You won\’t need a mowing strip if the blocks are laid flush with the ground. Undressed stone can be laid without or with mortared joints.

  • Bricks, tiles and pavers

    Edges are better with dry pressed house bricks that have a “frog” or a depression on one side than extruded bricks, which have holes running right through the brick. However, raised brick edges can sit directly on the soil. To prevent sideways movement, they are best contained on one side by a solid surface and on the other by a buttress of concrete. Terracotta tiles are used for raised edges and can be positioned in straight, curved or geometric lines. Clay pavers are used for making flat edges, such as mowing strips and are laid on the flat. Both are best supported by a solid surface and concrete buttress.

  • Timber

    To build the simplest form of timber edging, laid horizontally the lengths of treated pine or durable hardwood timber on edge and held in place by timber or metal pegs. Such timbers are suitable only for straight edging when laid horizontally. Install these vertically and then stack closely side by side for curved edges. They can also be cut off in a level line or the height can be staggered to create a one up, one down effect. New railways and old recycled sleepers make ideal edges. They are heavy to move but are strong and fairly durable. Their own weight is usually enough to hold them in place, whether bedded at ground level or rose to create an edge.

  • Concrete

    It can be used to make edgings of any shape or height. It has traditionally been neutral in color, but the use of oxides to color concrete is increasingly popular. Concrete strips can also be stamped or stenciled in variety of patterns. Precast concrete strips are available from most landscape supply centers. They are most suitable for straight edging where lengths can be butted together. The other concrete products such as cobblestones and pavers are laid in the same way as bricks.

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