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The market is full of interesting and varying edging solutions for your garden. However, many overlook the fact that paving actually makes very effective garden edging.
There are two main ways paving can be used as edging. The first way is to make flush edgings which can act as surface separators and mowing edges.
The second way is to install paving slabs as retaining edging, on edge. With a little preparation and skill paving edging can be cut into a variety of shapes including curves.
Using paving as edging is more labour intensive to install, however it is far more robust than many other edging products.
How do you use paving as retaining edging?
The best way to use paving as retaining edging is to install it vertically along beds and borders.
Excavate a foundation where you want your new edging to sit. Then lay a consistent and flush shallow concrete foundation to the channel.
Next cut your paving into consistent widths, cut them as neatly as possible so the heights are consistent when set in.
When your concrete has set, lay your vertical fillets of paving on edge along the foundation.
Mix up a 1:4 sharp sand and cement mortar mix and then haunch both sides into position.
Haunching is applying a triangular fillet of mortar to secure and strengthen edgings and other landscape elements.
How to make a mowing edge with paving?
The most common way of making edging with paving is by laying it flush with an adjoining surface. A typical arrangement would be installing paving as a mowing edge to a lawn.
Here the paving edging acts as a divider between lawn and flowerbed. To lay paving as a mowing edge simply cut your paving into consistent strips.
A good width for this is about 100mm!
If your lawn has many curves and organic shapes you could even cut the paving into squares.
This is a lot of cutting but creates an effective sett effect edging. Excavate a trench around the outside of your lawn to a depth of 120mm.
Supply and spread a 70mm layer of compactable sub-base like mot type 1 to the excavation. Compact the sub-base well and mix up a 1:4 cement and sharp sand mortar mix.
Set up a tight string line along the path and level you want your edgings. Using a bricklaying trowel lay your paving edging strips to the string line.
What is the best paving for edging?
The best paving for edging really is paving which already matches your existing garden. However it is always best to use a natural stone paving where colours will not fade.
It is also beneficial to use dense, natural, stone which does not absorb much water. Some examples of these include; sandstone, granite, slate and porcelain.
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