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Get an Edge with These Landscaping Tips

Summer is here, and now is the perfect time to get started on some outdoor home improvement projects. Getting your landscaping in order is one of the simplest things you can do, and it can make a major difference in your curb appeal. Whether you decide to take on a major landscaping update or you just want to clean up what you already have, learning how to properly edge your borders and flower beds will go a long way towards giving your outdoor space an upscale look. Luckily, once you know how to do it right, edging is a simple home improvement project that's easy to DIY.

Here's how to create a beautiful edge in four simple steps. 

  1. Define Your Edge The first step in the process is to outline the edge of your bed. If you're creating a new bed, use string and stakes or a garden hose to outline the shape. You can create your edge manually using a half-moon edger or a spade, but this has some drawbacks. For example, cutting curves will be a challenge. You may have better luck heading to the home improvement store and buying an edging tool, like and "Edge Hog." You can typically find one for about $100 or less and many homeowners find that it's well worth the investment. Whenever you take on a home improvement project, having the right tools will make a major difference.

  2. Remove the Turf  Next, use a spade to create a deeper cut that goes about four to six inches into the ground on either side. Ideally, you'll want to cut it at a 90-degree angle. If you do it right, you should be able to pull up the turf by hand.

  3. Add Mulch to Your Bed Next, you'll want to add approximately two to three inches of mulch to your freshly-edged bed. There are plenty of different options at the home improvement store so you can choose the color and texture that appeals to you. Most beds look best with a dark mulch as it will make your edging stand out. Adding mulch will also help keep weeds from growing up. You'll want to place your mulch so that it slopes gently down and goes right to the edge of the turf. 

  4. Maintain Your Edge  As with many home improvement projects, this isn't a set-it-and-forget-it task. To keep your edges looking great, it's a good idea to work on maintaining it a little bit at a time about once a week. Using a shovel or a weed walker can cause your beds to slowly expand, so you may want to just maintain them with a pair of edging shears.

Keeping up with your edges can be a bit tedious, but it's well worth it. When your flower beds are impeccably manicured, all of your other outdoor home improvement projects will look much better. 

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